Charles Courtice Pounds claimed in an early issue of "The Green Room" to have made his debut in the original production of "Patience" as understudy to Durward Lely (the Duke) and Rutland Barrington (Grosvenor)! This was the beginning of a long career in the musical theatre. He played leads in West End productions for forty years.
Courtice Pounds was principal tenor in the American productions of "Princess Ida", "The Mikado", and "Ruddigore". He returned to England to appear in the premieres of "The Yeomen of the Guard" and "The Gondoliers" at the Savoy. Like Durward Lely, he was admired by Gilbert as a "tenor who could act". He remained at the Savoy to appear in "Haddon Hall" and "The Chieftain".
After leaving the D'Oyly Carte Company in 1894, he appeared in such West End successes as "La Poupee", "The Belle of Mayfair", and "Princess Caprice". He played the tenor lead in "Chu Chin Chou" at His Majesty's Theatre for five years and appeared in "The Boatswain's Mate" by Dame Ethel Smyth.
He was a versatile performer, and once played Touchstone in "As You Like It" at the Haymarket. Thirty-five years after his Savoy successes, he starred as Franz Schubert in "Lilac Time".
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