Monday, November 12, 2012

George Rose • Modern Major General

George Rose in Pirates of Penzance

To celebrate the celebrated Veteran's Day - for the real day was yesterday, I thought I would offer everyone a look at an incredible performance of "Modern Major General" by George Rose in the movie version of 'Pirates of Penzance.' He played the role in the free production in Central Park, on Broadway, and in the film. He was amazing.

The film version was in 1983, just five years before he was brutally murdered in his home in the Dominican Republic. Rose was an out and proud gay man, not always an easy thing thirty years ago. While he had no family to speak of, he did adopt a 14-year-old boy, and soon changed his will to leave the boy everything. When he returned home during a break from touring in a 1988 production of 'The Mystery of Edwin Drood,' Rose was savagely beaten by the boy, the boy's father and uncle, and another man. Rose was 68 years old at the time of his death. The men eventually confessed, but a trail was never held. All four were in prison for a time, although soon all were let free. And Rose was buried in an unmarked grave near the place he was murdered.


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