Guys And Dolls
WINNER - Millennium Award for Best Set Design (NODA) - Derek Bramwell
8th - 13th November 1999
Photographs by John Tustin
Production Officials
Director Roy E. Iddon
Musical Director Daniel Robins
Choreographer Barbara Martin
Sky Masterson Michael Ball
Sarah Brown Lindsay Farnworth
Nathan Detroit Michael Taylor
Miss Adelaide Adrienne Wormald
Nicely Nicely Paul Brennan
Benny Southstreet Don Howcroft
Arvide Abernathy Ernest Dawson
General Cartwright Jane Bickerstaffe
Big Jule Norman Bowers
Harry the Horse Adrian Yapp
Rusty Charlie Jeff Christie
Agatha Sylvia Fishwick
Lt. Brannigan John Holloway
Angie the Ox Eddie Williams
Mimi Kay Brannon
Liverlips Louie Ron Finney
Society Max Kevin Ogden
Hotbox Girls Carole Brooks, Liane Critchley, Janet Witt
Murray Brindle, Harry Lee, Keith Richardson, Bill Sharples, David Witt
Mission Band
Clare Brennan, Christine Catherall, Paul J. Duckworth, Doreen Healey, Cecilia Keefe, Barry Newth, Mary Pycroft, Joyce Walters, Norma Wilcock
Havana Girls
Caroline Burke, Ann Coleman, Lucy Finney, Janet Munnery, Kate Tarrant
Ros Binge, Jenny Brindle, Helena Houghton, Elizabeth Pycroft, Jean Maden, Rita Margiotta, Maria Sharrocks, Janet Smith, Bess Williams
  • Crapshooters "Luck Be A Lady Tonight" Crapshooters "Luck Be A Lady Tonight"
  • Sky Masterson Sky Masterson
  • Sky and Sarah in the Mission Sky and Sarah in the Mission
  • Miss Adelaide Miss Adelaide
  • Benny, Nathan and Nicely with the Gamblers "Guys And Dolls" Benny, Nathan and Nicely with the Gamblers "Guys And Dolls"
  • Sarah Brown Sarah Brown
  • The Mission Band "Follow The Fold" The Mission Band "Follow The Fold"
  • Nicely-Nicely and Benny Southstreet Nicely-Nicely and Benny Southstreet
  • The Hot Box Girls "A Bushel And A Peck" The Hot Box Girls "A Bushel And A Peck"
  • Miss Adelaide at the Hot Box Miss Adelaide at the Hot Box
  • "Guys And Dolls" "Guys And Dolls"
  • The Gamblers wait for the Prayer Meeting The Gamblers wait for the Prayer Meeting
  • Big Jule and Lt Brannigan Big Jule and Lt Brannigan
  • Sarah and Arvide "More I Cannot Wish You" Sarah and Arvide "More I Cannot Wish You"
  • Miss Adelaide and The Hot Box Girls "Take Back Your Mink" Miss Adelaide and The Hot Box Girls "Take Back Your Mink"
  • Sky and Sarah in Havana Sky and Sarah in Havana
  • Nathan and Adelaide "Sue Me" Nathan and Adelaide "Sue Me"
  • Nicely-Nicely "Sit Down You're Rocking The Boat" Nicely-Nicely "Sit Down You're Rocking The Boat"
  • The Wedding finale The Wedding finale

  • Bolton Evening News Review
  • NODA North West News Review
It would take a musically confident and talented bunch to tackle this Broadway favourite - and Walmsley certainly don't sell themselves short. Guys and Dolls - a musical fable of Broadway - first hit the New York stage in 1950 and has been a firm favourite with audiences ever since. The well-known classics kept an enthralled audience toe-tapping right the way through the three hour performance.

The story centres round a group of gangsters, an illegal gambling game and their quest to get their dolls. Of course everyone knows how it's going to finish, but that's not the point. It's nice just to be able to sit back, relax and enjoy the show. Directed by Roy Iddon, he and his talented cast have crafted an outstanding show.

All the leads had exceptional voices and demonstrated their musical or acting talents, led by musical director Daniel Robins. Sky Masterson (Michael Ball) and Sarah Brown (Lindsay Farnworth), performed a wonderful duet "I'll Know" as did Paul Brennan and Don Howcroft singing "Guys and Dolls" as Nicely-Nicely and Benny. The best number of the night was the gangsters' sewer-singing venture led by Sky Masterson and Luck Be A Lady.

Everything about this production down to the detailed sets and authentic costumes oozed professionalism. If it's not already sold out, it is well worth a vist.

Louise Tansey
This is one show I always look forward to seeing because of the music and lyrics of Frank Loesser and the many elements within the show which give amateur societies plenty of scope.

Over the years I have seen many good performances both collectively and individually and, in this case, non better than than the superb performance of Adrienne Wormald as Miss Adelaide. She had the stage presence, was vocally excellent, good accent and a personality that made you sympathise with her predicament as the longest serving fiancee in the world.

The remaining cast members had their work cut out not to be completely overshadowed and, in varying degrees, most did quite well. Lindsay Farnworth captured the facets of the Sarah Brown character, sang quite well, and is a young lady of considerable promise for the future.

The trio of Nicely-Nicely (Paul Brennan), Benny (Don Howcroft) and Rusty (Jeff Christie) had contrasting characters whilst working well together with Paul coming into his own with an excellent "Sit Down You're Rockin' the Boat" number. Norman Bowers was a convincing Big Jule, both in voice and presence, whilst Ernest Dawson as Arvide Abernathy sang "More I Cannot Wish You" with much sincerity. John Holloway made a believable Lt Brannigan as he tried to nail down the elusive crap game.

Two other good performances came from Michael Ball as the debonair high roller Sky Masterson whilst Michael Taylor never overplayed his hand as the all time loser Nathan Detroit. Both delivered the dialogue well, looked comfortable with their parts with Sky making the most of "Luck Be A Lady" and Nathan particularly good in the "Sue Me" duet with Adelaide.

The small orchestra under the director Daniel Robins seemed a little unbalanced at times and some of the numbers were sorely lacking in pace. This affected the dancers in the Hot Box numbers which appeared a little staid and the "Crapshooters Ballet" which was less than athletic.

I have reported previously about the quality of the scenery at this society and this show was no exception. Whilst one of the scene changes was a little laboured the stage was bedecked with a multitude of neon signs, a well designed box set arrangement at the rear of the stage transformed itself from outside the mission to inside the mission to the Hot Box club whilst the sewer scene had the sound of dripping water and a slight echo when the characters spoke. Full marks to the backstage team. An enjoyable show with which the society, and the director Roy E. Iddon, can be justifiably pleased.

Glyn Neary

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