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No. 4b: CHORUS & DUET (Nekaya & Kalyba)
"How fair! how modest! how discreet!..
Although of native maids the cream"

Midi Symbol MIDI File [20KB, 2' 39"]

Enter Nekaya and Kalyba. They are twins, about fifteen years old; they are very modest and demure in their appearance, dress and manner. They stand with their hands folded and their eyes cast down.

Chorus.
How fair! how modest! how discreet!
How bashfully demure!
See how they blush, as they've been taught,
At this publicity unsought!
How English and how pure!
How English and how pure!

Nekaya and Kalyba.
Although of native maids the cream,
We're brought up on the English scheme —
The best of all
For great and small
Who modesty adore.

Nekaya.
For English girls are good as gold,
Extremely modest (so we're told)
Demurely coy — divinely cold —.

Kalyba.
And that we are — and more
To please papa, who argues thus —
All girls should mould themselves on us
Because we are
By furlongs far
The best of all the bunch,
We show ourselves to loud applause
From ten to four without a pause —
Emmie Owen & Florence Perry as Nekaya & Kalyba in the original production, 1893
Click on picture to enlarge

Nekaya.
Which is an awkward time because
It cuts into our lunch.

Both.
Oh maids of high and low degree,
Whose social code is rather free,
Please look at us and you will see
What good young ladies ought to be!

Nekaya.
And as we stand, like clockwork toys,
A lecturer whom papa employs
Proceeds to praise
Our modest ways
And guileless character —

Kalyba.
Our well-known blush — our downcast eyes —
Our famous look of mild surprise —

Nekaya.
(Which competition still defies) —

Kalyba.
Our celebrated "Sir!!!"
Then all the crowd take down our looks
In pocket memorandum books.
To diagnose
Our modest pose
The Kodaks do their best:

Nekaya.
If evidence you would possess
Of what is maiden bashfulness
You need only a button press —

Kalyba.
And we will do the rest.

Both.
Oh maids of high and low degree,
Whose social code is rather free,
Please look at us and you will see
What good young ladies ought to be!

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