Friday, November 28, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

‘Pirates of Penzance’ is a rollicking good time

By
From page A5 | February 19, 2012 |

Mike Baad, pictured in the Light Opera Theatre of Sacramento's 2006 production of "Pirates of Penzance," will reprise the role of Major General Stanley in this month's performances in Sacramento and Davis. Courtesy photo

Check it out

What: Light Opera Theatre of Sacramento presents Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Pirates of Penzance”

Sacramento performances: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, at the 24th Street Theatre, 2791 24th St.

Davis performances: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24-25, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 25-26, at the Veterans’ Memorial Theater, 203 E. 14th St.

Tickets: $20 general, $15 students, seniors and children 12 and under; BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006

The famous “Pirates of Penzance” rolled into Sacramento this past weekend, and took the town hostage. And the town loved it.

The delightful Gilbert and Sullivan classic — presented by Light Opera Theatre of Sacramento and directed by Katie Daley, with musical direction by her husband Philip Daley — will continue this weekend at the 24th Street Theater in Sacramento and then play Feb. 24-26 at the Veterans’ Memorial Theater in Davis.

There hasn’t been much Gilbert and Sullivan in Davis since the Davis Comic Opera Company ended its 30-year run. And if you have been longing to hear a good patter song or two again, this is definitely the shop for it.

This wonderful production starts with what may be the best community theater orchestra I have heard. However, Gilbert and Sullivan aficionados may find it confusing that the overture has been shortened, lopping off the first 2½ minutes and starting with the slow “Ah leave me not to pine” rather than the upbeat “With Catlike tread.” Daley points out that the omitted section is played, instead, at the end of the show, as the audience is leaving.

As the chorus of pirates enters and begins its “Pour o pour the pirate sherry,” the audience is again blown away by the rich, full sound. The female chorus is equally as impressive, and when the two combine for “Hail Poetry,” it sends chills down the spine.

The principals are all outstanding, but head and shoulders among them is Sara Haugland as Mabel, one of the wards of Major General Stanley (Michael Baad), who falls in love with the young ex-pirate Frederic (Ian Cullity).

Haughland has a bearing and a voice that shine, and her affection for her young lover is poignant in their parting song “Ah, leave me not to pine.”

Cullity is no slouch either, very earnest in his desire to fight his former comrades, and then again a slave to his sense of duty when a problem arises concerning the length of time of his indenture.

Baad has had years to perfect his Major General Stanley, and perfect it he has. When he began his famous patter song, “I am the very model of a modern major general,” I wondered how in the world he was going to do the final section, which traditionally is considerably faster than what has gone before.

He not only did it significantly faster, but his diction was crystal-clear and as near as I could tell, he didn’t drop or slur a word. That feat alone makes this production worth seeing.

This is a family affair so it’s no surprise that Chris Baad plays the Pirate King and Debbie Baad is Ruth, Frederic’s former nursemaid, now a piratical maid of all work. Both Baads are quite good, though it would have been better if Debbie had a bit more volume. However, it’s such a small thing, it hardly matters. Chris swashes a nice buckle and makes a fun pirate.

Bob Schroeder, as the Sergeant of Police, also could use a bit more oomph, but his body language as he trembles in his boots out of fear of confrontation with the pirates is great fun.

In the smaller role of Mabel’s sister, the hormone-charged Edith, Kelly Daniells is one of those actors you simply can’t take your eyes off of. She is cute as a button and sings up a storm and I kept thinking what a great Ado Annie she would make if someone wants to do a production of “Oklahoma!”

The show is presented with super titles, which not only display the song lyrics that you otherwise might not catch, but also the entire libretto, a great help for a show like this where language and word play are so crucial to the humor.

Surprisingly, there are inconsistencies between the super titles and the script. I know “Pirates” pretty well and as near as I could tell, the actors got it right and the super titles had it wrong whenever there were discrepancies.

This is a wonderful production, rich in sound, with excellent performances. The whole thing is a lot of fun. You have a first-rate opportunity to catch it at the Veterans’ Memorial Theater and I highly recommend it.

And if you’re a real die-hard, do what about a quarter of the Sacramento audience did — come wearing your very own pirate costume. They say that the production is rated “arrrgh.”

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Shop-local focus highlights Small Business Saturday

    By Bob Schultz | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Looking for the gift of life

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    The artistic process of a neighborhood legend

    By Lily Holmes | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Davis MRAP didn’t go far: Woodland

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

    Holiday shopping in full gear

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

     
    Tell us your Putah Creek stories

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    Gorilla death prompts S.F. Zoo changes

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Bob Dunning: MRAP your arms around this

    By Bob Dunning | From Page: A2

    Ceremony Tuesday celebrates MU bus terminal

    By Dave Jones | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Explorit: Water expert will speak Dec. 15

    By Lisa Justice | From Page: A3

     
    Free bike clinic, ride set Sunday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Locals come through for families in need

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Travel the world at Logos Books

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Dormant-season pruning tips offered

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Junior high students set walkathon fundraiser

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Horse owners needed for online survey

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Sierra Club calendars on sale Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Enterprise holiday decorating contest is back

    By Kimberly Yarris | From Page: A4

     
    Flyway Nights talk focuses on sea otters of Elkhorn Slough

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

    Chamber of Commerce lays out 5-year plan

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    Holiday gifts galore available at crafts fair

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    Shakespeare folio discovered in France

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A7 | Gallery

     
    Students come together for sustainability

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7 | Gallery

    Workshop will answer financial aid questions

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    Wolks share their unique perspective on Davis

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    Christmas Bird Count workshop planned Wednesday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Watch, then make, a holiday floral decoration

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

    .

    Forum

    Behavior straining friendship

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    It all started at the bookstore

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    What can we do to help?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    What if we really need it?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

     
    Tom Elias: Utilities look to soak small users

    By Tom Elias | From Page: A6

    Cheers and Jeers: Thankfully, no jeers

    By Our View | From Page: A6

     
    Many thanks for a great benefit

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    .

    Sports

    Seahawks shut down San Francisco

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Aggies out-Fox Utah State after dramatic Les shot to forces overtime

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Defense, depth lead Aggie women to home win

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
     
    Youth roundup: 10 titles for the Diamonds Level 3 gymnastics squad

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B4 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Mumbo Gumbo plays for post-Thanksgiving dance party

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

     
    ‘Horrible Bosses 2′: Fire ‘em all!

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    Sonata evolves into more sophisticated car

    By Ann M. Job | From Page: C1 | Gallery

     
    .

    Obituaries

    John Walter Neves Jr.

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Friday, November 28, 2014 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B3

     
    Comics: Friday, November 28, 2014 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: A10