Get a personalised letter from Santa

Madame Butterfly at the Abbey Theatre, St Albans

PUBLISHED: 10:07 18 March 2012

Madame Butterfly

Madame Butterfly


PUCCINI’S Madame Butterfly will be fluttering into the Abbey Theatre next week to mark the 25th anniversary of St Albans Chamber Opera.

Nadine Mortimer-Smith and Emily Yarrow are sharing the title role of Cio Cio San, a young geisha known as Butterfly, who is deeply in love with the American naval Lieutenant B.F.Pinkerton, sung by Neil Simon, who has “married” her and then gone away.

Suzanne Joyce as Suzuki, Butterfly’s servant, and Oliver Gibbs as Sharpless, the US Consul, who both sing at English National Opera, make up the main quartet of professional singers. Also in the cast are popular Chamber Opera regulars Des Turner, Warren Albers and Alexandra McPhee.

Although all around her think Pinkerton will never return, Butterfly remains positive and optimistic truly believing that he will return to her, “one fine day”. When his ship arrives in the harbour, she and Suzuki deck the house with flowers and the famous Humming Chorus floats in the distance as they await his arrival.

Phyl Swindlehurst, one of the founders of the company, will be directing a main production for the last time. She said: “We are aiming to be as authentically Japanese as possible using traditional costume and building a Japanese house on stage. The opera will be sung in Amanda Holden’s English translation used recently at the Albert Hall.”

Fraser Goulding returns to conduct the chorus and orchestra in his own reduced orchestration.

Madame Butterfly runs from 7.30pm next Tuesday, March 20, until Saturday, March 24, and, for the first time there will be a Sunday matinee at 3pm on on March 25. Tickets at £17 (students £10) are available from the Abbey Theatre box office on 01727 857861.

More news stories


Brave jumpers will splash into 2019 by bearing a freezing cold outside pool for charity.


A shop in St Albans has been named the best independent spirits business at the “Oscars of the drink industry”.

St Albans MP Anne Main has toured a number of city pubs which have been badly affected by a business rate increase.


If you fancy a good laugh, a comedy club night returns to a St Albans venue this week with a quality line-up of four stand-ups.

CountryPhile Zoo Watch

Most read stories

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Read the The Herts Advertiser e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Herts Advertiser weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy