Burnand & Solomon - Pickwick; Grossmith - Cups & Saucers
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Label: Retrospect Opera
Cat No: RO002
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 1st February 2016
ArtistsSimon Butteriss (baritone)
Gaynor Keeble (mezzo-soprano)
Toby Stafford-Allen (baritone)
Alessandro MacKinnon (treble)
Stephen Higgins (piano)
Premiered at the Comedy Theatre, London, on 7 February 1889, it is no exaggeration to describe Pickwick as the first great Charles Dickens musical, though in its own day it was categorised as an operetta (and, for the scholarly minded, was officially titled a “dramatic cantata,” following the Gilbert and Sullivan Trial by Jury). Musical versions of Dickens’s stories before Pickwick were little more than disjointed spoken plays with a handful of largely incidental songs. Pickwick, by contrast, was essentially conceived in sung music from start to finish, the most celebrated incident in Pickwick Papers, the hilarious misunderstanding between Mr Pickwick and Mrs Bardell, elaborated in a series of sparkling songs and duets.
The companion work, Cups and Saucers of 1876, was written, composed and performed by George Grossmith (1847-1912), best known for his origination of many of the Gilbert and Sullivan patter roles, but a talented composer and writer in his own right. It is a delicious little satire on the British obsession with Oriental china and may have helped inspire The Mikado.
- Pickwick: Simon Butteriss
- Mrs Bardell: Gaynor Keeble
- The Baker: Toby Stafford-Allen
- Tommy: Alessandro MacKinnon
Cast (Cups and Saucers):
- General Deelah: Simon Butteriss
- Mrs Worcester: Gaynor Keeble
Dibdin - The Wags
Dibdin & Garrick - The Jubilee with Queen Mab and Datchet Maid
Dibdin - Christmas Gambols & The Musical Tour of Mr Dibdin
Bernstein - Trouble In Tahiti
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