FIFTY MILLION FRENCHMEN A Musical Comedy Tour of Paris in Two Acts, a Prologue and 10 Scenes. Book by Herbert Fields. Music and lyrics by Cole Porter. Lyric Theatre, New York - Opened 27th November, 1929; closed 5th July, 1930 (254 perfs) SYNOPSIS The impetuous Peter Forbes falls in love with Looloo Carroll on first sight. He bets his friend Michael Cummins $25,000 that he can win Looloo without flaunting his money, Taking a job as a guide he pursues his new heartthrob and wins her away from the Grand Duke Ivan Ivanovitch of Russia whom Looloo's social-climbing parents had chosen for her. STORY The year is 1929, the month is June: the season when thousands of Americans invade Paris—and all the Parisians leave town. Among the first arrivals are Mr. and Mrs. Emmit Carroll, a pair of vulgar social climbers from Terre Haute, Indiana. On holiday with their daughter, Looloo, and her school chum, Joyce Wheeler, the Carrolls waste no time storming the Ritz Bar, the place where, according to Mrs. Carroll, everybody meets everybody else. Alas, the Carrolls arrive a full hour before cocktail time, and the bar is empty—except for three thirsty college boys on vacation. One of them, Peter Forbes, has been dragging his buddies, Michael Cummins and Billy Baxter, to every tourist trap in Paris in search of a beautiful girl he spotted on the boat coming over. Peter glances across the bar; and behold!—it's the girl from the boat: Looloo Carroll. Before Peter has a chance to make his move, however, his pal Billy suggests a little wager: He bets Peter fifty thousand francs that he can't live in Paris without his line of credit and, at the same time, win Looloo’s hand in marriage. At the end of one month— that would be July 4th—he must throw a party at the Chateau Madrid and announce his engagement. Peter, confident that his charm matters more to a girl like Looloo than his family fortune, accepts the bet. He then rushes to Looloo, introduces himself, and proposes marriage. Much to her surprise, Looloo agrees to take his offer seriously. Within a few days, Peter has found work as a tour guide but unfortunately, his schedule allows no time to call on Looloo. Michael, meanwhile, has taken a shine to Joyce and insists on following her all over town. Stopping at the American Express Company, he finds his friend Peter much in demand: first, by a discerning American lady named Violet Hildegarde, who's come abroad hoping to be shocked; then by an aspiring cabaret artist, May DeVere, whose mind is definitely not on her work. Nearly a week passes before Peter catches up with Looloo, who, in his absence, has taken up with Billy. Forced by the conditions of the bet to keep his job a secret, he explains to Looloo that he has been busy taking people to places of interest. Looloo suggests some activities that appeal to her: the new revue at the Casino de Paris—or perhaps tea at the Crillon; or a drive through the Bois in an open barouche. But Peter, reaching into his empty pockets, realises that he can only afford to meet Looloo on the corner later, a suggestion that sends her off in a huff. Seething, she allows Billy to flirt with her while Peter returns to work. At a bookstall along the Left Bank, Violet is hunting for a copy of a novel that's been banned in the States: Ulysses. Billy appears and turns on the charm, but his plea for companionship falls on deaf ears. He moves on, and Violet is left to reflect on the loose morals of the modern world.