The Music Man (1962) - full transcript

It's the early twentieth century American Midwest. A con man, currently going by the assumed name Harold Hill, has used several different schemes to bilk the unsuspecting, he now traveling from town to town pretending to be a professor of music - Gary (Indiana) Conservatory of Music, class of '05 - being able to solve all the respective towns' youth problems by forming a boys' marching band. He takes money from the townsfolk to buy instruments, music, instructional materials and uniforms for their sons. However, he, in reality, has no degree, knows nothing about music, and after all the materials arrive and are distributed, hightails it out to move to the next town with all the money never to be seen again. Many of the traveling salesmen in the territory have been negatively impacted by him, as the townsfolk then become suspicious of any stranger trying to sell them something. For Harold's scheme to work, he has to gain the trust of the local music teacher, he usually doing so by wooing her, regardless of her appearance. And if the town doesn't believe it has a youth problem needing to be fixed, he will manufacture one for them. That is the case when he arrives in River City, Iowa, population 2,212, where he will have some unexpected help from Marcellus Washburn, a friend and former grifter colleague who he didn't know now lives in River City, has gone straight, but still wants to make sure Harold survives his stay in town. The music teacher he has to impress in River City is spinster Marian Paroo, who is also the town librarian. Unlike all the other River Citizens who he is able to impress with his fast talking sales pitches, he is unable to impress suspicious Marian, whose hard as nails exterior is partly due to her somewhat removed standing in the town, as all the gossipy housewives believe she is a smut peddler - encouraging the teenagers to read authors such as Chaucer and Balzac - and mistakenly believe she got her position as librarian through less than scrupulous means. What Harold does not know is that one way to Marian is through her young adolescent brother, Winthrop Paroo, a sullen boy who has withdrawn from life since the death of their father two years ago and when he started to lisp. Complications for Harold ensue when he starts to fall for Marian, something that has never happened with another music teacher before. Further complications may ensue for him if any of those traveling salesmen who have been following his same route through the territory catches up with and exposes him.

All aboard!

Let him go, Orville.

We made it plain we don't want
no more traveling salesmen in Brighton.

Credit is no good for a notions salesman.

How far you going, friend?

Wherever the people
are as green as the money...


-What's the matter with credit?
-lt's old-fashioned.

You're an anvil salesman.
Your firm give credit?

-No, sir!
-Nor anybody else!

River City next station stop.
River City, lowa!


Cash for the merchandise

Cash for the buttonhooks

Cash for the cotton goods
Cash for the hard goods

Cash for the fancy goods
Cash for the soft goods

Cash for the noggins and the piggins
And the firkins

Cash for the hogshead
Cask and demijohn

Cash for the crackers
And the pickles and the flypaper

Look, whaddya talk?
Whaddya talk, whaddya talk?

Where you get it?

You can talk, you can talk
You can bicker, you can talk

You can bicker, bicker, bicker
You can talk, you can talk

You can talk, talk, talk, talk
Bicker, bicker, bicker

You can talk all you want to
But it's different than it was

No it ain't, no it ain't
But you got to know the territory

It's the Model T Ford made the trouble
Made the people want to go

Want to git, want to git
Want to git up and go

7, 8, 9, 1 0, 1 2, 1 4, 22

23 miles to the county seat

Yes, sir! Yes, sir!

Who's gonna patronize a little bitty
2 by 4 kind of store anymore?

-Whaddya talk? Whaddya talk?
-Gone, gone

Gone with the hogshead cask
And demijohn

Gone with the sugar barrel
Pickle barrel, milk pan

Gone with the tub
And the pail and the tierce

Ever meet a fellow
By the name of Hill?


ALL: No!

MAN: Just a minute
Just a minute, just a minute

Never heard of any salesman Hill

-He doesn't know the territory
-Doesn't know the territory?

-What's the fella's line?
-Never worries about his line

Or a doggone thing

He's just a bang-beat, bell-ringing
Big haul, great go-neck-or-nothing

Every-time-a-bull's-eye salesman

That's Professor Harold Hill
Harold Hill

What's the fella's line?
What's his line?

He's a fake
And he doesn't know the territory

Look, whaddya talk, whaddya talk?
Whaddya talk, whaddya talk?

He's a music man

-He's a what?
-He's a music man

And he sells clarinets
To the kids in the town

With the big trombones
And the rat-a-tat drums

Big brass bass
Big brass bass

And the piccolo, the piccolo
With uniforms too

With a shiny gold braid on the coat
And a big red stripe running

Well, l don't know much about bands

But I do know you can't make a living
Selling big trombones

No, sir!

Mandolin picks, perhaps
And here and there a jew's-harp

No, the fella sells bands
Boys' bands

I don't know how he does it
But he lives like a king

And he dallies and he gathers
And he plucks and he shines

And when the man dances
Certainly, boys

What else?
The piper pays him

Yes, sir!

When the man dances
Certainly, boys

What else?
The piper pays him

Yes, sir!

Yes, sir!

But he doesn't know the territory!


River City!

Station stop, River City.

Just crossed the state line into Iowa.

