Gilbert & Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore

Samantha PillingEntertainment, Latest News

Opera Glass

The Grim’s Dyke Hotel is proud to present H.M.S. Pinafore. Gilbert & Sullivan’s fourth operatic collaboration and their first international sensation, it is being performed by The Grim’s Dyke Opera group.

One of Gilbert & Sullivan’s flagship operas

So much more than ‘just’ one of Gilbert & Sullivan’s plays, this production was the first one that was self-financed by the duo AND the second-longest running performance or ANY musical theatre piece at the time. When originally opened on 25 May 1878, it ran for a staggering 571 performances!

A piece of operatic history

Gilbert & Sullivan self-financed H.M.S. Pinafore so they could select talented actors, most of which were unheard of. This enabled Gilbert & Sullivan to teach them a more naturalistic style of performance, unlike that utilised by the usual actors already engaged with the Royal Theatre. They could then tailor their work to suit the abilities of their performers, giving their audiences a totally natural and real experience – something that had never been seen before.

Sullivan conducted the music rehearsals, whilst Gilbert acted as the stage director, as he sought a realism to the acting, something he strove to achieve in each of their plays.

A hit both at home and abroad

H.M.S. Pinafore opened in New York on 1 December 1879 – approximately 1 year after UK production – and after over 150 unauthorised productions had already been shown in the US.

Historian John Bush is stated as saying that “H.M.S. Pinafore demonstrated that musical theatre can address contemporary and political issues without sacrificing entertainment value.”

Continuing the tradition

We at the Grim’s Dyke Hotel are immensely proud to continue honouring Gilbert’s love of H.M.S. Pinafore – he even had a model of the ship installed at Grim’s Dyke that is still there to this day. We are delighted that HMS Pinafore is being performed at The Grim’s Dyke in July.

To find out more about the H.M.S. Pinafore performance in July and to check availability, please visit our ‘What’s On’ page, by clicking here.

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