A Musical comedy in 2 acts, 16 scenes: Book by Howard Lindsay & Russel Crouse: Music by Harold Karr: Lyrics by Matt Dubey
Majestic Theatre, Broadway - 6 December, 1956 (408 perfs)
It's the wedding of the year. Grace Kelly of Philadelphia is soon to be Princess Grace of Monaco. Liz Livingstone, the darling outcast of Philadelphia's Main Line society, and her daughter, Beth, have come to Monaco, along with a regiment of reporters, tourists, and Main Liners to attend the wedding. Mrs. Sanford Stewart, Sr., the grande dame of the Main Line, and her son, Sandy, are also in the tiny principality. Ostensibly Sandy is there to check the faltering finances of the Hotel Riviera for the ownership syndicate that Sandy's law firm represents.
Sandy and Beth meet outside the Palace gates while Liz is trying to run down their tardy invitations to the wedding. As it turns out, they were overlooked, but rather than admit the disappointment to Beth, Liz stages the theft of all her clothes and makes international headlines in her pyjamas and jewels. However, Liz confesses the truth to Beth just before the hotel manager, Arturo, discovers the clothes stuffed in a linen closet. There has been a witness to the crime, the hotel's most honoured guest, the Duke of Granada. He, of course, immediately recognises Liz and is puzzled by her actions.
She gives him the story straight from the shoulder and in the next breath lines him up for a date with Beth. Meanwhile Sandy has discovered the hotel's red ink closely matches the 'credit extended the Duke over the last year. Arturo is proud to be one of the Duke's strongest supporters. Sandy isn't sympathetic to the problems of high-living royalty in exile and orders the Duke to pay up or get out. Liz is loaded and proposes a marriage for money between the Duke and Beth. The Duke accepts and the whole post-wedding crowd sails for the U.S.A. En route, Sandy, who is also Liz's lawyer, is directed to work out the marriage agreement with Arturo, who is now on the Duke's personal staff. By now the Duke is becoming more and more enchanted with Liz while Sandy is agonisingly dealing away his growing love for Beth (who toys with his predicament). Only after Beth's icy status rejection by Sandy's mother does she resolve to go through with her marriage to the Duke.
Meanwhile the Duke confesses to Liz that the best part of the agreement will be his nearness to her. They kiss emotionally and Liz is ready to switch the signals, but she has already baited the press, and the Duke is forced to announce his engagement to Beth. Back in Philly Liz is throwing a party to introduce the Duke. Even the Main Liners who have snubbed Liz for years can't stay away from royalty. However, they seek to embarrass her with a hunt (the vehicle of Liz's previous falling out with society). But the plan backfires. Liz's showing convinces the Duke that she's really the woman for him. Just as well, too, for Beth has been secretly meeting Sandy, and they plan to elope. But when the Duke tells Liz he wants her, she believes he only wants her money and he storms out. However, they are reunited at the Hunt Ball where the Duke renounces his claim to the throne of Spain to announce his engagement to his delightful American commoner. Liz has really arrived.
- Postage-stamp Principality
- Don't Tell Me
- It's Good to Be Here
- Mutual Admiration Society
- For Love or Money
- Bikini Dance
- It's Like a Beautiful Woman
- Wedding-of-the-Year Blues
- Mr. Livingstone
- This Is What I Call Love
- A New-Fangled Tango
- She's Just Another Girl
- The Game of Love
- Happy Hunting
- I'm a Funny Dame
- This Much I Know
- Just Another Guy
- Everyone Who's Who's Who
Violin A-C, B-D, viola, cello, bass, pic (flute, clar, alto sax), clar (alto sax, bass clar), tenor sax (flute, oboe, Eng. horn, clar), tenor sax (clar, flute), bari sax (bassoon, bass clar), trumpet I-II, 111, trombone 1, II, horn, percussion, guitar, piano-conductor.
32 parts, 6 principals, 3 featured roles.
Liz, powerful singer/actress who carries show
Sandy and Beth, romantic leads who sing well and dance (Beth does dance solo).
Duke of Granada, middle-aged, classy actor who sings.
Arturo, character man.
Maud, character woman.
Mrs. Sanford Stewart, Sr., cold straight role.
Featured reporters, sing 2 numbers.
Separate singing and dancing choruses.
Total cast, 40-60, plus 1 trained horse (equine or human).
Scenes and Sets:
2 acts, 17 scenes, 9 full stage sets (original production used turntable), 3 scenic drops (1 transparent), gangplank set piece. (Several sets could be converted to drops or partial sets.)
Scene 1: Outside the Palace Gates, Monaco.
Scene 2: Liz Livingstone's Suite, Hotel Riviera, Monaco.
Scene 3: Terrace of the Hotel Riviera.
Scene 4: Veranda of the Duke's Suite, Hotel Riviera.
Scene 5: The Quay.
Scene 6: The Ship's Bar.
Scene 7: Afterdeck of the Ship.
Scene 8: The Ship's Bar.
Scene 9: Afterdeck of the Ship.
Scene 1: The Garden of Liz Livingstone's Estate, Near Philadelphia.
Scene 2: The Stables, Liz's Estate.
Scene 3: Summerhouse, Liz's Estate.
Scene 4: The Hunt Club.
Scene 5: Another Part of the Forest.
Scene 6: Liz's Boudoir.
Scene 7: A Corridor in the Hunt Club.
Scene 8: The Hunt Ball.
Period and Costumes
Mid 1950s: high society dresses, suits. Everyday beat-up clothes for reporters, photographers, etc., uniforms for Monaco police sergeant, hotel staff, the Duke's servants and confidants, waiter, ship's officers and crew, bartender, stable groom. Duke's high style fashions. Casual deck clothes, negligees, robes and other casual clothes, evening clothes, boots, gaily colored hunt outfits, Goya period costumes for everyone attending Hunt Ball.
Solo beach ball dance, tango, modern ballet, ballroom steps, soft shoe.
Lighting and special effects:
Thunderstorm, rain, rear-projected shadows of the hunt figures on horseback. Recorded offstage playback.
This show is built around the marriage of Grace Kelly to the Prince of Monaco and is in that sense topical for the time of its first production. However, even if fictional names were used it would have little effect on today's production. It was an added point of interest then, but now of little value. The subject has always been Liz Livingstone. The show could be updated or done as a period piece. Beth's beach ball dance solo is extraneous.