On the Twentieth Century

On the Twentieth Century

by  Cy Coleman, Adolph Green, Betty Comden

Full Length Musical, Comedy  /  12m, 5f

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    12m, 5f
  • Duration

    Duration

    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    Tony, From Broadway
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

    • Competition or audition material
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Pre-Teen (Age 11 - 13)
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

Whether performed with elaborate scenery or on a simple scale, this brilliantly comic musical appeals to audiences everywhere. As in the classic original, the story concerns the efforts of a flamboyant theatrical impresario Oscar Jaffe to persuade glamorous film star (and former amour) Lily Garland to appear in his next production while outwitting rival producers, creditors and religious nut Letittia Primrose. And all this before the 20th Century Ltd. reaches NYC!
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Accolades

  • WINNER - 1978 Tony Award, Best Book of a Musical
    WINNER - 1978 Tony Award, Best Original Score
    WINNER - 1978 Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Music
    NOMINEE - 2015 5 Tony Awards including Best Revival of a Musical
    NOMINEE - 2015 Drama Desk Award, Best Revival of a Musical
    NOMINEE - 2015 9 Outer Critics Circle Awards including Best Revival of a Musical
    NOMINEE - 2015 Drama League Award, Best Revival of a Musical

Reviews

REVIEWS:

"A rare delight: a musical that tells a story and does so with delicious wit. A hilarious American sequel to My Fair Lady." - Hartford Courant, Read More

"From harmonizing and tap-dancing porters to elaborately staged numbers and many bits of physical comedy in between, the show is a nonstop delight." - The New York Post, Read More

Videos

  • On the Twentieth Century 2015 Tony Awards
  • On the Twentieth Century montage
  • On the Twentieth Century
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Keywords

Betrayal, Business, Love

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1930s
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Mainly on the Twentieth Century Limited from Chicago to New York. The early 1930s.
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Music

  • Musical Style: Classic Broadway
  • Vocal Demands: Moderate
  • Orchestra Size: Medium
  • Chorus Size: Small

Song Samples

Overture
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Stranded Again / Saddle Up the Horses
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I Rise Again
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Veronique
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I Have Written A Play
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Together
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Never
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Our Private World
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Repent
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Mine
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I've Got It All
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On the Twentieth Century (Reprise)
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Entr'acte / Life is Like a Train
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Five Zeros
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Sextet
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She's A Nut
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Babbette
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The Legacy
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Lily, Oscar
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On the Twentieth Century (Reprise)
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Casting

12m, 5f

LILY GARLAND / MILDRED - Soprano; actress and star, spoiled, pampered, megalomaniacal: under it all intelligent and self-doubting.
OSCAR JAFFEE - Baritone; brilliant theatre impresario and director of indeterminate age: flamboyant, ruthless, megalomaniacal, indomitable in the face of total disaster.  
MAX JACOBS - Self importanat young producer: successful, intense, confident.
BRUCE GRANIT - Tenor; young leading movie man, Errol Flyn type: stud, vain, silly, egotistical
OWEN O'MALLEY - Baritone; Oscar's press agent: a boozer, sardonic, self-satirical. He and Oliver are Oscar's two loyal henchmen.
LETITIA PRIMROSE - Mezzo-soprano; middle-aged to oldish lady, presenting a picture of easy breeding, wealth and religious fervor: Actually she is a genuine nut on the loose.
OLIVER WEBB - Baritone; Oscar's company manager: plump, ulcerous, worried, fed-up: trying to bring a note of sanity to the surrounding madness.
AGNES - Llily's maid, suffering and bored.
BISHOP
OTTO VON BISMARK
ANITA
PREIST
JOAN
CONDUCTOR FLANAGAN - Typical solid type.
DR. JOHNSON
IMELDA THORNTON- Glamorous, imperious, fur-bedecked stage actress.

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Cast Attributes

  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)
  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)

Casting Notes

17 Principal roles, plus chorus.

Resources

Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package

Piano/Conductor’s Score
Reed I (Flute, Piccolo, Clainet, Soprano Saxophone)
Reed II (Flute, Clarinet)
Reed III (Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet)
Reed IV (Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Contrabass Clarinet)
Trumpets I & II
Horns I & II
Bass
Percussion
20 Chorus Books

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Authors

Cy Coleman

Cy Coleman (June 14, 1929 - November 18, 2004) was born Seymour Kaufman in New York City. Despite early success in the classical and jazz genres, Coleman decided to build a career in popular music. Coleman’s most successful early partnership was with Carolyn Leigh. Coleman's winning streak as a Broadway composer began ...

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Adolph Green

Adolph Green and Betty Comden (respectively, born December 2, 1915, Bronx, New York—died October 23, 2002, Manhattan, New York; born May 3, 1917, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.—died November 23, 2006, Manhattan, New York;) were an American musical-comedy team who wrote scripts—and often the lyrics—for many B ...

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Betty Comden

Betty Comden and Adolph Green (respectively, born May 3, 1917, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.—died November 23, 2006, Manhattan, New York; born December 2, 1915, Bronx, New York—died October 23, 2002, Manhattan, New York) were an American musical-comedy team who wrote scripts—and often the lyrics—for many Br ...

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On the Twentieth Century was first presented on Broadway by The Producers Circle 2, Inc., Robert Fryer, Mary Lea Johnson, James Cresson, and Martin Richards at the St. James Theatre in New York City on February 19, 1978. It was directed by Harold Prince.

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