Actor Richard Gauntlett swaps panto for pirates at Norwich theatre

The National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company is bringing The Mikado to Norwich Theatre Royal in S

The National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company is bringing The Mikado to Norwich Theatre Royal in September.Theatre Royal pantomime stalwart Richard Gauntlett is among the actors in the show. He is pictured to the right of this photo as the character Ko Ko. Photo: submitted. - Credit: submitted

He is best known in Norwich for playing the pantomime dame, but soon Richard Gauntlett will be returning the Theatre Royal in a different role.

The National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company is bringing The Pirates of Penzance to Norwich Theat

The National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company is bringing The Pirates of Penzance to Norwich Theatre Royal in September.Theatre Royal pantomime stalwart Richard Gauntlett is among the actors in the show. He is pictured to the far left of this photo as the character Major General Stanley. Photo: submitted. - Credit: submitted

Mr Gauntlett, whose most recent pantomime role was Nurse Dorothy Dumpling in Snow White, will this September be performing with the National Gilbert and Sullivan Company at the city venue.

It is the first time the company has presented a double bill in the city and Mr Gauntlett will be taking on main roles in both of the comic operas, playing Ko Ko in The Mikado and Major General Stanley in Pirates of Penzance.

'It will be lovely to come back to Norwich and be on stage at the Theatre Royal without having to worry about my frock or tights,' said Mr Gauntlett, who has written, starred in and directed Norwich Theatre Royal pantomimes for many years.

'I am very excited to be back in the city. These two productions are brilliant and audiences are in for a real treat. Oh yes, they are!'

One of Richard's co-stars from last year's pantomime will also be in the shows - Bruce Graham, who played Igor The Henchman in Snow White, will play Poo Bah and the Sergeant of Police.

The Gilbert and Sullivan fun begins on September 2 with The Mikado, a show set in a Japanese village where flirting becomes an offence and fun is poked at the layers of officialdom who police the community. On September 3 The Pirates of Penzance will then take to the stage.

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Co-producer Neil Smith said: 'We brand our Gilbert and Sullivan as fun, friendly and for all the family...There is a lot of humour in them. It is respectful to the piece, the costumes are generally very traditional and we want to keep hold of that because it is part of our heritage.'

The Mikado will be performed on September 2 at 7.30pm and Pirates of Penzance on September 3 at 2.30pm and 7.30pm.

To book, call the box office on 01603 630000 or visit www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.uk

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