Take Me Along

Full-Length Musical, Dramatic Comedy  /  4w, 7m

Music and Lyrics by Bob Merrill
Book by Joseph Stein and Robert Russell
Based on the play Ah, Wilderness! by Eugene ONeill
Original production by David Merrick

A delightful and heartwarming musical adaptation of Eugene O’Neill’s Ah, Wilderness!, Take Me Along takes place in a small Connecticut town on July 4, 1906.

  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    4w, 7m
  • Duration
    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre
    Adaptations (Stage & Screen), Christmas/Holiday, Period, Romantic Comedy
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    Appropriate for all audiences
  • Nominee: Nine 1960 Tony Awards, including Best Musical
    Winner! 1960 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical (Jackie Gleason)
Take Me Along
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In a small Connecticut town on July 4, 1906, Nat and Essie Miller head a middle class New England family with teenage children who are coming of age, falling in love, and desperately trying to stay out of trouble. Bob Merrill's rousing and lovely score includes "Staying Young," "That's How It Starts," "Promise Me A Rose," and the title song.
Take Me Along opened on Broadway at the Shubert Theatre on October 22, 1959, starring Jackie Gleason, Walter Pidgeon, Eileen Herlie, Robert Morse and Una Merkel. The production played for 448 performances.
In Centerville, Connecticut, in 1906, the publisher of the "Centerville Globe," Nat Miller, wins a new fire engine for the town whose citizens celebrate the acquisition. With Nat as he is cheered are his wife, Essie, his sister Lily, and the rest of his family.

But as Nat is basking in praise, his middle son Richard is getting into trouble by plighting a passionate-but-pure troth to Muriel Macomber. Her starchy father overhears Richard reading passages from classics to his daughter and considers them extremely erotic. He drives Richard from his home, confines Muriel for a month, announces intention to withdraw sorely needed advertising from Nat’s newspaper.

There is gaiety at the town trolley station because Sid Davis, Essie’s brother, is returning from Waterbury, where he has a newspaper job. Essie has coached Lily on how to trap Sid into marriage and reform him from drinking. Sid’s homecoming is interrupted when Macomber storms into the house, demands Richard be punished; Nat throws Macomber out of the house.

Sid proposes to Lily—his first such offer while sober—and she accepts with his promise to stay sober, particularly at the Fourth of July picnic. As the whole town celebrates, Richard is despondent over receiving a note from Muriel breaking their engagement. Nat and Sid, both in their cups, return from the picnic and Richard leaves home for a night of carousing.

At the Pleasant Beach House, Richard drinks too much and falls into a nightmarish sleep. When he returns home, Sid tries to give him advice about drinking. Richard learns Muriel was forced to write her letter and still loves him. They secretly meet on a beach, and Richard promises to accept four years at Yale. Sid is given one more chance by Lily if he keeps his promise to return to his job in Waterbury. She leaves with him as the whole town cheers.
(4 female; 7 male)

Sid Davis
Nat Miller
Essie Miller
Richard Miller
Mildred Miller
Tommy Miller
Muriel Macomber


Art Miller
David Macomber


Fire Chief
Lady Entertainers
The Drunk
Beardsley Dwarf

  • Time Period 1900-1910
  • Setting
    Centerville, Connecticut. 1910.
  • Features Period Costumes
  • Duration More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Cautions
    • No Special Cautions


“A delicious tonic... as entertaining and lighthearted as any show should hope to be.” – TheaterMania

“Bob Merrill's charming score, as orchestrated by Philip J. Lang, makes for a dandy overture.” – Frank Rich, The New York Times

“A captivating adaptation of Eugene O’Neill’s only comedy... buoyed by the beguiling music and lyrics of Bob Merrill.” – Curtain Up

“A delicious tonic... as entertaining and lighthearted as any show should hope to be... Merrill's songs pop up like spring flowers on a country lane.” – TheaterMania


