24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Criminally neglected work.... Stunning recording,
This review is from: Sullivan: The Beauty Stone [Rory Macdonald, Elin Manahan Thomas, Toby Spence] [Chandos: CHAN 10794(2)] (Audio CD)
After a total flop of an original production, this work lay almost completely untouched for over 100 years. The fault was certainly not Sullivan's. Musically this must rank among his greatest achievements and while it is incredibly tuneful - and much of it lodges in the brain after just one hearing - it is very unlike his work with Gilbert, especially in the use of leitmotiv. The orchestration is especially fine and impressive.
This is most definitely opera with one or two moments of operetta and is a far better work than his own opera Ivanhoe (which has some great moments but pales enormously beside this piece). Chandos has pulled out all the stops with an incredible cast and Rory Macdonald wrings excitement, drama and pathos out of the orchestra and from Sullivan's score. Kudos to the Sullivan Society, without whom this would never have happened.