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Du Barry Was A Lady

Cole Porter, Herbert Fields, B.G. DeSylva

Full Length Musical, Comedy  /  4f, 5m

Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter / Book by Herbert Fields and B. G. DeSylva

This wacky Cole Porter musical features Louis, a washroom attendant who dreams that he is King Louis XV of France and that his secret love, May, is Madame Du Barry.
Du Barry Was A Lady
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OVERVIEW

  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    4f, 5m
  • Duration
    Duration
    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre
    Subgenre
    Fantasy, Romantic Comedy
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    • Appropriate for all audiences
Description
Louis Blore is a washroom attendant in a night club where his secret love, May Daly performs. Having just won the sweepstakes and hoping to declare his love for May openly, Louis accidentally drugs himself, dreams that he is King Louis XV of France and that May is Madame Du Barry. When he wakes up, he knows what to do next.
History
Du Barry Was A Lady opened on Brodway at the 46th Street Theatre on Dec 06, 1939, starring Ethel Merman, Bert Lahr and Betty Grable. The show later moved to the Royale Theatre and ran for a total of 408 performances. In London’s West End, the show played for 178 performances at His Majesty’s Theatre.
Keywords
Louis Blore, attendant in the men's washroom of the Club Petite in New York, wins $75,000 in the Irish sweeps. Having long had his eye on the star of the floor show, May Daly, Louis seeks to win her away from Alex Barton, the young man to whom she is engaged. He tries to put Alex away with knock-out drops, but mixes up the glasses and drinks the potion himself. During his delirium Louis dreams that he is Louis XIV and that May Daly is Du Barry, his mistress. His unsuccessful pursuit of May continues through the gardens and boudoirs of 18th century Versailles. When he awakens, Louis realizes that he has no chance with May and will have to settle for her friendship.

Considerations

Performing Groups
  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

Licence details

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.

Specifics

Details

  • Time Period: 1930s, 18th Century
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: New York City and Versailles, France
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Casting

4f, 5m
Cast Attributes
  • Expandable casting
  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)
Louis Blore, His Most Royal Majesty, The King of France
May Daly, Mme. La Comtesse du Barry
Charley, His Royal Highness, The Dauphin of France
Alice Barton, Mme. La Marquisse Alisande de Vernay
Molly Wincor, Starlet of the Club Petite, Mme. La Marquise du Pont L'Eveque
Bill Kelly, Docteur Michel
Henri
Mary Gray, Starlet of the Club Petite, Mme. La Vicomtesse de Roquefort
Jones, Le Duc de Choiseul
Ruth Frederick, Starlet of the Club Petite, Mme. Le Princesse Gruyere
Florian
Zamore
Peggy Brown, Starlet of the Club Petite, La Baronne de Brie
Sigana Sigan, Starlet of the Club Petite, Mme. La Comtesse de Camembert
Alex Barton
An International
An International
Vi Hennessey, Mme. La Duchesse de Villardel
An International
Gateman
Cosette
Manuel Gomez
An International
Pierre
David Shelly
Radio Announcer
Geraldine Spreckels
Ann Todd, Starlet of the Club Petite, Mme. La Duchesse de Grammont, Mme. La Duchesse du Coeur Flottant, Dames de la Cour
Jane Sproule
Jack Stanton
An International
Rene
Kay Sutton
Ann Barton, Mme. La Duchesse de Grammont
Paul Thorne
Edith Turgell
Lewis Turner
Marie Vannemen
Arlyne Varden
William Vaux
Charles Walters
Harry Norton
Captain of King's Guard
Nina Wayler

11 Dancing boys
23 Dancing girls

Music

  • Musical Style: Classic Broadway
  • Dance Requirements: Moderate
  • Vocal Demands: Difficult
  • Orchestra Size: Large
  • Chorus Size: Large

