Fings Ain't Wot They Used T'Be

by  Lionel Bart, Frank Norman

Full Length Musical, Drama  /  9m, 4f

Fred Cochran, the hero, is a down-at-heel gangster, trying to make a comeback. Lil Smith is his loyal moll, a tart with a heart of gold, who longs for respectability and keeps a marriage licence ready for her lucky day.

Read more +
License Estimator

Use this tool for cost estimates based on your specific needs.

  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    9m, 4f
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

Fred Cochran, the hero, is a down-at-heel gangster, trying to make a comeback. Lil Smith is his loyal moll, a tart with a heart of gold, who longs for respectability and keeps a marriage licence ready for her lucky day. Fred's shpieler (gambling den) provides a refuge for the failures of the underworld: Paddy the gambler, Tosher the ponce with his girls Betty and Rosey, and Redhot, a sad little burglar who never manages to get warm. They all look to Fred for a living and when he wins on the horses it seems the gang may be back in business. Fred redecorates his place, all contempery and at the opening the Horrible Percy Fortesque comes to gamble and a rival leader, Meatface, is beaten in a razor fight. The play ends with a wedding - Lil and Fred are giving up crime to go straight; handing over the shpieler to the constable on the beat who has long wanted to go crooked!

The author admits that the final published version of Fings owes much to the improvisation that took place during rehearsals by the Theatre Workshop Company who originally staged it. It was conceived as a straight play with music rather than a musical play; but it does provide opportunities for extras and for some lively ensembles. The music is all in unison and the play is therefore specially suited to the dramatic society looking for a musical show.

Read more +

Considerations

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1960s

Music

  • Vocal Demands: Easy
  • Orchestra Size: Small/Combo

Casting

9m, 4f
See all +

Cast Attributes

  • Expandable casting

Resources

Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package

15 Vocal Scores
Band parts are not available

More

Authors

Lionel Bart

Lionel Bart was born Lionel Begleiter on August 1, 1930. Bart's parents and six older siblings were survivors of the Holocaust out of Austria and resided in the East End of London. When Lionel Bart was six, a teacher told his parents that he was a musical genius. At 16, he received a scholarship to St. ...

View full profile
Frank Norman

Frank Norman

Now Playing

Community Experiences