Apart from the Madison Savoyards’ gracious offer to purchase their production at the negligible amount of 65 British pounds, the only choice you’ll get when shopping on Amazon is the Brent Walker production. The opinions regarding the latter, and especially Joel Grey’s performance as Jack Point, vary vastly – for me, Grey was the best thing in the entire 1982 series, his Jack being the freshest and most genuine and touching experience. But then again, this was my first acquaintance with the “Yeomen”. Pretty much everybody else seems to have hated it. Well, at least, the visual side of the production is clearly superior to the one of, say “Pinafore”, from the same collection.
However – and it’s a huge “however” – a few songs are missing, including “Is Life a Boon”? For me, who saw the inscription on Sullivan’s memorial before watching this, this cut made me doubt my own memory. Could it have been I had forgotten hearing the song before the film was over?
You may want to go for one of the versions produced by the National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company, such as this one, or for the Carl Rosa production – also available in a set with “The Mikado” and “Iolanthe”.
The CT Gilbert and Sullivan Society offers you an alternative for £0: