2017 Guys and Dolls.jpg
20th - 24th June 2017
at The Halifax Playhouse

A musical fable of broadway based on a story and characters of Damon Runyon
Music and Lyrics by Frank Loesser
Book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows

This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Ltd on behalf of Music Theatre International of New York

Guys and Dolls

Guys and Dolls is a musical romantic comedy involving the unlikeliest of Manhattan pairings: a high-rolling gambler and a puritanical missionary, a showgirl dreaming of the straight-and-narrow and a crap game manager who is anything but.

Set in the Manhattan of Damon Runyon’s short stories, Guys and Dolls tells of con-man Nathan Detroit’s efforts to find new life for his illegal, but notorious, crap game. When their trusty venue is found out by the police, Nathan has to find a new home for his crap game quickly - but he doesn’t have the dough to secure the one location he finds. Enter Sky Masterson, a high-rolling gambler willing to take on any honest bet with a high enough reward attached. Nathan bets Sky that he can’t take the “doll” of Nathan’s choosing to Havana, Cuba, with him on a date. When Sky agrees to the bet, Nathan chooses uptight Evangelist Sergeant Sarah Brown, head of Broadway’s Save-a-Soul Mission. Sky thinks he’s been duped, but he’s in for even more of a surprise when his efforts to woo Sarah are so successful that he falls in love with her himself!

NODA Review

For their 110th anniversary production Halifax Light Opera Society presented Guys and Dolls with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser based on the book by Jo Swerland and Abe Burrows, taking us into Runyonland with Damon Runyon's characters involving Salvationists, Gamblers and Showgirls. This musical first premiered in 1950 and has lost none of its popularity and allure for the audience.  The opening scene over the overture was well choreographed showing the commings and goings on in the street involving the different characters.

Their first Sky Masterson had to drop out unfortunately due to illness and Ben Garbett literally stepped out of the the chorus into the lead role late on in rehearsals, giving an extremely polished and assured performance.  Innocent Sarah Brown (Emliy Hurst) gave a fine characterisation and sang with conviction.  The long suffering fiance Miss Adelaide, (Louise Whyte) with her perfect Bronx accent, confidently executed her Lament, always a highlight.  Nathan Detroit (Craig Tucker) showed depth and understanding of the role with good vocal abilities.  Nicely-Nicely Johnson, (Ian Smith) gave a robust performance and his big number "Sit Down You're Rocking the Boat" was very well received. Harry the Horse, Benny Southstreet, Rusty Charlie and Lt Branning all gave convincing performances.  There were also experienced character performances from General Cartwright and Avride Abernathy with a praiseworthy rendition of "More I Cannot Wish You". Lovely dance sequence in the Havana scene and a superb Sewer scene with an excellent "Luck Be Your Lady".

A happy lively production that deserves to be a success, my sincere congraulations to all.


Jacqui Hartley - NODA representative District 10


Nicely-Nicely Johnson
Ian Smith

Benny Southstreet
Ned Smith

Rusty Charlie
Andrew Ingham

Sarah Brown
Emily Hurst

Arvide Abernathy
Stephen Jamieson

Harry the Horse
Roy Greenwood

Lt Brannigan
Peter McDonnell

Nathan Detroit
Craig Tucker

Miss Adelaide
Louise Whyte

Sky Masterson
Ben Garbett

Joey Biltmore
Tony Speight

Rachel Woffenden

General  B.Cartwright
Ann Hindle

Big Jule
Tom Watson

Ensemble and Hot Box Dancers
Francesca Hardman-Saiao, Rachel Woffenden, Carole J.Greenwood, Pat Schofield, Paige Fletcher, Amy Straw, Lynn Acton, Janet Fletcher, Sue Varley, Helen Fantom, Julie Stott, Pippa Wilson, Laura Ogden, Rachel Priestwood, Phil Roberts, Henry Foulkes, Andrew Ingham, Tony Speight

Creative Team

Steve Tetlow

Alexandre Townend

Musical Director
Steve Muir

Stage Manager
Gerard Marescaux

Daniel Holden, Phil Walsh
and David Netherwood

Lighting Design
Mark Jennens

Richard Lumb

Nuala Smith and Team

Norma Bateman and Team

Costume Hire
Ian Stead Theatrical Costumier

Set Design
Steve Tetlow

Programme Editor
Roy Greenwood

Programme Design
Paul Thornton

Programme Print
Larchfield Associates, Halifax