The Shop Girl

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The Shop Girl is a musical farce in two acts by H.J.W. Dam (1856-1906), Ivan Caryll (1861-1921)[1], Adrian Ross (1859-1933)[2] and Lionel Monckton (1861-1924)[3].

The original text

Written by Dam, with lyrics by Dam and Ross and music by Caryll, (plus additional numbers by Monckton and Ross), the play premiered on 24 November, 1894, at the Gaiety Theatre in London, where it had an extremely successful run of 546 performances. This was followed by a New York production that opened at Palmer's Theatre on October 28, 1895, where it had 72 performances.[4]

An early example of what became known as "Edwardian musical comedy" and - along with A Gaiety Girl (Hall, 1893) - part of the Gaiety movement and among the first of many other "girl"-themed musicals.

Published in London by Hopwood & Crew, copyrighted in 1895.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1894: Performed in South Africa in the second half of the year by the Cairns James Company as part of their season in the Good Hope Theatre, Cape Town, under the auspices of the Wheeler Theatre Company.

1902: Performed at the Good Hope Theatre by a Gaiety Company under the auspices of the Wheeler Brothers, as part of a season of Gaiety musical comedy and light opera.


Online Books by H. J. W. Dam, The Online Books Page[5]

D.C. Boonzaier, 1923. "My playgoing days – 30 years in the history of the Cape Town stage", in SA Review, 9 March and 24 August 1932. (Reprinted in Bosman 1980: pp. 374-439.)

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: p.400, 412

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