Pride and Prejudice – the Musical (For Producers)

Welcome to Pride and Prejudice, the Musical

Home life for the five Bennet daughters is punctuated by visits from military officers, card parties, and the occasional ball – pastimes guaranteed to throw them into the path of potential husbands, much to the delight of the garrulous Mrs Bennet and the horror of her quietly despairing husband. A local assembly sees the arrival in the neighbourhood of the wealthy and single Mr Bingley and of his aloof, handsome friend, Fitzwilliam Darcy… 

 

Can Elizabeth overcome her initial disgust at Darcy’s supercilious manner? Will he be able to overlook the outrageous behaviour frequently exhibited by her mother and younger sisters? Does true love finally conquer all?

 
Inspired by the much-loved Jane Austen novel, Pride & Prejudice the Musical has a script by Josie Brown, with music and lyrics by Rita Abrams.
 

Says composer Rita Abrams:

   IUnnamedt is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen's timelessly precious gift-that-keeps-on-giving  will continue to delight and inspire the world for as long as there is a world. The story will soar on, beyond every form of media we humans can devise–which is why author Josie Brown and I were moved to make a musical of it, a humbling experience which demanded of us the best, and then some.  While others have tweaked, twisted and revised the tale to make it theirs, we aspired to keep it authentic, as if Jane herself decided to add songs.  And the sweet audiences at our Ruislip Operatic Society, UK world premiere in November seemed to approve.  Happy Anniversary, Jane, and thank you from the bottom of our millions and millions of hearts.
Says Librettist Josie Brown:

P2 Brochure CoverOf all my writing accomplishments, no one project has touched my heart as deeply as this musical, created with Rita Abrams, and based on the words of one of the world's greatest authors, Jane Austen.
 
The wonderful reviews for its productions are the icing on this lightest of confections. 
 
The opportunity to bring this particular story to life is an honor. Please feel free to click onto these song samples — and the full songs, too! — below!
 
For videos of a full production, producers are welcomed to email us at PridePrejudiceMusical@gmail.com 
The World Premiere was produced
27 November 2012 – 1 December 2012,
by the Ruislip Operatic Society, London, England.
 

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View More photos here…

PRESS

San Francisco Chronicle / Uxbridge Review / Rita Abrams profile, Uxbridge Gazette

______________________________________________

SAN FRANCISCO 2016 PRODUCTION – IAM THEATRE 

Click the Video Boxes below for Musical Excerpts

PRESS

“PRIDE AND PREJUDICE — THE MUSICAL 
is funny and inviting right from the title. It is a pleasure and much more from beginning to end. 

So many things to admire, from the wit, bite and insouciance of Rita Abrams' lyrics to her command of the musical forms that make the piece take wing and soar. The gorgeous Changing World ensemble (and then the differently shaded reprise) were especially fine.

 The song, Being Married, is a dry martini of double meaning. The production’s wonderfully, darkly charismatic Darcy (David Crane) won the night with his showstopper delivery of his moving torch-song ballad.  The transporting final chorus brought the garden-growing end of Bernstein’s Candide to mind.  And plenty of other delights along the way.” Steven Winn, former theatre critic, The San Francisco Chronicle  

SONG 1: “Welcome to the Neighborhood”  

 The full cast, singing “Welcome to the Neighborhood”

“Abrams and Brown are to be commended for their faithfulness to Jane Austen’s text keeping the plot line intact with lyrics that complement the story and instill much-needed humor to palliate the oppressive mores of its time. It is an auspicious and ambitious beginning with the 17-member cast in full 18th Century costumes that is carried through the entire evening, sharing the text and dancing with songs that range from music hall ditties to romantic ballads and even a show stopping tango. Abrams’ lyrics are often a joy to hear, proving she has not lost her touch that was highlighted years ago in the revues FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS and NEW WRINKLES. The construction of the play, the marvelous plethora of songs, and the descriptive social mores found in Jane Austen’s novels create a potentially successful professional stage life. To steal a quote, ‘This musical has legs'.” —For All Events

 

SONG 2: “It Is a Truth”  

