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Cover to original Broadway cast recording

A Musical Comedy in Two Acts, 17 Scenes. Book by E. Y. Harburg and Fred Saidy. Music by Sammy Fain. Lyrics by E. Y. Harburg. Dances and musical numbers staged by Helen Tamiris.

14 May 1951 at the Broadhurst Theatre and closed 17 June 1951 after 40 performances.


The allegorical tale is set in fictional Capsulanti, USA, site of the headquarters for B.G. Bigelow, Incorporated, the largest toy corporation in the world. Puppet designer Sylvester has created laughing doll Flahooley and is about to unveil it as the company's big Christmas release to the board of directors when the meeting is interrupted by a Saudi Arabian delegation. Their country has run out of oil, the magic lamp upon which they rely is broken, and they hope someone can repair it so genie Abou Ben Atom, who keeps things running smoothly, will reappear and help them in their time of need.

Bigelow, enamored with Princess Najla, agrees and assigns Sylvester to the project. He succeeds and, hoping to become wealthy enough to marry his model Sandy, asks for assistance from the genie who, unclear on the concept of capitalism, begins giving away thousands of dolls. Before long a witch is pursuing him in an effort to put an end to his misguided generosity.

CAST (in order of appearance):

A March of Time Voice
Switchboard Operators
K. T. Pettigrew
Board of Director (6) - Quimsby; Peabody; Evans; Farquarson; Lovingham; Hastings;
The Voice on the P.A.
B. G. Bigelow
Miss Buckley
Clayfoot Trowbridge
Fowzi, the Younger Arab
El-Akbar, the Elder Arab
Abou Ben Atom
Elsa Bullinger

Citizens of Capsulanti; Arabs; Nurse; Flahooley; Radio Voice; Marionettes; Singers; Dancers; Puppet Singing Voices

Scenes and settings:

Act 1

Scene 1: B. G. Bigelow, Inc.
Scene 2: A Section of the Puppet Laboratory.
Scene 3: Telephone Room.
Scene 4: The Board Room.
Scene 5: Bigelow's Toyland Bazaar.
Scene 6: The Bigelow Hall of Fame (Showroom to you).
Scene 7: The Puppet Laboratory.
Scene 8: (Najla's Specialty.)
Scene 9: Bigelow's Inner Sanctum.

Act 2

Scene 1: B. G. Bigelow, Inc.
Scene 2: City Hall Sqaure.
Scene 3: B. C. Bigelow Inc.
Scene 4: Bigelow's Bagdad.
Scene 5: Hospital Waiting-Room.
Scene 6: Abou's Hospital Room.
Scene 7: Sing the Merry.
Scene 8: Main Street-Capsulanti.

Musical Numbers

  1. You Too Can Be a Puppet - Puppet Singers
  2. Here's to Your Illusions = Sandy, Sylvester
  3. B. G. Bigelow, Inc. - Excutives, Personnel
  4. Demonstration Dances - Dancers
  5. Najla's Song (music by Moises Vivanco) - Najla
  6. Who Says There Ain't No Santa Claus? - Sylvester, Sandy, Executives, Personnel
  7. Flahooley - Griselda, Miss Buckley, Executives, Personnel
  8. Danced by Toy Band: Big Drum; Clarinet; Accordion; Tuba; Glockenspiel;
  9. The World Is Your Balloon - Sandy, Sylvester, Puppet Singers
  10. He's Only Wonderful - Sandy, Sylvester
  11. Arabian for Get Happy - (music by Moises Vivanco) - Najla, Abou Ben Atom, Young Arab, El-Akbar
  12. Jump, Little Chillun' - Ensemble
  13. Spirit of Capsulanti Miss Buckley, Townspeople
  14. Happy Hunting - Elsa, Miss Buckley, Griselda, Townspeople
  15. Enchantment (music by Moises Vivanco) - Najla
  16. Scheherezade - Arabs, Executives
  17. Come Back, Little Genie - Sandy
  18. The Springtime Cometh - Abou Ben Atom
  19. Sing the Merry - Griselda, Clyde, and citizens
  20. Finale - Entire Company