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Question: Happy as Larry

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 16 Jul 2012 08:53 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 8:53 am UTC 

As everybody knows, ‘Happy as Larry’ was a Musical that played on Broadway a good few years ago.

Even though it starred Burgess Meredith (who played Larry as well as doing the Staging) and Gene Barry, it failed to match the successes of Oklahoma!, Carousel, Annie Get Your Gun, Call Me Madam or Kiss Me Kate.

However, with a few important changes, I reckon that it’s now overdue for a revival.

For obvious reasons, I can’t give too much away but, for example, I intend changing the Tailors into Rug Makers and Larry himself, who is an international rug dealer, will also have a boat. This will lead naturally to a few Sea Shanties and Sailors’ Hornpipes.

Of course, Larry’s rug business is merely a cover for his more important activities as an undercover CIA agent.

Additionally, Larry also has a very successful Elvis Tribute Act which naturally leads to further musical numbers.

The reason that Larry is happy is because he always manages to come out on top and the reason I feel confident about the new musical is because it will inspire many people to prosper regardless of the difficulties they face.

However, I myself now require some help and I am sure that some Ucluer can help me resolve the minor problem of how to raise the finance.

Researchers David Sarokin, Oliver Scriptor and q21 and commentators like Ribuck and Myoarin could easily dig into their own pockets to get the show on the road.

Please post your offers as Comments and next week I will invite the Researcher with the most useful suggestions to post an answer.

Many thanks





 16 Jul 2012 10:07 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 10:07 am UTC 

The play "Happy as Larry" by Donagh MacDonagh:

Please note that "there are a lot of typos - the result of an inadequately proofread OCR translation from the printed book", according to:

Unfortunately, it was rather unsuccessful in New York:




 16 Jul 2012 10:11 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 10:11 am UTC 

I would like to suggest as a title for this musical, "Sticking My Oar In". This opens the door to plenty of situational comedy.




 16 Jul 2012 15:23 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 3:23 pm UTC 

By a strange coincidence, I know a Larry. Back in the 80s he had s  - the - star role in something call Leisure Suit Larry.  It was pretty insipid, but there were several sequels.  Unfortunately, it ruined his career as an actor, being typecast for all time as a rather daffy character.
A couple of weeks ago, however, now looking much more distinguished, he managed to sneak back into the business as a walk-on in the party scene of psycho-terror-drama.  The story is pretty illogical, to judge by the one scene, something only a publicly funded TV station would make.  One extra, passed out and fell headlong, ending more than 100 minutes to film the 5 minute scene.
Nontheless, Larry has high hopes of being called out of retirement for a real role, since the scene includes a bit in which he shakes hands with the production manager, his Hitchcock-like cameo appearance.

To get back to the question  - show financing - those old enough to remember, will recall that Leisure Suit Larry was no angel. 
For some reason, I do like Ribuck's suggestion of a title, very original.



Phil Answerfinder 


 16 Jul 2012 15:49 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 3:49 pm UTC 

I think you should look to find investors from Australia or New Zealand. After all, the phrase 'as happy as Larry' seems to originate from there.

Certainly the first reference I can find in the Australian newspapers is from 1883 and it's written in such a way that it must have been in common usage by that time. It's 1890 for New Zealand.




 16 Jul 2012 17:28 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 5:28 pm UTC 

I will gladly dig into the pockets of David Sarokin, Oliver Scriptor, q21, Ribuck, and Myoarin to get the show on the road.

As an alternative, I suggest a fund-raising event attached to the 2012 Olympics: place a hefty tax on every sports commentator who uses the words "incredible," "absolutely," or "axolotl." (I am aware that "axolotl" is seldom used, but I love this word and just wanted to see it in print.)


David Sarokin 


 16 Jul 2012 17:35 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 5:35 pm UTC 

"I will gladly dig into the pockets of David Sarokin..."





 16 Jul 2012 18:39 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 6:39 pm UTC 

Many thanks One & All - some very useful ideas already!

I understand that John From Melbourne hails from the Land of Oz and he might now rise to the challenge ...





 16 Jul 2012 20:20 UTCMon 16 Jul 2012 - 8:20 pm UTC 

In case others haven't already discovered what an axolotl is, here is
pretty one.  But watch out, it's full screen:

Pink (like my axolotl), it's wonderful to see you here again, and an honor to Probo's question.

The Larry I know says that he is flattered by the question, only complaining a bit that it wasn't posted on his birthday last week.

Cheers to all,  Myo




 17 Jul 2012 07:32 UTCTue 17 Jul 2012 - 7:32 am UTC 

I now have every reason for optimism but I also need some songs.

I have penned a little ditty called 'I'm Just Wild About Larry' and for a scene set in Istanbul, I am toying with 'What a Bizarre Bazaar'.

