Gilbert & Sullivan’s Mikado Comes to Vero Beach August 18


A large cast of singers from Opera del Sol and Central Florida Vocal Arts will be featured in the Space Coast Symphony concert, The Mikado. Photo courtesy Opera del Sol.

Victorian England meets an imaginary imperial Japan when the Space Coast Symphony Orchestra teams with Central Florida Vocal Arts and Opera del Sol to present The Mikado, at 3:00 PM on Sunday, August 18.  The large cast of costumed singers will perform the most popular of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, in an unstaged concert version of the musical comedy classic at the Community Church of Vero Beach, 1901 23rd Street. Laugh out loud fun for the entire family, The Mikado features sparkling satire, famous melodies, and captivating silliness in a topsy-turvy tale of love and misadventures. Directed by Asian American director, Kit Cleto with support from veteran opera director Eric Pinder, The Mikado will celebrate both creative comedy and Japanese culture. The libretto will be projected onto a screen behind the singers in both English and Japanese. Japanese American opera star, Arisa Kusumi will play a female emperor in this modern immersive production of The Mikado, while Metropolitan Opera regular Susan Neves will sing the role of the amorous Katisha.  Central Florida standout Tamir Hernandez will delight audiences in her portrayal of Yum-Yum.  Dramatist W. S. Gilbert and composer Arthur Sullivan collaborated on 14 comic operas between 1871 and 1896.  The Mikado became the partnership’s longest-running hit, enjoying 672 performances upon its debut at London’s Savoy Theatre in 1885, one of the longest runs of any theatre piece up to that time. The Mikado remains immensely popular and has been recorded more often than any other Gilbert and Sullivan opera. It has been translated into numerous languages and is one of the most frequently played musical theatre pieces in history. $25 advance tickets for adults are available through the orchestra website at or at the orchestra’s official ticket outlet, Marine Bank & Trust, beachside and mainland branches.  Tickets at the door are $30.  The Mikado is free for those aged 18 and under or with a student ID. For more information, call toll free to 855-252-7276 or visit  

Space Coast Symphony Orchestra conductor and artistic director, Aaron T. Collins, is pleased to be teaming up once more with the talented singers of Opera del Sol and Central Florida Vocal Arts for several unstaged performances of  The Mikado.

“We are excited to be presenting The Mikado in three Central Florida counties,” said Collins. “This is a really fun and appealing work for audience members of every age. Everyone can appreciate the comedy, the music and the amazing talent of the singers assembled for this concert production. Gilbert and Sullivan take the scary out of opera and replace it with a heaping helping of silliness.”  

For more information about the Space Coast Symphony’s 2019-20 Season or the Symphony for Everyone discount ticket program, please or call toll-free (855) 252-7276.

PLOT SUMMARY — Nanki-Poo, son of the Mikado (Emperor) of Japan, flees the imperial court to escape marriage with elderly Katisha. Disguised as a traveling musician, he meets and falls in love with Yum-Yum, the young ward of Ko-Ko, a cheap tailor in the small town of Titipu.  When Ko-Ko becomes appointed to the unenviable position of executioner, he knows he must successfully perform an execution in one month’s time — before the appearance of the Mikado. Ko-Ko finds a suitable victim in Nanki-Poo, who is distraught over his unrequited love for the maiden Yum-Yum. Nanki-Poo agrees to sacrifice his life if he is allowed to spend his remaining days with Yum-Yum– who is betrothed to executioner Ko-Ko.



 ABOUT THE SPACE COAST SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA— The SCSO is a lively and passionate Central Florida orchestra comprised of professional musicians, music educators and mentored amateurs of exceptional ability.  The Orchestra was formed by Conductor and Artistic Director Aaron T. Collins with a two-fold mission: to provide mentoring and performance opportunities for Florida’s finest young musicians as well as to provide professional concerts at genuinely affordable prices.  The ultimate goal of the organization is to help ensure the symphonic tradition for the enjoyment of future generations.

35-year old Aaron T. Collins is garnering recognition for his achievements.  LEAD Brevard named the ambitious Collins one of their “4 under 40” Young Professionals, the youngest-ever recipient of the honor.  Space Coast Business magazine listed him as one of Brevard’s “100 Most Admired Businesspeople.” Collins is a past recipient of the Richard A. Stark Award for cultural leadership from the Cultural Council of Indian River County. Through his personal involvement with more than a dozen performing arts groups, pioneering reciprocal ad program and social media cross promotions, Collins has gained a reputation for generosity; championing other arts organizations throughout Central Florida for the cultural enrichment of the community. 

The Space Coast Symphony Orchestra performs in several very comfortable venues in Brevard and Indian River counties, with advance general admission tickets priced at just $25.  School-aged children 18 years and under are admitted free of charge, as are college students with a valid ID.  In keeping with their mission, the symphony provides a unique Symphony for Everyone ticketing program, a “pay-what-you-can” option designed to provide substantially discounted admission to any Space Coast Symphony concert.  Relying on a non-traditional orchestra model and a slim budget, the Space Coast Symphony Orchestra is one of only 19 U.S. orchestras to perform year-round. In addition to maintaining the Space Coast Symphony JAZZ Orchestra and Space Coast Symphony Wind Orchestra, the non-profit organization also has a youth orchestra and provides numerous separate and free ensemble performances. More information about the Space Coast Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming concerts, ticket sales, venues, directions and sponsorship opportunities is available at by calling toll free (855) 252-7276.

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