Step into the mayhem

Bad baronet Sir Despard Murgatroyd has inherited a centuries-old curse – he must commit a crime a day or die in agony. That is, until the timid Robin Oakapple is revealed as his long-lost brother and the true inheritor of the curse. Blossoming romance will be dashed, and a chorus of ghosts will reappear when Robin’s feeble crimes don’t cut it with his ancestors. In this topsy-turvy world, is there a way to break the curse?

Hilarity, dancing and tongue-twisting singing… Ruddigore has all the hallmarks of classic Gilbert and Sullivan, a creative duo unlike any other who made a profound mark on the light opera world.

“Wickedly funny… one of the great Gilbert & Sullivan stagings”
★★★★★ — The Guardian

“Operetta bliss. A must for all G&S fans”
★★★★ — The Telegraph

“A comic masterpiece”
★★★★ — The Stage

From £16*
  • Leeds Grand Theatre
  • Newcastle Theatre Royal
  • The Lowry, Salford Quays
  • Theatre Royal, Nottingham

Running time
Approximately 2 hours 45 minutes including one interval

Sung in English with English subtitles

Audio described and relaxed performances

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Digital (£4) or printed (£6+£2.50 postage)

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*Prices vary by venue. Booking fees may apply.

Bite to eat before the show?

Kino’s seasonal pre-theatre menu is a little bit French, a lot British, and Yorkshire through and through. Think classic dishes reimagined, made from scratch by our award-winning chefs using the best local and wild produce. Sit back and relax as we make sure you have a pre-show meal to remember!

Relaxed Performance

The performance on Wednesday 30 October 2024 will be a Relaxed Performance. Our relaxed performances ensure a theatre that is inclusive and welcoming for all. The performances are designed for people who may make spontaneous noises, need to leave and return to their seat or access the toilets during the performance, and who may find a traditional theatre setting with complete silence and darkness hard to cope with. 

More information


A chorus of professional bridesmaids frets that there have been no weddings lately. All of the young men want to marry Rose Maybud, the prettiest girl in the village, but are too shy to approach her. 

Dame Hannah tells the bridesmaids about the curse of Ruddigore. Centuries ago, Sir Rupert Murgatroyd, the first Baronet, had persecuted witches, and one of them had cursed all future Baronets to commit a crime every day, or perish in agony.  

Dame Hannah greets her niece, Rose, and they talk about her suitors, particularly Robin Oakapple. Unknown to them, Robin is secretly Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd, having run away years before to avoid inheriting the curse. 

Robin seeks advice from Rose about “a friend” who is in love. Rose says that she has such a friend too, but Robin is too shy to take the hint. He tells his foster-brother, Richard Dauntless that he is too shy to confess his feelings to Rose. Richard offers to speak to her on his behalf, but falls in love with Rose himself. The two enjoy a brief engagement before Rose breaks it off and accepts Robin instead.  

Mad Margaret, desperately in love with the current “Bad Baronet” Sir Despard Murgatroyd, enters. She has heard that Sir Despard intends to carry Rose off as one of his daily crimes and is worried, but Rose reassures her.  

Sir Despard enters. He muses that, although he is forced to commit a crime every day, he does so early and then does good works for the rest of the day. Richard approaches and reveals that Despard’s elder brother Ruthven is actually alive and living as ‘Robin Oakapple’. Despard is elated and shortly interrupts the wedding of Rose and Robin, revealing Robin’s true identity and insisting his accept his title as the Bad Baronet. Sir Despard takes up with his old love Mad Margaret, and a horrified Rose accepts Richard.

At Ruddigore Castle, Robin (now Sir Ruthven) tries to get to grips with being a bad baronet.  

The ghosts of his ancestors are unimpressed with the feebleness of his crimes, and Robin’s uncle, the late Sir Roderic Murgatroyd, orders him to do something drastic and “carry off a lady” immediately, or die in agony.  In panic, Robin orders Adam to go to the village and abduct any lady.  

Despard, now reformed and married to Mad Margaret, comes to the castle and urges Robin to renounce his life of crime. Robin resolves to defy his ancestors.  

Meanwhile, Adam has chosen to abduct Dame Hannah, who proves very unwilling, and Robin cries out for his uncle’s protection. 

Robin argues that, under the terms of the curse, a Baronet of Ruddigore can die only by refusing to commit a daily crime. Refusing is therefore equal to suicide, “but suicide is, itself, a crime”. Thus, he reasons, his predecessors ought never to have died at all! The ghost of Sir Roderic follows this logic and agrees, freeing Robin of the curse.  

Rose once again drops Richard and resumes her engagement to Robin. 

Cast & creative

A man with short curly hair and a black t-shirt.
Dominic Sedgwick

Robin Oakapple / Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd

Xavier Hetherington

Richard Dauntless

A man with a short beard and hair brush to his right.
John Savournin

Sir Despard Murgatroyd

A man with a beard wearing a shirt.
Henry Waddington

Old Adam Goodheart

Steven Page
Steven Page

Sir Roderic Murgatroyd

A woman with curly dark hair resting her head on her hand.
Amy Freston

Rose Maybud

Helen Évora

Mad Margaret

Claire Pascoe

Dame Hannah

A man wearing glasses without frames.
Anthony Kraus

Conductor (EXC. 2 Nov matinee, 7 Nov)

A man with wavy hair.
Jack Ridley

Conductor (2 Nov matinee, 7 Nov)

Jo Davies


A man with short hair and glasses.
James Hurley

Revival Director

A bald man with round glasses.
Richard Hudson

Set Designer

Gabrielle Dalton

Costume Designer

A woman with curly hair and long earrings.
Anna Watson

Lighting Designer

A woman with dark curly hair.
Kay Shepherd



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