We also need a Leading Lady.

Larry is very partial to rather exotic ladies. Maybe a modern Marlene Dietrich type? Any ideas?





 17 Jul 2012 10:10 UTCTue 17 Jul 2012 - 10:10 am UTC 

For a party scene on his yacht (something smaller than that of Abramovich would be adequate),  "It's all so Preposterous on the Bosporus" 

Appropriate lyrics shouldn't be a strain on Probo's poetic skill. The yacht would, however, have to be large enough for a Bollywood-style dance scene (a whole chorus line of belly dancers?).

"Every time, it's the same old Bump and Grind."  The scene would be in an "etablissement" in a small pedestrian street below the tower on Pera.

If Ribuck's title is used, maybe "I am the very Model of a Modern Galley Slave" (with apologies to G & S).

"Larry loves the Lira"    This would start as an homage to L's infatuation with the Turkish currency, but then "Lira" enters the scene.  I am undecided as to whether she is the ingenue or had a role in my second suggestion. 

"Between the Scilly Isles and Sicily"  Second line: 
Live can be so silly ... 
I guess that would be one of Probo's shanties (I don't think hornpipes have lyrics).

At the risk of appearing to have a one track mind, but Probo insists on including exotic ladies:
"Getting it straight in the Strait of Gibralter"

The lyrics would, OF COURSE, deflect from the suggestive title.

Ah, rug makers:
"Tying the Turkish Knot"  (Maybe he has to marry the ingenue.) 
An explanation of Islamic short-term weddings would probably be too complicated for the show, and certainly here.





 18 Jul 2012 09:16 UTCWed 18 Jul 2012 - 9:16 am UTC 

Many thanks, Myo

Nobody has commented on the source of fp's findings which was:


Clearly, fp has also got friends in High Places!

I am now thinking that I should write fp, ribuck and pinkfreud into the musical, as well as our old friend Le Pétomane:


Any further thoughts?





 18 Jul 2012 11:20 UTCWed 18 Jul 2012 - 11:20 am UTC 


It may be only my own self-critical interpretation, but are you implying  that my suggestions for song titles are all gas?

A new one:  "She wasn't Cleopatra, but she came rolled in a Rug"

You want exotic ladies.
And again of course, the title is slightly misleading; the lyrics being a paean to UPS,or whichever shipping service most generously sponsors the show (with its shipping cartons shown in every halfway appropriate scene).

Yes indeed, Pinkie, fp and ribuck should be included, adding international flair. also Answerfinder, whom I see in a Poirot-like role between the Scilly Isles and Sicily. 
Ha, that solves the problem of lyrics in the Strait of G. In his usual final scene, when Poirot (Phil) explains to the gathered suspects his solution of the crime, he sings the song. The culprit is cast overboard and let swim to the British colony, reaching the island before the Great White Shark gets him  - or maybe not, depending on how heinous you make his crime. 
If you cast Pinkie in the role, of course, her crime would not be so heinous, and she would survive.  We want to keep her around. Na, we would want to keep her on board and let/require her to entertain us with silly pos.  (Newbies here, "po" is her expression for her ad hoc short poems.)

Maybe Montecristo would like a role, certainly deserves to be included.  His name suggests that he would be ideal for helping Pinkie escape.

Cheers,  Myo




 19 Jul 2012 06:53 UTCThu 19 Jul 2012 - 6:53 am UTC 

Very many thanks, Myo, your contributions are much appreciated.

I have decided that we need a spectacular dance number to close Act 1 and I visualise something like the famous Gene Kelly and Vera-Ellen take on 'Slaughter on 10th Avenue' in the 1948 movie 'Words and Music':


Larry will play Gene's part and Pinkfreud will do Vera's.

Obviously, we don't want to be accused of plagiarism so our number will be set in Paris and will be called 'Laughter on the Left Bank'.

No matter if Pinkfreud cannot do ballet, I'm sure that she will soon pick it up.

The part of the baddie must surely go to David Sarokin.

Do you all agree?





 19 Jul 2012 11:11 UTCThu 19 Jul 2012 - 11:11 am UTC 

I have talked to Larry, who is very flattered by the suggestion that he could dance anywhere near as good as Gene  - even once could have.  Ah, but of course, you may have another person in mind for the role of Larry.

Would "Laughter on the Left Bank" need a baddie?  Of course, David would be perfect for the role.

Recalling a photo of Pink's face and the wonderful "Pinkfreud's Back" photo, I agree that she would be perfect for Vera's role.

For a couple of my songs, you still need to get the party to Cornwall, at least near Land's End on the voyage to Sicily:
"Puttering from Portsmouth to Plymouth and Penzance"


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