Lyrics by Lorenz Hart, music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics published on The Complete Lyrics of Lorenz Hart
BUY mp3 on

"An American Jazz Opera" inspired by Gilbert Seldes
Music by Richard Rodgers and libretto by Lorenz Hart.
Introduced by Edward Hogan, Betty Starbuck, Romney Brent, June Cochrane, Willard Tobias, Lee Strasbers Starr Jones, Felix Jacoves, Frances Hyde, and ensemble.
Scene 1

Tag: ?


[Morning. The lovers are asleep on counters, covered by
counter cloths and unseen by the audience. Torn sticks
out his head and yawns and goes back to sleep. Mary
does likewise. The bustle of the workers entering is
heard and their singing begins softly ]
WORKERS: We'll be late, it's such a worry!
Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Hurry!
We've no time to take a local.
Taxi! Taxi! Taxi! Taxi!
[Two clerks come in and remove their coats. They start
to remove the counter cloths. Before they disclose the
lovers Price comes in and looks around. Next he sees
the lovers asleep]
PRICE: What's this! Torn Jones! Here, wake up! Come down!
[Tom starts down and yawns. Mary echoes his yawn,
and Price turns on her]
And Mary Brown! What does this mean? Come down!
[She does so ]


TOM: Oh!

PRICE: Oh-oh-oh-oh! That doesn't mean a thing, you know!
Asleep-and here! Together!
You'll kindly tell me whether
You think this store is a temple of Venus!

TOM: Oh, sir, there's nothing wrong between us.
How could we know that anyone had seen us?

PRICE: It's too outrageous to be true!
A fatal sin! What you did does not matter.
It's all the same.
It is a shame!
[During the last few speeches the commotion has at-
tracted the salespeople of the store, who return They
gather around Mr. Price, Tom and Mary and during
the last few lines of his speech, they sway to the jazz
rhythm of the music that accompanies them ]
I cannot tell just what your vice is,
But such mistakes won't do at Price's.
For Price's name and high position,
Like Caesar's wife, must be above suspicion!
You're fired!
TOM: We fire ourselves!
All the world I'd love to tell
That we are in love.
And you can go straight to Hell
For we are in love!

MARY & TOM: We'll be too busy holding hands today
To spend our time in making Price's pay.
[Stella has entered and now goes to Mary ]

STELLA: Goodbye, Mary. Got a date?

MARY: Why, yes. Why, yes!

STELLA: Well, I'll help you with your wedding dress.

ALL: Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray!
They' re gonna get married today!
[Tom and Mary start to go ]
You get so tired-tired of working
Once in a while.
[ They exit, and Price composes himself]

PRICE: These sinners dim the light of beauty,
And to forget them is our duty.
So fill the cup with joy up to the brim
And start the morning with our loving hymn.

ALL: Onward! Onward! Follow your duty! .
Onward! Onward! Joyfully bold!
In the loyal army of beauty
Smile away and do as you're told!
Follow! Follow duty delightful!
Follow! Follow labor today!
Pack each minute so tight full, right full!
Smile gaily as you pray! .
[This song has been sung in a sarcastic and insurgent
manner. As one of the salesmen on Price 's command
has encouraged them to strike, they all move toward
Price threateningly as they sing it and Price is crowded
into a corner stage right, and is thrown over, as the
curtain falls and the last strains of their song are
[The curtain falls ]

Sheet music:


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