Review: Illyria actors work their magic at Clumber Park

A fresh summer evening brought a touch of enchantment to Clumber Park’s open air stage as Illyria presented The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

Within the castle stage set dwells a sorcerer, Dr. Dee, who is searching for a youngster to be his new apprentice.

The Sorcerer�"s Apprentice by Illyria open-air Theatre at Clumber Park

The Sorcerer�"s Apprentice by Illyria open-air Theatre at Clumber Park

With a stage production like this I would expect to see marvels and magic and Illyria brought all this to us with the help of Paul Daniels who was their magic consultant.

From handkerchief tricks to disappearing milk the audience were wowed.

The spell-binding set was put to good use during the multiplying broom scene, perfectly adapted for the small cast, with each subsequent broom becoming more evil and twisted than the last.

The energetic actors were put through their paces as they carried water across the whole set, tipping and spilling everywhere as they were tasked to fill the sorcerer’s bath on the top floor of the castle.

Comedy was laced throughout and was perfect for children and adults alike.

The audience was invited to help with a spell at the end of the show to stop Wisteria’s evil plot and it was great to see the sea of arms waving toward the stage as they joined forces with the incantation.

The happy ending was imminent but not before the big finale with one last trick where we finally got to see Lucian’s magic box.

Illyria repeat The Sorcerer’s Apprentice at Sudbury Hall & Museum of Childhood on August 26 at 2.30pm.

Fans of open-air theatre can still catch some of the other shows by Illyria which are currently touring the country, including Iolanthe at Newstead Abbey today (Friday, August 21) at 7pm.

A full programme is listed at