My One and Only

Full-Length Musical, Comedy

Music and Lyrics by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin
Book by Peter Stone and Timothy S. Mayer

Original Staging and Choreography by Thommie Walsh and Tommy Tune
Original Broadway Production produced by Paramount Theatre Productions, Francine LeFrak, Kenneth John Productions, Jonathan Farkas, Bernard Carragher, Obie Bailey, Bernard Bailey and Lewis Allen

Featuring timeless Gershwin tunes from Funny Face and other hit shows of the 1920’s, My One and Only is a delightfully frothy escapade buoyed by a tuneful score and exuberant dance numbers.

  • Duration
    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre
    Romantic Comedy
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    Appropriate for all audiences
  • Nominee: Nine 1983 Tony Awards, including Best Musical
    Winner! Three 1983 Tony Awards
    Nominee: Six 1983 Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Musical
    Winner! Three 1983 Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Orchestrations
My One and Only



In 1927 America, Captain Billy Buck Chandler, a barnstorming aviator, falls for Edith Herbert, a former English Channel swimmer and the star of Prince Nicolai Erraclyovitch Tchatchavadze’s International Aquacade. Billy, who plans to be the first man to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, hopes to win Edith’s hand by taking a crash course in sophistication at Mr. Magix’ Tonsorial and Sartorial Emporial. Billy’s wisecracking female mechanic, Mickey, adds a bit of sass as a series of escapades and misadventures keep the potential lovers from finding happiness.

In addition to the title tune, the score includes “‘’S Wonderful,” “Funny Face,” “I Can’t Be Bothered Now,” “He Loves and She Loves,” “Strike Up the Band,” “Nice Work If You Can Get It” and “Kickin’ the Clouds Away.”

My One and Only opened on Broadway at the St. James Theatre on May 1, 1983, starring Tommy Tune and Twiggy. (Tune also co-choreographed with Thommie Walsh.) The show ran until March 3, 1985, playing a total of 767 performances.

My One and Only concerns an aviator, a Channel swimmer, and the America of 1927, which knew exactly what it wanted (“I Can’t Be Bothered Now”).

Captain Billy Buck Chandler is determined to be the first man in history to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. His mission is somewhat sidetracked at a railroad station when he first lays eyes on Edith Herbert, ex-Channel swimmer and current star attraction of Prince Nicolai Erraclyovitch Tchatchavadze’s International Aquacade (“Blah, Blah, Blah”). To the chagrin of his female mechanic Mickey, Billy dreams of Edith (“Soon”) while Edith dreams of romance (“Boy Wanted”).

Determined to meet and win her, Billy takes a crash course in sophistication at Mr. Magix’ Tonsorial and Sartorial Emporial, where the urbane, all-knowing Mr. M tells Billy what it’s all about (“Sweet ‘n’ Low Down”). Billy arranges to run into Edith "accidentally" at the movies, where she often goes to fantasize – the Russian Prince Nikki keeps a tight rein on her, having in his possession certain compromising photographs. Of course, Billy and Edith fall in love (“He Loves and She Loves”).

Seeing Billy as her only hope of escaping Prince Nikki, Edith persuades Billy to fly her to Cuba, but Nikki sabotages the plane and the two lovebirds fall to earth on a seemingly deserted island which they quickly turn into Paradise (“It’s Wonderful”). But when Nikki finds them and forces Edith to go back to the Aquacade by threatening to reveal her past, Billy, left alone, bitterly returns to the only dream left him – his flight to Paris and the fame he will achieve (“Strike Up the Band”).

Life at the Aquacade goes on (“In the Swim”), but Edith is despondent (“Nice Work If You Can Get It”) and decides to run away. Billy, however, is unable to forget Edith. He returns to Mr. Magix for fresh advice. What should he do now? Mr. M counsels him that only love matters (“My One and Only”).

After a brief interlude that finds Prince Nikki and Billy’s female mechanic Mickey falling head over heels for one another (“Funny Face”), Billy takes off in his plane, the Lone Star, in search of Edith. He finds her in Morocco – it was the location of the movie they fell in love at – and persuades her to return to America with him and get married, which they do (“Kickin’ the Clouds Away”).

