Bravery, deception, love, music – and plenty of pie. What more could anyone want from a musical production?
Did we mention pie?
The Tinker of Tivoli comes to the Surrey stage next week, following the story of Beppe (played by Brad Dewar), the tinker himself. It seems he’s grown quite weary of fixing everyone’s household items for free, as there is little respect given to him in return.
One day, while angrily defending his – you guessed it – pies from flies, he swats a small swarm. And it dawns on him: why not tell the townspeople he has killed seven in one blow? They don’t need to know he’s talking about insects.
The villagers are duly impressed and treat him like the hero he had hoped. Except for the town cynic, Luigi (played by Joseph Thomas Messner), who also happens to be Beppe’s arch nemesis.
As Beppe becomes more popular, Luigi becomes increasingly determined to plan his demise.
In the meantime, however, Luigi’s son Ernesto (Chantelle Anderson) and Beppe’s daughter Nannina (Taylor Harrison) have fallen for one another. The road to love is bumpy, what with gossiping friends Isabella (Rebecca Teskey), Angelina (Amaris Gutierrez Sandoval) and Rosina (Jessica Hebbel) trying to help and the town pie-maker Madalena (Lisa Teskey), serving up an oversized helping of wisdom and pastries to solve everyone’s problems.
The production, presented by the Young People’s Opera Society of B.C. (YPOSBC) and the Arts Council of Surrey was created by the same group – the Youth Opera of New Jersey – that did Pandora’s Box, which the YPOSBC produced in 2011.
It features well-known music of Rossini (of Barber of Seville fame) with 18 songs, such as When You Have a Flair for Baking, Truest Love is Like a Sweet, Sweet Pie, and My Dearest Father.
When Luigi finally challenges the now-popular Beppe to a contest of skill, Beppe loses the battle and the deception is revealed.
The disappointment is short-lived, however, as Nannina and Ernesto finally learn to communicate and become engaged. Everyone celebrates with singing and … pie.
The Tinker of Tivoli runs June 25-29 at 7:30 p.m. with 2 p.m. matinees Saturday and Sunday. (There is also a preview night June 24). Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and children under 10. To reserve, or for further information, phone 604-594-2400.