Bitter Sweet, 1978

This poor battered ticket has just emerged from the archive but sadly because it had been somewhere damp for 40 years the creases are well established!






Act I

In 1929, the elderly and widowed, but still lively, Marchioness of Shayne is holding a party at her home in London to celebrate the impending society marriage of a young woman who, it turns out, is in love not with her fiancé but with another man, a poor musician (“That Wonderful Melody”). The young woman is torn between love and fortune, and Lady Shane is reminded of her own youth (“The Call of Life”).

Nearly 55 years earlier, in 1875, Lady Shane is the young Sarah Millick, a wealthy London girl, who is having a singing lesson with her dashing music teacher, Carl Linden. The spirited Sarah is engaged to Lord Hugh, a wealthy but rigid young nobleman, but she and her music teacher have fallen in love (“If You Could Only Come With Me”). Carl is a man of integrity and does not want to ruin Sarah’s young dreams. He plans to return to his native Austria late that night but vows to think of Sarah each Spring (“I’ll See You Again”). At the pre-wedding party, Sarah realises that her life with Lord Hugh would be very unhappy indeed (“What Is Love”). Carl is entertaining at the party (“The Last Dance”), and when she sees the depth of his love for her, she agrees to run away with him to Vienna.

Act II

Five years later, in Vienna, Carl is a bandleader, and Sarah (now called Sari), sings his songs, but she is unhappy with their new employment at Schlick’s Café, a racy establishment where she is expected to dance with the patrons, and perhaps more (“Ladies of the Town”). Carl’s earlier love, Manon, is another entertainer at the cafe, who has mixed feelings about Sarah (“If Love Were All”). Sarah begs Carl to quit the cafe and take them to a safer place (“Evermore and a Day”; “Dear Little Café”). He agrees, but that night is busy at the cafe (“Tokay”). Manon sings “Bonne Nuit, Merci”. Sarah is asked to dance with an army captain who handles her boldly and steals a kiss on the dance floor (“Kiss Me”). Carl is enraged and strikes the military man. The captain challenges Carl to a duel and easily kills the musician with his sword.


Thirteen years pass, and it is the Gay Nineties; (“Ta Ra Ra Boom”; “Green Carnation”). Sarah has become world-famous as an interpreter of Carl’s song (“Alas! The Time is Past”). She returns to London, pursued by the amiable Marquis of Shayne, who is struck by her talent and sadness; he is sure that he can restore her youthful spirit. She sees her old London friends after nearly 20 years and entertains them with Carl’s music (“Zigeuner”). Lord Shayne has proposed to her in every capital in Europe and now, home in London, he tells her that he accepts the fact that her love for Carl has never died. He begs her to let him make her happy again. She reluctantly accepts his proposal; she sings to Carl, “I shall love you till I die – good bye” (“I’ll See You Again” (reprise)).



The Marchioness of Shayne (Sarah Millick) … Jenny Tustian

Carl Linden … Ian Preece

Annalisa … Sandra Jacques

Dolly Chamberlain … Sue Anker

Lord Henry Jekyll … John Waterer

The Hon Hugh Devon … Graham Anker

Mrs Millick … Pat Stubbs

Sir Arthur Fenchurch … George Moon

Herr Schlick … Norman Pearce

Lady Devon … Josephine Thompson

The Marquis of Stecia … Michael Davies

Vincent Howard … John Spence

Lord Edgar James … Chris Richards

Mr Proutic … Andrew Jenner

Victoria … Sue Anker

Harriet … Marilyn Beal

Gloria … Michelle Watts

Honor … Gaynor Lee

Janc … Carol Ince

Effic … Clare Michell

Gussie … Pat Stubbs

Lottie … Josephine Thompson

Freda … Margaret Thomas

Hansi … Sylvia Bunce

Lt. Tranisch … Fred Cross

Band Singer … James Harper

Fritz (A waiter) … Gray Bowden

Maid … Louise Davies

Chaperones … Pat Goodall and Paula Mitchell

Stage Crew

Stage Manager … Fred Temlett

Lighting … Keith Bennett

Sound … Graham Rousell

Decor … Valerie Temlett

Set Construction … Fred Temlett, Michael Goodall, Ian Harris

Props … Louise Davies

Costumes … Beryl Pierce, Paula Mitchell & Members of the company

Front of House … Graham Talbot & John Jacques

Costumes … Deniv Costumes, County Drama Wardrobe, Banbury Operatic Society


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