Population River City: 2212.

Cigarettes illegal in this state.

If you're all through
I'll tell you about this Harold Hill.

Say, you know Hill?

Never saw him in my life. But l just
been run out of town because of Hill.

He's giving every one of us a black eye.

You go into town to call on the trade...

...and they're waiting for you
with tar and feathers... ride you out the city limits on a rail!

How you account for that?

It's this Hill! He goes around
selling band instruments and uniforms...

...and instruction books by guaranteeing
to teach the kids to play.

-Stands to reason.
-And organize them kids into a band...

...with himself as the leader.

What's wrong with that?

He don't know one note...

-...from another!

That's what's wrong!

He don't know a bass drum
from a pipe organ.

He's a bare-faced, double-shuffle,
two-bit thimblerigger!

And l'll catch up with him
one of these days.

When I do l'll have
the law on him quick!

Territory's tough enough
without him fouling up the nest.

I'd like to be around
when you catch up with him.

I'm not apt to catch up with him in lowa.
Not on your kidney plaster!

He's too smart to pull
that flimflam out here.

Not on these neck-bowed Hawkeyes.


Gentlemen, you intrigue me.
I think I'll have to give Iowa a try.

-l didn't catch your name.
-l didn't drop it.



Fine-looking animal.

For a horse, yeah.

Good morning. Could you kindly
direct me to the center of town?

Runs right down the middle
of the street.


Friend, where would l find a good hotel?

Try the Palmer House in Chicago.

I'm a stranger in town.
What do you folks do for excitement?

Mind our business.

You are in Io-way

At least now l know how
to pronounce it.

I thought you preferred lo-wuh.

We do.

But he just said lo-way.

We say it now and then.
But we don't like anybody else to.

We are from lo-way

I know.

Well, you folks certainly do know how
to make a body feel at home.

Oh, there's nothing halfway

About the Iowa way to treat you
When we treat you

Which we may not do at all

There's an Iowa kind of special
Chip-on-the-shoulder attitude

-We've never been without
-That we recall

ALL: We can be cold as
The falling thermometer in December

If you ask about our weather in July

And we're so by-God stubborn
We can stand touching noses

For a week at a time
And never see eye to eye

ALL: But what the heck
You're welcome

Join us at the picnic

-You can eat your fill
-Of all the food you bring yourself

You really ought to give Iowa a try

Provided you were contrary

Good morning, Mayor Shinn.

Good morning, Mayor Shinn.

It is if you want to go around
in your drawers all day.

ALL: We can be cold as
A falling thermometer in December

If you ask about our weather in July

And we're so by-God stubborn
We can stand touching noses

For a week at a time
And never see eye to eye

But we'll give you our shirt

And the back to go with it

If your crop should happen to die

So what the heck
You're welcome

Glad to have you with us

BOTH: Even though we may not
Ever mention it again

You really ought to give Iowa

Hawkeye lowa

Dubuque, Des Moines, Davenport
Marshalltown, Mason City

Keokuk, Ames, Clear Lake

Ought to give Iowa a try

Mr. Squires. Yes.

I'm interested in a rig for Sunday.

Then you ought to see the man
in charge of hiring rigs.


Riggs? Ain't nobody here by that name.


Marcellus Washburn!



Of all the people to run into in lowa!

Shh. Hill's the name this trip.
Professor Harold Hill.

Why didn't you tell me you were coming?

I didn't know l was, myself.

I never thought l'd find a slicker
like you here in the sarsaparilla belt.

This is where I work.

-You mean you live in this town?
-Yeah. I like it too.

It's not Brooklyn, New York.
Not the city of homes and churches but--

Marce, this isn't even Dubuque.

Hey. Are you hiding out or what?

Just not as light on my feet as I used
to be when l was shilling for you.

You're in a business that got
a lot of close shaves.

I got a nice job now.
I got a nice girl.

Ethel Toffelmier.
That's the boss's niece.

So you've gone legitimate, huh?

I knew you'd come to no good.

What are you selling now?
I heard you were in steam automobiles.

-l was.
-What happened?

-Somebody actually invented one.

So now l'm back at the old stand.

Not boys' bands?

They got no call for boys' bands
in this town.

Anything Iowa folk don't have
they do without.

They got music?

They got a gramophone down
to the barber shop.

And a stuck-up librarian gives piano.

-Gives piano?
-A maiden lady.

She'll expose you
before you unpack this bag.

Maiden lady librarians who give piano
are a specialty of mine.

Just point her out
the minute you see her.

Yeah. l'll back her into a corner
and breathe on her glasses.


Thar she blows!

I'll do it but I won't like it.


That's not the librarian.
That's Mrs. Shinn, the mayor's wife.


Good afternoon, Mrs. Shinn.

Don't change the subject.

Something the matter?

The same thing is the matter as is
always the matter here. Look!

Is this the sort of book
you give my daughter?

This Ruby Hat of Omar Kay-ay-ay--
I am appalled!

I did recommend it.

It's beautiful Persian poetry.

It's dirty Persian poetry.

People lying out in the woods
eating sandwiches.

