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Yes ! (Soulaine, Pujol & Bousquet / Willemetz / Yvain)

Date

1928.1.26

Description

Operetta in 3 acts to a libretto by Pierre Soulaine, René Pujol and Jacques Bousquet. Music by Maurice Yvain. Lyrics by Albert Willemetz. Premiered at the Théâtre des Capucines, in Paris, on 26 January 1928.

Text

“The originality of this score lay in the way it was written. It was composed for two pianos. Wiener and Doucet had convinced me that it was possible to replace the orchestra with a twosome like this. Two virtuosos: Léon Kartun and Raffit brought about the huge success of Yes !, the new title of the piece. The press were unanimous in praising the libretto and the music. Which is worth mentioning, since it’s such a rare occurrence.” This is how Maurice Yvain himself described the production of the work in his memoirs entitled Ma belle opérette. The cast counted on the success of the famous Arletty, who had replaced Christiane d’Or at the last minute. The score, with its typical interwar rhythms, was initially written for two pianos because of limited space at the Théâtre des Capucines. Depending on where the operetta was revived, Yvain added 12 jazz musicians (Théâtre des Variétés) and up to 35 for the Apollo (but never abandoned the original two pianos which gave this operetta such a unique flavour). The action runs through all the themes of bourgeois comedy inherited from Feydeau, while featuring several particularly nostalgic numbers.