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Salad Days is a musical with music by Julian Slade and lyrics by Dorothy Reynolds and Julian Slade. It premiered at the Bristol Old Vic in 1954, and transferred to the Vaudeville Theatre in London on August 5 of that year, running for 2,283 performances to become the longest-running show in British musical theatre history until overtaken by Oliver! In the Evening Standard Awards for 1955, Salad Days was given the Award for Most Enjoyable Show (although The Pajama Game won as Best Musical). A Canadian production was put together by Barry Morse and Bill Freedman in 1958, which played quite successfully in Toronto and Montreal. This production was partly recast and brought to Broadway with much fanfare in 1959, where it flopped badly. The musical's enduring popularity lay in its light-hearted innocence and apparent simplicity, in sharp contrast to the many "hard-nosed" American musicals of the era, and its bright score including the songs "We Said We Wouldn't Look Back", "I Sit in the Sun", and "We're Looking for a Piano". The title is taken from William Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra: "My salad days, When I was green in judgment, cold in blood, To say as I said then!", and the phrase is now used to refer to one's days of youthful inexperience. The show received a new production by Tête à Tête (opera company) directed by Bill Bankes-Jones, originally produced in November 2009 at Riverside Studios in London, and revived for over two months 2010-2011. Synopsis Jane (originally played by Eleanor Drew) and Timothy Dawes (originally played by John Warner), meet in a park, soon after their graduation, to plan their lives. They agree to get married, and do so in secret, but Timothy's parents have urged him to ask his various influential uncles—a Minister, a Foreign Office official, a General, a scientist—to find him suitable employment. He and Jane, however, decide that he must take the first job that he is offered. A passing tramp offers them £7 a week to look after his mobile piano for a month, and, upon accepting, they discover that when the piano plays it gives everyone within earshot an irresistible desire to dance! After attempts by the Minister of Pleasure and Pastime (Timothy's Ministerial uncle) to ban the disruptive music, the piano vanishes, and Timothy enlists his scientific Uncle Zed to take them in his flying saucer to retrieve it. When it is found, the tramp reappears to tell them that their month is up and the piano must be passed on to another couple. He also reveals that he is a hitherto unknown uncle of Timothy (whose parents had referred to "the one we don't mention"). Timothy and Jane look forward to the future with confidence. Cultural impact The musical was parodied, in a particularly bloody manner, by Monty Python in their skit Sam Peckinpah's "Salad Days". References Information about the musical at Allmusicals.com Information about a 1963 production Information about the origin of the title Information about Slade and Salad Days "Analysis of Salad Days" in The Cambridge Companion to the Musical by William A. Everett, Paul R. Laird (2002). Cambridge University Press, p. 115. ISBN 0521796393.