My Fair Lady is a musical based on George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion, with lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Lowe. It has often been referred to as ‘the perfect musical’.
The story begins under the arches of Covent Garden Market where Eliza Doolittle runs into a young man called Freddy who she admonishes for spilling her bunches of violets in the mud. Nearby Professor Higgins declares to Colonel Pickering that in six months he could turn Eliza into a lady by teaching her to speak properly.
After Higgins meets with her father, Alfred, Eliza endures endless speech tutoring but makes a good first impression at Ascot with her polite manners until she shocks everyone with her vulgar cockney slang. She does, however, capture the heart of Freddy Eynsford-Hill.
Her final challenge at the Embassy Ball is a success as the Zoltan Karpathy concludes that Eliza is not only Hungarian but of royal blood. Pickering flatters Higgins on his triumph and Higgins expresses his pleasure that the experiment is over, completely ignoring Eliza until he mislays his slippers. She and Freddy return to Covent Garden Market where they meet her father on the way to his wedding. Eliza meanwhile, no longer recognised by her old friends, sadly returns home.
Higgins realises that he has grown attached to Eliza and reviews the recording that he made of her when she first came to his house. The phonograph turns off and he hears, in a cockney accent:’ I washed me face an’ ‘ands before I come, I did.’ The musical ends on an ambiguous moment of possible reconciliation between teacher and pupil, as Higgins slouches and asks, ‘Eliza, where the devil are my slippers?’.
My Fair Lady is filled with instantly recognisable songs such as; ‘With a Little Bit of Luck’, ‘I Could have Danced all Night’, ‘On the Street Where you Live’, and not forgetting the toe-tapping ‘Get me to the Church on Time’,and the unforgettable, ‘Wouldn’t it be Loverly’.
TWODS will be performing ‘My Fair Lady’ from November 21st to 25th at The Assembly Hall Theatre in Royal Tunbridge Wells. There will be a signed performance on Wednesday evening and matinees on both Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm.
Tickets from £18
Plus £1.75 per ticket booking fee