The Discovery Series was the brainchild of Don Tull, one of Lyric’s directors (both stage and music) and translator of several operettas including La Périchole, and La Vie Parisienne. As a member of Lyric’s board of directors and repertoire committee, Don came up with the idea of presenting unfamiliar and “lost” operettas in semi-concert form, with no sets, minimal costumes and props, and using a piano rather than an orchestra.
Discovery shows are usually presented for a single weekend in mid- to late summer, in a small concert venue, with small casts featuring many of Lyric’s finest performers.
The first Discovery show was Merrie England by Edward German and Basil Hood, produced in 2003. So far, only two Discovery shows; The Rose of Persia by Arthur Sullivan and Basil Hood, and last summer’s The Serenade; have graduated from the Discovery stage to the main stage.
Other notable Discovery productions include Florodora, L’Étoile, and Victor Herbert’s Cyrano de Bergerac, with orchestra parts that had been lost for 100 years.