The Mackerras/Telarc Mikado (1992)

The MikadoDonald Adams
Nanki-PooAnthony Rolfe Johnson
Ko-KoRichard Suart
Pooh-BahRichard Van Allan
Pish-TushNicholas Folwell
Yum-YumMarie McLaughlin
Pitti-SingAnne Howells
Peep-BoJanice Watson
KatishaFelicity Palmer

Orchestra & Chorus of the
Welsh National Opera

Conductor: Sir Charles Mackerras

Telarc CD-80284
Telarc CD-80284

With this recording of The Mikado, Sir Charles Mackerras started down the same road as his distinguished predecessor Sir Malcolm Sargent. The Mackerras recordings, like Sargent's a generation ago, use grand opera singers (for the most part) rather than G&S specialists. Musical values are superb, though Mackerras is not overly concerned with textual issues (i.e., new critical editions, restoring "lost" passages, and so forth).

Unlike Sargent, Mackerras does anchor his cast with two bona-fide G&S comedians, Donald Adams (who makes his third Mikado recording here) and Richard Suart. The Mackerras recordings have a spirit and life to them that the Sargent recordings never quite reached.

The recording is issued on a CD running 79'10", which is the upper extent of its technical limit. To make this possible, the overture, the second verse of the list song, and the second verse of "The threatened cloud" in the Act I finale, are omitted. (The Mikado overture is generally held in low regard, and Sullivan did not write it himself anyway.) Purists may bristle at this, but the price is right. This is the only Mikado nearly complete on one CD, aside from some cut-down historical re-issues.

Issue History
1993 Telarc CD CD-80284  
Cassette CS-30284
(not verified)
1999 Telarc CD CD-80500 All five of the Mackerras/Telarc recordings in one package