‘It makes a fine evening: no sex, no violence, no reality.’

Financial Times


'If this tale seems unlikely as the basis for musical treatment, Sue Casson’s witty and intelligent musical will convince you otherwise. The music and lyrics complement each other very well and have something of the quality of both Sondheim and Victoria Wood.

The Stage


 ‘Both children and adults should be entranced by this show, which, for style and imagination, knocks the spots off any Christmas panto.’ 

Venue Magazine


'A little pool of magic. The music has variety and charm, the concept is simple and relevant.

Derbyshire Times


 ‘The power of imagination was fully exploited by the company which presented a novel adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s enchanting tale.’ 

Darlington & Stockton Times


‘Casson’s witty lyrics and soaring melodies transform a simple morality fable into a poignant meditation on the nature of poverty, generosity and the illusion of theatre.’

The Big Issue

HP Image

'There can be no more charming and radiant a show at the Fringe this year than English Cabaret’s The Happy Prince.'



Read Chloe Stopa Hunt's  full review here

Reviews of The Happy Prince from

the original 1992 production.



At the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival 2013

A reviewer’s unhappy task is often to reason and analyse and I found that almost impossible such was the enchantment of The Happy Prince - a musical showing at 7:30 in the Teachers Club. Oscar Wilde’s fairy tale for children shows what an extraordinary Victorian father he was. Sue Casson the composer shares her talent to communicate with adults and children alike in this magical family musical. The narrator promises magic and we get it simply and in abundance. The score is melodic and easy on the ear, capturing the swallows flight as he guides us through the narrow streets of the prince’s domain. The well sung role of The Prince played by Andrew Bolton is more Ranier than Harry but beautifully carried throughout.


The musical fable remains true to the Wildean with touches of theatrical magic to enchant young and old. Casson’s own children shine in the roles of swallow (Robert Blackmore) and multi talented Pandora (Lily Blackmore). The onstage musicianship is uplifting and the vocal security of all performers enriches this lovely score. Putting the words gay theatre and children may provoke some response but nothing could outshine the warmth, charm and sensitivity of this beautifully simple musical. Bring the family and celebrate the art of Wilde at his best in his children’s stories in this scintillating exploration directed by Tom Blackmore.

IDGTF A6 Brochure 2013 R2-1 happy prince A4 revised


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‘a beguiling delight'


A heartwarming tale full of pathos and joy, made magical by the simplicity of its telling and the beautiful harmonies of the players.

Made us cry...but happy tears!

Edfringe Public Reviews

'This charming musical adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s well-known fable keeps magic firmly at the forefront'

3 weeks

'English Cabaret’s cast of four works well together, sprinkling the show with magic'



music & lyrics by Sue Casson

adapted and directed by Tom Blackmore

The 20th anniversary production of The Happy Prince played at C Venues as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2012 and 2014, with successful runs at the Bridewell Theatre, London in Christmas 2012, and at the Dublin International Gay Festival in 2013.

'A musical touched by magic'



‘Nothing could outshine the warmth, charm and sensitivity of this beautifully simple musical.’  

The Dublin Cast

'Oscar would be proud'


Artistic Director Brian Merriman

Poster line-up

Nominated for the Doric Wilson inter-cultural dialogue award

The Crowd Scene 1

'The Happy Prince is theatre with a heart.'


a younger theatre The swallow

Christopher Cubitt as The Happy Prince 2014

photo by Marion Schmoranzer

The enduring story of how a statue prince and migrating swallow redeem the poverty of a city is brought imaginatively up to date by a cast of 4 and a piano, exploring how a tale is told and bringing alive for the audience all the

‘tricks of the trade’.


This ‘enchanting’ production boasts an original score with ‘witty lyrics and soaring melodies’.

'One of the great musicals, for its' heart, thought, and purity of music and lyric. '


‘Casson produces that rare thing – a well-written new musical....(her) harmonies could give Andrew Lloyd Webber a run for his money. ’

The Stage

'Snowflakes' 29. Pandora, Swallow and Chorus



Chorus              Sue Casson

Pandora            Lily Blackmore

Swallow            Robert Blackmore

Happy Prince   Tom Dawkins (2012) Andrew Bolton (Dublin and London)

                        Christopher Cubitt (2014)