Bloody brilliant: Warning on show

THE latest Cork Operatic Society production comes with a health warning — the show is definitely not suitable for under 16s.

Furthermore, it might not even be suitable for adults with a sensitive disposition.

Producers of Sweeney Todd — The Demon Barber of Fleet Street advise the show will be “extremely graphic”, complete with lots of blood and guts and a rape scene thrown in for good measure.

Director Trevor Ryan has admitted his operatic version of the Victoria-era barber, who goes mad and cuts the throats of scores of the gentry, will have plenty of gore in it. And, if some of the pre-production images released are anything to go by, he’s not exaggerating.

“This show is very complicated. It’s full of plots and sub-plots. It’s going to be bloody wonderful,” he said.

After cutting his victims’ throats, Todd dispatches the bodies down a revolving trapdoor into the basement of his shop. After the demon barber has robbed his victims of their goods, Mrs Lovett, his partner in crime, assists him in disposing of the bodies by baking their flesh into meat pies, and selling them to the unsuspecting customers of her pie shop.

The opera will be staged at the Everyman Palace from August 5-8. Mr Ryan said it was originally earmarked for Cork Opera House which closed for the summer as part of a cost-cutting plan.

Michael Sands, whose previous credits include Les Miserables and Fiddler on the Roof, will play the part of the murderous barber.

The part of the pie-maker Mrs Lovett will be played by Deirdre Bashford, who has performed with the Bunratty Castle Entertainers for five years and also appeared in several noteworthy musicals.

The cast also includes Cork’s very own Cara O’Sullivan. Acknowledged as one of Ireland’s leading sopranos, she has appeared in operas all over the world and raised more than €300,000 for Marymount Hospice with the release of her CD Caradiva.


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