Let's Face It

Original Broadway Production

Let's Face It [playbill]

A Musical Comedy in Two Acts
Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter
Additional songs by Sylvia Fine and Max Liebman
Book by Herbert and Dorothy Fields, based on the play The Cradle Snatchers (1925) by Russell Medcraft and Norma Mitchell

Tryouts began October 6, 1941 at the Colonial Theatre, Boston

Opened October 29, 1941 at the Imperial Theatre, NYC
Closed March 20, 1943
Ran for 547 performances
Produced by Vinton Freedley
Staged by Edgar MacGregor
Choreography by Charles Walters
Costumes by John Harkrider
Set Design by Harry Horner
Vocal Arrangments by Edna Fox, Carley Mills, Lyn Murray
Orchestrations by Ted Royal, Hans Spialek, Don Walker
Musical Direction by Max Meth

Note: This production closed from July 19 - August 16, 1942.  When it re-opened on August 17, Eve Arden was replaced by Carol Goodner.


Suspicious of their husbands' hunting trips, Maggie Watson, Nancy Collister, and Cornelia Pigeon decide to turn the tables and invite three young Army inductees to Maggie's summer home at Southampton.  The inductees' girlfriends get wind of the scheme and decide to crash the party.  Adding to the complications, the husbands also return home.


Danny Kaye (Jerry Walker)
Eve Arden (Maggie Watson)
Benny Baker (Frankie Burns)
Mary Jane Walsh (Winnie Potter)
Edith Meiser (Cornelia Abigail Pigeon)
Vivian Vance (Nancy Collister)

James Todd (George Collister), Sunnie O'Dea (Muriel McGillicuddy), Nanette Fabray (Jean Blanchard), Jack Williams (Eddie Hilliard), Helen Devlin (Dorothy Carlton), Betty Moran (Gloria Gunther), Joseph Macaulay (Julian Watson), Fred Irving Lewis (Judge Henry Clay Pigeon), Margueite Benton (Madge Hall), with Tommy Gleason's Royal Guards, and Mary Parker and Billy Daniel


    Act One

    Scene 1: The Alicia Allen Milk Farm on Long Island
    Scene 2: Service Club at Camp Roosevelt
    Scene 3: Parade Grounds
    Scene 4: Mrs. Watson's Summer Home, Southhampton, L.I.

    Act Two

    Scene 1: Mrs. Watson's Home
    Scene 2: Boathouse of Hollyhock Inn
    Scene 3: Hollyhock Inn's Gardens
    Scene 4: Exterior of Inn
    Scene 5: Service Club

Ev'rything I Love

Musical Numbers

    Act One

  • Overture - Orchestra
  • "Milk, Milk, Milk" - Ensemble
  • "A Lady Needs a Rest" - Maggie, Nancy, Cornelia
  • "Jerry, My Soldier Boy" - Winnie
  • "Let's Face It" - The Royal Guards
  • "Farming" - Jerry, Frankie, Eddie, Muriel, Jean, Ensemble
  • "Ev'rything I Love" - Jerry, Winnie
  • "Ace in the Hole" - Winnie, Muriel, Jean, Ensemble
  • "You Irritate Me So" - Jean, Eddie
  • "Baby Games" - Jerry, Maggie, Frankie, Cornelia, Nancy, Eddie
  • "Rub Your Lamp" - Winnie [Danced by Mary Parker and Billy Daniel]
  • Act Two

  • Entr'acte - Orchestra
  • "I've Got Some Unfinished Business With You" - Winnie, Jean, Muriel, Dorothy, Gloria, Julian, Judge Pigeon
  • "Let's Not Talk About Love" - Jerry
  • "Let's Talk About Love" - Maggie [may not have been performed in the Broadway production]
  • "A Little Rumba Numba" - The Royal Guards, Madge, Mary and Billy
  • "I Hate You, Darling" - Nancy, George, Jerry, Maggie
  • "Get Yourself a Girl" - The Royal Guards [may have been dropped during the Boston tryout]

