Audio Review: ‘The Pirates of Penzance’ at Symphony Area

December 29th, 2013

It is a tribute to the charms of “H.M.S. Pinafore” that some one hundred fifty American firms staged unauthorized productions soon after the show’s successful London debut in 1878. Gilbert and Sullivan, the authors, of training course resented this copyright piracy, and wished to get no odds with “The Pirates of Penzance,” a subsequent production. But “Pirates” faced a equivalent copyright struggle right after the premiere in New York. (It was the only Gilbert and Sullivan opera that experienced its official opening in the United States.)

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The show’s recognition has by no means waned, and it has an enthusiastic neighborhood winner in the New York Gilbert &amp Sullivan Gamers, who supply a normal source of Savoyard classics and lesser-identified gems.

Underneath the helm of the energetic Albert Bergeret, the company presented “Pirates” on Friday night at Symphony Area, component of a winter season period that also consists of the comic opera “Patience.”

Gilbert and Sullivan’s satire is ripe for updating, though apart from a couple of modern day references — such as mentions of the Homeland Protection Office and No Child Remaining Powering — this conventional production characteristics period costumes and slapstick components. The Pirate King, performed with swashbuckling aptitude and apt comedian timing by David Wannen, emits an “om” and does yoga to serene down. The maidens frolic and simper the pirates cry hammy tears each time exploring somebody is an “orphan.”

As Key-Standard Stanley, James Mills shipped with ?lan the patter track “I Am the Really Product of a Contemporary Key-Basic,” a melody parodied many instances considering that its composition. The tenor Daniel Greenwood proved an earnest and partaking Frederic, the younger man mistakenly apprenticed to the pirates and trapped by a leap year birthday. Despite the fact that at instances she could have projected much better, Sarah Caldwell Smith sang with a sweet-timbred soprano and amusing trills as Mabel. C?itl?n Burke was a feisty Ruth, Frederic’s nursemaid and would-be more mature spouse. The scaled-down roles, such as David Auxier as the Sergeant of Law enforcement, ended up also convincingly portrayed.

Mr. Bergeret and the tiny ensemble presented the singers with energetic accompaniment. The amiable production, even though not extremely imaginative, was undoubtedly typically charming — and the viewers responded warmly.

“Pirates” runs by means of Tuesday at Symphony Room, 2537 Broadway, at 95th Avenue 212-864-5400, symphonyspace.org.

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