Performing Arts

The Mikado

When: Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m. Continues through July 16 2016

Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado has suffered from the passage of time, but only for cultural reasons — the music is as sharp and witty as it ever was. But what was acceptable comedy in nineteenth-century England — white actors in yellow-face and singing in pidgin English — is no longer welcome. Union Avenue Opera and director Eric Gibson have updated the setting to the 1920s, and the location is now a gentleman's club in a fictional town. More importantly, it is the British institutions (military, government and monarchy) that are satirized, not the Japanese people. And so the intertwined tales of trombonist Nanki-Poo and his love for the unattainable beauty Yum-Yum, an executioner who has to cut off his own head before he can do anyone else, and an edict that an execution be carried out within the month, can all collide in a club in Titipu guilt-free for the audience. The Mikado is performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday (July 8 to 16) at Union Avenue Christian Church (733 North Union Boulevard; Tickets are $30 to $55.

Paul Friswold

Price: $30-$55