“Ida was a twelve-month old,
Twenty years ago!
I was twice her age, I’m told,
Twenty years ago!
Husband twice as old as wife
Argues ill for married life
Baleful prophecies were rife,
Twenty years ago.”

—Prince Hilarion
Princess Ida
The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company’s Production of

Princess Ida or Castle Adamant

March 5 to 21, 1982

Princess Ida Program

Directors

Stage Director: William Metcalf
Music Director: Timm Rolek

Princess Ida was the eighth collaboration in the successful but stormy partnership between William S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan.  Princess Ida followed Patience and Iolanthe (just the order in which our company has presented them), opening at the Savoy Theatre, January 5, 1884.

Gilbert’s inspiration for the plot came from a long poem by Tennyson, published in 1847.  Education for women and women’s rights were current concerns, and Gilbert could not resist doing what he called “A Respectful Operatic Perversion of Tennyson’s “Princess.”  The dialogue is even written in iambic pentameter.

Princess Ida is the only three-act Gilbert and Sullivan piece.  However, because of staging considerations, our company is presenting the show in two acts, putting the intermission in the middle of Gilbert’s second act and not making any break between Gilbert’s second and third acts.

Two excellent internet resources for information about Princess Ida:

Wikipedia – Princess Ida

The Gilbert & Sullivan Archive – Princess Ida

Princess Ida 1982 Show Poster

Show Poster

“The woman of the wisest wit
May sometimes be mistaken, O!
In Ida’s views, I must admit,
My faith is somewhat shaken O!”

—Lady Psyche
Princess Ida