Feisty and beautiful Princess Ida is a medieval heroine who has founded a women's university to escape an arranged marriage. Her childhood fiance, Prince Hilarion, and his friends, disguise themselves to gain entry with hilarious results. This is a delightful, comic battle of the sexes that combines Gilbert's wicked humour with Sullivan's most vibrant music.

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NODA report from Sally Holmes 22 May 2015

'Princess Ida, one of Gilbert and Sullivan’s less performed operas, was new to me but I am very pleased to have had the opportunity to see this first-rate show by Harrogate G&S Society.
The show was lively, moving along at a good pace with plenty of humour. The singing and acting were of an extremely high standard. There were some superb solo performances, most notably from Donald Stephenson as King Hildebrand – his diction was excellent at all times, Rachel Warren as Princess Ida – her singing was absolutely beautiful and I particularly liked Valerie Greens portrayal of Lady Blanche. There were also superb supporting roles from Brittany Rachin as Lady Psyche and Jane Fawcett as Melissa. I loved the humour from the three “friends” Colin Belsey as Hilarion, Gordon Fawcett as Cyril and John Carter as Florian.
Chorus work was superb and the diction of the cast was of an extremely high standard – not easily achieved in G & S especially. For me, this made the production so much easier to follow.
The costumes by Mary Glaze and Elizabeth Stagewear were spectacular and complimented the scenery, by Paul Lazell, which was very striking.
The orchestra, under the baton of Oliver Longstaff, was excellent and they played sympathetically without drowning out the cast on stage. All of the singing was beautiful and could be heard with such clarity – they had obviously been well drilled in their singing by their chorus master Nicholas Whitaker.
Congratulations must go to Alistair Donkin (Director) on this superb production, and I look forward to seeing Pirates of Penzance in 2016!'

A quick snapshot of what goes on courtesy of the Ripley Castle Estate

The cast

King Hildebrand
Donald Stephenson

Hildebrand's son
Colin Belsey

Hilarion's friend
Gordon Fawcett

Hilarion's friend
John Carter

King Gama
David McDonald

Gama's son
David Parker

Gama's son
David Nield

Gama's son
Peter Haken

Princess Ida
Gama's daughter
Rachel Warren

Lady Blanche
Professor of Abstract Science
Valerie Green

Lady Psyche
Professor of Humanities
Brittany Rachin

Lady Blanche's daughter
Jane Fawcett

Girl Graduate
Roz Ebbetts

Girl Graduate
Catherine Culligan

Girl Graduate
Julie Robinson

Soldiers, Courtiers, Girl Graduates, Daughters of the Plough

Wendy Belsey
Carrie Brown
Jim Coleman
Graham Woods
Helen Johnson
Charlotte Brown
Martin Johnson
Madeleine Johnson
Dot Haken
Daniel Stanford
Gwen Nuttall
Liz Kelley

Sam Westwood