Ideal Kilworth setting for popular musical

Mark Inscoe (Emile de beque) and Celia Graham (Nellie Forbush) in rehearsal for South Pacific at Kilworth House
Mark Inscoe (Emile de beque) and Celia Graham (Nellie Forbush) in rehearsal for South Pacific at Kilworth House

An outdoor theatre set in some tunning wooded surroundings is staging one of the most popular musicals of all time.

North Kilworth’s Kilworth House Theatre, which opened in 2007, is gearing up for the first show of its 2014 season, the award-winning Rodgers and Hammerstein musical South Pacific.

It opens tomorrow night (Friday) and runs until Sunday, July 13.

The epic musical follows a group of American sailors and Navy nurses stationed in the South Pacific during the Second World War.

It also follows two parallel love stories that are threatened by the dangers of war and prejudice.

Arkansas woman Nellie Forbush befriends and quickly falls in love with middle-aged French plantation owner Emile de Becque (Mark Inscoe) while Lt Joe Cable finds himself in a passionate affair with a young Tonkinesse woman, Liat.

As the war against Japan escalates, reality sets in for both Forbush and Cable, and, when Emile agrees to accompany Joe on a dangerous mission to a neighbouring island, the consequences mean that all four lives will never be the same again.

The songs from South Pacific have become some of the most memorable standards in musical theatre.

They include Bali Ha’i, I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair, Some Enchanted Evening, There Is Nothing Like A Dame, Happy Talk, Younger Than Springtime and I’m In Love With A Wonderful Guy.

The original production opened in 1949 in Broadway and was an immediate hit, running for almost 2,000 performances and winning ten Tony Awards.

The 2008 Broadway revival was also a huge critical success, running for nearly 1,000 performances and winning seven further Tonys, including Best Musical Revival.

Prices for the Kilworth run range from £25 to £35 and there are also matinee performances throughout the series

People can also book a pre-show dinner or lunch at Kilworth House Hotel or enjoy a picnic in the grounds.

For tickets book online at or call the box office on 01858 881939.