Something for the Boys

Original Broadway Production


Something for the Boys [souvenir program]

A Musical Comedy in Two Acts
Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter
Book by Herbert and Dorothy Fields
Working Title: Jenny, Get Your Gun

Tryouts began December 18, 1942 at the Shubert Theatre, Boston

Opened January 7, 1943 at the Alvin Theatre, NYC
Closed January 8, 1944
Ran for 422 performances
Produced by Michael Todd
Staged and lighted by Hassard Short
Book directed by Herbert Fields
Choreographed by Jack Cole, Lew Kessler
Costumes by Billy Livingston
Set Design by Howard Bay
Orchestrations by Robert Russell Bennett, Ted Royal, Hans Spialek, Don Walker
Musical Direction and Vocal Arrangements by William Parson




Synopsis

A defense worker (Blossom), a carnival pitchman (Harry), and a burlesque queen (Chiquita) inherit equal shares of a Texas ranch near Kelly Field.  They successfully transform it into a boarding house for soldiers' wives, but Lt. Col. Grubbs, convinced that they're running a different sort of house, tries to put them out of business.  Eventually, Blossom, aided by a carborundum-coated tooth filling that allows her to hear radio signals, manages to clear the family name.  Other characters include bandleader Sgt. Rocky Fulton (Blossom's love-interest), Rocky's snobbish fiance Melanie, squatter Tobias Twitch, and two of Rocky's admirers: Mary-Frances and Betty-Jean.


Cast

Ethel Merman (Blossom Hart)
Paula Laurence (Chiquita Hart)
Bill Johnson (Rocky Fulton)
Betty Garrett (Mary-Frances)
Betty Bruce (Betty-Jean)
Allen Jenkins (Harry Hart)

Jed Prouty (Roger Calhoun), William Lynn (Tobias Twitch), Stuart Langley (Sgt. Laddie Green), Jack Hartley (Lt. Col. Grubbs), Remi Martel (Sgt. Carter), Frances Mercer (Melanie Walker), Walter Rinner (Burke), Anita Alverez (Micheala), The Barnes Twins (Lois, Lucille), Bill Callahan (Corp. Burns), and Madeleine Clive (Mrs. Grubbs)


Scenes

    Prologue

    Set 1: Chiquita's Dressing Room in the Picadilly Club, Kansas City
    Set 2: 6th Ave. at 50th St., New York City
    Set 3: An Assembly Line in a Defense Plant, Newark

    Act One

    Scene 1: Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, Texas
    Scene 2: Near the P.X. at Kelly Field
    Scene 3: Patio of the Old Hart Estate, near San Antonio
    Scene 4: A Crossroads
    Scene 5: Patio of the New Hart Estate

    Act Two

    Scene 1: The Patio
    Scene 2: The Terrace of Col. Grubbs' Home on the Post
    Scene 3: The Crossroads
    Scene 4: The Cadet Club at the Texas Hotel, San Antonio
    Scene 5: Corridor of the Texas Hotel
    Scene 6: An Army Plane
    Scene 7: The Cadet Club at the Texas Hotel, San Antonio

Could It Be You [sheet music]

Musical Numbers

    Act One

  • Overture - Orchestra
  • "Announcement of Inheritance" - Calhoun, Chiquita, Harry, Blossom [alternate title: "Prologue"]
  • "See That You're Born in Texas" - Ensemble
  • "When My Baby Goes to Town" - Rocky, Ensemble
  • "Something for the Boys" - Blossom, Ensemble
  • "When We're Home on the Range" - Blossom, Chiquita, Harry
  • "Could It Be You?" - Rocky, Ensemble
  • "Hey, Good-Lookin'" - Blossom, Rocky
  • "He's a Right Guy" - Blossom
  • "Carborundum" [instrumental; lyrics not used; alternate titles: "Assembly Line" and "Opening Act I, Scene 5"]
  • "The Leader of a Big-Time Band" - Blossom
  • Act Two

