Down Under First Night Reviews

"Throughout my career I have made it a rule never to allow private feeling to interfere with my professional duties."


Here follows a series of first night reviews from newspapers of the time. Most are of the first performance in Australia as most opened there first. However I have added a few New Zealand reviews to add a bit of variety.

Most of the first night reviews were extremely long often just recapping the plot and describing the songs in depth. You must remember that to most of the readers of the time this would be the very first they would have heard of anything at all about the opera.

Most of the reviews have been edited a little and obvious typographical errors have been corrected and, yes, in the late nineteen century New Zealand and Australia were still using the 'American' spelling of humor and color.

The Sorcerer (Melbourne 1879)

The Sorcerer (Auckland 1879)

H.M.S. Pinafore (Auckland 1879)

H.M.S. Pinfore (Sydney 1879)

The Wreck of the Pinafore (NZ 1880-81)

The Pirates of Penzance (Sydney 1881)

The Pirates of Penzance (Wellingon 1881)

Patience (Sydney 1881)

Patience (Dunedin 1882)

Iolanthe (Melbourne 1885)

The Mikado (Sydney 1885)

The Sorcerer (Savoy 1884 revival) (Melbourne 1886)

Princess Ida (Melbourne 1887)

The Mikado (Dunedin 1887)

Iolanthe (Dunedin 1887)

The Yeomen of the Guard (Melbourne 1889)

The Gondoliers (Melbourne 1890)

The Yeomen of the Guard (Dunedin 1890)

Princess Ida (Dunedin 1890)

The Gondoliers (Auckland 1892)

Ruddigore (Wellington 1895)

The Rose of Persia (Melbourne 1900)

The Grand Duke (Wellington 1900)

Utopia Ltd (Melbourne 1906)

Utopia Ltd (Wellington 1906)