Scottish Opera - HMS Pinafore - AllMusic
The Scottish Opera's live concert performance of Gilbert & Sullivan's HMS Pinafore was given at the 2015 Edinburgh International Festival, and the one-night-only show was well received by both the audience and critics. Featuring a charismatic cast including John Mark Ainsley as Sir Joseph Porter, Elizabeth Watts as Josephine, Andrew Foster-Williams as Captain Corcoran, Toby Spence as Ralph Rackstraw, Hilary Summers as Buttercup, and comedian Tim Brooke-Taylor as the Narrator, the production was especially noteworthy for conductor Richard Egarr's historically informed approach to the music. This is the first recording of a period performance of HMS Pinafore, and the attention paid to 19th century practices in operetta and authentic instrumentation add to the performance's value to historians and collectors. However, most listeners will appreciate the humor and highly infectious tunes that have kept HMS Pinafore among the most popular of Gilbert & Sullivan's works since its 1878 premiere.