Sir William Schwenk Gilbert and Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan were a well-know musical duo in the late nineteenth century AD. They are best known for the fourteen operas (thirteen comic, and the one tragedy is about a comedian) they worked on together. They are also off-screen figures in such fandoms as Star Trek, Doctor Who, and VeggieTales.
Gilbert and Sullivan humor is classic and the inspiration for many comedic acts. Some people say that many parodies draw on the spirit of and the precedents set by Gilbert and Sullivan material—including some PPC missions.
- Main article: The Mikado
The Pirates of PenzanceEdit
When Frederic was about eight or so, his father wanted him to be apprenticed as a pilot. However, his nurse, Ruth, misheard and apprenticed him to pirates instead. These pirates are so tenderhearted that they never harm an orphan and so credulous that they do not realize that mariners military and civilian are wise to this and are not really orphans. The scene opens with Frederic celebrating his twenty-first birthday—he is out of his indentures now. He takes his leave of the pirates, seeking to become an honest man. Ruth told him she is still attractive, but her information is out-of-date, and Frederic assumes she was lying. He meets some vacationing young ladies, who balk when they learn he was a pirate. But one, Mabel, falls head-over-heels in love with him. The pirates arrive to take the rest of the young ladies as wives, but their (the ladies') foster-father, Major General Stanley arrives. (It turns out that while he is a brilliant scholar, he does not know thing one about tactics.) He defuses the situation by pretending to be an orphan.
Deception of any sort, however, goes against the Major General's personal code of honor. He is weeping with remorse when Frederic brings in a squad of the most timid bobbies ever to help sweep the pirates away. Then, when all save Frederic have left, Ruth and the pirate King arrive and tell him that as he was born on February 29, he has only had five birthdays, and so must remain with the pirates. Frederic, bound by his sense of duty, does so, and spills the secret that Maj. Gen. Stanley is no orphan. The pirates are furious. Mabel breaks the bad news to the police, and then the pirates arrive to kill Stanley. Will they succeed? And can Frederic find a way out of his indenture?
In the early seventeenth century, a witch (whom Sir Rupert Murgatroyd, Bart., was burning) cursed the line of Baronets of Ruddigore so that each one would have to commit a crime a day or die horribly. In the early nineteenth century, to escape this doom, young Ruthven (pronounced Riven) Murgatroyd faked his death and assumed the name Robin Oakapple. At the time the story begins, he is madly in love with Rose Maybud, who is madly in love with him. However, neither can tell the other. Meanwhile, his friend Richard Dauntless is coming back from the sea. He regales the professional bridesmaids with an account of how his ship had pity on a French frigate (more powerful than his revenue sloop). Then, Robin enlists his help in wooing Rose. Richard agrees, but falls in love with Rose himself and woos her, but in the end she chooses Robin. Meanwhile, Sir Despard Murgatroyd's old flame Margaret comes on, decidedly mad. She is soon followed by the men's chorus and Despard himself, the current Baronet of Ruddigore. Richard, determined to secure Rose for himself, reveals Robin's true identity to Despard, who is desperate to become an honest man again. Despard interrupts the wedding with the revelation of Robin's true identity. Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd becomes the baronet, Despard marries Margaret, and all go off happily save Sir Ruthven and his servant Adam Goodheart.
A week later, Richard and Rose come to the castle Ruddigore to get Sir Ruthven's permission to tie the knot. Sir Ruthven grants it. Once everyone has left, the portraits of his predecessors come alive and their ghosts emerge, led by Ruthven's uncle, Sir Roderic Murgatroyd. Sir Ruthven has been trying to get by with misdemeanors; this will not do. They tell him to kidnap a maiden at once, or else. Once they've left, Sir Ruthven sends Old Adam to carry off a maiden—any maiden. Meanwhile, Despard and Margaret come in. They now run a national school, and Despard is an author. They talk Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd into reforming, and then Old Adam returns with Dame Hannah, Sir Roderic's old flame. Can Sir Ruthven find a way to break the curse? And more immediately, can he avoid being slain by Dame Hannah, who has appropriated a pointy object? And how will Sir Roderic react to Dame Hannah being the one kidnapped?
The villagers of Ploverleigh are all excited over the pending wedding between Alexis Poindextre (son to Sir Marmaduke Poindextre, Bart.) and Aline Sangazure (blue blood, get it?). Now, Sir Marmaduke was madly in love with Aline's mother, now the widowed Lady Sangazure, way back when, and they start to feel the stirrings again. Meanwhile, Alexis, who believes that love should be for its own sake only and that being in love is the key to happiness, hires a local sorcerer, John Wellington Wells, to spike the tea at the engagement banquet with love potion. The villagers drink it and pass out for twelve hours.
At exactly midnight, they wake up and everyone falls in love with the first person of the opposite sex they see, and that love is immediately returned. Young Constance Partlett, who'd had a crush on Doctor Daly (the local vicar), falls in love with the sixty-six-year-old notary, and her mother falls in love with Sir Marmaduke. Meanwhile, Alexis is worried that Aline might fall out of love with him, so he has her drink the potion. Then Mr. Wells, who has not drunk the potion, meets Lady Sangazure, who has, and she falls madly in love with him. They sing a duet wherein she tries to woo him and he tries to rebuff her. Meanwhile, Aline and Doctor Daly fall madly in love, much to Alexis' dismay. He asks Mr. Wells how to break the spell. Mr. Wells replies that it can only be broken if either he or Alexis gives himself up to the Devil. Who will it be?
- The Gondoliers
- The Grand Duke
- H.M.S. Pinafore
- Princess Ida
- Trial By Jury
- Utopia, Limited
- The Yeoman of the Guard