PUSSY

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Pussy: An operatic adaptation of Angela Carter’s Puss in Boots
Dates to be announced later in the new year

“Commedia dell’arte meets Carry On Camping.”

Renato’s Theatre Company presents Pussy, with words by A.C.H. Smith and music by Christopher Northam. Pussy is an operetta adapted from Angela Carter’s version of Puss in Boots, one of the stories in The Bloody Chamber collection, which she also adapted for radio. Carter’s genius was to unfurl the feline raunchiness implicit in Charles Perrault’s tale. The target it hits is the male chauvinism which imprisons human sexuality. The outcome is high comedy.

The score of Pussy is composed by Christopher Northam. As composer he regularly performs at the Colston Hall and Hippodrome, and for the BBC, as well as recent opera dates in the West Country, Wales, and abroad. His film work includes Robert Altman’s Gosford Park (with his brother, the actor Jeremy Northam). A previous collaboration with A.C.H. Smith was the Molière-based opera Doctor Love, music by David Lyon, performed at the Tobacco Factory in Bristol. A reviewer described it as “commedia dell’arte meets Carry On Camping.”

A.C.H. Smith is a playwright, novelist, and poet. His stage works, drawing on the history of Bristol, include God’s Wonderful Railway and Up The Feeder, Down the ‘Mouth (both Bristol Old Vic), The Redcliffe Hermit and Walking The Chains. Peter Brook invited him on a three-month tour of Iran to write a book about Brook’s and Ted Hughes’s experimental production, Orghast. He has been writer-in-residence at the University of Texas (where Angela Carter was a predecessor), director of the Cheltenham Literature Festival, and presenter of many programmes for HTV and the BBC.

 

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Cast

In order of appearance

Puss – Simon Vardaki

Master – Tom Manson

Mademoiselle – Isabella Jackson

Hag –Sheila Hannon

 Tabitha – Natasha Sutton-Williams

 Librettist – A.C.H. Smith

 Composer and accompanist – Christopher Northam

Director – Roland Oliver

 Musical Director – Harry Haden-Brown

 Choreographer – Kay Zimmerman

 Producer – Marie Mulvey-Roberts

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