and lyrics by Lionel Bart 'freely adapted' from the novel
'Oliver Twist' by Charles Dickens.
Monday 1st to Saturday 6th March 1999
At Gordon Craig Theatre,
Mon-Sat 7:45 pm, Saturday Matinee 2:30 pm.
Director - Jim Snell, Musical Director - Justin Thomas,
Choreographer - Mollie Gilbert.
undoubtedly one of the greatest musicals ever written.
Bart's interpretation lightens the bleak picture Dickens
painted of lower class life in Victorian England by adding
cheery music and a good dose of cockney humour.
With a host of
well known songs including 'Consider Yourself', 'You've got
to pick a pocket or two', 'I'll do anything', 'Oom-Pah-Pah'
and 'As long as he needs me'; this musical cannot fail to
please a wide audience.
astounding success of Oliver!
at the New London Theatre, London on 30 June 1960. With a
run of 2618 performances, it held the longest running
musical record until overtaken by Jesus Christ Superstar. On
Broadway, it opened at the Imperial Theatre on 6 January
1963 and ran for 774 performances. Oliver! remained the
longest-running British musical on Broadway until Evita
surpassed it some 20 years later. The most recent London
revival opened on 8 December 1994 starring Jonathan Pryce as
Fagin, Sally Dexter as Nancy and Miles Anderston as Bill
Sikes. The show was directed by Sam Mendes and produced by
Cameron Mackintosh. Notable also is the 1968 film version
which won a total of 6 Oscars including Best Picture.
Thespians are pleased to be able to present this show by
arrangement with MusicScope and Stage Musicals Limited of
New York to play at the Gordon Craig Theatre, Stevenage from
1 to 6 March 1999. With Jim Snell as the producer, Justin
Thomas as Musical Director and Mollie Gilbert in charge of
choreography, we intend to continue the long success of this
in a charity workhouse in Victorian London. The orphan boys,
summoned for their daily ration of gruel, fantasise of the
food they would like to be given. Only Oliver dares to ask
the workhouse manager Mr Bumble, for more with the famous
line "Please sir, I want some more". Oliver, excluded from
the workhouse on account of his 'unacceptable' greed, is
taken by Mr Bumble to be sold. After being hauled through
the streets of London, he is finally bought by an
undertaker. In the funeral parlour, he is teased by another
apprentice about his longing for his mother. Oliver escapes
and makes his way to London where he meets The Artful Dodger
- always on the lookout for likely lads on behalf of his
Fagin who tells him what he has to do to stay, "You've got
to pick a pocket or two". Oliver is befriended by Nancy,
girlfriend of the thief Bill Sikes. The next morning, Oliver
is shown the ropes by The Artful Dodger, but he is caught at
his first attempt of stealing and taken away by the police.
When Oliver is let off by the judge, Mr Brownlow, who had
earlier called him a thief, takes him to his home.
Meanwhile, Nancy is entertaining the locals at the Three
Cripples Public House. She stops as Sikes enters and learns
of Oliver's capture. Concerned that Oliver might tell the
police about his unorthodox activities, Sikes orders Nancy
to find the boy. Nancy reluctantly does so, out of love of
Sikes, but feels guilty about taking Oliver away from what
could be a happy home.
Oliver awakes to see a joyful scene of street vendors
selling their wares. Later he goes out on an errand for Mr
Brownlow to return some books, but on leaving the house, is
taken by Sikes and Nancy and returned to Fagin's den, where
he is threatened by Sikes. After the furore dies down, Fagin
reflects upon his life as a villain and considers, then
rejects, settling down to a normal life. Meanwhile, Mrs
Bumble, the workhouse manager's wife, tries to make her
fortune by revealing to Mr Brownlow a locket that belonged
to Oliver's mother, his daughter, who ran away to bear an
illegitimate child. Mr Brownlow is furious that she had it
all along and made no attempt to seek Oliver's family.
sorry for her part in capturing Oliver, offers to help
Brownlow get Oliver back. In bringing Oliver to a
rendezvous with him, she is killed by Sikes for her
betrayal. Sikes takes Oliver back to Fagin's den but he is
followed by Bow Street Runners who kill Sikes and reunite
Oliver with his grandfather.
happily with Oliver returned to his family and Fagin setting
off into the sunset.
(In order of
Thomas Briggs / Joseph Eddy
Mr Bumble David Springate
Widow Corney Veronica Crowley
Noah Claypole Mike Niles
Mr Sowerberry Mike Barker
Mrs Sowerberry Elaine Cousins
Charlotte Alex Evans
Artful Dodger Carl Rutherford
Fagin Simon Latter
Nancy Lesley Houldcroft
Bet Sami-Jo Ward
Old Sally Joanna Chugg
Bill Sykes Tom Evans
Bullseye - Cass
Mrs Bedwin Rose Saunders
Mr Brownlow Eddie Cullum
Dr Grimwig Arthur Warne
Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday matinee
Simon Allen, Claire Bailes, Daniel Barnes, Laura
Benney, Danielle Boxer, Rhiannon Budin-Jones,
Erin Crockford, Stephanie Dakakni, James Fletcher, Rebecca
Healy, Eleonor Huggins,
Susie Kirby, Heather Lawther, Emily Piper, Phillip Skinner,
Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday evening
Louise Agnew, Melissa Aimes, Jemma Balch, Amy
Balmforth, Clare Chadney, Mark Chamberlain,
Justine Dickson, Kirsty McArthur, Ian Mardale, Paul
Monaghan, Steven Monaghan,
Amy OMahoney, Lucy Potterton, Sally Potterton, Jennifer
Kiersten Adams, Peter Bailey, Katy Bonja, Christine
Brown, Slava Budin-Jones, Ron Burton,
Michael Bullen, Alan Dickinson, Sandra Goodman, Adrian
Johnson, Jack Lardent, Caroline Lock,
Nick Morgan, Keith Mortland, Carolyn Roberts, Alexandra
Robinson, David Ross,
Vivienne Tadman, Sarah Welch, Jan Williams, David Young,
Paul Adams, Michelle Arnold, Gillian Bailey, Roger
Bailey, Roy Benney, Alison Day,
Lucie Day, Ranae Gray, Paul Harris, Neil Johnston, Michelle
Johnstone, Marie Knight,
Donna Potter, Michael Roberts, Mark Savage, Andrew Wyllie
selection of pictures from the show. Click on images to
see larger version.
Oliver is introduced
to Fagin, Nancy and the gang of boys.
Oliver is introduced
to pick pocketing.
The locals enjoy a
typical night at 'The Three Cripples'.
Nancy after an
with Bill Sykes, sings 'As long as he needs me'.
Oliver after being
adopted, runs an errand.
Bill Sykes snatches
Oliver back to a life of crime.
All the cast on stage
for the curtain calls.
Backstage crew, the
Producer, Musical Director join the cast on stage.
Reviews - click for larger version