Donald Harris in Ruddigore

Donald Harris (1947-51)

[Born Redruth, Cornwall 1921, died 31 Aug or 2 Sep 1957]

Donald J. Harris spent the four seasons spanning September 1947 and August 1951 with the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company. Initially a chorister, he deputized on occasion his first season for Radley Flynn as Bob Beckett in H.M.S. Pinafore while Flynn was filling in for Darrell Fancourt as Dick Deadeye.

In August 1948 Harris assumed the small parts of the Foreman of the Jury in Trial by Jury and Go-To in The Mikado, and in April 1949, following Richard Dunn's departure, he added Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance. That month he also filled in as the Lieutenant of the Tower in The Yeomen of the Guard when Charles Dorning fell ill. Harris ultimately added the Lieutenant to his regular duties when Richard Walker left in July 1949.

Harris would play the Foreman, Samuel, Go-To, and the Lieutenant for the balance of his D'Oyly Carte career. During the 1949-50 season he also made occasional appearances as Bob Beckett again, and as Old Adam Goodheart in Ruddigore. For his final season he assumed Bill Bobstay in Pinafore and a share of Giorgio in The Gondoliers.

Donald Harris may be heard on D'Oyly Carte recordings of Trial by Jury (as the Foreman, 1949), The Pirates of Penzance (as Samuel, 1949), The Mikado (as Go-To, 1950), and The Yeomen of the Guard (as the Lieutenant, 1950). He also sang Go-To on a 1951 D'Oyly Carte broadcast of The Mikado on BBC. Harris was married to D'Oyly Carte chorister Diedree Thurlow.

Page modified May 4, 2009 © 2002-09 David Stone