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THE LITTLE CHERUB A musical play in 3 acts by Owen Hall. Music by Ivan Caryll and Frank E. Tours: Lyrics by Adrian Ross Prince of Wales, London - 13th January, 1906. Closed 28 April, 1906 (114 perfs) Revised as The Girl On the Stage (additional songs by Frank E. Tours and Jerome Kern) - Opened 5 May, 1906 - Closed 2 June, 1906 (29 perfs) SYNOPSIS We are seated in a stall at the Prince of Wales' Theatre, or on a chair in the townhouse of the Earl of Sanctobury: it doesn't matter which. And now let us peep into a room and discover a big crowd of ladies and gentlemen all wildly endeavouring to do something. In point of fact they are trying to "act." Of course their efforts are like nothing on the stage, if not the earth, for they are only a lot of utterly incompetent society amateurs. The company is headed by the Earl's four pretty daughters, whose intention it is to reproduce a successful London play called "The Little Cherub" for the benefit of some charity. And so we find them wandering abstractedly through the mazes of a rehearsal under the guidance of their dear friend Algy Southdown, who knows as much about stage management as he did when he was just born. Their muddle is hopeless. Clearly the charity will never reap this particular benefit unless professional help rushes to the rescue. Wherefore the Earl's youngest and cheekiest daughter wires off to Miss Molly Montrose, the star of the real "Cherub" company, which is on tour, praying that she will come and show them all how to do it. And Molly, the actress, replies by visiting the Earl's house and giving the distinguished amateurs the benefit of her advice. Now the Earl has, or is supposed to have, the most rigid theories of propriety - and this brings us to the thickening of the plot. As I have stated, "The Little Cherub" has, professionally, been a highly successful play, so much so that his lordship, in the course of his supervision of public morals, has thought it necessary to write to the papers and comment upon the play's debasing influence. And all the time his daughters rehearse the awful play under his very nose. His shock when he makes this discovery is bad enough, but nothing to his condition when he meets a celebrated actress in his own drawingroom. Words completely fail him. For one long minute the sanctimonious Earl is indignant, and then-well, what Molly doesn't know about men and their ways isn't worth much. In less than another minute she induces the Earl to believe that the alleged impropriety of her performance is a matter calling for further consideration, and extracts a promise from him to run down to Dunbridge Baths, where the play is being performed, that very evening. And so it comes to pass that a slightly disguised Earl departs in the best of spirits to have a real good time, and with the knowledge that no one is likely to find him out. Where ignorance is bliss 'tis folly to be wise. How was he to know that his four pretty daughters also make up their minds to witness that night's performance of "The Little Cherub and follow him by the next train? We, too, have followed them and go right into the saloon of the Dunbridge Baths Hotel, the manager of which has been ordered to provide supper tables for two separate parties. We know these parties; one consists of the Earl and Miss Molly Montrose and some of her companions, and the other is Algy Southdown accompanied by Lady Isabel, Lady Dorothy, Lady Agnes and Lady Rosa, the Earl's dutiful daughters. The hotel is very full in consequence of a ball which is in progress, and as there are no private rooms vacant the manager uses a screen to separate the two tables with exhilarating results. What with the cracking of bon-bons, the popping of champagne corks and the laughter of the actresses, there is quite a "noise" on the Earl's side of the screen. The comparatively sedate ladies on the other side become curious, and Dorothy, the