Thursday 9 June 2011

Gilbert v Sullivan

There is a very interesting article by Tom Ford about Gilbert and Sullivan's partnership, and Gilbert's life without Sullivan, on the Australian website
'G&S: the Lennon/McCartney of the 19th century

On the centenary of WS Gilbert’s death, Tom Ford sheds light on the life without Sullivan.

They were a musical and lyric juggernaut brought to its knees by a series of artistic and personal misunderstandings. This disharmony – like John Lenon and Paul McCartney's – was left unresolved following a premature and unforeseen death. The mighty partnership between wordsmith William Schwenck Gilbert and musical prodigy Arthur Seymour Sullivan, which produced 14 comic operas between 1871 and 1896, was prickly and delicate. These two men fused their creative powers, yet remained deliberately independent from each other. “Each man brought his own star to the partnership,” noted scholar Gayden Wren. “That it lasted so long is little short of miraculous.” So what was it that sparked their eventual estrangement?....'

Read the whole article at Limelight Magazine.



  1. thanks for posting this! I've always thought that the quarrels between G & S were such a shame. I like the idea that they were the Lennon & McCartney of their day. And I had no idea that Gilbert financed the Garrick Theatre!!

  2. I had no idea either! Really interesting article. Amazing what you find from some random Googling : -)