“Welcome, gentry,
for your entry sets our
tender hearts a-beating. 
Men of station,
admiration prompts this
unaffected greeting. 
Hearty greeting offer we!”

—The Women’s Chorus
Ruddigore 2022

Poster design by Tom McGregor and Mary Olson

“Spring and summer pleasure you,
autumn, aye, and winter too.  
Every season has its cheer,
life is lovely all the year!”

—The Full Company
The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company’s Production of

Ruddigore, or The Witch’s Curse (Remounted!)

March 11 to April 3, 2022

The GSVLOC Covid-19 Health and Safety Plan

Our production of Ruddigore will be dedicated to the memory of long-time company member, tenor Vern Harmon, Music Director James Straka, and company co-founder and Music Director Jim Hart.


The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company is pleased to announce that it will remount its production Ruddigore, for four weekends, from March 11 to April 3, 2022.

This production will be directed by Joe Andrews, with Choreography by Penelope Freeh and Music Direction by Dr. Randal Buikema.

Ruddigore, or The Witch’s Curse, is Gilbert and Sullivan’s parody of Victorian melodrama, traditionally set in the Regency Period, decades before Gilbert and Sullivan’s time.  In our upcoming production, Director Joe Andrews will take us decades before our time with his vision of Ruddigore set as a 1940s film of the golden age of cinema with elements of classic MGM musicals, film noir, and the screwball comedies from Hawks, Vidor and Capra.

Ruddigore tells the story of Robin, a young farmer who has a dark secret.  He is really Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd, the rightful Baronet of Ruddigore, who has gone into hiding.  The Baronets of Ruddigore are cursed and anyone who succeeds to the title has to commit a crime every day, or perish in agony.  His younger brother, Despard, believing Ruthven to be dead, has assumed the title.  Robin is in love with Rose Maybud, a beautiful village maiden, but Richard, his foster brother, who is seeking Rose for himself, tells Despard of Robin’s deception, and Robin is forced to accept his true position, losing Rose to Richard in the process.

Once he becomes the Baronet of Ruddigore, Robin must face the ghosts of his ancestors who confront him to ensure that he commits his daily crime.  So far, he’s done so half-heartedly at best!  Robin eventually discovers a legal loophole in the curse which leads to a typically Gilbertian happy ending!

Ruddigore was the tenth collaboration between Gilbert and Sullivan, following The Mikado and proceeding The Yeomen of the Guard.  It opened on January 21, 1887 at the Savoy Theatre and ran for 288 performances.

Ruddigore Remount Cast

The cast for this production of Ruddigore includes:

Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd (Robin Oakapple): Seth Tychon Steidl
Rose Maybud:                                           Sarah Wind Richens
Sir Despard Murgatroyd:                           Joe Allen
Mad Margaret:                                          Lara Trujillo
Richard Dauntless:                                   Paul Willis, Jr.
Dame Hannah:                                         Deb Haas
Sir Roderic Murgatroyd:                            Scott Benson
Zorah:                                                     Anna Maher
Old Adam:                                               Waldyn Benbenek
Ruth:                                                       Cassie Utt

Chorus of Bridesmaids, Bucks and Blades, Townspeople and Ghosts

Mary Mescher Benbenek Maggie Benham
James Brooks Kelly Danger
Laini Devin Jeff Erickson
Clyde Gerber Alexander Gerchak
Mary Gregory Stephen Hage
Rylan Hefner Shawn Holt
Wendy Matsutani Kellogg Kaitlin Klemencic
John Orbison Richard Rames
Samantha Raun Bryan Reed
Lowell Rice Aaron Rolloff
Sarah Shervey Molly Shields
Rhea Sullivan Josh Weisenberger


Two excellent internet resources for information about Ruddigore:

Wikipedia – Ruddigore

The Gilbert & Sullivan Archive – Ruddigore


All performances will be at the Howard Conn Fine Arts Center, at Plymouth Congregational Church, located at 1900 Nicollet Avenue South, in Minneapolis.  Friday and Saturday evening performances are at 7:30 pm. The Saturday and Sunday matinees are at 2:00 pm.

If you would like to be notified about when to order tickets, we invite you to add your name to our mailing list. This way, we will know how to contact you! We never sell our mailing list to other parties.