The Mikado


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Dialogue following No. 7

Enter Ko-Ko and Pooh-Bah.

Ko-Ko. At last, my bride that is to be! (About to embrace her.)

Catherine Ferguson, Helen Gilliland
& Nellie Briercliffe, 1919
Click on picture to enlarge

Yum-Yum. You're not going to kiss me before all these people?

Ko-Ko. Well, that was the idea.

Yum-Yum. (aside to Peep-Bo) It seems odd, doesn't it?

Peep-Bo. It's rather peculiar.

Pitti-Sing. Oh, I expect it's all right. Must have a beginning, you know.

Yum-Yum. Well, of course I know nothing about these things; but I've no objection if it's usual.

Ko-Ko. Oh, it's quite usual, I think. Eh, Lord Chamberlain? (Appealing to Pooh-Bah.)

Pooh-Bah. I have known it done. (Ko-Ko embraces Yum-Yum.)

Yum-Yum. Thank goodness that's over! (Sees Nanki-Poo, and rushes to him.) Why, that's never you?

The three Girls rush to him and shake his hands, all speaking at once.

Yum-Yum. Oh, I'm so glad! I haven't seen you for ever so long, and I'm right at the top of the school, and I've got three prizes, and I've come home for good, and I'm not going back any more!

Peep-Bo. And have you got an engagement? — Yum-Yum's got one, but she doesn't like it, and she'd ever so much rather it was you! I've come home for good, and I'm not going back any more!

Pitti-Sing. Now tell us all the news, because you go about everywhere, and we've been at school, but, thank goodness, that's all over now, and we've come home for good, and we're not going back any more!

These three speeches are spoken together in one breath.

Ko-Ko. I beg your pardon. Will you present me?

Yum-Yum. Oh, this is the musician who used —
Peep-Bo. Oh, this is the gentleman-who used —
Pitti-Sing. Oh, it is only Nanki-Poo who used —

Ko-Ko. One at a time, if you please.

Yum-Yum. Oh, if you please he's the gentleman who used to play so beautifully on the — on the —

Pitti-Sing. On the Marine Parade.

Yum-Yum. Yes, I think that was the name of the instrument.

Nanki-Poo. Sir, I have the misfortune to love your ward, Yum-Yum — oh, I know I deserve your anger!

Ko-Ko. Anger! not a bit, my boy. Why, I love her myself. Charming little girl, isn't she? Pretty eyes, nice hair. Taking little thing, altogether. Very glad to hear my opinion backed by a competent authority. Thank you very much. Good-bye. (to Pish-Tush) Take him away. (Pish-Tush removes him.)

Kenneth Sandford as Pooh-Bah & Peggy
Ann-Jones as Pitti-Sing with
John Reed as Ko-Ko, 1966
Click on picture to enlarge

Pitti-Sing. (who has been examining Pooh-Bah) I beg your pardon, but what is this? Customer come to try on?

Ko-Ko. That is a Tremendous Swell.

Pitti-Sing. Oh, it's alive. (She starts back in alarm.)

Pooh-Bah. Go away, little girls. Can't talk to little girls like you. Go away, there's dears.

Ko-Ko. Allow me to present you, Pooh-Bah. These are my three wards. The one in the middle is my bride elect.

Pooh-Bah. What do you want me to do to them? Mind, I will not kiss them.

Ko-Ko. No, no, you shan't kiss them; a little bow — a mere nothing — you needn't mean it, you know.

Pooh-Bah. It goes against the grain. They are not young ladies, they are young persons.

Leo Sheffield as Pooh-Bah
& Henry Lytton as Ko-Ko, 1920s
Click on picture to enlarge

Ko-Ko. Come, come, make an effort, there's a good nobleman.

Pooh-Bah. (aside to Ko-Ko) Well, I shan't mean it. (With a great effort) How de do, little girls, how de do? (aside) Oh, my protoplasmal ancestor!

Ko-Ko. That's very good. (Girls indulge in suppressed laughter.)

Pooh-Bah. I see nothing to laugh at. It is very painful to me to have to say "How de do, little girls, how de do?" to young persons. I'm not in the habit of saying "How de do, little girls, how de do?" to anybody under the rank of a Stockbroker.

Ko-Ko. (aside to Girls) Don't laugh at him, he can't help it — he's under treatment for it. (aside to Pooh-Bah) Never mind them, they don't understand the delicacy of your position.

Pooh-Bah. We know how delicate it is, don't we?

Ko-Ko. I should think we did! How a nobleman of your importance can do it at all is a thing I never can, never shall understand.

Ko-Ko retires and goes off.

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