The Pirates of Penzance

The Pirates of Penzance

By Gilbert and Sullivan

Season 20-28 November 1991
Venue Belconnen Theatre


The operetta opens with a rollicking chorus of pirates elaborating Frederic's Coming Out of His Indentures. When he was a child, his nurse, Ruth was under instructions to apprentice him to a "pilot", but being hard of hearing, she mistakenly apprenticed him a "pirate". Frederic's apprenticeship with the pirates finishes at the age of 21, and once his duty has been fulfilled, he will devote himself to exterminating his former comrades. He invites the Pirate King to repent and mend his ways but the King responds with Oh, Better Far to Live and Die Under the Brave, Black Flag I Fly. Living in the vicinity is Major-General Stanely and his daughters. Frederic asks whether there is not one maiden among them who will rescue him from his unfortunate position. Mabel responds with a beautiful solo Poor Wandering One. Meanwhile her sisters are seized by the pirates who see a First Rate Opportunity to get Married with Impunity.

Mabel warns them Father is a Major General. He pleads for mercy saying he's an orphan, and the pirates cannot resist. The girls urge the policeman led by their sergeant in quest of the pirates and they reluctantly set out to seek Death and Glory.

A paradox appears. Frederic was born on February 29th in a leap year, and therefore is not 21, but only five and a quarter. He tells the pirates that the Major General is not really an orphan. They seek vengeance. The pirates capture the police but the sergeant bids them yield in Queen Victoria's Name. The pirates surrender. The Major General invites them to Take my Daughters all of Whom are Beauties - a truly Gilbertian happy ending.


Director Jason Savage
Musical Director Pam Connor-Woolcock
Production Manager Kelda McManus
Stage Manager Andrew Richards
Assistant Stage Manager Suzanne Hartshorn
Set Design Jason Savage
Costume Design Suzanne Hartshorn, Amy Weekes, Lyn Liddiard, Andrew McGuire, Nerida Crossley
Lighting Design Andrew Richards
Sound Design Malcolm Tompkins


Mabel Amy Weekes
Frederic Gareth Millar
Major General Stanely John Stabler
Police Sergeant Richard Niven
Pirate King Lachlan Abrahams
Ruth Margot Reynolds
Samuel Graham Bauerle
Edith Jennifer Stroud
Kate Jenna Haynes
Isabel Amanda King
Major General's Daughters Anne Beard, Felicity Boyd, Rosey Higgins, Pamela Kelly, Debbie Learmonth, Pamela McManus, Kelda McManus, Kate Tricks, Catherine Priddle, Amanda Walshem Deborah Woodyard
The Police John Alsford, Chris Boyldew, Bill Curnow, David Priddle, Philip Russell
The Pirates Mick Bower, Anthony McGlynn, Steven Mottlee, Craig Rossiter, Steve Thatcher, Glen Toohey


Violin 1 Monica Boyton, Timothy Chaston, Heather Shelly, Hannah Sless
Violin 2 Tim Beard, Kate Quilky, Clare Scanlon, Kirsten Pollard, Dimity McClelland, Felicia Trewin, Anne Harlen
Viola Mandy Souters
Cello Olga Howel
French Horn Iain Herdus, Malini Devadas
Trumpets Nicholas Hassanoff, David Hood
Trombone Boud Roukema, Michael Argy
Percussion Barry Pigram, David Tricks
Tuba Peter McDonald
Clarinet Jon Rasalky
Flute/Piccolo Gillian Marshall, Amy Maxwell
Oboe Sandra Holdom
Pianist Jenni Mersiades