My fair lady

My fair lady is a musical of Frederick lion (music) and Alan J. Lerner (book and song texts).

The premiere found to 15. March 1956 in Marks the Hellinger Theatre in New York instead of. In London the piece became only two years later, to 30. April 1958, specified in the Drury Lane Theatre. The German-language first performance in the translation of Robert Gilbert was to 25. October 1961 in the theatre of the west in Berlin.

Like many musical also My has fair lady its roots in a play one „serious “Author, i.e. in the comedy Pygmalion of George Berne pool of broadcasting corporations Shaw, which was uraufgeführt 1914 and for their part been based on the antique myth of Pygmalion, a sayful bildhauernden king, who fell in love with a statue created by it.

Table of contents


  • Eliza Doolittle, flower girl
  • professor Henry Higgins, Phonetiker
  • Alfred P. Doolittle, father of Eliza
  • Colonel Hugh Pickering
  • Mrs. Higgins, nut/mother of Professor. Higgins
  • Freddy Eynsford Hill
  • Zoltan Karpathy
  • Mrs. Pearce
  • Mrs. Eynsford Hill


professor Higgins, who concerns itself with phonetics, meets the Blumenverkäuferin Eliza Doolittle on the flower market in London. Their strong vulgären language, in the English version worst Cockney accent, in the German version alternatively broad Berlinerisch or Wienerisch, take itas example of the deformation of the native language („cannot the children teach as one speaks “)? „The language makes humans. The origin makes it not “, means Higgins. Even a flower girl such as Eliza can improve their conditions and be a fine lady, even a respectableFlower shop lead, if she would learn correct English to speak. Eliza hears begins to dream. Are their desires very modest („a Zimmerchen with a sofa in it, Gasbeleuchtung, chocolates and never more cold legs - would December be nich wunderscheen? “), but is it theirFulfilment just as near as the moon. To each day fights for its living costs and must also still its verse-open father through-bring, for whom Eliza is its completely private „bank of England “. Father Doolittle is more genuinly nothing-uses and mogelt themselves „with nem kleen bit luck “byLife. With this Balast at the leg and the missing education Eliza does not have to ever be in the society a chance more than a poor flower woman. But now the light view: this strange professor said, it can make a fine lady from it! Eliza washes itselfNeck and hands and move forward with its last groschen with the taxi with professor Higgins. Those wants to have instruction in phonetics! The wages, which it offers to Higgins, are only laughful for the professor, but its friend Colonel Pickering suggests a bet to it: IfHiggins succeeds, within 6 months from Eliza a lady to make can, then it takes over the costs of the training. Elizas „final examination “should be the diplomat ball in the Buckingham Palace. Professor Higgins takes the bet to and for Eliza begins a hard training. It must eingefleischten bachelors professor Higgins draw in and from in the morning early until practice in the evening late, practice, practice. It treats Higgins very ruppig and more like animal, which it trains, than like humans. The temperful Eliza cooks before rage and dreams about a revenge(„Wait' s only off “).

But finally it creates Eliza: She says g instead of j, egg instead of e and not e but u („it becomes green so green if of Spain blooms flowers “). Euphorically is celebrated and the completely untwisted Eliza finds as good at the night as noneSleep. („I hätt danced heut night “) thereby however only the first hurdle is created. Now Eliza must exist a test run in the fine society. Professor Higgins and Colonel Pickering select themselves in addition the horse running in Ascot. Eliza has strict defaults, about which they talkmay: The weather and the health. But also these apparently harmless topics save their Tücken. Because when Eliza in the beautiful English reported that their aunt „abgemurkst “is, are nevertheless quite irritated the fine ladies and gentlemen. Nevertheless Elizas origin flies up not, maintains professorHiggins, the outstanding Philologe, „abgemurkst “is murdered a new mode word for „“and Eliza has a completely special humor. However also he does not find a suitable explanation for it, when Eliza anfeuert later with running excited their horse: „Run faster or I strew you pepper into the ass! “Which for a scandal! The young Freddy Eynsford Hill probably should have given her no light.

Freddy Eynsford Hill is very done a young man from better circles and of the picture-pretty Eliza, which are so cordially recreating. It begins to patrouillieren in its road, in thatHope that Eliza leaves once the house. In addition it writes it twice daily a love letter and bombadiert Eliza with flowers. The Angebetet does not receive of it however much. To speak it can now, but Eliza is still ungebildet like the flower girl, itin the reason is. In order to exist with the diplomat ball, their considerable knowledge gaps must be plugged. That is hard work, Eliza creates it with the diplomat ball in the Buckingham Palace to brillieren. Everyone is bewitched of this unusual, graceful creature. Everywhere one puzzles, who the beautiful foreigner is.A colleague of Higgins, a Hungarian Phonetiker is to bring light in the darkness. Due to its language it is to find out, from where Eliza comes. Its diagnosis: One speaks so clean English only abroad. According to its opinion Eliza is a Hungarian princess! Which for a triumph for professorHiggins.

