The Emerald Isle

(Sullivan and Basil Hood; Music completed by Edward German, 1901)

Background | Recordings

Contemporary drawing of The Emerald Isle


Throughout the 1890's, Sullivan struggled to find a congenial collaborator. His two operas with Gilbert, Utopia, Limited and The Grand Duke were largely unsuccessful, and several of his works with other librettists fared even worse.

With The Rose of Persia (1899), Sullivan finally had the success that had eluded him for nearly a decade. The Emerald Isle, replete with fairy music and Irish jigs, shared the same librettist (Basil Hood) and was nearly as successful enjoying a solid run of 205 performances.

Sullivan never lived to see it. He died with only a bit over half the numbers composed and almost none of them orchestrated. Edward German completed the score.


NR 1982 Prince Consort Ster LP CD

The Prince Consort recording, listed above, has recently been re-issued on CD by Sounds on CD. Three selections from the opera are included on Sullivan & Co.: The Operas that Got Away. These give an excellent idea of the score's many charms.