My First Music: John Wilson Conducts the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in G&S Favorites at Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, 18 April 2019

…including a complete performance of Trial By Jury, which I was in a production of before my bonny lad was even born.

Trial by Jury.jpgAbove John: No one does it better than D’Oyly Carte, 1975.

Hastily conceived as a one-act filler for an evening’s entertainment with Offenbach’s La Périchole, Trial By Jury quickly established itself as the real hit of the production. Although this was not Gilbert & Sullivan’s first collaboration, it was the work that established the partnership for good. The first performance of Trial By Jury was on 25 March, 1875.

Here’s a 1985 British TV production of this selfsame one-act operetta with comedian Frankie Howerd as the Judge, and it’s a scream.

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My First Music: Gilbert and Sullivan’s Ruddigore, an Animation by Halas and Batchelor (UK, 1967)

This was my first taste of Gilbert and Sullivan at 12. A dozen years later I only remembered “Basingstoke” but it came at the right time.

RuddigoreD’Oyly Carte Opera, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, James Walker, conductor.

This fifty-five minute animated feature by the husband-and-wife animation artists John Halas and Joy Batchelor is a heavily-abridged version of Ruddigore. The D’Oyly Carte Opera Company supplied the soundtrack.

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