Lamplighters Music Theatre acknowledges that our past productions of The Mikado have been performed in traditional style, and have given offense to people in the Asian community. For this we sincerely apologize.

We are mostly a Gilbert & Sullivan company, The Mikado is an important part of the Gilbert & Sullivan repertoire, and we do not wish to pretend that we have not been guilty of yellowface productions in the past. The historical photos on our website represent that past and we sincerely regret our cultural unconsciousness then.

For our 2016 production of The Mikado, we had originally planned to set the show in Meiji Japan - a time when East met West with much interest, excitement and cultural exchange. We now realize that we had missed the point - that we would still be dressing up mostly white actors to play Asian characters, even if those Asian characters would be dressed as Westerners, which is what they would have done in that period. That was insensitive. We were wrong, we have been called on it, and we apologize.

We are now working on an entirely new production concept, removing all references to Japan, and developing a new title and a new setting. This is still a work in progress and we’re not ready to share it yet - but please rest assured that this will be a completely different version of the show, retaining the comedy and the basic plot line but with no yellowface and no joking references to anything Japanese.  

We are sincerely sorry for the pain and anguish this has caused in our community, and we hope you will forgive us.

Sincerely -
Lamplighters Music Theatre

Tell a Tale of Cock & Bull

Remembering Arthur Sullivan

Arthur Sullivan

A memorial service was held for the Lamplighters’ own Arthur Sullivan, who died January 17 at the age of 95 in the ranch he shared with his partner of more than 25 years, Dr. Jim Laumond. When Arthur came to the Lamplighters at age 42, he had already lived a full life. He entered the Jesuit seminary right out of high school, but since he spoke 7 languages, he was drafted to serve in the Army Signal Corps. He was sent to Japan with MacArthur, where he learned his 8th language (and later picked up a 9th, Tagalog). When he left the Army, he came to San Francisco to work for American Airlines, with whom he worked until his retirement. He had the opportunity to travel all over the world. Arthur was also a world class ballroom dancer and a world class skier, as well as an opera and symphony lover. He was still attending opera performances regularly into his final year...and he followed Wagner’s Ring Cycle around the world while he could still travel, seeing performances in many countries.

Arthur came to the Lamplighters in 1962 and participated in a number of ways for 40 years. He was described by then General Manager Spencer Beman as "the greatest single figure in the technical history of the Lamplighters." He started out on lighting, soon took over other technical responsibilities and eventually became production manager. He even appeared on stage a few times, but as he admitted he "couldn't carry a tune in a bucket," his roles were limited to non-singing ones, primarily the Solicitor in Patience and a waiter in The Merry Widow.

Arthur loved to party and to the end still enjoyed his nightly Manhattan. He was a quiet man who was proud of his Irish heritage. He had a gentile way, an infectious smile, a great sense of humor, and a warm hug. During his four decades with the Lamplighters he was a real backstage mainstay and a friend to everyone.

Arthur Sullivan 95

Lamplighters Music Theatre - Too Much Happiness

Join us for an intimate afternoon with many of your beloved Lamplighters, old and new, with song and laughter, and behind-the-scenes insights, reminiscences and recollections.

The event will feature fun performances including a selection of highlights from our 2015/16 Season (HMS Pinafore, Return of the Deadeye, Ruddygore and The Pirates of Penzance Singalong), and will preview some favorite numbers from the upcoming 2016/17 Season (The Mikado and Patience). Also included is a high quality catered buffet with fine wines.

This is a wonderful opportunity to sing and laugh with some of your Lamplighter favorites, and participate in the raffle and live auction to help support our upcoming season. It's Too Much Happiness!

Herbst Theater Green Room, San Francisco
415-227-4797 · Purchase Tickets
Sunday, April 24, 2016 • 4PM

Pirates Singalong last Sunday

We all had a fabulous time at the Singalong this past Sunday. If you were in the audience, THANK YOU ALL for your enthusiasm and spirit, you made it all the more fun for us (and we ALWAYS have fun at the Singalong)!

Lamplighters Pirates of Penzance Singalong - Modern Major-General

This weekend we even had a special guest conductor, Ravi Sahae. Ravi came to the show with his bow tie and baton and we spotted him at the back conducting along with everything. We thought he was great so invited him up to conduct "When a felon’s not engaged in his employment". Ravi obliged and received some of the afternoon's loudest applause! As we say, all are encouraged to join in on any and all parts!

Lamplighters Pirates of Penzance Singalong guest conductor

We also had some adorable raffle help in the form of three little maids: Josie, Kate, and Mattie (pictured below with third prize winner from Wildwood School, a participant in our education program). A huge part of what we love about the singalongs is seeing kids dressed up, so thanks girls, and thanks for being such great help!

Lamplighters Pirates of Penzance Singalong raffle

Thanks again to everyone for coming, you were all great! We're looking forward to doing it all again this weekend, in Mountain View and in Walnut Creek. We hope to see some of you there!

Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts
650-903-6000 · Purchase tickets
Saturday, March 19, 2016 • 8pm

Lesher Center for the Arts, Walnut Creek
925-943-7469 · Purchase Tickets
Sunday, March 20, 2016 • 4PM

More pictures from the San Francisco Singalong are posted here

Wish List

In addition to donations of time and money, the Lamplighters always appreciates thoughtful in-kind gifts. The following is a short list of items that would make our mission easier: an iPad for our company store, plain white paper; vacations, gift certificates, air miles, and other items of value for our Gala and Spring Party and Fundraiser auctions.

Please contact us at if you think you have something of interest. Lamplighters Music Theatre is a registered non-profit 501(c)3 organization and all donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. We thank you for your continued support!