By Ian Bradley
In Oh pleasure! Oh Rapture! professional and fanatic Ian Bradley explores the area of Gilbert and Sullivan over the past 4 and a part many years, taking a look at the best way this "phenomenon" is handed from new release to iteration. Taking as his start line the expiry of copyright at the opera libretti on the finish of 1961 and utilizing attention-grabbing hitherto unpublished archive fabric, Bradley unearths the extreme tale of the final years of the previous D'Oyly Carte Opera corporation, the mum or dad of Savoy culture for over 100 years, and the afflicted heritage of its successor. He explores the wealthy vein of parodies, spoofs, and spin-offs of the songs, in addition to their effect on 20th century lyricists and composers. He analyzes expert productions the world over, seems to be on the certain position of G&S in colleges, schools, and universities, and lovingly explores the tradition of beginner functionality. He additionally uncovers the principally male global of the obsessive fanatics, these accumulating memorabilia, the myriad magazines, journals, web content, and fairs dedicated to G&S, and the arcane pursuits of a few of the trustworthy "inner brotherhood."
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Additional info for Oh Joy! Oh Rapture!: The Enduring Phenomenon of Gilbert and Sullivan
The local British-American Chamber of Commerce suggested a call to the Seattle Gilbert and Sullivan Society, who provided four Yeomen of the Guard in full costume. Somehow in the North American context there is nothing incongruous about using G & S-inspired ‘Olde English’ nostalgia to celebrate the wonders of modern aerospace technology. In Britain, such juxtaposition would somehow jar. The historian David Cannadine, one of very few British academics to have analysed the whole Gilbert and Sullivan phenomenon, places a heavy emphasis on the nostalgia factor.
Thus the hold of the D’Oyly Carte family was maintained. The new Trust’s conservatism is evident in an article written by its first president, Sir Malcolm Sargent, in the official D’Oyly Carte journal, the Savoyard: If there were producers living who were better at producing Gilbert and Sullivan than Gilbert himself was, then I am sure that the D’Oyly Carte tradition would cease. . But I see no producer living whose productions have lasted more than a few years as against Gilbert’s survival for over fifty.
There have been others dedicated primarily to performing the works of one author, like the Royal Shakespeare Company, but they have generally embraced other authors and different styles of production. The D’Oyly Carte stuck to G & S alone and performed it in a style which followed many of Gilbert’s own directions and bits of ‘business’ added by early performers. In doing so, it delighted its fans who were sticklers for tradition and derived much of their pleasure from seeing familiar faces doing things in a familiar way.