Genesius Guild brings ‘Pirates’ to region

2013-02-22T00:00:00Z Genesius Guild brings ‘Pirates’ to regionTim Shellberg Times Correspondent
February 22, 2013 12:00 am  • 

To Genesius Guild director David Long, staging the musical “The Pirates of Penzance,” is truly a collaborative effort between he and his cast.

“Obviously I blocked the whole show, but there are some things, where the pirates are abducting girls and the pirates and the police are fighting, where I gave everyone parameters and let them take off on their own,” he said. “It’s been endlessly creative, and funnier than I could have come up with for each individual person.”

Opening Feb. 23 and running through March 10 at Hammond’s First United Methodist Church, “Penzance” tells the tale of Frederic, a young pirate apprentice, who finds adventures with a band of seasoned pirates and falls in love with Mabel, the daughter of a prominent major.

Originally staged as an opera in 1880 and created by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan and a theatrical staple ever since, “Pirates” was updated a century later by Joseph Papp. Opening on Broadway in 1981 and starring Kevin Kline and Linda Ronstadt, Papp’s “Pirates” took home a handful of Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and ran for nearly 800 performances.

“It’s a show that I think of as comedy,” Long said. “The situations are silly and in British (comedy) style … it’s been a long time since it’s been done (regionally) and the music is great and the comedy is great. The characters are just so fun, and the audience and the performers, I think, have a great time.”

Leading Genesius Guild’s cast of “Pirates” are Justin Treasure as Frederic, Mary Herrod as Mabel and Jeff DeBoer as the Pirate King.

“It’s a very fun group of people,” Long said of his cast. “They’re very fun and very creative.”

Next up for Genesius Guild is a production of the drama “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” which is scheduled to open at First United Methodist Church April 19.

Copyright 2014 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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