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The Marx Brothers
The Cocoanuts (1925)


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Home | Vaudeville | The Cocoanuts


This play opened at the Lyric and ran for 375 performances on Broadway as well as two years on the road.

With a successful run of "I'll Say She Is!" underway at the Casino Theatre, Sam Harris began preparing the Marxes' new show, with book by George S. Kaufman and music by Irving Berlin. Kaufman soon regretted it. Rehearsals were outrageous and the brothers made a shambles of Kaufman's script.

The Philadelphia opening was an absolute washout. Lines that read hilarious got no laughs at all. The following two weeks consisted of nightly performances with rehearsals all day and writing sessions all night, for which Morrie Ryskind had been brought in to help the ailing script. With the best talents in the business working on the show, the Marxes would have no excuse for failure on Broadway.

They shouldn't have worried. Lines that fell flat in Philly were uproarious to the New York audiences. On December 8, 1925, "The Cocoanuts" opened at the Lyric Theatre and was another instant smash.


Read the reviews


Theater program


Cast:

New York cast: 
Zeppo Marx Jamison
Georgia Hale Eddie
Margret Dumont Mrs. Potter
Henry Whittemore Harvey Yates
Janet Velie Penelope Martin
Mabel Whitee Polly Potter
Jack Barker Robert Adams
Groucho Marx Henry W. Schlemmer
Chico Marx Willie the Wop
Harpo Marx Silent Sam
Basil Ruysdael Hennessey
Frances Williams Frances Williams

Written by (uncredited) Morrie Ryskind
Lyrics and Music by Irving Berlin
Produced by Sam H. Harris
Directed by Oscar Eagle
Musical numbers staged by Sammy Lee
Settings by Woodman Thompson
Premiere 1925-12-08

Musical numbers

Performed byComments
A Little Bungalow
view
A Little Bungalow 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 In the preview-length print of The Cocoanuts, Groucho sang this number while courting Margaret Dumont. In the play it had been "the inevitable duet" (according to Alexander Woollcott), sang by characters Polly Potter and Robert Adams but Woollcott also found it "clever, insidious, engaging".  
Florida By The Sea
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Florida By The Sea 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (also listed as "New summer edition")  
We Should Care
view
We Should Care 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 the music is an excerpt taken from another piece of sheet music for this show 
The Monkey Doodle-doo
view
The Monkey Doodle-doo 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (also listed as "New summer edition")  
Lucky Boy
view
Lucky Boy 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (also listed as "New summer edition")  
 Tango Melody 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (also listed as "New summer edition")  
Five O'Clock Tea
view
Five O'Clock Tea 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (also listed as "New summer edition") 
 Minstrel Days   
 My Family Reputation   
 A Hit With The Ladies   
 When We're Runnning A Little Hotel Of Our Own   
Why Do You Want To Know Why?
view
Why Do You Want To Know Why? 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (marked "New summer edition") 
Ting-a-ling The Bells'll Ring
view
Ting-a-ling The Bells'll Ring 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (marked "New summer edition") 
 Everyone In The Word Is Doing The Charleston 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (marked "New summer edition") 
 Gentlemen Prefer Blonds 
Music and lyrics by: Irving Berlin
 (marked "New summer edition") 
 The Tale Of A Shirt Ruysdael, Company  
 The Tale Of A Shirt "Piano Speciality" Chico Marx  
 The Tale Of A Shirt "Harp Speciality" Harpo Marx  
Home |  NEWS |  Biography |  Movies |  Today in Marx history |  Shop |  Vaudeville |  Radio |  TV |  Quotes |  Media Files |  Books |  on DVD |  on VHS, LaserDisc etc. |  on CD, LP etc. |  Links |  Posters |  Memorabilia |  Music |  Pictures |  Games |  Marxes in the Sky |  Miscellaneous |  Feedback/Discussion |  auf Deutsch Deutsch |  Disclaimer |  Frank Bland's Why A Duck? |  Mikael Uhlin's Marxology
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This site uses material originally created by Frank Bland for his website Why A Duck?. Frank did kindly give me permission to use this material.

The Marx Brothers - Los Hermanos Marx - האחים מרקס - マルクス兄弟 - Les Freres Marx - 마르크스형제 - Братья Маркс - Bröderna Marx - برادران مارکس - I Fratelli Marx - Братята Маркс - Bracia Marx - Germans Marx - الأخوة ماركس - 馬克思兄弟 - Αδελφοί Μαρξ - Irmãos Marx

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