The Over Players
Rogers and Hammerstein's
Music by Richard Rogers
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Book by Oscar Hammerstein II and Joshua Logan
Wednesday 1st June to Saturday 4th June 2011
at The Community Centre, Over
South Pacific is set in French Polynesia in World War 2 on an island taken over by the US forces as they advance against the Japanese although at this stage there is no military action or immediate threat to the area — the forces are able to enjoy the balmy tropical island and a comparatively easy life.
The forces comprise female nurses (ensigns), sailors, Seabees (an acronym for members of the Construction Battalion — 'CBs'), and soldiers. The gentle islanders are typically French Polynesian except for the tough and immoral Bloody Mary and there are a number of nuns and French planters' daughters.
Set against this idyllic background Nellie, a nurse, falls in love with Emile de Becque an older French plantation owner with what appears to be a shady past. Young Lt Joseph Cable falls in love with Liat, a young island girl.
Both relationships are doomed to fail. Nellie can't accept Emile's past and Joseph has a girl back home.
The Japanese forces move in and both Emile and Cable make the touch decision to risk their lives to provide intelligence on Japanese troop movements.
South Pacific provides us with numerous classic show tunes, ranging from the haunting Bali Ha'i, to the raucous There is Nothing Like a Dame and Honey Bun, to the tender Some Enchanted Evening, Younger Than Springtime, and This Nearly was Mine.