Opera della Luna’s vibrant production of The Mikado returns to Salford this week, starring three RNCM-trained singers as the ‘three little maids’. Heald Green’s very own Victoria Joyce is one of them.
The International soprano star talks to Manchester’s Finest about returning home and how this version of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado is one that shouldn’t be missed!
MF: So Victoria, how does it feel to be back on home turf?
VJ: Once you set out on this career, you often end up in London so it’s quite rare you get to come back and sing on home turf. It’s really lovely, particularly as I studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester as well.
MF: When you studied at the RNCM did you ever think you would have such a glittering career ahead of you?
VJ: Every person who goes into any career, particularly the arts, has aspirations to make it. In Opera it’s not quite like that-it’s a specialist field musically and not that main stream. You don’t know where it’s going to take you, you just try and do as best as you can.
It’s very easy to follow, entertaining and superbly executed. I think it’s suitable for all ages and accessible.
MF: Opera is often regarded as highbrow, is that true of The Mikado?
VJ: It’s officially called an Operetta, so it’s lighter in tone than your usual Opera and the way Jeff (Clarke) has directed it is superb and brings it into the modern day. It’s funny but there are also some very touching moments. There’s also a lot of popular musical people will recognise that they didn’t realise came from this piece. It’s very easy to follow, entertaining and superbly executed. I think it’s suitable for all ages and accessible.
MF: You mention this production is set in the modern day-is there anything you can reveal to us about it?
VJ: Jeff has set it in a fashion house and we are all wearing Versace-esq costumes with the three maids playing Supermodel types which is a real twist on the way The Mikado is played. A lot of people try to modernise Operas just for the sake of it but Jeff’s approached it in a way which hasn’t affected the integrity of how it was written. I’m sure Gilbert and Sullivan would approve.
The Mikado runs 18-21st September
The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays M50 3AZ