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Musique: Noel Gay • Paroles: Arthur Rose • Douglas Furber • Livret: Arthur Rose • Douglas Furber • Production originale: 13 versions mentionnées
Résumé: Who turns out to be the long-lost heir to the Baronetcy of Hareford, its 17th Baron and 8th Viscount? Lambeth's own Cockney sparrow, Bill Snibson, that's who. He has his own girlfriend, Sally, but that won't stop gold-digger Lady Jacqueline. She ditches her dumbfounded boyfriend, Gerald, when Mr Parchester, the family solicitor, presents Bill to the flabbergasted family as the new son and heir. But Bill has still to win the family's approval to inherit the title - and the money. If he doesn't, he'll be given an annuity and sent away. The formidable Duchess is determined Bill should stay, insisting that all will be well and, with a little grooming, Bill will be suitable to inherit. There will be an official reception to introduce him to the county set. But Sally is not to be invited. Bill faces up to the Duchess - no Sally, no Bill. But Sally doesn't want to come anyway - not to a posh party. The party goes ahead and Sally turns up in full Cockney get-up complete with a posse of pearly kings and queens who perform the 'Lambeth Walk' to prove Bill doesn't belong. But they are all invited to the reception and go into dinner. Next day there's croquet on the lawn. In an effort to make him stay and take up his inheritance, the Duchess has persuaded Sally to tell Bill she no longer loves him. Sally does this, and slips out to an unknown destination. Bill, helped by Sir John and Parchester, is determined to find Sally (whom he still loves). He is urged on by a Ruddigore-like gallery of ghostly portraits of his ancestors. Back at her landlady's Sally decides to move on. She's got a telegram from Bill and must escape. However, Sir John arrives and has a cunning plan for her. When Bill arrives, her landlady says she's not there, but Bill waits. He expends all his energy on locating Sally and bringing her back. Sir John makes the Duchess soften her attitude towards Bill's beloved. Bill finally rejects Lady Jacqueline and she returns to Gerald. Bill is making to leave when Sir John enters with a new Eliza Doolittle - it's a posh Sally! The Duchess is delighted and Bill has his girl!
Création: 16/12/1937 - Victoria Palace Theatre (Londres) - représ.