My Fair Lady

Luzerner Theater

My Fair Lady

Musical in two acts by Frederick Loewe
Lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, based on George Bernard Shaw's Play
In German
Premiere: 31. October 2012

From rags to riches – this is presumably the most common dream among men. By contrast, women’s aspirations are not necessarily financial, but rather social: for example, from maid to princess. Thus it comes as no surprise that Broadway eventually discovered this theme. In 1952 the film producer Gabriel Pascal acquired the rights to use George Bernard Shaw’s stage play “Pygmalion” (1912) as the basis for a musical. Author Alan Jay Lerner agreed to write the adaptation and collaborated with composer Frederick Loewe the following four years to create the most successful work of the genre up to that point: “My Fair Lady.”

Eliza Doolittle, a poor and simple flower girl, accidentally becomes the object of male pretension when a chance meeting between two renowned British linguist experts, Professor Henry Higgins and Colonel Pickering, leads to a wager: despite all vulgarity, the unknown woman could successfully pass as a duchess at the Embassy Ball with just six months of elocution lessons. But achieving the goal is more difficult than imagined – for everyone involved …

Although the author remained consistently faithful to the original leitmotif  – the interdependence between creator and creature – he intensified the plot with numerous, spirited subplots to enable the addition of chorus and dance. Moreover, he provided for brilliant dialogues and ingenious lyrics which the composer then congenially set to animated music, often characterised by dance rhythms or distinctive gestures.