In the same evening Higgins and Pickering congratulate themselves mutually for the successful work. They knock themselves on the shoulders and can by the personnel be celebrated. Eliza is directly ignored. One trained it, functioned her, the fame goes to the professor - forit won the bet. When she speaks later with Higgins alone, she says to him very clearly, as very she feels demonstrated and degraded. And how is it to go at all for it further? Which perspectives does it have? Higgins does not understand that at all andEliza accuses to be ungrateful. A bockiges, stupid child, whom it does not have to take seriously. All the more surprise and more frightened he is, as it is on the next day Eliza no longer there.

It packed and is taken off its things. Together with Freddy, that timesagain before the door for it, visits it waited the bad quarter of London, in which it was a half year ago still at home. But it fits there no longer. It sits between all chairs. For a flower woman it is now too fine,for a fine lady you are missing the money. Eliza seizes the resolution to inform even phonetics and marry Freddy.

As it Professor. Higgins confronted with this resolution, it terribly furious - and recognizes frightened, why it reacts so violently: It misses Eliza. Itdespite the large differences as a person to the heart grew it („I am accustomed to their face “).My fair lady ends versöhnlich. Eliza comes back to professor Higgins. It remains open whether she marries Freddy and with professor Higgins remains only friendly or whether it professorHiggins, which is nevertheless so gladly bachelor, whom preference/advantage gives.


the music is rather conventional and operettenhaft, contains however einge pieces, which rank because of their charm until today among ear worms of the classical musical. The musical is relatively text annoying. The amusingEffects are based to a large extent on the sudden collision of most different language levels and on the discussion exercises Elizas, which work strangely diagonally in the fremdsprachigen versions, because in London evenly Cockney spoken and not (z. B.) Berlin ore becomes. Nevertheless one may do the transmission of „The rain in Spainstays mainly into the plain “too „it becomes green so green, if of Spain flower blooms “as extremely successfully mark.

literary collecting main

My fair lady is an adaptation of the 1914 uraufgeführten comedy Pygmalion of George Berne pool of broadcasting corporations Shaw. Both the main personsand the action of the two works are at first very similar. Contrary to My fair lady is Eliza for Higgins in Shaws piece however only one test object, which it uses to its own building. During itself in My fair lady from the experiment oneDear relationship between Eliza and Higgins developed, remains unreturned in Pygmalion Elizas love. After the appearance in the opera, which becomes in the musical the appearance in Ascot, Higgins Eliza from the house sends. It put the foundation-stone for its future now, and it is gladlyits that it for it also still do not require money. Eliza leaves water-rushes over the house and finally marries its friend Fredy, which already made it the whole time rises.

idea and conversion of the musical

the idea to the musical come from Gabriel Pascal, which had already produced the Pygmalion film in the 30's. G.B. Shaw did not release however its comedy for Vertonung. Only after after its death and the musical project could be enough tackle for tough negotiations with inheriting Shaws. Large composers and text poetslike smelling pool of broadcasting corporations Rodgers and OSCAR hammer stone II., Leonard amber, Gian Carlo Menotti, Betty Comden and Adolph Green finally rejected their co-operation at the musical version, to one Alan J. Lerner and Frederick lion asked, those with My fair lady probably the high point of theircreative work reached and beyond that by their operettenhafte conversion the way for the musical as such in the German-speaking countries smoothed.

Negative criticism brought in only the change of the conclusion, in which Eliza and Henry Higgins become nevertheless still another pair for the author team. This endone felt however under the Machern as musical-suited (“welfare world”). In addition the American composer expressed Rudolf Friml that he would not call the My-fair-lady-score under any circumstances “music”.


My fair lady was filmed 1964 with Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison in the main roles.Hepburns singing voice was replaced thereby by the American Marni Nixon. The film was distinguished in the same year with eight Oscars. However Audrey Hepburn was not nominated in the category “best Hauptdarstellerin”. Julie Andrew got this OSCAR in this year (in the Disney film “Mary Poppins“), which had brilliert in the stage version of the piece as Eliza Doolittle beside Rex Harrison. It was however too unknown to the producer. They estimated it as a risk occupation and took instead the much more well-known Audrey Hepburn. Hepburns singing voice is for some titles on the DVDthe musical receive.

A German version was successful on numerous Theaterbühnen. Heidi Brühl and Cornelia Froboess could celebrate large successes as Eliza.

A very original adaptation of the material represents the successful French Actionfilm Nikita of Luc Besson .


  • Alan JayLerner:My fair lady. Libretto. Texts and verses of Alan Jay Lerner. Music of Frederick lion. After Shaws Pygmalion. German by Robert Gilbert. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt/Main 1962.
  • George Berne pool of broadcasting corporations Shaw: Pygmalion. Romance in five documents (OT: Pygmalion). Suhrkamp, Frankfurt/Main 2000, ISBN 3-518-38359-0.
  • Wolfgang Jansen: My fair lady, the German first performance 1961 in the citizen of Berlin “theatre of the west. Small writings of the society for maintaining stage art, volume 1, Berlin: Weidler book publishing house 1992, ISBN 3-925191-85-2.
  • Günter Bartosch: “The whole world of the musical”,F. - English publishing house, Wiesbaden, 1981

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