Vocal Score of Utopia Limited or, The Flowers of Progress. An Original Comic Opera, in two acts, written by W.S. gilbert and composed by Arthur Sullivan. Arranged from the full score by Ernest Ford. Copyright MDCCCXCIII (1893), Published by Chappell & Co., 50, New Bond Street, W.
Utopia Limited, or The Flowers of Progress, opened October 7, 1893 at the Savoy Theatre under the management of Mr. D'Oyly Carte, and ran for 245 performances. It was the penultimate collaboration between Gilbert and Sullivan, opening more than two years after Gondoliers had closed, and following a legal dispute between Gilbert on the one hand and Carte and Sullivan on the other, the famous "Carpet Quarrel".
King Paramount of the south seas island of Utopia decides that his people should adopt all English customs and institutions, but he goes a bit overboard and decrees that the kingdom and each of its inhabitants should become a "company limited" based on the English "companies act" of 1862. The king's daughter, Princess Zara, brings six "flowers of progress" from England to train the Utopian people in "English" customs. But the reforms are too successful, which upsets the judges of the Utopian Supreme Court, the "Public Exploder" and ultimately the entire populace, which revolts against them. Zara realises that an essential element has been forgotten, namely "government by party". Introduce that and the result would be "general and unexampled prosperity".
The cover of the score is in good condition for its age but has some wear to the edges, corners and spine. The deep red colour is clean and bright as is the gilt tile "Utopia" on the front. There is some foxing to the first few blank pages but the music score is clean and clear. A stamped signature for Arthur Sullivan can be seen on the first page with an additional stamp which reads, T.W.Wright, 142 Ferry Road, Leith.