Neither driving rain nor intermittent squalls could dampen the enthusiasm of Illyria’s open-air performance of this Gilbert and Sullivan classic. As the audience sheltered from the weather, the players did not miss a beat and put a show that was lively and upbeat from beginning to end.

This old favourite has been performed at countless venues for more than 130 years and is still as captivating – and topical – as when it first opened at the London Savoy in 1885. The tunes and cleverly updated lyrics remain catchy and infectious and the tales of fake news, double talk and hypocrisy strike a chord in a world dominated by politicians who say what they don’t mean and mean what they don’t say.

The fact that the many parts were played by just six players did not prevent this being a big performance. Matthew James Willis was outstanding as Nanki-Poo ably supported by Jenny Cullen as an authentic Yum Yum. Sam Wright gave an emphatic and bravura performance as Poo-Bah and Edward Simpson won over the audience with his stage presence in the comic role of Ko-Ko.

Rachel Lea as Katisha and Stephanie Lyse as the Mikado were both equally versatile. A great evening despite the weather.