The latest production plucked from the Savoy canon by the Putteridge Bury Gilbert & Sullivan Society isn’t a box office banker like The Mikado or Pirates of Penzance – Princess Ida is one of the lesser-known G&S works, and doesn’t boast a clutch of well-known tunes to get the audience humming along.

And when you learn that the story mocks the concepts of education for women, feminism in general and the theory of evolution, you could be excused for wondering how it might play with a modern audience – particularly one in the town where Cambridge University’s famously female Girton College was first founded nearly 150 years ago.

But the Putteridge Bury company, many drawn from the Hitchin area, clearly believe in girl power whatever the script might say – when the show goes on stage at the Queen Mother Theatre, Alison Gibbs is in the director’s chair while Margaret Johnson wields the conductor’s baton.

The Ida of the title leads a women’s university under attack from the men in a tale which involves cross-dressing, swordplay and, of course, great music.

The show runs from next Wednesday, April 6, through to the Saturday night, with curtain up at 7.30pm each evening.

Tickets are £12 for the first night and £14 for the rest of the run – you can book online at or call 07946 264886. You can also use the theatre box office via 01462 455166 or