The Mikado Opera Bracelet

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Beloved since its opening in 1885, Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado is a wild tale of mixed up marriages and laws that defy reason. It's one of those operettas that point out the ridiculous by being ridiculous.

Nanki-Poo wants to marry Yum-Yum. This is only slightly complicated by the fact that he is heir to the Emperor of Japan (The Mikado) in disguise and she is betrothed to her ward Ko-Ko, who has his own problems having escaped a death sentence and taken the position of Lord High Executioner. He doesn’t know how to execute anyone though and the Mikado had demanded the town execute someone within the month. A secret wedding and a fake execution seem to solve the problem UNTIL Nanki-Poo's identity is revealed... Confused yet?

Each bead and charm of The Mikado Opera Bracelet represents a character or moment from the operetta. Some of the most important beads and charms are described below and you can see all of the symbolic descriptions on the spiral chart photo above or to the left. Also, a story chart explaining the symbolism of the beads and charms accompanies every bracelet. Click here to see the chart.

  • Gold Crystals represent Nanki-Poo and his father the Mikado
  • Yum-Yum the bride is an elegant glass flower while her companions Peep-Bo and Pitti-Sing are delicate glass pearls.
  • Fire Polish beads represent Lord High Executioner Ko-Ko (Blue), Pish-Tush, a noble lord of the town (Green) and Pooh-Bah, “Lord High Everything else” (Purple).
  • A silver bead symbolizes elderly Katisha who also plans to marry Nanki-Poo
  • The concept of execution which looms over the opera is indicated by tiny barrel beads embossed with X's
  • Ornate Cloisonné beads evoke intricate Japanese silks: A large blue and pink heart is the love of Yum-Yum and Nanki-Poo as they plan to marry.
  • A red heart is Ko-Ko’s love song to Katisha.
  • A large round blue and gold sunburst disc symbolizes the joy of the town as the operetta concludes.

Charms included on the bracelet are:

  • A music note (Nanki-Poo as traveling minstrel)
  • A wedding ring (Ko-Ko’s marriage plans)
  • Yum-Yum’s fan
  • A dagger/sword (the command for an execution)
  • A Japanese woman (Yum-Yum preparing for her wedding)
  • A marriage license (the secret wedding).

4 Reviews Hide Reviews- Show Reviews+

  • 5
    The Mikado bracelet

    Posted by Suzanne Mencer on 02 24 2021

    This colorful beauty lifts my spirits on grey, wintry days but is a joy to wear on sunny, spring-like days, too! The charms are delightful, tell the story and the colors are invigorating.

  • 5
    Mikado Bracelet

    Posted by Leslie Painter on 05 08 2020

    My daughter in law was in this in college, as well as a few other performances represented by your opera bracelets. I have bought them all and will be giving them to her in the near future. This is a lovely telling of the opera, I know she will love it! Thanks again for your fine workmanship and lovely, unique pieces!

  • 5
    Lovely quirky item for opera lovers everywhere

    Posted by Angela on 06 05 2016

    This is a beautiful bracelet and is a gift for my daughter who is playing Katisha in The Mikado, in Edinburgh 2016. The service is excellent and I was delighted with the speedy despatch. Thank you. I will be buying from you again.

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