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Wild, Wild Women! (musical)

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Wild, Wild Women!
MusicNola York
LyricsMichael Richmond
BookMichael Richmond
BasisAristophanes's comedy Lysistrata
Productions1981 Orange Tree Theatre
1981 Theatre Royal Windsor
1982 West End
2018 West London revivial

Wild, Wild Women! is a musical with book and lyrics by Michael Richmond, and music by Nola York.

Based on both the comedy Lysistrata by Aristophanes and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, it made its debut in 1981 at the Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond[1] followed by a further production at the Theatre Royal in Windsor before receiving it’s West End premiere at the Astoria theatre.[2]

The Orange Tree Theatre staged a successful revival of the piece in 2001 and the piece has been produced by amateur groups many times since its initial creation.[3]

The professional and amateur rights for the musical are currently controlled by Faber Music.[4]

Pastiche Musical Theatre will be producing a new production of the show in March 2018 at The Compass Theatre in Ickenham.[5]

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

The action takes places in Aggroville, a wild mining town in the Wild West, during the 1880’s.[6]

Act I[edit | edit source]

The Wild West town of Aggroville is anything but peaceful. Two feuding families – the Clantons and the McLairds – are constantly fighting and killing each other, despite the efforts of Judge West and his bodyguards – the Earp Brothers.

After a shootout in the Peaceable Haven Saloon, Alice is distraught that the fighting has finally reached the threshold of the saloon. A visiting nun, Sister Priscilla arrives to try and bring joy and peace to Aggroville. Judge West persuades Bill Tibbs to become the town’s sheriff in an attempt to restore order to the chaotic township.

Unknown to their two families, Robert McLaird and Jane Clanton are in love and they come to Alice Tibbs of the Peaceable Haven Saloon to ask for her help.

Lawlessness runs rife and the feud between the two families reaches a climax when Sister Priscilla is killed in the street by a stray bullet. Alice decides enough is enough. Promising the dying nun that she will try to bring peace to the town, Alice is incensed to learn that her husband, Bill, has become sheriff. Alice calls a meeting with the women of the town, including Mrs Clanton, Mrs McLaird and Mrs West (the Judge’s wife) and persuades them that the only way to bring an end to all the bloodshed is for the women to go on a “love strike”. The women all agree to stay with Alice at the Peaceable Haven for the duration of the strike – Bill having been banished to the jailhouse.

The close proximity of the Peaceable Haven to the rival saloon, The Red Candle, which is ran by Madame Lola and her “Soiled Doves” ensures that none of the menfolk can stray there without being seen.

On being told of the women’s decision, the men are horrified but assume the matter will quickly be resolved in their favour. The curtain falls on Act One with the men and women facing off against each other and each side vowing not to give in.[6]

Act II[edit | edit source]

Temperatures and tempers start to rise as the strike beings to take effect and the men are reduced to dancing with each other at the weekly Saturday night dance. The Judge has made it a hanging offence for any of the men to visit the Red Candle and despite temptation from Madame Lola and the Soiled Doves, the strike appears to be working.

Back at the Peaceable Haven, the womenfolk are also starting to feel the effect of the strike and Alice has to prevent several dubious attempts to leave to visit their menfolk for various ‘reasons’. The strike is tested to its limit by newlyweds Clint and Myrtle who almost give in to their desires. When confronted by the women, a furious Clint vows to visit the Red Candle to satisfy his needs.

Outside the Red Candle, Clint spots Jamie Earp sneaking out. Jamie tries to give an excuse for his presence at the saloon by helping to move furniture ‘a couple of inches’.

Alice goes to see Madame Lola and persuades her to join the strike by telling her of Jane and Robert’s love, likening them to Romeo and Juliet. Madame Lola is moved by this story decides to join the strike, ordering the Soiled Doves to do so as well.

Now that Lola and the Doves have joined the strike, the men cannot bear it any longer and capitulate.

Robert and Jane decide to elope and whilst in transit, they spot fireworks coming from the town (Alice having told them that this would be a signal it would be safe for them to return). Jane and Robert return as the Judge is drafting a peace treaty which both the Clantons and McLairds agree to. Alice reveals that Jane and Robert wish to marry and both fathers give their consent.

With peace finally achieved, Bill resigns as sheriff and the town settle down to a period of peace and prosperity, having spent ‘quality time’ with their spouses first…[6]

Song list[7][edit | edit source]

Critical reception[edit | edit source]

The various performances of the musical have received mainly positive reviews.

Time Out said the 2001 production of the musical had “"A wonderful selection of toe-tappin tunes from Nola York, some frisky choreography from Bill Deamer"[8]

The Financial Times described the piece as “irresistible”.[9]

Many of the amateur productions have received positive reviews from local media[10] and from NODA.[1]

External links[edit | edit source]

  • [1] at the Faber Music (right holder) website
  • [2] at the Composer’s website
  • [3]” at the Guide To Musical Theatre website


Category:1980s musicals Category:British musicals

Category:List of Musicals M to Z

Category:Musicals set in America Category:Musicals set in the Wild West Category:Musicals set in the 1800s

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Wild,Wild Women - NODA". www.noda.org.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  2. "The Astoria Theatre, 157, Charing Cross Road, London, WC2". www.arthurlloyd.co.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  3. "Wild,Wild Women - NODA". www.noda.org.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  4. "Wild Wild Women". fabermusicals.fabermusic.com. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  5. "Wild Wild Women | Pastiche Musical Theatre". www.pastichemusicaltheatre.com. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Richmond, Michael (1985). Wild, Wild Women Libretto. ISBN 0573080607.
  7. York, Nola (1985). Wild, Wild Women (score).
  8. "Wild Wild Women". www.chantellemusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  9. "Wild Wild Women". www.chantellemusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.
  10. "Wild Wild Women". www.chantellemusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2018-02-19.


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