List of patter songs

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This is a list of some of the best known patter songs.

Pre-Gilbert and Sullivan[edit]

Gilbert and Sullivan[edit]

  • Arthur Sullivan and F. C. Burnand: Cox and Box – "My Master Is Punctual" (Mr. Cox)
  • Gilbert and Sullivan (referred to below as "Sullivan"): The Gondoliers – "In enterprise of martial kind" (Duke of Plaza-Toro)[1]
  • Sullivan: The Gondoliers – "Rising early in the morning" (Giuseppe)[2]
  • Sullivan: H.M.S. Pinafore – "When I Was a Lad" (Sir Joseph)[2]
  • Sullivan: Iolanthe – "When you're lying awake" (Lord Chancellor)(the "Nightmare song")[2]
  • Sullivan: The Mikado – "As Someday it May Happen" (Ko-Ko)
  • Sullivan: Patience – "If you want a receipt for that popular mystery" (Colonel Calverley)
  • Sullivan: Patience – "So go to him and say to him" (Bunthorne and Lady Jane)
  • Sullivan: Patience – "When I go out of door" (Bunthorne and Grosvenor)
  • Sullivan: The Pirates of Penzance – "I am the very model of a modern Major-General" (Major-General Stanley)
  • Sullivan: Princess Ida – "If you give me your attention, I will tell you what I am" (King Gama)[2]
  • Sullivan: Ruddigore – "My boy, you may take it from me" (Robin)[2]
  • Sullivan: Ruddigore – "Henceforth all the crimes that I find in the Times" (Robin)
  • Sullivan: Ruddigore – "My eyes are fully open to my awful situation" (Robin, Despard, and Margaret). This song was adapted for use in the Broadway revivals of The Pirates of Penzance (Papp production, 1980) and Thoroughly Modern Millie as "The Speed Test".[3]
  • Sullivan: The Sorcerer – "My name is John Wellington Wells" (J. W. Wells)[2]
  • Sullivan: Trial by Jury – "When I, good friends, was called to the bar" (the Learned Judge)[2][4]
  • Sullivan: Utopia, Limited – "It's understood, I think, all round" (Scaphio, Phantis, Zara and Fitzbattleaxe)
  • Sullivan: The Yeomen of the Guard – "I've Jibe and Joke. ... I've wisdom from the East and from the West" (Jack Point)
  • Sullivan: The Yeomen of the Guard – "Oh! A private buffoon is a light-hearted loon" (Jack Point)[2]
  • Sullivan and Basil Hood: The Rose of Persia – "I'm the Sulivan's Vigilant Vizier" (Grand Vizier, Chief Physician, Royal Executioner and Sultan)

After G&S: Selected popular and classical music and showtunes[edit]


  1. ^ Lyrics to "In enterprise of martial kind", The Gilbert and Sullivan Archive Archived 2008-06-23 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Shepherd, Marc. "Nelson Eddy: Patter Songs from Gilbert and Sullivan" Archived 2008-05-15 at the Wayback Machine. at A Gilbert and Sullivan Discography
  3. ^ a b c d e Henderson, Kathy. "Speed Test! Check Out Our Video Roundup of the Fastest Patter Songs, from Company, Godspell & More",, August 5, 2013, accessed June 24, 2016
  4. ^ Article and links about "The Judge's Song", The Victorian Web
  5. ^ Mendoza, N. F. "Shows for Youngsters and Their Parents Too: A sense of history and smarts set Fox's Animaniacs apart", Los Angeles Times, December 26, 1993, accessed June 24, 2016
  6. ^ Stone, Martin. "Little Shop of Horrors: Cross-Pollinization!", Mondo Musicals, August 25, 2010, accessed February 7, 2017
  7. ^ Sutherland, Lori Archer. "'The Flim Flam Cider Song' by Daniel Ingram",, April 1, 2016, accessed February 7, 2017
  8. ^ Farrington, Jan. "Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay!",, October 22, 2014, accessed June 24, 2016
  9. ^ Holden, Stephen. "Extrovert and Introvert: Refined Musical Clowns", The New York Times, December 9, 2009, accessed February 7, 2018
  10. ^ Neethling, Bertie. (2016). "Names in Songs: A Comparative Analysis of Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the Fire and Christopher Torr's Hot Gates" in C. Hough (ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Names and Naming.
  11. ^ Blanchette, Kyle. "Top 10 Disney Holiday Specials!",, November 30, 2015, accessed June 24, 2016
  12. ^ Westwood, Matthew. "Songs in the key of the Sherman brothers", The Australian, July 27, 2010
  13. ^ Weiss, Hedy. "Writers Theatre sets a blistering look at marriage in Company", Chicage Sun-Times, June 23, 2016
  14. ^ Doll, Christopher (2017). Hearing Harmony: Toward a Tonal Theory for the Rock Era. University of Michigan Press. pp. 266.
  15. ^ Dale, Michael. "Videos: Chicago's Jason Danieley Holds a Note for Longer Than It Takes Danny Kaye to Sing 'Tchaikovsky'",, April 8, 2016
  16. ^ Laurence, Robin. "Geoffrey Farmer fêted in new Vancouver Art Gallery show",, May 27, 2015, accessed June 24, 2016

External links[edit]