After the ceremony, happiness theirs, Edith pauses to wonder at it all (“How Long Has This Been Going On?”). To the surprise of practically no one, they will live happily ever after.

– Peter Stone

(2 female; 4 male)

Edythe Herbert – Channel Swimmer, Star of the Aquacade (singer/dancer)
Mickey – Agent Lucy Ann Fergusson – An airplane mechanic and an F.B.I. Agent (singer)
Captain Billy Buck Chandler – An aviator. (singer/dancer)
Nikki – Prince Nicolai Erraclyovitch Tchatchavadze – A Russian Agent, Owner Promoter of the Aquacade (singer)
Reverend J.D. Montgomery – Clergyman and Speakeasy Proprietor (singer)
Mr. Magix – Proprietor of the “Tonsorial & Sartorial Emporial” (principal specialty dancer/singer)


Fish: The 6 Female Chorus/Dancers

New Rhythm Boys – Singing trio, part of the 8 male chorus/dancers


Train Porter (doubling role – male)
Newspaper Reporter (doubling role – female)
Ritz Quartette (4 mature businessmen – singers)
“Nuns” (New Rhythm Boys in disguise)
Movie Patron #1 (doubling role – female)
Movie Patron #2 (doubling role – male)
Man’s Voice (doubling role)
Newscaster (taped voice – male)
Stage Doorman (doubling role – male)
Mrs. O’Malley (played by one of the New Rhythm Boys)
Train Conductor (doubling role)
Achmed (played by Nikki)
Legionnaire (doubling role – male)
Radio (taped voice imitates Lowell Thomas)
Deacons (the 8 male chorus/dancers)

Chorus: Emporial Assistants, Shoeshine Boy, Manicurist, etc., Club Havana Waiters, Customers, Cops, Beauties: Miss Domino, Miss Del Monte, Miss Upman Panatella, Miss United Fruit, Miss Cuba Libra. Movie Patrons, Spectators at Train, Photographers, Umbrella Dancers, Club Oasis Legionnaires & Belly Dancers.

Original cast of 24. Six Principals and 18 Chorus:

6 Girl singers/dancers
8 Boy singers/dancers (including New Rhythm Boys)
4 Men singers (Ritz Quartette)

  • Time Period 1920s
  • Setting New York, a deserted island and Morocco. 1927.
  • Features Period Costumes
  • Duration More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Cautions
    • No Special Cautions


Music Samples

Act I

1. Overture – Orchestra
2. Opening Act I, Part 1: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – New Rhythm Boys
2a. Opening Act I, Part 2: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – Billy
2b. Opening Act I, Part 3: “Blah, Blah, Blah” – Billy
2c. Opening Act I, Part 4: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – Edythe & Chorus
2d. Opening Act I, Part 5: Playoff & Scene Change – Orchestra
3. “Boy Wanted”/“Soon” – Edythe & Billy
4. Scene Change – Orchestra
5. “High Hat” – Billy, Mr. Magix, New Rhythm Boys, & Male Chorus
5a. High Hat Dance – Orchestra
6. Just Another Rumba – Orchestra
7. Reprise: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – Male Quartet
8. Underscore & Reprise: “High Hat”/“Blah, Blah, Blah” – Edythe
9. The Beauty Contest – Orchestra
10. The Raid: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – New Rhythm Boys
11. Movie Underscore – Piano Solo
12. “He Loves And She Loves” – Billy & Edythe
12a. Dance – Orchestra
12b. Reprise: “He Loves And She Loves” – Ritz Quartet
13. Flying: “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” – New Rhythm Boys
14. “’S Wonderful” – Billy & Edythe
14a. Dance – Orchestra
15. Underscore/Reprise: “’S Wonderful” – Ritz Quartet
16. “Strike Up The Band” – Billy

