incorporates many of the usual narrative elements of a Gilbert and Sullivan
story - love across the social barriers, people not being who they seem to be,
etc - and weaves them into a more modern story of a corporate mogul (a Franchise
King also known as the Corporate Pirate of Penzance) who is hoping his daughter
will marry into the British aristocracy, and a penniless young poet who falls in
love with the daughter.
The show uses some of
Gilbert and Sullivan's most popular and well known songs from Pirates of
Penzance, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Mikado, Iolanthe, Trial by Jury and The
Gondoliers, mixing the songs of Arthur Sullivan and the words of W.S.
Gilbert with lyrics that reflect
the modernized narrative. For example, "The Very Model of a Modern
Major-General" now becomes "The Very Model of a Modern Intellectual", while "A
Policeman's Lot is Not a Happy One" becomes "An Accountant's Life is Not a
Lot of Fun."
Updated versions of
familiar characters from the traditional shows are there, including the cowardly
policemen from Pirates of Penzance, as well as Josephine, Ralph and
Buttercup from H.M.S. Pinafore.
"The lyrics are
skillfully blended and it is often difficult to distinguish where Gilbert's
lyrics end and Bernard Taylor's lyrics begin," noted a Professor of Literature.
"The show is well
thought through," said a representative of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company., who
expected the show to be widely popular.
"The show is
brilliant and hysterically funny," was the opinion of a member of Manhattan
The CD on sale here
presents piano renditions of all the songs from the show and can be used for
rehearsal purposes as well as simply for listening.
Bernard J. Taylor
I have loved Gilbert
and Sullivan since I was a child and, as with the Marsh King's Daughter (where I
felt guided by the spirit of Mozart), I felt equally guided by the spirits of
Gilbert and Sullivan - sometimes almost literally, as I occasionally developed a
sense that they were looking over my shoulder as I was creating the show! As
with The Marsh King's Daughter, the show almost seemed to write itself.
There are some in
jokes for those who are familiar with Gilbert and Sullivan, but overall I
believe the show has enough humor and familiar melodies to be enjoyed even by
those who are not particularly familiar with their works.
Please see Production Enquiries for
licensing contacts. Libretto, orchestrations/scores, midi files and backing tracks are available upon
request; contact Bernard J. Taylor.