Monday, 13 February 2012

Aden: Random Memories 13: The Mikado

In the programme I have my own special entry Ko-Ko’s Sword Bearer-Timothy Ellis. My role was silent but crucial to the drama, and heavens above I also had to carry a sword! Now, theatre is all about illusion, I can reveal (and I hope this revelation doesn’t destroy any belief that theatre is heightened reality) the sword was not real. It was made of wood.
My big moment came when the chorus (which included my father) sang the word “Defer” very loud. Ko-Ko suddenly became timid and jumped out of his skin. I turned and looked at him, with perfect timing, most haughtily. I’m even better at it as I get older.
We put on six performances from 5th to 10th November 1962 at 8.30 p.m. at the Khormaksar Primary School Theatre. However, the best was yet to come! On 11th November the entire cast and orchestra were ferried far out into the harbour where we boarded the Ark Royal and gave a performance in the Upper Hangar. Thanks for the specific information here is due totally to this website address I Googled “Steamer Point Light Opera Society” and this is one of the few entries I found. I can’t give a direct thank you to the website creator, so I trust this will do.
After the performance the Mikado (who terrified the life out of me when in costume) gave me two of his prop “elliptical billiard balls”. One bears the now faded inscription “To Tim from Mik”. Vincent Martinelli, whoever you were, wherever you are, you made one eight years and 2 days old kid really happy that night.
The only bad thing about it all concerned my mother who was one of those who helped the wardrobe mistress. They got her first name wrong in the programme, Maria instead of Margaret. That’s grownups for you.

© 2012 Gwailo54


Anonymous said...

How nice to find someone else who remember "The Mikado" performance on the HMS Ark Royal. I played the leading part of 'Peep-bo'. At the time my name was Helena van den Berg.
Thank you very much for sharing your memories with the wider world.

Tim The Nomad said...

I was terrified by the Mikado, but when he gave me his (polystyrene) elliptical billiard balls with to Tim from Mik on them after the Ark Royal I felt as pleased as Punch. I still treasure them.

I'm sorry I don't remember you specifically but it was a long time ago!