Trial by Jury

Savoyards Musical Theatre, Ltd. will present two performances of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury: Saturday, April 23, 7:30 PM in the Moot Courtroom at Cornell Law School, and Sunday, April 24, 2:00 PM in the Tompkins County Courthouse (320 North Tioga Street, Ithaca). Tickets at the door are $15 for adults, $10 for students, or e-mail savoyardsithaca@gmail.com for a reservation.

This special production honors both the 140th anniversary of Trial by Jury, Gilbert and Sullivan’s first successful collaboration, and the 130th anniversary of the Cornell Law School. Paired with Act II of Engaged, W.S. Gilbert’s 1878 farce on Victorian marriage, it deconstructs law and love in one topsy-turvy entertainment. The show contrasts traditional and reverse-gender casting, and features a dynamic cast of characters including a heartbroken groom, a feisty dominatrix bride, and even a group of Las Vegas chorus girls.

“Our production examines traditional gender roles and stereotypes under Gilbert and Sullivan’s satiric lens,” says director Ellen Jackson, a 2015 graduate of the Ithaca College School of Music, who joins the Savoyards for the first time. “They were far more progressive—and subversive—than most people realize. Their challenge of conventional marriage and critique of law and ethics will shock and delight contemporary audiences.”

Trial by Jury features Lilia Farris as Edwin, Andrew Hudson-Sabens as Angelina, Lisa Frank as the Learned Judge, Doug Mathews as Counsel for the Plaintiff, Anna O’Connell as the Usher, and Nick Roscoe as the Foreman of the Jury. Maggi Chauby, Nicolette Nordmark, and Judelle White shimmy as the Jury Girls. Chad Dumont, Pete Magnus, and Ryan Mewhorter swagger as the Groomsmen. The Chorus includes Ashley Dickson, Jim Hedlund, Ellie Hobbie, Wendy Kimble-Dugan, Betsy Schermerhorn, and Chantel Torrey. The same actors appear in Engaged. The cast is accompanied by Albert Quizon, who brings the charming score to life.