White Horse Inn: October 1986
Adapted by Hans Muller and Erik Charell, from a play by Blumenthal and Kadelburg : Original Lyrics by Robert Gilbert. Music by Ralph Benatsky and Robert Stolz
Head waiters of White Horse Inn have found that to fall in love with the attractive young widow who owns the establishment is a swift and certain route to dismissal. Yet none have been able to resist Josepha; least of all Leopold, the present incumbent. She, however, pines for Valentine Sutton, a regular visitor from England, and is resolutely blind to all the evidence that his thoughts for her are no more than warm friendship. Valentine’s annual visit is at hand, and by the same steamer arrive Ebenezer Grinkle, a self-made lad from Lancashire with plenty of brass, his sweet young daughter Ottoline, an impoverished Professor Hinzel and his gawky, lisping, but appealing daughter Gretel, and a dapper young man, Sigismund Smith (of Hammersmith). Sub-plots abound as Smith and Grinkle discover they are hated business rivals. Sutton (who is Smith’s solicitor) falls in love with Ottoline, and Smith with Gretel, while Leopold repeatedly threatens to resign and wish them all a last “Good-bye!” The subsequent arrival of His Imperial Majesty the Emperor serves at first only to add to the acrimonious chaos, but finally his kindly understanding and wisdom do much to bring about the statutory happy ending.