Mr. Darcy (David Crane), Mr. Bingley (Kodo Elder-Groebe),
and Caroline Bingley (Kim Schroeder Long) singing 
“It Is a Truth”

(The musical) skillfully articulate the novel’s early 19th-century mores and morals, and lively, dense verbiage, which the writers lovingly retain. It’s truly an ensemble piece, from the funny opening “Welcome to Our Neighborhood” (which introduces the five unmarried Bennet sisters with the amusing invitation, “It would be our greatest gift if we / could facilitate your felicity — especially if you’re as wealthy as you look, sir”) to the sentimental closing “I Wish You Joy!” (One fan in the audience even teared up at the inevitable unions between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy and Jane and Mr. Bingley.) The show’s biggest drama comes in a power ballad by David Crane as Darcy (after he’s rejected by Elizabeth), and Brittany Law as Elizabeth, as she comes to terms with her complicated feelings toward Darcy.

—San Francisco Examiner

SONG 3: “Five Daughters”  


 Mrs. Bennet (Kathy Deichen) and Mr. Bennet (Geoffrey Colton)

Though the Bennet parents love their girls, Mr. Bennet has a decidedly more cynical view of them—and their prospects.


Song 4: “Minuet Téte-a-Téte”

 

Song 5: “Wickham's Lament”

Mr. Wickham (Fernando Siu) and Elizabeth (Brittany Law) singing “Wickham's Lament” 

Song 5: Wickham's Lament


Song 6: “A Husband”
“…The songs are often funny and occasionally surprisingly bawdy…Brown’s adaptation conveys the gist (of the novel) fairly and effectively, and gives some sense of Austen’s sly humor, accentuated by the more whimsical drollery of the musical numbers. In true romantic comedy fashion, these elements initially seem like an odd match but gradually come together into what feels almost like a natural pair.” —Marin Independent Journal 

Mrs. Bennet (Kathy Deichen), singing, “A Husband”

“If you are an admirer of Jane Austen’s fiction, and have a soft spot for the more traditional style of American musicals than most of what has been generated on and off-Broadway in the past few decades, then you ought to hop in your car, page an Uber or engage whatever mode of transport you prefer, and head over to Fort Mason Center on the San Francisco waterfront. There, ensconced in what used to be the Magic Theatre’s venue, the Southside Theater, you’ll find Independent Actors of Marin’s (IAM) delightful production of Pride and Prejudice—The Musical.

Be forewarned, however: You better hurry, because this staged version of Austen’s most beloved novel, which debuted in London in 2012, is scheduled to end its American premiere run on Sunday, October 9th. Given the uncertainties that face such projects, who knows when, or where, it will turn up next.

The show is about as close to a perfect package of script, music directing, performers and overall production quality as one could realistically expect from a low-budget, non-professional company. Beyond that, the energy and talent of its mostly youthful cast give it a freshness that is often lacking in more lavish treatments.” — Charles Brousse, The Pacific Sun 

  Song 7: “Changing World” 


Bingley (Kodo Elder-Groebe), Jane (Lizzie Moss),
Elizabeth (Brittany Law), and Darcy (David Crane)

To her mother’s delight, Jane is confined to Netherfield by illness.  Elizabeth visits her there, where the voices of Bingley, Jane, Elizabeth, and Darcy entwine in separate soliloquies of their various heartfelt feelings.

Bingley and Jane are falling in love, Elizabeth is hopeful for Jane, and Darcy is fighting his growing attraction to the feisty Elizabeth who has steeled herself against his haughty ways.

 Song 8: “In My Imagination”  

Sung by Charlotte (Juliet Heller )



At the Bingleys’ masked ball, Lizzy’s pragmatic friend, Charlotte, confides that while Lizzy might have marital choices, Charlotte herself is in no position to be picky—and that romantic love is not the only path to contentment.

 Song 9: “Changing World Reprise”  

 Sung by the Bennet Family

The sudden departure of the Bingley party for London devastates Jane and her family.  Elizabeth suspects the manipulation of Bingley’s spiteful sister Caroline.  But she is unaware of the impact of the rude behavior of her younger sisters and her mother, plus her own attentions to the secret scoundrel Wickham, upon Darcy—who has decided to rescue his friend–and himself–from the clutches of the conniving Bennet women by taking his party off to London.

 
Song 10: “Being Married 


Charlotte (Juliet Heller) and Mr. Collins (Chris Maltby)


Having spurned Collins’ proposal, Elizabeth acquiesces to visit him and his rebound bride, Charlotte, in their new home—where they sing the praises of the ties that bind.  However, Charlotte’s performance of the song hints at her being less than ecstatic about the choice she has made.

 

Song 11: “That Would Be Me   

(Sung by Lady Catherine DeBourgh)

The bossy Lady Catherine is even more pompous than her sycophant, Mr. Collins, whom she has invited to dinner along with his wife and Elizabeth. Noting the attentions of her nephew Darcy to Elizabeth, she holds forth even more obnoxiously.

 

Song 12: “The One I Could Have Been with You  

(Sung by Darcy)



Elizabeth's unexpected appearance at his Aunt Catherine's estate sends Darcy into turmoil, as he wrestles with his conflict between passion and prejudice.  Succumbing to love, his unexpected, and all-too-honest proposal enrages Elizabeth, who rails against his arrogance, and his newly discovered part in separating Bingley from her sister Jane. Taking his leave, Darcy broken-heartedly laments the loss of a future with Elizabeth.

 

Song 13: “How Dare He 

Elizabeth (Britanny Law), singing, “How Dare He”

“Emmy award winning songwriter Rita Abrams has managed to bring her considerable powers to Austen's Pride and Prejudice in a way that brings that classic work alive, and keeps us thoroughly engaged as we listen to the catchy and compelling lyrics embodied in her delightful and wonderfully enchanting melodies. The songs are a triumph of inventiveness and skill, and display the abundant talent of this rich and original, gifted songwriter.” 
—Michael Krasny, Host of NPR's Forum (KQED, San Francisco) and Author of Off Mike: A Memoir of Talk Radio and Literary Life

Song 14: “A Husband (Reprise)”

 Song 15:  Husband (Reprise)
(Duet by Elizabeth and Jane)

Click song title above

Elizabeth is summoned home, only to find the Bennet household in an uproar. Not only has Lydia run away with Wickham, but her letter indicates no plans to marry—which will throw the Bennet family into total disgrace!

Elizabeth assumes the reason for Darcy’s sudden appearance at Longbourn is to gloat in person over her family’s misfortune. On the contrary: upon hearing the bad news, he feels compelled to tell Elizabeth how Wickham had once tried to run away with Darcy’s wealthy little sister. Only a payoff from Darcy dissuaded him. This story only deepens Elizabeth’s despair, since unlike Darcy, the Bennets are too poor to “purchase” Lydia’s betrothal to the odious Wickham, even if they wanted to. Their only hope is to find the girl before word of her actions ruins her reputation—and the futures of all the Bennet sisters.

After Mr. Darcy leaves, Lizzy confides in Jane about his proposal. The two fantasize about a world in which marriage isn't a woman's financial salvation…

Song 15: “Mr. Collins's Tango”


(Sung by Mr. Collins)

 Not one to miss an opportunity to gloat, Mr. Collins shows up to blame the Bennets’ faulty childrearing for daughter Lydia's scandalous disappearance with Mr. Wickham.  From there he tangos around to the universal truth—that “hanky-panky” is NEVER the man’s fault.

 SONG 16: “The One Who I Will Be with You”

 

Elizabeth (Britanny Law) and Mr. Darcy (David Crane)

Song 16: The One Who I Will Be With You
Reprise, sung by Darcy (David Crane) and Elizabeth (Brittany Law)

Darcy takes Lizzy to the window to show her that Charles is proposing to Jane.
As Darcy and Lizzy sing of their love in the finale, Charles and Jane join them…

