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The Playground Theatre and Reptilian Productions presents

The Crocodile of Old Kang Pow 

An Oratorio of the third and final act of Darren Berry’s extraordinary opera, The Crocodile of Old Kang Pow, with strings and piano accompaniment.

Acts One and Two will be briefly summarised using a combination of film and live V/O before the full live recital of Act 3.

  • About
  • Cast/Creatives

A comic opera set in 18th century Paris and a tropical jungle. One’s a fetid swamp, and the other has a lot of crocodiles.

The Marquis De Sade has lost his libido and must find it or lose his head to the chopping block of Marie Antoinette. His quest takes him to a mythical world to petition its Crocodile God of fertility, who is having libido-related problems of his own…


The captured de Sade regains consciousness and is questioned under torture, but disconcerts his tormentors with his remarkable resilience to pain.
O’felas’ health continues to deteriorate.
Momolow makes a decision. The failing body of the God must be ceremoniously slain, and his soul reborn in the body of another; de Sades!

Byegee meanwhile has formulated a rescue plan. He and Justine, disguised as a crocodile goddess arrive at the temple in time to see the transformation ceremony taking place.

Justine sings a siren song, and spellbound, O’fela follows her voice, throwing the ritual into chaos. De Sade is rescued and secreted in the rear of Justines’ costume. O’fela declares his undying love for Justine who unexpectedly reciprocates, having recognised the creature as being her long lost husband under a curse. The hidden de Sade siphons ‘the potion’.

Sated the lovers swoon into blissful slumber. Byegee demands the potion. Sade refuses, and a scuffle ensues, during which a drop is spilled into de Sades eye. Byegee expediently drinks the contents as the furious Acolytes arrive. The lovers awake with Justines' husband having reverted to human form. Byegee then transforms into the Crocodile God.

The Acolytes are jubilant.
De Sade feels his libido return.
All recent events are explained and the new trio sent home to Paris. 

The Grand Finale

Music and Words: Darren Berry
Producer: Agusta Giovanni
Eleanor Burke
Marquis de Sade: Chris Foster
Virgin Sacrifice, Justine & Marie Antoinette: Caroline Kennedy
Momolow, the High Priestess of O’fela: Susan Harriott
O’Fela, the Crocodile God: Matt Secombe, Oscar Dom Vitello Castellino
The Wizard Mystah Byegee: Chris Swithinbank, Jackson Scott
The Pure Ones, Acolytes of O’fela: Emily Raiher, Caroline Kennedy, Zoe Devlin
Messenger: Emily Raiher
Goddess of Thunderballs: Helen

Pianist: Ioannis Giannopoulos
Double Bass: Andy Waterworth

Narrator: Darren Berry
Choreography: Christian Holder
Puppet Maker: Seb Mayer
Shadow Puppetry: Drew Colby
Headdresses: Natasha Lawes
Production Design and Costume: Rosy Thomas
Production: Rosy Thomas, Gus Robertson,
Production Assistants : Daisy Holden-Beggs

Darren Berry is a multi-instrumentalist and vocalist, session musician, musical director, orchestral arranger and composer. His work includes the HBO series Art-land, Channel 4’s The Turner Prize, along with installations at the Tate modern and winning a Grammy for the eponymously titled “La Roux” album. 

Phil Wilcox is a graduate of both Leeds College of Music and the Royal Academy of Music and has sung as a soloist for Buxton Festival Opera, Royal Shakespeare Company, Waterperry Opera Festival, Retrospect Opera, Merry Opera Company, XOGA, Northern Opera Group, Proper Opera and Opera on Location. 

Caroline Kennedy is a graduate from The RSAMD’s Alexander Gibson Opera School. She has sung and covered roles with companies such as ENO, Scottish Opera, Mid Wales Opera, Nevill Holt Opera, Grange Park Opera, Opera Holland Park, Buxton Opera, Bampton Classical Opera and Tête à Tête.

Emily Raiher is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, singer and music therapist from London who studied at Guildhall, and the royal academy of music. Emily has composed for film and most recently the Eden project, as well as DJing around the world, working with artists from hip hop legends de la soul to uk garage stalwart zed bias.

Susan Harriott has a been a professional singer for almost thirty years. Trained at Italia Conti,  she toured the globe extensively with Corinne Bailey Rae, John Legend, Rumer and Mutya Buena (Sugar Babes) and her backing vocals can be heard on the tracks of Adele, Madonna, Michael Bolton, Westlife, and many more. 

Jackson Scott was born in Seville to British parents. His music is steeped in flamenco flourishes embellish song-writing reminiscent of the late 60′s Kinks and Syd Barrett, but with a more anarchic attitude; unusual jazz-influenced chords crossover with New Orleans/Rock ‘n Roll beats against a constant backdrop of rumbas and strong Hispanic rhythms.

Eleanor Burke is the Founder and Artistic Director of Green Opera and has been awarded a Junior Artists Fellowship at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (2020-21).
as an Assistant Director.

Gus Robertson is a Guitarist, impresario, creative director, curator, DJ, promoter Gus curates immersive rock’n’roll shows known as “The Great Brain Robbery” at some of the UK's leading festivals.

Rosy Thomas is a London based production designer who has been working in film, television, and live events for 25 years. She has been involved in all aspects and performances of the Crocodile of Old Kang Pow since it’s inception in 2015.

Running time - 1 Hours no interval
Recommended for ages 14+
4-6 AUG 2022 | 7.30pm
Tickets (All unreserved)

General Admission £10

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