A hilarious farce of sentimental pirates, bumbling policemen, dim-witted young lovers, and an eccentric Major-General await you in Gilbert & Sullivan’s effervescent musical masterpiece “Pirates of Penzance.” Theater at Monmouth’s show will open the season at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 13. Additional performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Sept. 14, 15, 20, 21 and 22 and at 1 p.m. Sept. 15, 16, 22 and 23.

Long before there was Pirates of the Caribbean, Gilbert and Sullivan had disembarked their toe-tapping, tongue-twisting, titillating farce packed full of sentimental pirates, bumbling British Bobbies, and improbable paradoxes. Join the band of swashbuckling buccaneers, Victorian maidens, and the delightful “model of a modern Major-General” for a rollicking romp.

Frederic’s in search of a wife, and a wife he thinks he’s found with Mabel. Just one problem, she’s the daughter of the Major-General and he hates pirates. Though dead-set to join the police force keeping the pirates in check, Frederic finds himself out of a job and in with the wrong crowd. That’s the catch when your indentured servant contract says you’ll be released on your 21st birthday and you’re born on a leap year.

Since its inception, “The Pirates of Penzance” has been a G&S favorite among theatre producers and audiences alike. Since its premiere in 1879, it has had more than 40 major revivals in NYC alone. A hit production in 1980 by Joseph Papp ran nearly two years on Broadway receiving seven Tony Award nominations, and winning three, and securing five Drama Desk Awards. The cast included Linda Ronstadt, Rex Smith, Kevin Kline (Tony Award), Patricia Routledge, George Rose and Tony Azito. The Broadway show featured notable replacements for Mable during its run including Pam Dawber, Karla DeVito and Maureen McGovern. That production transferred to London for a run of 601 performances and in 1983 was turned into a movie that included Angela Lansbury.

“Pirates of Penzance” features Billy Hutto as Frederic; Laura Whittenberger as Mabel; Candice Handy as Pirate King; John Anker Bow as Major General Stanley; Caitlin Diana Doyle as Ruth/ Isabelle; Trevor Latez Hayes as Samuel; Mark Cooper as Sergeant; Karen Lipovsky as Edith; Mackenzie Richard as Kate. Set design by Rew Tippin, costume design by Michelle Handley, lighting design by Jim Alexander, Props by Rebecca Richards, and music direction by Rebecca Caron.

Tickets cost $34 for adults, $29 for senior citizens, and $20 for students 18 and younger. Group discounts are available.

For more information, call the TAM Box Office at 933-9999 or visit theateratmonmouth.org.

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