Comic operetta by Surbiton man makes a singing start to spring at Walton's Riverhouse Barn

This Is Local London: Dapper man: Gordon Peters Dapper man: Gordon Peters

He is the very model of a modern Gilbert and Sullivan aficionado.

Entertainer and actor Gordon Peters returns to Walton’s Riverhouse Barn this month with his tribute to the two giants of comic operetta.

Peters, based in Surbiton, has appeared in TV shows such as Little Britain and Dad’s Army and teams up with regular pianist David Carter for the show featuring a mixture of songs and anecdotes.

Peters says: “I use a different hat for each character. And the audience get involved - they are all given an A4 sheet with the chorus words and we rehearse them before each number. In the fast Modern Major General it’s so funny seeing who has got the false teeth.

“The hardest song to learn is probably the Nightmare Song from Iolanthe. It’s a perfect example of Gilbert’s use of the English language.

The first line is ‘When you are lying awake with a dismal headache and repose is tabooed by anxiety’. What a wonderful description of a nightmare. Yet it is the most enjoyable for me to perform. Sullivan’s music drives it along. It’s very similar to Flanders and Swann’s the Slow Train. They are the heirs to Gilbert and Sullivan in my opinion.”

Peters says he will, of course, be carrying on the tradition of updating the Mikado’s List Song with topical references.

“I already have a beauty for Alex Salmond,” he says.

The Humour of Gilbert & Sullivan; Gordon Peters, Riverhouse Barn, Manor Road, Walton, KT12 2PF; Saturday, March 15; 8pm; Call 01932 253354 or visit riverhousebarn.com for more details.

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