Music and Lyrics by Robert Wright and George Forrest from the themes of Alexander Borodin

A day in the life of a glib-tongued street poet in old Baghdad. He accidentally inherits the city’s most lucrative begging site, is captured by brigands from whom he tricks a small fortune in gold, hands most of it to his beloved daughter to spend on baubles, bangles and beads, purchases slave-girls and bids for a palace, gets arrested for theft and condemned to have his right hand lopped off, briefly reconciles an erring father and a hard-hearted son, thus winning a reprieve-and the lustful affection of the shapely wife of the Wazir of Police-undertakes to prevent the marriage of a love-sick Caliph, no less, and finally murders the aforementioned Wazir. Since he finds himself about to become the Caliph’s father-in-law, he pronounces the only fitting sentence for such a crime, and is banished to a lonely oasis with Lalume, the Wazir’s recent, willing widow, to spend the rest of his days compensating for her deprivation. For a street poet in old Baghdad, some days were like that.

Produced by Frank Doran


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