Opera Scotland

Pirates of Penzance 1990D'Oyly Carte Opera Company

Read more about the opera Pirates of Penzance

The resurrected (briefly termed 'New') D'Oyly Carte company began operations in 1988 with two works, Iolanthe and Yeomen of the Guard. This was quickly followed by a second pair of excellent stagings - Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado. By the time of this week-long visit to Edinburgh, they had already held a successful London season at the Savoy, and those productions had been joined by a double-bill of Pinafore and Trial By Jury. It was the last four that were brought on the company's first visit to Edinburgh (they had previously travelled to Aberdeen with Mikado and Pirates).

The schedule for the week, commencing  Monday 14 May, was: Mon Pirates; Tue Pirates; Wed Mikado; Thu Mikado; Fri Pinafore & Trial; Sat m & e Pinafore & Trial.

Musical standards were high, with an excellent touring orchestra (unlike the old company) and top-notch cast of experienced singers. These productions all showed a freshness of ideas that was thoroughly enjoyable - pirates with periscopes, for example. The team of director and designer had cut their G & S teeth with Scottish Opera's excellent Iolanthe a couple of years before, and this showed the same willingness to subvert the traditions without losing respect for it altogether. A notable new arrival is Tim Dean, ex of Kent Opera, a few years before he moved to Glasgow to take up an important role at the RSAMD.

The text used reverted to some long abandoned features - the two normally nameless principals were listed as 'Richard, a Pirate Chief' and 'Edward, a Sergeant of Police' - hardly earth-shattering, but evidence of the willingness to clean up details that had crept in over the decades.

Performance Cast

Samuel a Pirate Lieutenant

Paul Parfitt

Pirate King

James Meek

Frederic a Pirate Apprentice

Philip Creasy

Ruth a Piratical Maid of all Work

Susan Gorton

Mabel Gen Stanley's Youngest Daughter

Marilyn Hill Smith

Edith Gen Stanley's Daughter

Patricia Cameron

Kate Gen Stanley's Daughter

Elizabeth Elliott

Isabel Gen Stanley's Daughter

Denise Shane

Major-General Stanley

Alan Oke

Sergeant of Police

John Rath

Performance DatesPirates of Penzance 1990

Map List

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

14 May, 19.30 15 May, 19.30

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