Opera Scotland

Mikado 1891Mr R D'Oyly Carte's Principal Repertoire Company

Read more about the opera Mikado

The autumn of 1891 saw the D'Oyly Carte touring company beginning to establish, in embryonic form, the repertoire system that would typify its operating style in future years.

The first phase of the autumn tour saw a five week visit - two in Glasgow and one each in Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee. The weeks commencing Monday 31 August (in Aberdeen) and 7 September (in Dundee) both began with two performances of The Mikado, followed by two of The Yeomen of the Guard. Finally, the weekend saw the most recent of the Gilbert and Sullivan output, The Gondoliers, appearing for two Saturday performances, matinee and evening.

The original schedule was for The Gondoliers to play on Friday as well, and that happened in Dundee. However the company was summoned to give a performance at Balmoral on the Friday of the Aberdeen week - the first such theatrical event at the castle. The piece chosen was The Mikado, since the Queen had already seen The Gondoliers in a command performance at Windsor a few months before. The logistics were nightmarish - a special train to Ballater with a convoy of carriages reaching the castle at four, in time for a long period of rehearsals on a tiny stage in the ballroom. The performance, from 9.30 to 11.45, was followed by a midnight supper party. The carriages left once more at 1.30am, delivering everyone to Ballater station at 3. The special train arrived back in Aberdeen at 4.30am. Quite how they all found the energy to deliver two performances of The Gondoliers later in the day can only be imagined.  Fred Billington caught a cold as a resulto of all this late night activity, being forced to withdraw from some of the Dundee performances.

When the company returned to Dundee for a fortnight in mid-December, The Mikado received five performances, Yeomen and Gondoliers two each, and a fourth piece was revived - Iolanthe also receiving five performances. After Christmas the company moved back to Aberdeen for another two week run through into January.

Further Scottish dates to be added.

Performance Cast

Nanki-Poo the Mikado's son, disguised as a wandering Minstrel

Richard Clarke

Pish-Tush a Noble Lord

Albert Kavanagh (Aug, Sep)

Edward White (Dec)

Pooh-Bah Lord High Everything Else

Fred Billington

Ko-Ko Lord High Executioner of Titipu

George Thorne

Yum-Yum Ko-Ko's Ward

Rose Hervey (Aug, Sep)

Margaret Cockburn (Dec)

Pitti-Sing Yum-Yum's sister, also Ko-Ko's Ward

Haidee Crofton (Aug, Sep)

Dorothy Vane (Dec)

Peep-Bo Yum-Yum's sister, also Ko-Ko's Ward

Alice Pennington (Aug, Sep)

Miss E Hebden (Dec)

Katisha an elderly Lady, in love with Nanki-Poo

Kate Forster

Mikado of Japan

Thomas Redmond

Performance DatesMikado 1891

Map List

Royalty, Glasgow | Glasgow

10 Aug, 19.30 11 Aug, 19.30 12 Aug, 19.30 15 Aug, 14.00 20 Aug, 19.30 21 Aug, 19.30 22 Aug, 19.15

Royal Lyceum Theatre | Edinburgh

24 Aug, 19.30 25 Aug, 19.30 26 Aug, 19.30 29 Aug, 14.00

Her Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

31 Aug, 19.30 1 Sep, 19.30 28 Dec, 19.30 29 Dec, 19.30

Balmoral Castle | Braemar

4 Sep, 21.30

Her Majesty's Theatre, Dundee | Dundee

7 Sep, 19.30 8 Sep, 19.30 14 Dec, 19.30 15 Dec, 19.30 23 Dec, 19.30 26 Dec, 14.30 26 Dec, 19.00

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