The International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival

Entertainment, Music & Theatre



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The International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival is back in Harrogate for another spectacular season! The Festival is the largest celebration of England’s most famous theatrical partnerships and attracts visitors from all around the world.  This year more than thirty-five full-scale productions will take place in the magnificent Royal Hall, Harrogate and a specially-built theatre in the adjoining International Convention Centre.

The acclaimed, professional National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company is the Festival’s resident performing group and will celebrate the 26th annual event with four fantastic new productions: The Mikado, The Pirates of Penzance, The Gondoliers and The Yeomen of the Guard. The Festival will also feature performances by professional groups Forbear! Theatre and Charles Court Opera and competing amateur societies New London Opera Group, Peak Opera, Bus Pass Opera and SavoyNet Performing Group.

As well as the main productions in the Royal Hall, the Festival offers a packed fringe programme in the adjoining Utopia Pavilion and Utopia Theatre. Each morning at 10:30 visitors can explore the Gilbert & Sullivan operettas with a fascinating talk from one of the Festival’s G&S experts, they can hear from the stars of the National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company or join a backstage tour and see what it really takes to put on such a complex and jam-packed festival - led by Chairman and Artistic Director Ian Smith.

And in the afternoon eight leading British universities perform a fully-staged Gilbert & Sullivan opera in the Utopia Theatre as part of the annual UNIFest competition.

The Festival embraces young and old alike.  It certainly lives up to its branding – it’s fun, it’s friendly, and it’s for all the family. Indeed, visitors aged between nine and 99 can actually “tread the boards” in Harrogate this summer

The Festival Youth Production is always a highlight. This year youngsters aged between nine and 19 years old meet for the first time on Saturday, 11 August for a week of rehearsals with a professional director and musical director prior to presenting their production of The Pirates of Penzance on Saturday, 17th August.  Anyone wanting to take part should email

And for performers aged 60 and beyond, there is the aptly named “Bus Pass Opera”.  This “Senior Citizens” show has proved extremely popular with both audience and performers. Last year the combined ages of those on the Royal Hall Stage exceeded 2500 years.  An evening not to be missed and not a glimmer of a zimmer in sight!

Every evening after the curtain falls, the Festival Club really comes to life with singing, and entertainment – usually until the early hours.  It’s a wonderful opportunity for our visitors to meet old friends, make new ones and generally have a very good time  

The Festival is twelve days jam-packed with pleasure.  Beautiful voices and glorious music.  It will be in Harrogate from August 7th-18th 2019.

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Type Price
Adult £25 per ticket
Child £12.50 per ticket
Concession 60+ £23 per ticket

Opening Hours

Mon 09:00 17:30
Tue 09:00 17:30
Wed 09:00 17:30
Thu 09:00 17:30
Fri 09:00 17:30


  • Disabled Access
  • On-Site Parking
  • Wi-fi
  • Child Friendly
  • Indoor
  • Card Payment

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