A Comic Opera
Book and Lyrics by F. H. BELL and HAROLD ELLIS. Music by W. H. BULLOCK
The BIRMINGHAM STUDIO ORCHESTRA, conducted by JOSEPH LEWIS
Principal Characters :
Chorus of Townsfolk, Sea Dogs, Town Councillors and Beefeaters
THE BIRMINGHAM STUDIO CHORUS
THE Scene is Plymouth Ho? on the afternoon of July 19. 1588. Plymouth is making holiday to celebrate the return of Devon lads from the Spanish Main. Noah Fleming (Baritone) is yarning about his experiences when Dolores (Soprano) enters. He and his wife have taken charg<' of her since Drake rescued her from Vigo. She is joyously awaiting her lover. Hugh. and is further delighted at having from Drake a promise of a rich dowry on her wedding day. This news is heard by Sir Wilfrid Leigh (Baritone), who determines to win Dolores.
Now the Devon lads return, with Captain Hugh Fleming (Tenor), son of the innkeeper, at their head. The Town Clerk (Baritone) announces the approach of Sir Francis Drake (Baritone). The great seaman tells the townsfolk that the Armada is coming, and that the Spanish Ambassador has been recalled. Don Bernardino (Bass-Baritone), whom the people do not know. enters, and soon Sir Wilfrid tells him privately the news about Dolores and her dowry. The Don was formerly Governorof Vigo , and he suggests that he shall claim her as his daughter.
As Drake and the Mayor (Baritone) are about to play a game of bowls, the Don breaks his ' news ' about Dolores.
A new diversion arises. Hugh comes to announce that the Armada is sighted. The Don cannot at the moment pursue his object, for he is now an enemy prisoner. Drake calmly stays to finish his game of bowls.
THE scene is the garden of the inn, the same evening. Hugh is ordered to join Drake on the Revenge. Dame Margery Fleming (Con. tralto) is to guard the Ambassador.
Her husband, Noah, and the Corporation meet. The Mayor is particularly grieved at the coming of the Armada, because now he will not be able to take part in a play he has been getting up. Next Sir Wilfrid and the Don appear. They are scheming to outwit Drake. They see the Mayor, and, mistaking him for their hired villain, give him orders to kidnap Dolores. The Mayor raises a hue and cry, but the two plotters escape.
TWO weeks later. Queen
Elizabeth (Contralto) has come to Portsmouth on a secret mission to look into a report, which Sir Wilfrid has wickedly given her, of Drake's taking Spanish gold as a bribe. Jn the midst of a revel in honour of the Queen, news comes that Drake has defeated the Spaniards. Soon he enters, and is able to convince the Queen that he has not made away with the captured gold. So far things go well; but the Queen wants Dolores to marry Sir Wilfrid. It is decided to take the advice of an astrologer as to the wisdom of the match. 'He (really Noah Fleming in-disguise) appears, and compels the Don to tell the truth about the girl-that she is the daughter of an English nobleman, not of a Spaniard. The villains are thus exposed, and Dolores, of course, is allowed to marry Hugh.
Dorothy (Maid at the Pelican Inn):
Town Crier of Plymouth:
Mayor of Plymouth:
Dame Margery Fleming:
Noah Fleming (Host at the Peliran):
Town Clerk of Plymouth:
Dolores (Drake's Ward:
Sir Wilfrid Leigh (a Renegade Englishman):
Capt. Hugh Flem ing (Noah's Son):
Sir Francis Drake:
Don Bernardino de Mendoza:
The Captain of the Guard: