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Kissing-Dance, The

Howard Goodall

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A Musical by Howard Goodall. Book and lyrics by Charles Hart, loosely based on 'She Stops To Conquer' by Oliver Goldsmith


It is All Fools’ Eve.  In the great hall at Nonesuch, home to the Hardcastle family, the servants are preparing to receive two important guests: an old friend of Mr Hardcastle’s from his military days, Sir James Marlow, and travelling separately, his son Charles.  Both fathers hope that Charles will offer his hand in marriage to Kate and unite the families.  But Charles suffers from the mysterious affliction of “the Englishman’s Malady”.  While gallivanting amongst working-class girls, he is a notorious womaniser, but with girls “of his own station”, he is turned into a tongue-tied idiot.  Charles has a problem: he is on his way to meet his intended, Kate Hardcastle, but knows that her presence will render him painfully shy and speechless.  He is nonetheless riding to Nonesuch with his friend George Hastings and all goes well until they lose their way and stop at the “Fur and Feathers” (an inn) to ask for directions...


double bass


Vocal scores, orchestral parts and libretti are available for hire. Please see application pack.

To view a perusal score please click here.


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Cast Size: Large (16+)

Genre(s): Musical Theatre, Opera/Operetta


“There is a freshness about the piece, which treats Goldsmith's original with grace and wit, that is enormously appealing. For all the comic absurdities of the plot, this is that rare beast: a genuinely intelligent musical that is performed with evident pleasure by its largely young cast.”

The Guardian (Lyn Gardner), 28 March 2011