  • Entr'acte - Orchestra and Male Chorus
  • "I'm in Love With a Soldier Boy" - Mary-Francis
  • "There's a Happy Land in the Sky" - Blossom, Chiquita, Harry, Twitch, Rocky
  • "By the Mississinewah" - Blossom, Chiquita
  • Square Dance [instrumental; also includes a vocal reprise of "See That You're Born in Texas"]
  • Specialty Dance [instrumental; includes themes from "See That You're Born in Texas" and "When My Baby Goes to Town"; performed by Betty-Jean]

Cut Songs

  • "Riddle-Diddle Me This" [dropped during the Boston tryout; sung by Blossom and Harry in Act Two]
  • "So Long, San Antonio" [dropped during the Boston tryout; replaced by "I'm in Love With a Soldier Boy"; music used later in "So Long" for the unproduced film Mississippi Belle]
  • "Washington, D. C." [dropped during rehearsals; sung by Rocky and Melanie]
  • "Oh, How I Could Go For You" [unused]
  • "Texas Will Make You a Man" [unused]
  • "Well, I Just Wouldn't Know" [unused]
  • "Wouldn't It Be Crazy?" [unused]

The London production of Something for the Boys opened on March 30, 1944 at the Coliseum, and closed on May 20, 1944.  It was produced by Bernard Delfont and starred Evelyn Dall (as Blossom), Daphne Barker (as Chiquita), Bobby Wright (as Harry), Leigh Stafford (as Rocky) and Jack Billings (as Laddie).


Original Cast Recordings

"Something for the Boys" / "By the Mississinewah" - Paula Lawrence [B-side by Betty Garrett and Paula Lawrence]

  • 78 RPM, 1943 [Decca 23363]

Something for the Boys

Orchestra Directed by William Parson, with David Broekman
Originally Produced for Records by David R. Gooch
Cast: Ethel Merman
(Blossom), Bill Johnson (Rocky), Betty Bruce (Chiquita), Allen Jenkins (Harry), except as noted.

Note: This release is a combination of two sets of recordings - a Treasury broadcast and a special shortwave-radio broadcast to Armed Forces in Europe.   [Courtesy of David Cunard, AEI Records]

  • LP, 1985 [AEI 1157]
  • Compact Disc, 1992 [AEI CD 004] (47:13)
  • Selections

    • Overture - Orchestra
    • "See That You're Born in Texas" - Ensemble
    • "When My Baby Goes to Town" - Rocky
    • "Something for the Boys" - Blossom and Boys
    • "Could It Be You?" - Rocky and Boys
    • "Hey, Good-Lookin'" - Blossom, Harry, Rocky
    • "He's a Right Guy" - Blossom
    • "I'm in Love With a Soldier Boy" - Mary-Frances (Ethel Merman)
    • "There's a Happy Land in the Sky" - Blossom, Harry, Rocky
    • "He's a Right Guy" (Reprise) - Blossom
    • "Could It Be You?" (Waltz Reprise) - Rocky and Ensemble
    • "By the Mississinewah" - Blossom and Chiquita
    • Finale ("I'm in Love With a Soldier Boy") - Blossom and Ensemble
    • Finale Ultimo - The Company

    Note: Some of these radio broadcast recordings appeared on the following release


    Something for the Boys

    Orchestra and Chorus conducted by David Broekman

  • LP, 1980 [Sound Stage 2305] (also includes four selections from Seven Lively Arts)
  • Selections

    • Overture - Orchestra
    • "Something for the Boys" (Opening) - Chorus
    • "See That You're Born in Texas" - Chorus
    • "Something for the Boys" - Chiquita (Paula Lawrence) and Chorus
    • "Could It Be You?" - Rocky (Bill Johnson) and Chorus
    • "Hey, Good-Lookin'" - Blossom (Ethel Merman) and Rocky (Bill Johnson)
    • "He's a Right Guy" - Blossom (Ethel Merman)
    • "The Leader of a Big-Time Band" - Chorus
    • "By the Mississinewah" - Blossom (Betty Garrett) and Chiquita (Paula Lawrence)
    • "Something for the Boys" (Reprise) - Blossom (Ethel Merman) and Chorus

    Go to the 42nd St. Moon Recording of Something for the Boys


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