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The Green Room

4 of 10 portraits of Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan

The Green Room, by London Stereoscopic & Photographic Company, 11 May 1867 - NPG x18489 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

The Green Room

by London Stereoscopic & Photographic Company
albumen print, 11 May 1867
6 3/4 in. x 8 1/2 in. 173 mm x 217 mm
Given by M. McCheane, 1962
Photographs Collection
NPG x18489

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Cox and Box marked Sullivan's first departure from the serious music with which he had made his name. With a libretto by F.C. Burnand, this one-act comic opera was performed five years before Sullivan's first collaboration with Gilbert. This photograph records a charity performance at the Adelphi Theatre, London, staged by Punch magazine to benefit the widow of former colleague Charles Bennett (1829-67). Ironically, Gilbert, writing a review in rival magazine Fun, anticipated the criticism later to be levied at his own libretti: 'Mr Sullivan's music is, in places, of too high a class for the grotesquely absurd plot to which it is wedded.'