Welcome

Our highly-acclaimed performances to date started with Love’s Luggage Lost, an adaptation of Rossini’s one act opera L’Occasione fa il Ladro. After this small beginning, our productions have included Cimarosa’s comic masterpiece Il Matrimonio Segreto set to a new libretto (2009), based on Garrick and Colman’s The Clandestine Marriage, a new adaptation in 2010 of Sheridan’s School for Scandal with music by W.A. Mozart and Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor, including musical selections from Otto Nicolai’s sparkling operatic reworking of the play, which was selected as one of the RSC’s Open Stages productions in 2011.

In 2012, we performed Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband with hauntingly beautiful music by Puccini, followed in 2013 by William Wycherley’s classic Restoration comedy The Country Wife, which was set to the bubbling melodies of Rossini.  Then 2014 saw a return to the sparkling combination of Sheridan and Mozart as we performed The Rivals, plus a new link up with Stratford Music Festival Fringe as part of the RSC’s latest Open Stages initiative with a concert of music and words inspired by Shakespeare. Then in 2015 we were delighted to over £2200 for local charities as we performed one of the best-loved and most-quoted plays in the English language, Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest combined with music by Cole Porter and friends.

Then 2016 saw us take to the stage with Goldsmith’s She Stoops to Conquer, which was followed by performances of two of Gilbert and Sullivan’s best-loved operettas, The Mikado and Iolanthe, in 2018 and 2019 respectively.

Stratford Herald reviews

"...the show opened with immediate impact...the entire cast had the audience on side from the very beginning."

"...the most wonderfully complicated musical quintets were of a standard worthy of a much larger venue and audience..."

"...what they seem to have mastered is the art of bringing wonderful operatic music blended with well-chosen plays to a wider audience..."

"The cast seemed to have been cherry-picked for the occasion also. Certainly some of the finest singers and actors were among those taking to the stage, making this already excellent production sensational."

"This portrayal of fashionable contemporary society of the day and its hypocrisy was brought to life by some stunning performances."

"...Claire Johnson and Joan Self boasted to be amateur but offered a world-class performance any professional would be proud of..."

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The Bear Pit
www.thebearpit.org.uk

High quality opera and drama in Stratford upon Avon.