Friday, February 23, 2018
News Roundup

Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera 'Thespis' opens Feb. 4 in Tarpon Springs

TARPON SPRINGS

What happens when elderly Greek gods, no longer appreciated by mortals on Earth, decide to go on holiday?

A lot of hilarity and mishaps — according to Gilbert and Sullivan's lighthearted romp.

This weekend and next, the Gilbert and Sullivan Players present Thespis (or, the Gods Grown Old) at the Tarpon Springs Performing Arts Center. The comic opera is directed by Jamie Bierchen, who also performs the role of Thespis. Constantine Grame is the musical director and pianist.

Thespis premiered in London in 1871; it was the first of 14 collaborations between Victorian-era composer Arthur Sullivan and librettist W.S. Gilbert.

"The musical score was never published," Grame said. "The reason for that remains unknown."

Thus the show is seldom performed, but this production features mostly new music, composed by Grame, which follows Sullivan's style.

"I had a blast writing it," Grame said. "The words that Gilbert wrote just suggested the lightness and whimsy of the music."

The fanciful spoof revolves around a troupe of successful comedic actors led by Thespis, often called the father of drama. They make their way to Mount Olympus and agree to stand in for the Greek gods so they can party on Earth. When the actors make a mess of things under Thespis' liberal rule, well, the Gods get angry and take revenge.

The libretto is posted on the Thespis page on Tarpon Springs Performing Arts Center website, www.tarponarts.org, for those who wish to print it out and follow along.

The 29-year-old community theater group plans to present a complete series of all of Gilbert and Sullivan's works in the order in which they were written over the next several years. They think the cheery music and adventuresome themes of Gilbert and Sullivan's works will attract opera novices as well as seasoned aficionados.

"It's just a lot of fun and it's sung in English, its original language," Grame said. "We think audiences will love it."

Terri Bryce Reeves can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Winter Olympics: Alina Zagitova wins figure skating gold, Russia’s first of Games

Winter Olympics: Alina Zagitova wins figure skating gold, Russia’s first of Games

GANGNEUNG, South Korea  — The Russians finally have a gold medal at the  Olympics, thanks to a 15-year-old who beat the fellow teen who inspired her to become a figure skater.Alina Zagitova won one of the Games' spotlight events Frida...
Updated: 2 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Feb. 22

Thursday’s scoreboardSoftballBoca Ciega 4, Pinellas Park 2Admiral Farragut 7, Northside Christian 1Boys tennisOsceola 7, Dixie Hollins 0Clearwater Central Cath. 4, Jesuit 3Girls tennisOsceola 7, Dixie Hollins 0Boys basketballClass 3A, region semifina...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Deputy ‘never went in’ during Parkland school shooting. There were other failures, too

Deputy ‘never went in’ during Parkland school shooting. There were other failures, too

Eight days after mass shooter Nikolas Cruz murdered 17 people inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Broward’s top cop on Thursday revealed a stunning series of failures by the sheriff’s department.A school campus cop heard the gunfire, rushed ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
A case for wild flamingos calling Florida their home

A case for wild flamingos calling Florida their home

In 2015, Conchy the flamingo showed up at Florida’s Naval Air Station Key West, and he wouldn’t leave. Normally, managers on the grounds lethally remove feathered troublemakers — it can be very dangerous with birds flying around million-dollar fighte...
Updated: 5 hours ago

Updated: 6 hours ago
Florida man yells ‘murderers!’ as he’s executed for slaying

Florida man yells ‘murderers!’ as he’s executed for slaying

Associated PressSTARKE — An inmate convicted of raping and killing a college student decades ago screamed and yelled "murderers!" three times, thrashing on a gurney as he was being put to death Thursday. The governor’s office said Eric Scott Branch, ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
After Parkland, another plea for rumor control: ‘This is not a joke’ (w/video)

After Parkland, another plea for rumor control: ‘This is not a joke’ (w/video)

ST. PETERSBURG — The mayor and the police chief came to Northeast High on Thursday to warn students about the dangers of circulating rumors of school safety threats on social media.While they were there, one of those unfounded rumors popped up on Fac...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Administrator Haley Loeun fired from CareerSource jobs centers

Administrator Haley Loeun fired from CareerSource jobs centers

Haley Loeun, a top aide to the embattled leader of the Pinellas and Hillsborough jobs boards, was fired Thursday from her $130,000-a-year position as business services director.Loeun came under criticism after the Tampa Bay Times reported that employ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
V.M. Ybor: That’s not cigar smoke you’re smelling

V.M. Ybor: That’s not cigar smoke you’re smelling

TAMPA — Across Interstate 4 from Ybor City’s nightlife, another part of the historic neighborhood has an odor less nostalgic — and much less pleasant — than cigar smoke and roasting coffee beans.V.M. Ybor, named after the Spaniard who founded the cit...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Mattis expected to back allowing transgender troops to stay in the military

Mattis expected to back allowing transgender troops to stay in the military

WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is expected to propose to President Donald Trump that transgender members of the U.S. military be allowed to continue serving despite the president’s call last summer for a ban on all transgender service, acc...
Updated: 9 hours ago