“Rita Abrams' PRIDE AND PREJUDICE songs are catchy, entertaining and, in the case of the ballads, touching. She has captured the period flavor in both music and lyrics, and given the score just the right gloss. The tunes shimmer with an inviting appeal, and it's clear that the Abrams-Brown production has the right “sensibility” for Austen and her characters. It's a great beginning to what should evolve into a winning show.”
—Gerald Nachman, Theatre Critic and Author of Seriously Funny: The Rebel Comedians of the 1950s and 1960s SONG 19: “I Wish You Joy”


Sung by the Cast

…As does the rest of the cast as the song crescendoes into a joyous double wedding scene. Through repenting for his prejudices, maneuvering the redemptive marriage of Lydia and Wickham, and reuniting Bingley and Jane, Darcy proves himself to be worthy of Elizabeth—herself repenting for her own misguided pride—after all.  A double-wedding unites the two couples, as the Bennet family and the whole town joins in on this paean of love, friendship, and community.

_____________________________


A NOTE TO PRODUCERS

Pride And Prejudice, the Musical has a cast size of 15 speaking/singing: 10 women/5 men. This version can be augmented for larger groups.

Includes Musical Orchestration for 8 instruments, and there are Vocal Charts.

“Pocket” Pride and Prejudice, the Musical has a cast size of only 7 (4 female/3 males, playing multiple roles)

This engaging new musical of Jane Austen’s classic novel, adapted for the stage by two-time Emmy Award-winning composer/lyricist Rita Abrams, and celebrated author Josie Brown, contains 19 highly entertaining songs, 16 of which are featured here, below, in full.

If you are interested in producing this musical, please contact Josie at Mail@JosieBrown.com, or Rita at  MVMusic@aol.com

Enjoy,

Josie Brown and Rita Abrams

Josie and Rita

BANNER PHOTO (by Graham Law):
Lizzie Moss as Jane Bennet; Brittany Anne Law as Elizabeth Bennet
IAM Theatre Productions

SIDEBAR PHOTO (by Dudley Mendenhall)
Brittany Anne Law as Elizabeth Bennet; David Crane as Fitzwilliam Darcy
IAM Theatre Productions

__________________________

 PRAISE FOR ABRAMS & BROWN'S PRIDE AND PREJUDICE —THE MUSICAL

“The show is about as close to a perfect package of script, music directing, performers and overall production quality as one could realistically expect. They've managed to pull off the difficult task of fashioning a musical treatment of a famous literary milestone that, although modern in form, carefully preserves the vision of the original source. What I can say is that from top to bottom it is an outstanding ensemble. I would be remiss, however, if I didn’t also mention that the show’s period costumes (no designer credited) are absolutely gorgeous. To repeat: It’s the whole package. Future potential producers: take notice.” —Charles Brousse, Pacific Sun

“PRIDE AND PREJUDICE — THE MUSICAL is funny and inviting right from the title. It is a pleasure and much more from beginning to end. So many things to admire, from the wit, bite and insouciance of Rita Abrams' lyrics to her command of the musical forms that make the piece take wing and soar. The gorgeousChanging World ensemble (and then the differently shaded reprise) were especially fine. The song, Being Married, is a dry martini of double meaning. The production’s wonderfully, darkly charismatic Darcy (David Crane) won the night with his showstopper delivery of his moving torch-song ballad.  The transporting final chorus brought the garden-growing end of Bernstein’s Candide to mind.  And plenty of other delights along the way.” Steven Winn, former theatre critic, The San Francisco Chronicle 

 
“Abrams and Brown are to be commended for their faithfulness to Jane Austen’s text keeping the plot line intact with lyrics that complement the story and instill much needed humor to palliate the oppressive mores of its time. It is an auspicious and ambitious beginning with the 17 member cast in full 18
th Century costumes that is carried through the entire evening, sharing the text and dancing with songs that range from music hall ditties to romantic ballads and even a show stopping tango. Abrams’ lyrics are often a joy to hear, proving she has not lost her touch that was highlighted years ago in the revues FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS and NEW WRINKLES. The construction of the play, the marvelous plethora of songs, and the descriptive social mores found in Jane Austen’s novels create a potentially successful professional stage life. To steal a quote, ‘This musical has legs'.” —For All Events 

