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The Duke of Monmouth’s Maggot

Composer: Tim Porter. Opera,1975

The only one of Tim Porter's stage works as yet unperformed is a huge opera "The Duke of Monmouth's Maggot", written in 1974/5. Originally commissioned by Dartington Arts Society, it outgrew the original conception to such an extent that the production never took place. It is a work that demands large and elaborate forces and resources, and there is no way in which it can be cut down to size.

The opera is based on West Country traditions of the Duke of Monmouth's Rebellion, and contains spectacular scenes of battle and mayhem. It calls for full orchestra, country dance band, chorus, semi-chorus, speakers, singers, dancers, extras, and an elaborate set.

Cast list

Widow Parcet, an inn-keeper - contralto
Elizabeth, her daughter, aged 20 - soprano
Marcus Lucas, a young countryman - tenor or high baritone
Colonel Kirke, a brutal and lusty dragoon - baritone
Tom Napper, a rich young farmer - bass
The Parson - baritone
The Duke of Monmouth - speaking part
Lord Grey, his chief supporter - speaking part
Dr John Oliver, of Bath - speaking part
Sal Somerset, a street musician - folk-singer
Richard Godfrey, a peasant - speaking part
Two Girls (members of the chorus) - sopranos
A Man in the Crowd (member of the chorus) - baritone
Chorus (SATB) of country people, rebels, solders, etc.
Semi-chorus (SSA) of adolescent girls
On-stage Drummers
also, divers non-singing extras


3 flute (3rd doubling piccolo)
2 oboe
3 clarinets
2 bassoon
2 French horn
4 trumpets
2 tenor trombones
1 bass trombone
3 percussion
country dance band