Monday, October 22, 2007

And now, for something completely different!

I'm directing "The Pirates of Penzance" by Gilbert and Sullivan for our local symphony this year. As I've been working my way through the various scenes and looking at what the history books say a few interesting things have occurred to me:

1. Gilbert is pretty funny. (Seeing as it is a comedy it should be an obvious conclusion, but have any of you seen an actual production?)
2.Late Victorians were modern day Hippies ... without the head bands.
3. Monty Python's "Brave Sir Robin" and "When the Foreman Bears His Steel (Tarantara, Tarantara)" are essentially the same song. Different words of course. But the same. I'm not sure even I can follow that.

Interesting. I never expected that I would reach those conclusions (especially the hippie part, given the corsets that was a real shocker), but now that I have they really fit. We like to think of the Victorians as terribly repressed and horribly backward but a lot of what we currently hold dear, our love of technology, our reverence for science, our championing of the underdog, equality for all, and even our concepts of love, rebellion and peace all come from that period. Talk about weird. Now I'll have to rethink everything I thought I knew about everything I thought I knew before.

Thanks a lot. "I say Nee! In your general direction", Gilbert. I know you'd appreciate it.


Jenn said...

You must check out "The Pirate Movie"!

trace said...

I think I vaguely remember seeing that movie... and enjoying it. I've enjoyed the G & S show the times that I've seen it, too. There's nothing like being deeply involved in a project to see things from a different perspective... (how I found the little mermaid sang tunes from "Little shop of horrors..."

Cara said...

I just took a look at the Pirate movie, I actually haven't seen it! I'll have to look at that and the one with Kevin Kline they both look interesting! Thanks for the tip. The little mermaid sings tunes from "Little shop of horrors"?

trace said...

Same melody line/chord progression comes up in both the little shop and the little mermaid (probably because it was the same composer). I'd never have heard it if we hadn't rehearsed sections of Little shop many times!

Naomi said...

I have a copy of a performance with Kevin Kline- it may not be as good as the BBC version Alex has a copy of...such fun!

Does your Fredrick do Elvis?