Music Samples

Act I

1. Overture – Orchestra
2. Opening Act I – Nat & Chorus
3. “Oh, Please” – Essie & Nat
4. Reprise: “Oh, Please” – Essie, Nat, Lily, Tommy & Mildred
5. Incidental: Oh, Please – Orchestra
6. “I Would Die” – Muriel & Richard
7. Underscore: Poetry – Orchestra
8. Opening: Car Born – Orchestra
9. “Sid, Ol’ Kid” – Sid & Men
10. Tag: Sid – Orchestra
11. Essie – Lil – Orchestra
12. Patience Incidental – Orchestra
13. “Staying Young” – Nat
14. “I Get Embarrassed” – Sid & Lily
15. “We’re Home” – Lily
16. “Take Me Along” – Nat & Sid
17. Playoff: Take Me Along – Orchestra
18. Fun & Games – Orchestra
19. “For Sweet Charity” – Nat, Sid & Chorus
20. Picnic Dance – Orchestra
21. Scene Change: Picnic Exit – Orchestra
22. “Pleasant Beach House” – Wint
23. Wint’s Exit – Orchestra
24. “That’s How It Starts” – Richard

Act II

25. Entr’acte – Orchestra
26. Beardsley Ballet – Orchestra
27. Prelude – Salome
28. Chopin
29. Lysistrata
30. Circus Ballet
31. Bar Scene – Orchestra
32. Reprise: “Oh, Please” – Nat & Essie
33. Sid – Lil Incidental – Orchestra
34. “Slight Detail (Promise Me A Rose)” – Lily
35. Slight Detail Postlude – Orchestra
36. Richard – Drunk – Orchestra
37. Richard’s Exit – Orchestra
38. “Staying Young” Reprise – Nat
39. Incidental: Scene Change – Orchestra
40. “Green Snake” – Sid
41. Phone Call – Orchestra
42. “Nine O’Clock” – Richard
43. Reprise: “Nine O’Clock” – Richard
44. Porch Incidental – Orchestra
45. “But Yours” – Sid & Lily
46. But Yours Incidental – Orchestra
47. Embarrassed Incidental – Orchestra
48. Nat – Incidental – Orchestra
49. Finale – Sid, Lily & Chorus
50. Exit Music – Orchestra

Full Orchestration

Violin AC
Violin BD

Reed I: Flute, Piccolo, Clarinet & Alto Saxophone
Reed II: Clarinet & Alto Saxophone
Reed III: Clarinet & Tenor Saxophone
Reed IV: Clarinet & Tenor Saxophone
Reed V: Clarinet & Baritone Saxophone

Horn I & II
Trumpet I & II


  • 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!
36 Libretto/Vocal
1 Piano-Conductor
1 Reed 1
1 Reed 2
1 Reed 3
1 Reed 4
1 Reed 5
2 Horn 1&2
2 Trumpet 1&2
1 Trombone
1 Percussion
1 Harp
2 Violin AC
1 Violin BC
1 Viola
1 Cello
1 Bass
36 Libretto/Vocal
1 Piano-Conductor


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Bob Merrill

Bob Merrill (May 17, 1921 - February 17, 1998) was an American songwriter, theatrical composer, lyricist and screenwriter. He was the second most successful songwriter of the 1950s on the UK Singles Chart, with hits such as “How Much Is That Doggie In The Window?,” “Mambo Ita ...
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Joseph Stein

Joseph Stein (1912-2020) won the Tony Award and Drama Critics Circle Award for Fiddler on the Roof. His other musicals include Zorba! (Tony nom., Drama Critics Circle Award), Rags (Tony nom.), The Baker’s Wife (Laurence Olivier Award, London), June, Take Me Along, Irene (star ...

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Robert Russell

Robert W. Russell (1912-1992) was an American playwright, screenwriter and documentarian. Over his career, he was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Writing, Original Story and Best Writing – Screenplay. His plays include Take Me Along, Flora the Red Menace and Washington ...
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Eugene O'Neill

Eugene O’Neill, born in New York City on October 16, 1888, was the first great American playwright. His father was James O’Neill, the famous dramatic actor, and during his early years, O’Neill often traveled with his parents. Beyond the Horizon (1920), the first of his plays ...

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