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The Gilbert and Sullivan Archive   The Sorcerer Review 1898

SAVOY THEATRE

It was a happy thought on the part of Mr. D’Oyly Carte to celebrate the “majority” of The Sorcerer by a revival, for there is not one of the long series of comic operas which we owe to the fertile genius of Mr. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan that the public will welcome more warmly. Originally produced so long ago as 1877, and revived in 1884, The Sorcerer is very far from having exhausted its popularity. Last night’s audience laughed as heartily over Mr. Gilbert’s delightful humour and encored Sir Arthur’s charming melodies as lustily as ever. Truth to tell, The Sorcerer bears its years wonderfully well. It may be said without exaggeration that the wit of the dialogue has lost nothing of its lambency, while the music, familiar as much of it is, retains all its freshness and charm.

The performance was a good one upon the whole. Not one of the original cast now appears at the Savoy and only one of that which assisted at the revival in 1884. Miss Brandram is fortunately still available for the part of Lady Sangazure, which she sings with all her old success, Mr. Jones Hewson has scarcely experience enough for the part of Sir Marmaduke, and Mr. Lytton’s Vicar lacks the unctuous humour of Mr. Barrington. Mr. Passmore, who succeeds Mr. Grossmith as the Sorcerer, gives ample effect to the extravagant humours of the part, and the hero and heroine are ably represented by Miss Ruth Vincent and Mr. R. Evett, the latter a new-comer with a sonorous tenor voice, who strengthens the Savoy company in a marked manner. Miss Emmie Owen, Miss E. McAlpine, and Mr. L. Russell fill the smaller parts in a thoroughly efficient manner.

The Sorcerer is followed by the ever-popular Trial by Jury, in which the principal parts fall to Mr. Lytton, Mr. Cory James, and Miss Isabel Jay. Both operas were received with overwhelming demonstrations of delight and ought to fill the theatre for come time to come.

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