“(The musical) skillfully articulates the novel’s early 19th-century mores and morals, and lively, dense verbiage, which the writers lovingly retain. It’s truly an ensemble piece, from the funny opening “Welcome to Our Neighborhood” (which introduces the five unmarried Bennet sisters with the amusing invitation, “It would be our greatest gift if we / could facilitate your felicity — especially if you’re as wealthy as you look, sir”) to the sentimental closing “I Wish You Joy!” (One fan in the audience even teared up at the inevitable unions between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy and Jane and Mr. Bingley.) The show’s biggest drama comes in a power ballad by David Crane as Darcy (after he’s rejected by Elizabeth), and Brittany Law as Elizabeth, as she comes to terms with her complicated feelings toward Darcy. —San Francisco Examiner

“…The songs are often funny and occasionally surprisingly bawdy…Brown’s adaptation conveys the gist (of the novel) fairly and effectively, and gives some sense of Austen’s sly humor, accentuated by the more whimsical drollery of the musical numbers. In true romantic comedy fashion, these elements initially seem like an odd match but gradually come together into what feels almost like a natural pair.” —Marin Independent Journal

“Rita Abrams' songs are compelling, delightful, and in the case of the ballads, moving. The book by Josie Brown captures the period of Jane Austen's world in words. It is a witty, tuneful, and sophisticated show.” — Talkin' Broadway

EVEN MORE PRAISE

“Rita Abrams' PRIDE AND PREJUDICE songs are catchy, entertaining and, in the case of the ballads, touching. She has captured the period flavor in both music and lyrics, and given the score just the right gloss. The tunes shimmer with an inviting appeal, and it's clear that the Abrams-Brown production has the right “sensibility” for Austen and her characters. It's a great beginning to what should evolve into a winning show.”
—Gerald Nachman, Theatre Critic and Author of Seriously Funny: The Rebel Comedians of the 1950s and 1960s

“Emmy award winning songwriter Rita Abrams has managed to bring her considerable powers to Austen's Pride and Prejudice in a way that brings that classic work alive, and keeps us thoroughly engaged as we listen to the catchy and compelling lyrics embodied in her delightful and wonderfully enchanting melodies. The songs are a triumph of inventiveness and skill, and display the abundant talent of this rich and original, gifted songwriter.” —Michael Krasny, Host of NPR's Forum (KQED, San Francisco) and Author of Off Mike: A Memoir of Talk Radio and Literary Life

“Witty, tuneful, and very sophisticated.” —David H. Bell, Helen Hayes Award-winning director for THE HOT MIKADO

“This musical does not disappoint. When I listened to the musical I was entranced and I wanted to know more about its creators. I am a music buff and attend many concerts and Broadway musicals. From my perspective, I would pay to see this production.” —”Ms. Place” of the Jane Austen's World blog.

We were honored to be interviewed by Ms. Place, on our process for creating this musical. You can read that interview by clicking here to her blog.


ABOUT THE CREATORS

For information on producing this show,
email Josie at Mail@JosieBrown.com and Rita at MVMusic@aol.com

Ritaclose250C
RITA ABRAMS, Music and Lyrics
MVMusic@aol.com

Rita has won 2 Emmy Awards, 32 ASCAP Awards, and 3 San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards for her other musical comedy collaborations, which include New Wrinkles, Men are from Mars~Women are from Venus, For Whom the Bridge Tolls, and Just My Type.  

Her Sony/BMG comedy albums with Dr. Elmo earned her a gold record. Rita's album containing her evergreen hit single “Mill Valley” (over 100,000 YouTube hits) was re-released in Japan, by Varese-Sarabande Records.  

Rita also writes humor books, greeting cards, and scripts for Velocity Entertainment. And she is very excited about IAM Theatre’s national premiere of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, The MUSICAL.

