Gilbert and Sullivan Archive



1882: IOLANTHE becomes the first G&S opera to premiere at the Savoy, and the first stage work of any kind to have its British and American debuts on the same day.

David Duffey

Mary Ellen Kelly

Paul McShane I have been waiting with bated breath for some time for this posting of David's (pounce!) -

But David, you left out the most important thing of all in 1882:

For most of you on the western side of the Atlantic, this may be incomprehensible, but I'm sure Mr. Duffey will be delighted to explain if you ask him in respectful tone.

David Duffey How could I have missed it? And on a day when the Aussies were trounced in a one dayer. I wish I thought that was a sign of things to come this summer.

You bowled me through the gate there, Paul.

John C. Searight I assume that David's last sentence includes the cricket equivalent of being out on three called strikes on this side of the pond. Not to mention 3000 miles of North America. But, speaking of Aussies, have you all heard of Rupert Murdoch's (sp?) impending purchase of the Los Angeles Dodgers? Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!! (At this point the thread wandered hopelessly off topic. Ed.)

Neil Ellenoff <<Gladstone sent a gunboat.>> Did Serbia have a coastline? David Duffey The affair gave rise to 'The Dalmanian Incident'. A RN squadron under Rear Admiral Harvey (HMS Warspite) patrolled off Dubrovnik, threatening to use its smaller vessels and force of marines to navigate the R. Neretvia. Austria objected strongly, backed up by Germany and Italy. Diplomatic relations with Austria (but not Germany - I can't find out about Italy) were broken by Austria recalling its ambassador. In the Commons, the views of the house diverged. There was considerable feeling that Britain should keep to its own traditional spheres of influence and not attempt to be an international policeman. The debate rumbled on and off for ten years or so, although the Austrian ambassador was back within a couple of months.

Of all the operas, I think I would most like to have seen Iolanthe at The Savoy through the eyes of a Victorian.

We are so used to colour and bright illumination that we probably fail to appreciate the impact the show must have had visually.

Stan Deorsey Hi David. I always (well almost always!) enjoy your Savoynet postings -- including your history of what happened in some particular year past. However ... your recent 1882 posting contains a major error: Hiram S Maxim (English, despite his US sounding name) patented a recoil-operated machine gun. Dear Hiram was born in the State of Maine in the USA. He grew up there and became a tinkerer building a variety of items which lead him to various business deals and ultimately to England. He was knighted and I think he actually became a UK citizen. I believe he died in London. But despite his US sounding name, he was from the US! I can provide dates and places if you need it (I am from Maine too!)

But do keep posting these and your other contributions.

David Duffey Coals of fire heaped on my head (rightly), for a failure to research deeply enough. I knew Maxim was knighted, and assumed that this meant he was British born, however:

Updated 28 November 1997