“Oh, better far
to live and die
Under the brave
black flag I fly,
Than play a
sanctimonious part,
With a pirate head
and a pirate heart.”

—The Pirate King
The Pirates of Penzance

The Pirates of Penzance – Summer Concert 2017

July 2017

The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company and the Minneapolis Pops Orchestra will present a concert version of Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance, at the Lake Harriet Bandshell, on Saturday July 15th and Sunday, July 16th.

The performance is free and open to the public. There are benches available directly in front of the stage and lots of lawn seating available in the surrounding area. Plan to arrive early to get a good spot as our concerts are one of the most popular events of the summer at the Lake Harriet Bandshell.


The Pirates of Penzance, or The Slave of Duty, is one of the best-known and loved shows by the Victorian duo. Frederic, an apprentice pirate, wants to give up piracy and lead a blameless life. As he follows Frederic’s star-crossed journey, Gilbert manages to lampoon the army, the police, and “respectability.” And remember, it’s all about leap year. Sullivan’s music is magnificent and innovative, with a number of the songs that defined the two for years to come: “Poor Wand’ring One,” “I am the Very Model of a Modern Major General,” and “A Policeman’s Lot is not a Happy One.”

When: Saturday, July 15th, 7:30, and Sunday, July 16th, 5:30

The Lake Harriet Bandshell Minneapolis, MN

(Click Here for Directions)

The cast for this concert production of The Pirates of Penzance includes:

Major General Stanley   Tom Berg 
The Pirate King Waldyn Benbenek 
Samuel Eric Sargeant 
Frederic Eric Mellum 
Sergeant of Police John Orbison 
Mabel Victoria Valencour 
Kate Cassie Utt 
Edith Katerina Middeldorp
Ruth Lara Trujillo 

The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company has collaborated with Jere Lanz and the Minneapolis Pops Orchestra for many years in presenting a concert version of one of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.

Two excellent internet resources for information about The Pirates of Penzance:

Wikipedia – The Pirates of Penzance

The Gilbert & Sullivan Archive – The Pirates of Penzance

“Poor wandering ones!
If such poor love as ours
Can help you find
True peace of mind,
Why, take it, it is yours!”

—The Full Company
The Pirates of Penzance