Thespis premiered at the Gaiety Theater in London on December 26, 1871, as a burlesque form of holiday entertainment. Although it marked the collaborating debut of W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan, giants in their own rights who would go on to collaborate and write behemoth successes like The Mikado and Pirates of Penzance, this first collaboration only ran for 63 performances. With the exception of only 3 songs, the music was not preserved and has been lost to the ages.
Now, thanks to new music and orchestrations by 12-time Grammy winner, Emmy nominee and Tony nominee Thomas Z. Shepard, the prolific Producer of Broadway recordings and a brilliant composer, we have the opportunity to hear what this music might have sounded like, as his deep understandings of the period result in a beautiful homage to Sullivan's composing style while still remaining original. When the opportunity arose for us to bring this rare piece to you, we jumped at it. To be part of something so unique, so classic and yet so new at the same time is a very exciting endeavor. We think you'll be glad we did.
The Gilbert & Sullivan Light Opera Company of Long Island is proud to bring you Mr. Shepard's version of Thespis in it's world premier with a full orchestra!
Sunday, June 22, 3:00 pm- OLPH Auditorium, 5902 6th Ave., Brooklyn
Saturday, June 28, 8:00 pm- Landmark Theater, 232 Main Street, Port Washington
Sunday, June 29, 2:00 pm- Student Center Theater, Hofstra University, Hempstead
Monday, June 30, 8:00 pm- Connelly Theater, 220 E. 4th Street, Manhattan
Saturday, July 5, 8:00 pm- Islip Town Hall West, Main Street, Islip
Sunday, July 6, 3:00 pm- Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Norther Blvd., Queens