(Sullivan and F.C. Burnand, 1867)
Sullivan was educated as a serious musician. His first comic opera, Cox and Box, was composed as a diversion and probably never intended as a permanent career direction. However, that one-act opera's surprising success prompted the impressario German Reed immediately to commission a full-length opera from the same team of authors, Sullivan and F. C. Burnand.
The Contrabandista, or The Law of the Ladrones, Sullivan's first full-length stage work, did not repeat the success of Cox and Box. Burnand did not have enough dramatic inspiration to sustain a long piece, nor could Sullivan — now, or ever — rescue an opera through his score alone. Many years later, Sullivan and Burnand would rewrite and retitle the opera as The Chieftain, in which form it was even less successful.
|NR||1970s Fulham Light Operatic Society|
|1986 Prince Consort|
In addition, one song from this opera, "Only the night wind sighs alone", is on the album Lesley Garrett: Soprano in Red (Silva Classics; cd SILKD 6008; cassette SILKC 6008; 1995).
I normally don't list single tracks, but it seemed appropriate for an opera so seldom recorded.