Act I

1. Overture – Orchestra
2. “Where’s Louis?” – Chorus
3. “Ev’ry Day a Holiday” – Harry, Alice, & Chorus
3a. Dance: Holiday – Orchestra
3b. Louis’ Entrance – Orchestra
4. “It Ain’t Etiquette” – Louie & Vi
4a. May’s Entrance – Orchestra
5. “When Love Beckoned” – May
5a. Encore: “When Love Beckoned” – May & Chorus
5b. Incidental: Come On In – Orchestra
6. “Come On In” – May & Starlets
6a. Dance: Come On In – Orchestra
6b. Scene Change: Come On In – Orchestra
7. “Dream Song” – Quartet
8. Mesdames et Messieurs – Orchestra
9. Gavotte – Orchestra
9a. Entrance of Du Barry – Orchestra
10. Entrance of King Louis – Orchestra
11. “But in The Morning, No” – Louis & Du Barry
11a. Encore: “But In The Morning, No” – Louis & Du Barry
12. “Do I Love You” – Alexandre & Du Barry
13. Reprise: “Do I Love You” – Du Barry
14. Dance Victoire – Orchestra
14a. Scene Change: Written – Orchestra
15. Dance Erotique – Orchestra
16. Finale Act One – Du Barry, Alexandre, Louis, & Ensemble

Act II

17. Dance Tzigane – Orchestra
18. “Give Him the Oo-La-La” – Du Barry
19. “Well, Did You Evah!” – Lebel & Alisande
19a. Well, Did You Evah – Orchestra
19b. Scene Change: Arrow Shooting – Orchestra
20. “It Was Written in the Stars” – Alexandre & Quartet
20a. Entrance: Dauphin & Zamore – Orchestra
21. Dance: L’apres midi d’un boeuf – Orchestra
22. “Katie Went To Haiti” – May
23. “Friendship” – Louie & May
23a. Encore: “Friendship” – Louie & May
24. Finale Act II & Reprise: “When Love Beckoned” – Ensemble
25. Bows – Ensemble

Full Orchestration

Violin A
Violin B
Violin C
Viola
Cello
Bass

Reed 1: Piccolo, Flute, Clarinet & Alto Saxophone
Reed 2: Clarinet, Alto Saxophone & Baritone Saxophone
Reed 3: Oboe (or Cl.), Clarinet, Bass Clarinet & Tenor Saxophone
Reed 4: Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet (or Bsn.), Bassoon & Tenor Saxophone
Oboe & English Horn

Horn
Trumpet 1
Trumpet 2
Trumpet 3
Trombone (tenor)

Percussion:

Timpani (2 drums)
Snare Drum
Bass Drum
Oriental Drum
Military Drum
Tom-toms
Gran Cassa
Temple Blocks
Tambourine
Maracas
Wood Block
Marimba
Song Bells (low Bells) or Vibes
Xylophone
Vibraphone
Cymbals
Hi-Hat Cymbals
Gong
Triangle
Cuckoo (SFX)

Harp
Piano & Celeste

Materials

Scripts

Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package:
1 Piano/Conductor Score
33 Libretto/Vocal Books
1 Reed 1
1 Reed 2
1 Reed 3
1 Reed 4
1 Oboe & English Horn
1 Horn
1 Trumpet 1
1 Trumpet 2
1 Trumpet 3
1 Trombone
2 Percussion
1 Harp
1 Piano & Celeste
1 Violin A
1 Violin B
1 Violin C
1 Viola
1 Cello
1 Bass

Piano Only:
1 Piano/Conductor
33 Libretto/Vocal book

Additional Resources And Services Available

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Authors

Cole Porter

Cole Porter was born in Peru, Indiana in 1891 and died in Hollywood 73 years later. In between, he wrote some of the most memorable songs ever heard on stage or screen, among them “Night and Day,” “Begin the Beguine,” “You’re The Top,” “I Get a Kick Out of You,” “Love For Sale,” and “Just One of Tho ...

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Herbert Fields

Herbert Fields (1897-1958) was a celebrated librettist and screenwriter. The brother and sister team of Herbert and Dorothy Fields was part of a vibrant New York theatrical family that also included their brother, Joseph, a prolific librettist and playwright, and their father, Lew, the famous producer, actor, and di ...

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B.G. DeSylva

B. G. DeSylva was a composer, author and publisher, born in New York, NY, January 27, 1895, and died Los Angeles, CA, July 11, 1950. Education: University of Southern California. DeSylva wrote songs for several Broadway musicals, including Ziegfeld Follies (1918, 1921), Sinbad, Sally, The Perfect Fool

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