Hot Mikado, the musical comedy based on The Mikado, is vibrantly brought to life by House of GreasePaint; the in-house theatre company at Staffordshire University and South Staffordshire College. The cast have all trained at either one or both of these institutions and it was a pleasure to see a wealth of talent on stage for this uproarious production.
Following the story of Nanki-Poo (charismatically played by Daniel Roberts), the Mikado’s son, he arrives in the town of Titipu to find his one true love, Yum-Yum (played by Abbie Mead). However, he discovers Yum-Yum is marrying Ko-Ko. Meanwhile, the Mikado (played by James Rowney) demands Ko-Ko execute one person within the next month. Nanki-Poo strikes up a deal with Ko-Ko that if he can be husband to Yum-Yum for one month, he will then agree to be executed, but the plan goes awry when Katisha and the Mikado pay a visit…
The cast (which also included Alfie Kentesber, Vitalyia Harbord and Kaii Songhurst) hilariously captured what sounds like a head-spinning tale with assured performances. Elliot Lolley was superb as Pish-Tush, not only did he deliver with impressive vocals, but he was also utterly engaging throughout. The standout performances of the night came from Jamie Jones as Ko-Ko and Rachel Wrighte as Katisha. What a stunning pair of performers.
Wrighte commanded the stage as Katisha, with Hour of Gladness exhibiting her truly powerful vocals, whilst Jones had the audience in absolute fits of laughter. You could feel the audience anticipating each of his entrances, because he well and truly shone. I’ve Got A Little List and Tit-Willow were especial highlights and together Jones and Wrighte were brilliant in Beauty in the Bellow.
With direction from Laurie Asher, choreography from Katie McDonagh and musical direction from David Bebbington, House of GreasePaint should be delighted with their inaugural production, because there certainly was burgeoning talent in abundance.
Hot Mikado plays at Lichfield Garrick until 30 May. For more information and to book tickets for this show click here or call Lichfield Garrick’s box office on 01543 412 121.
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