Shows "I"

IRENE A musical Comedy in 2 acts, 7 scenes. Book by Hugh Wheeler and Joseph Stein from an adaptation by Harry Rigby based on the play Irene O'Dare by James Montgomery Music by Harry Tierney; Book by James Montgomery; Lyrics by Joseph McCarthy; Additional lyrics and music by Charles Gaynor and Otis Clements Vanderbilt Theatre 18 November, 1919 (675 perfs) Empire Theatre, London, - 7 April, 1920. Revived 1945 and 1973 SYNOPSIS Charm is the word for IRENE ... a special kind of charm, made up of equal parts of comedy, vivacity, romance and nostalgia. And as a special attraction, IRENE contains some of the best loved, most singable numbers in the history of the musical theatre. Originally produced in 1919, this new version carries its age with grace and style, for its story is of a delightful Irish lass who believed in women's lib before the term was invented. Irene O'Dare helps her widowed mother in a little music shop in New York City. She's not unhappy, but she feels there must be more to life than this - the world, she says, must be bigger than Ninth Avenue. Against all tradition, she intends to be a successful business woman. In fact, she installs a telephone in the shop - the first in the neighbourhood. And the very first time the phone rings, Irene is asked to tune the pianos at a very swanky Long Island house. There she meets Donald Marshall, a young tycoon, and despite his rather aloof manner, she is immediately captivated by him. Donald is intrigued by this cheerful lass, so unlike the society girls his mother has been urging him to marry. He is particularly taken by her description of her adventures when she wore her favourite dress - her 'Alice Blue Gown'. Donald's addle-pated cousin Ozzie arrives with a new idea. He wants to open a dress salon, to be run by a wild eccentric who calls himself Madame Lucy. Donald agrees to finance the project, with the proviso that his new discovery, Irene O'Dare.. shall take charge of the business. She is a great success a t this, and some of her Ninth Avenue friends are taken on at the salon as models, under the tuition of Madame Lucy. It is arranged that Madame Lucy's fashions are to be introduced at a society ball, where, to impress the gathering, Irene is announced as the Contessa Irena O'Dari. She captivates everyone with her Continental chic. But when Donald insists that she continue to play the role for business purposes, Irene is outraged. She will not live a lie, for Donald or anyone else. She reflects that 'I'm Always Chasing Rainbows'. Her Ninth Avenue friends cheer her up with the rousing and spectacular number 'Irene'. At a party at the Marshall house, Donald confesses his love for Irene with 'You Made Me Love You'. Mrs. O'Dare suddenly meets the man who was her own long-lost love - none other than Madame Lucy. And Donald introduces the lovely Contessa O'Dari as the girl he will marry - Irene O'Dare. CHARACTERS: - and original London cast. Mrs. Marshall - MAIDIE HOPE Eleanor Worth - DAISY HANCOX Donald Marshall - PAT SOMERSET Clarkson. - CHAS. ALEXANDER Robert Harrison - ROBERT BLYTHE Irene O' Dare - EDITH DAY Lawrence Healey - HUBERT NEVILLE Mrs.O Dare - HELEN KINNAIRD Helen Cheston - MARGARET CAMPBELL Jane Gilmour - WINNIE COLLINS J.P. Beaudon. - ROBERT MICHAELIS Madame Lucy - ROBERT HALE Mrs. Cheston - BERTHA BELMORE