Open main menu

La La Lucille is a musical with a book by Fred Jackson, primary lyrics by Arthur J. Jackson and Buddy DeSylva, additional lyrics by Lou Paley and Irving Caesar, and music by George Gershwin.

La La Lucille
Sheet music from the production
MusicGeorge Gershwin
LyricsArthur J. Jackson
Buddy DeSylva
Lou Paley
Irving Caesar
BookFred Jackson
Productions1919 Broadway

Plot overviewEdit

The plot involves a wealthy society matron who leaves her considerable fortune to her nephew on condition he divorce his chorus girl wife. In order to collect his legacy, he decides to comply with the terms and then remarry her after he receives the money. Since divorces are granted only for adultery, a Philadelphia hotel employee named Lucille Jaynes-Smith arranges for him to be found with a woman who is not his wife. He registers at the property as John Smith, and comic complications ensue when he discovers there are more than three dozen other John Smiths registered there as well.


The musical opened on Broadway at Henry Miller's Theatre on May 26, 1919, but had to suspend performances when Actors' Equity went on strike on August 19. After the dispute was settled, it reopened at the Criterion Theatre on September 8 and remained there until October 11, 1919 closing after 104 performances. The director was Herbert Gresham, with choreography by Julian Alfred. The cast included Maurice Cass, John Hazzard, Eleanor Daniels, Janet Velie, Lorin Raker, Marjorie Bentley, Helen Clarke, Alfred Hall, J. Clarence Harvey, and Cordelia MacDonald.[1][2]

This was the "first complete book musical score" that Gershwin wrote.[3] Among several later "stock" performances outside of New York was a Massachusetts staging in 1926.[4]

In 2019, the Third Avenue Playhouse in Sturgeon Bay, WI adapted and reproduced the musical.[5] The Playhouse's co-artistic director, James Valcq, spent years researching and reassembling the original songs and book in order to recreate the original musical as faithfully as possible.[6]

Song listEdit

Act I
  • Kindly Pay Us
  • When You Live in a Furnished Flat
  • The Best of Everything
  • From Now On
  • Money, Money, Money
  • Tee-Oodle-Um-Bum-Bo
Act II
  • Hotel Life
  • (Oo, How) I Love to Be Loved by You
  • It's Great To Be in Love
Act 3
  • Kisses (There's More to a Kiss than the Sound)
  • It Seldom Comes True
  • Tee-Oodle-Um-Bum-Bo (Reprise)
  • The Ten Commandments of Love

Nobody But You


  1. ^ Pollack, Howard. "La La Lucille" George Gershwin: His Life and Work, University of California Press, 2006, ISBN 0-520-24864-3, p. 235-236
  2. ^ (no author) "Henry Miller's, 'La La Lucille'" Theatre magazine, July 1919, Volume 30, p.16, Theatre Magazine Co., 1919 (Original from the University of California, Digitized April 23, 2009)
  3. ^ Wyatt, Robert; Johnson, John Andrew. "Chapter: The Growing Limelight, (1919-1924)" The George Gershwin Reader, Oxford University Press US, 2004, ISBN 0-19-513019-7, p. 37
  4. ^ "Brockton Players in 'La, La, Lucille'." Billboard, 22 May 1926, 30.
  5. ^ "Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Review: 'La La Lucille' is merrily one for the ages in theater in Sturgeon Bay". WFRV Local 5. 2019-07-26. Retrieved 2019-09-02.
  6. ^ "Culture Club: Reclaiming a Lost Landmark: 'La La Lucille'". Door County Pulse. 2019-07-19. Retrieved 2019-09-02.

External linksEdit