Act II

17. Entr’acte – Orchestra
18. “In The Swim” – Chorus Girls (The “Six Fish”)
19. “Nice Work If You Can Get It” – Edythe
20. “My One And Only” – Billy & Mr. Magix
20a. Dance – Orchestra
21. The Train Scene Change – Orchestra
22. Big Exit – Orchestra
23. “Funny Face” – Mickey & Nikki
24. Morocco – Orchestra
25. Reprise: “My One And Only” – Billy
26. Lucky Lindy Incidental – Orchestra
27. “Soon” / “My One And Only” – Billy
28. “Kickin’ The Clouds Away” – Montgomery & Chorus
29. “How Long Has This Been Going On?” – Edythe & Billy
29a. Final Curtain: “’S Wonderful”/ “He Loves And She Loves” – Company
30. Bows – Orchestra
31.Exit Music - Orchestra

Full Orchestration

Violins (divisi a3, six players)
Cello (divisi a2, two players)
Bass (doubles Cabasa)

Reed 1: Piccolo, Flute, Clarinet, Soprano & Alto Sax
Reed 2: Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet & Alto Sax
Reed 3: Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet & Tenor Sax (or: Clarinet & Tenor Sax)
Reed 4: Flute (or Clarinet), Clarinet, Bassoon & Baritone Sax

Horn 1 & 2
Trumpet 1 & 2 (Trumpet 1 doubles on Piccolo Trumpet)
Trumpet 3
Trombone 1
Trombone 2 (Bass Trombone)

Percussion I & II

I: (Trap Set)
Bass Drum
Snare Drum (Brushes & Sticks)
“Indian Drum”
Small Tom Tom
Floor Tom Tom
Small Triangle
Cow Bell
Wood Block
Crash – Thin & Normal

II: (Mallets)
Timpani – 2 Pedal Drums
Small Triangle
Field Drum
Gran Cassa
Suspended Cymbal
Bell Tree
Siren Whistle
Bongo Drums
Conga Drum
Cabasa – “Rattlesnake”
Sandpaper Blocks
Wood Block
Dumbek – for Belly Dance
“Taps” – Tap Shoes & Board

Piano I (Doubles on Cow Bell)
Piano II (Doubles on Claves, Cabasa, Police Whistle and Piatti)


  • Musical Style Classic Broadway
  • Dance Requirements Moderate
  • Vocal DemandsDifficult
  • Orchestra Size Large
  • Chorus Size Large

Licensing & Materials

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.

Music Rentals

Concord offers a full suite of resources to help you put on the show of a lifetime!
25 Libretto-Vocal Book
1 Piano-Conductor
1 Reed 1
1 Reed 2
1 Reed 3
1 Reed 4
2 Horn 1&2
2 Trumpet 1&2
1 Trumpet 3
1 Trombone 1
1 Trombone 2
2 Percussion 1&2
1 Piano 1
1 Piano 2
1 Guitar
3 Violins
1 Cello
1 Bass
25 Libretto-Vocal Book
1 Piano-Conductor


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George Gershwin

George Gershwin was born in Brooklyn on September 26, 1898, and began his musical training when he was 13. At 16, he quit high school to work as a "song plugger" for a music publisher, and soon he was writing songs himself. "Swanee," as introduced by Al Jolson, brought George ...

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Ira Gershwin

Ira Gershwin, the first songwriter to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize, was born in New York City on December 6, 1896. In 1917 The Evening Sun published his first song (“You May Throw All The Rice You Desire But Please, Friends, Throw No Shoes”). Four years later, Ira enjoyed hi ...

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Peter Stone

Peter Stone (1930-2003) was the first writer to win the Tony, the Oscar and the Emmy. With 15 Broadway productions to his credit, he received Tony Awards for his books to 1776, Woman Of The Year, The Will Rogers Follies and Titanic (all four also winning the Tony for Best Mus ...

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Timothy S. Mayer

Timothy S. Mayer (1944-1988) divided his time between business and the arts. He won the Phyllis Anderson Award at Harvard, where he founded the Agassiz Theatre Company with Thomas Babe, and to which he returned in 1981 as Artist-in-Residence. He was Levine Senior Fellow at Ya ...
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