The $7.8-million estate left by Dame Bridget D’Oyly Carte may revive the opera company that presented the light-hearted operettas of Gilbert and Sullivan for 107 years.
The D’Oyly Carte Opera Company, which never had a state subsisdy, was forced to close in 1982 for lack of funds.
Dame Bridget, who died last May 2 at the age of 77, was the granddaughter of Richard D’Oyly Carte, the Victorian impresario who founded the company. He built the Savoy Theater and Savoy Hotel and presented the 14 operettas written by W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan.
Dame Bridget’s estate will benefit both the D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust and the D’Oyly Carte Opera Trust, which she founded in 1961.
Asked if the will could lead to the resuscitation of the opera company, Sir Hugh Wontner, one of the Opera Trust’s six trustees, said, “I think that’s quite a possibility.”