When the Royal Order of Jesters was founded during a February 1911 voyage to Hawaii, its original 13 members each received a title befitting his rank in the new Order. The titles related to theatrical roles. Some, like director, are self-explanatory. Others are a little less clear in origin.

“Soubrette,” for instance, refers to a type of stock character that appears in theatre and opera. The character typically appears to be girlish, vain, lighthearted, frivolous, coquettish, and mischievous. The role’s pedigree stretches all the way back to the days of commedia dell’arte, and soubrettes make appearances in famous works by Pierre Beaumarchais and Jean-Baptiste Moliere. 

The term also describes a particular type of voice thought well-suited to singing the soubrette role in an opera. Operatic soubrettes have bright, light, soft voices that can be heard above the music of an orchestra. Because they tend to be cast in supporting roles, they frequently end up doing more acting than singing.