Also included these songs by Sylvia Fine and Max Liebman

  • "A Fairy Tale" - Jerry [performed during "Baby Games"]
  • "Melody in Four F" - Jerry [performed after "I Hate You, Darling"]

Note: Late in the run of the show, Jose Ferrer replaced Danny Kaye.  Both of the non-Porter songs were dropped.  "Melody in Four F" was replaced by "It Ain't Etiquette" from Du Barry Was a Lady

Cut Songs

  • "Revenge" [dropped during rehearsals]
  • "What Are Little Husbands Made Of?" [dropped during rehearsals]
  • "Pets" [dropped during rehearsals]
  • "Make a Date With a Great Psychoanalyst" [unused; intended for Maggie]
  • "Up to His Old Tricks" [unused]
  • "You Can't Beat My Bill" [unused]

Original Cast Recordings

"Let's Not Talk About Love" / "Farming" - Danny Kaye

  • 78 RPM, 1941 [Columbia 36582]

"Farming" / "I Hate You, Darling" - Mary Jane Walsh, Max Merth conducting

  • 78 RPM, 1941 [Liberty Music Shop L-343]

"Ev'rything I Love" / "Ace in the Hole" - Mary Jane Walsh, Max Merth conducting

  • 78 RPM, 1941 [Liberty Music Shop L-344]

Let's Face It - Original Cast Recording (Archival Reconstruction)

Production Coordination by Bill Bennett
Liner Notes by Richard C. Norton

  • LP, 1979 [Smithsonian / Columbia Special Products RO-16]
  • Selections

    • "Farming" - Danny Kaye
    • "Ev'rything I Love" - Mary Jane Walsh
    • "Ace in the Hole" - Mary Jane Walsh
    • "You Irritate Me So" - Hildegarde
    • "Let's Not Talk About Love" - Danny Kaye
    • "A Little Rumba Numba" - Hildegarde
    • "I Hate You, Darling" - Mary Jane Walsh
    • "Melody in 4F" [written by Sylvia Fine and Max Liebman]

    [Also includes selections from the following shows]

    Red, Hot, and Blue

    • "Down in the Depths (on the 90th Floor)" - Ethel Merman
    • "It's De-lovely" - Ethel Merman
    • "Ridin' High" - Ethel Merman
    • "Red, Hot and Blue!" - Ethel Merman
    • "Goodbye, Little Dream, Goodbye" - Yvonne Printemps [cut song]

    Leave It to Me

    • "Most Gentlemen Don't Like Love" - Mary Martin
    • "My Heart Belongs to Daddy" - Mary Martin
    • "Get Out of Town"- Eddy Duchin and His Orchestra
    • "From Now On"- Eddy Duchin and His Orchestra

    Contemporaneous Recordings

    "Ev'rything I Love" / "Ace in the Hole" - Hildegarde

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Decca 23242]

    "Ev'rything I Love" - Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Decca 4123]

    "Ev'rything I Love" - Benny Goodman

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Okeh 6516]

    "Ev'rything I Love" - Swing and Sway with Sammy Kaye

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Victor 27711]

    "Ev'rything I Love" / "I Hate You, Darling" / "Farming" - William Scotti and His Cotillion Room Orchestra

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Liberty Music Shop L-345]

    "Ev'rything I Love" / "I Hate You, Darling" - Claude Thornill and His Orchestra

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Columbia 36456]

    "I Hate You, Darling" / "Farming" - Hildegarde

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Decca 23244]

    "You Irritate Me So" / "A Little Rumba Numba" - Hildegarde

    • 78 RPM, 1941 [Decca 23243]

    Selections from "Let's Face It" - Hildegarde
    [Includes "Ev'rything I Love", "Ace in the Hole", "You Irritate Me So", "A Little Rumba Numba", "Farming", and "I Hate You, Darling"]

    • 78 RPM [three 10" discs], 1941 [Decca #23242-4 (69809-16) Album No. 291]

    Go to the London Production of Let's Face It
    Go to the 1954 Television Production of Let's Face It

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