Pirates of Penzance in London

Our family got tickets for Christmas and we we’re looking forward to seeing it (though the kids we’re a bit unsure about what it was;  “Is an Opera a musical?  What’s the difference?”.  A good question that :D)

I was expecting to go an appreciate the music and singer’s talent, but it was actually tonnes of fun.

We’d got the music first thinking we might listen to it ahead of time (to gen up) but we ended up skipping it to go in cold (“No spoilers!”).

The opera was shown at the London Coliseum, apparently the largest theatre in London.  There was lots of space (some of the older London theatres are “a bit snug”) and we had great seats and had plenty of time to gawp at the old stylings of the place.

The performance itself was great.  The overture was interesting and not too long and the opening songs did a great job of setting the scene.  While it was reasonably easy to make out what the soloists were singing the chorus was tricky to make out.  Still, I was able to follow what was going on with no prior knowledge.  Later my wife pointed out that all the lyrics were displayed on a screen at the top of the stage;  loads easier and I was able to pick up on lots more of the jokes too 😀

In fact, the whole thing was very funny, warm and British.  Though there were Pirates there were no villains (as such) and the whole premise was daft (the hero had been raised a pirate due to his guardian mis-understanding simple instructions).  I laughed through lots of the performance and we all found it really fun.

Very different too;  an old-fashioned, gentle form of Englishness from the dim and distant past and I was surprised at how many of the songs I’d heard somewhere before.

Worth a watch if you fancy something different!

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