PRESS & PUBLICATION QUOTES FOR RITA'S WORK

“Abrams’ songs are production’s standouts…” —Steven Winn, San Francisco Chronicle

“Abrams’ songs are playful and extremely easy on the ears.” —Gary Dretzka, Chicago Tribune

“The funniest lines and best moments come from Rita Abrams’ songs.”— Gene Price, Bay Area Reporter

“The show’s biggest strength is in the musical numbers penned by Abrams.” —Linda Xiques, Pacific Sun

“ ‘Christmas All Across the U.S.A.,’ by Rita Abrams. is so on target right now – just what the doctor ordered!  Warner Bros. Publications has released sheet music on the title, and it is already flying off the shelves. —Jeannet de Lisa, Warner Bros. Publications

“Rita Abrams is one of the most capable and engaging composer/lyricists I have ever worked with…one of the best songwriters in America today.  An artist who can delight so utterly with every song she writes should share her gifts with the widest audience possible.” —David Bell, Director, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus ~ the Musical

Josie_Brown author

JOSIE BROWN, Book/Libretto
mail@josiebrown.com

Over a million and a half novels by Josie Brown are in readers' hands. She's a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and HarperCollins, as well as an independently published author. Her novels have hit  #1 on Amazon and iBooks rankings on numerous occasions.

She is the author of The Housewife Assassin's Handbook series; Totlandia series; and the True Hollywood Lies series, as well as these stand-alone novels:

The CandidateThe Baby Planner; and Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives, which was optioned by Jerry Bruckheimer for television.

PRESS & PUBLICATION QUOTES FOR JOSIE'S WORK

“Josie Brown writes with all the secrets, sex, money and scandal of an OK Magazine cover. Truly entertaining reading.”–Jackie Collins, Hollywood Wives

“Josie Brown’s writing is whip-smart as well as wickedly funny, and just as you are enjoying the ride she takes you on, she shatters your heart with her insight into modern lives.”—Tatjana Soli, New York Times bestselling author and 2011 recipient of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction for The Lotus Eaters

The tone is confessional, the writing laced with venomous humor…” —Wall Street Journal

“Brown captures the humor of working for a megalomaniac…[A] well-paced, entertaining story…” —Publishers Weekly

“A fine piece of literary work.” —New York Post

“Already touted as the perfect summer beach read, this character driven (sometimes steamy) book can best be described as the offspring of an affair between Desperate Housewives and a Jennifer Weiner novel….A quick look into the sometimes catty world of wealth where priorities get shifted, friendships get broken and marriages, like their mansions, get rearranged. It was light and fluffy (with some excellent dialogue.)…“—GoodHousekeeping.com

“The book ended with a hook that immediately wanted me to get the next one…I'm completely smitten.” —Barbara Vey

“Brown  takes baby mania to its illogical, hysterical extreme in this bubbly romp….But what begins as a light foray into Bugaboo country turns into something bigger than a satire of status-obsessed Bay Area yummy mummies as Brown takes a dark look at the fears of parenthood and family, with Katie's heartbreaking longing for a child unveiling a disturbing reality about her marriage and family. Still, the message from the somber realities is one full of hope: love makes a family, commitment keeps it together.” —Publishers Weekly

“Fans of Desperate Housewives will enjoy this story. The examination of neighborhood politics and shallowness of the affluent is insightful and entertaining.” —Romantic Times

“I loved it! Josie Brown captures the highs and lows of love, lust and marriage with heartbreaking  pathos. I'm recommending it to all my friends as the perfect beach read!” — Lisa Rinna, actress, and author of the novel Starlit
Over a million and a half novels by Josie Brown are in readers' hands. She's a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and HarperCollins, as well as an independently published author. Her novels have hit  #1 on Amazon and iBooks rankings on numerous occasions.

 

REPRESENTATION

Theatre producers are welcome to discuss this and other musical theater projects by Rita Abrams and Josie Brown. For questions, contact

Bob Freedman
THE ROBERT A. FREEDMAN DRAMATIC AGENCY

1501 Broadway, Ste. 2310
New York, NY 10036

212.840.5760

_______________________

Our thanks to our CAST OF SINGERS on these recordings, in alphabetical order:

Maggie Bell
David Curley
Aubrey Davis
Bettina Devin
Christine Macomber
Mark Messersmith
Travis Poelle
Christina Sabotelli
Annie Stocking
Susan Zelinsky