The Orchid

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The Orchid is a musical play in two acts by James T. Tanner (1858-1915)[1], and others.

The original text

The libretto was by Tanner, with lyrics supplied Adrian Ross (1859-1933)[2] and Percy Greenbank (1878-1968)[3] and the music by Ivan Caryll (1861-1921)[4], and Lionel Monckton (1861-1924)[5]. Additional lyrics by Paul Rubens (1875–1917)[6].

First performed at the Gaiety Theatre, London and the text published in London by George Edwardes / Chappell & Co., c1903.[7] and

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1905: Performed in the Good Hope Theatre, Cape Town, opening on 31 March with a company that included Maud Thorne, Sybil Thorne, Daisy Wallace, Myles Clifton and Victor Gouriet in the cast.

1908: Performed by the Wheeler Juvenile Opera and Musical Company, inter alia at the Opera House, Cape Town in December. One of the leading performers was billed as "Dan Leno, son of the Dan Leno".


Facsimile version of the published libretto, Hathi Trust Digital Library[8]

D.C. Boonzaier, 1923. "My playgoing days – 30 years in the history of the Cape Town stage", in SA Review, 9 March and 24 August 1932. (Reprinted in Bosman 1980: pp. 374-439.)

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp.422, 425, 429, 438.

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