“The Very Model Of A Modern Major General” is a famous song from Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic opera “The Pirates of Penzance”. It is sung by the character Major-General Stanley, who boasts about his broad knowledge and expertise in various subjects. The song has become a popular piece in musical theatre and is often performed in recitals and concerts.
Errors people make about the song
Despite the popularity of the song, many people still make mistakes about its lyrics and context. Here are some of the most common errors:
1. Confusing the lyrics
Many people mishear or misunderstand the lyrics of the song, especially the lines that involve technical terms or foreign languages. For example, some people hear “Animalculous” as “Animal cutlass”, and “Mameluke” as “Mamaluke”. It is important to listen carefully and read the lyrics to avoid confusion.
2. Misinterpreting the character
Some people think that Major-General Stanley is a serious, knowledgeable person who truly knows everything he sings about. However, the character is actually a parody of the Victorian-era military officers who were often promoted based on social status rather than merit. He is portrayed as a pompous, self-important person who uses fancy words and references to impress others.
Examples of the song
Here are two examples of how “The Very Model Of A Modern Major General” has been used in popular culture:
1. The Muppets
In the 1981 film “The Great Muppet Caper”, the character Kermit the Frog performs a version of the song as a news reporter. The lyrics are slightly altered to fit the context, but the overall tone and melody are similar to the original.
In the animated TV series “Animaniacs”, the character Yakko Warner sings a version of the song in the episode “Yakko’s World”. The lyrics are rewritten to include the names of all the countries in the world, and the pace is much faster than the original.
“The Very Model Of A Modern Major General” is a classic song that has stood the test of time. Despite its age, it still resonates with audiences today and continues to inspire new versions and adaptations. By understanding the context and lyrics of the song, we can appreciate its humor and satire even more.