Getting drunk
with pitfall and with gin.

Drinking directly out ofjugs
with innocent young girls.

-No daughter of mine--
-Mrs. Shinn.

The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
is a classic.

It's a smutty book, like most of
the others you keep here, I daresay.

Honestly, Mrs. Shinn.

Wouldn't you rather have your daughter
read a classic than Elinor Glyn?

What Elinor Glyn reads
is her mother's problem.

Just you keep your dirty books
away from my daughter.

You sure picked yourself a town.

Let me take you over to the hotel.

Not sure l'm going to stay yet.

First l got to find a way to get into
some of these lowa boodlebags.

Greg, it ain't easy.

All I need is an opening.

You remember the pitch. What can I use?
What's new around here?

The other day a farmer brought in
an egg had 3 yolks in it.

Was in the paper.

That's exciting, all right.
No, what do you talk about?

There's the weather, of course.

When it's in season.

Now, Marce, I need some ideas...

...if I'm going to get your town
out of the serious trouble it's in.

River City ain't in any trouble.

We'll have to create some.

Must create a desperate need
in your town for a boys' band.

Why is everyone rubbering
into the billiard parlor?

They just got in a new pool table.

They must have seen one before.

No. Just billiards.

That'll do it!

Just sit where you are.
And remember...

...if you see that music teacher....

Are you Mr. Dunlop?

Either you're closing your eyes to a
situation you don't wish to acknowledge...

...or you are not aware
of the caliber of disaster...

...indicated by the presence of
a pool table in your community.

[SINGING] Well, you got trouble, my friend
Right here, I say

Trouble right here in River City
Why, sure, I'm a billiard player

Certainly mighty proud to say
I'm always proud to say it

I consider that the hours l spend
With a cue in my hand are golden

Help you cultivate horse sense
And a cool head and a keen eye

You ever take and try to give
An ironclad leave to yourself

From a three-rail billiard shot?

But just as I say
It takes judgment, brains and maturity

To score in a balk-line game
I say that any boob

Can take and shove a ball in a pocket
And l call that sloth

The first big step on the road
To the depths of degrada-- l say first

Medicinal wine from a teaspoon
Then beer from a bottle

The next thing you know your son is
Playing for money in a pinch-back suit

And listening to some big
Out-o'-town jasper

Hearing him tell about
Horserace gambling

Not a wholesome trotting race, no

But a race where they set down
Right on the horse!

Like to see some stuck-up jockey boy
Setting on Dan Patch?

Make your blood boil?
Well, I should say!

Now, friends
Let me tell you what I mean

You got 1 , 2, 3, 4

5, 6 pockets in a table

Pockets that mark the difference
Between a gentleman and a bum

With a capital B and that
Rhymes with P and that stands for pool

And all week long your River City
Youth'll be frittering away

I say your young men'll be frittering

Frittering away their noontime
Suppertime, chore time too

Get the ball in the pocket
Never mind getting dandelions pulled

Or the screen door patched
Or the beefsteak pounded

Never mind pumping any water
Till your parents are caught

With the cistern empty on a Saturday night
And that's trouble

Yes, you got lots and lots of trouble

I'm thinking of the kids in the
Knickerbockers, shirttail young ones

Peeking in the pool hall window
After school

You got trouble, folks
Right here in River City

Trouble with a capital T and that
Rhymes with P and that stands for pool

Now l know all you folks
Are the right kind of parents

I'm going to be perfectly frank

Would you like to know what kind of
Conversation goes on

While they're loafing around that hall?

They'll be trying out Bevo
Trying out Cubebs

Trying out Tail or Mades
Like cigarette fiends

And bragging all about

How they're going to cover up
A telltale breath with Sen-Sen

One fine night they leave the pool hall
Headin' for the dance at the Armory

Libertine men and scarlet women
And ragtime

Shameless music
That'll grab your son

Your daughter, with the arms of
A jungle animal instinct mass-teria

Friends, the idle brain
Is the devil's playground, trouble!

CROWD: We got trouble
-Right here in River City

With a capital T and that rhymes with P
And that stands for pool

We've surely got trouble

Right here in River City

Got to figure out a way to keep
The young ones moral after school

Our children's children
Gonna have trouble

Mothers of River City,
heed that warning before it's too late.

Watch for the telltale signs
of corruption.

The minute your son leaves the house...

...does he rebuckle his knickerbockers
below the knee?

Is there a nicotine stain
on his index finger?

A dime novel hidden in the corn crib?

Is he starting to memorize jokes
from Captain Billy's Whiz Bang?

Are certain words
creeping into his conversation?

Words like....

Like "swell."

And "So's your old man."

If so, my friends....

You got trouble

Right here in River City

With a capital T and that rhymes with P
And that stands for pool

We surely got trouble

Right here in River City

Remember the Maine, Plymouth Rock
And the Golden Rule

Our children's children
Gonna have trouble

Oh-ho, we got trouble
We're in terrible, terrible trouble

That game with the 1 5 numbered balls
Is the devil's tool

Oh, yes, we got
Trouble, trouble, trouble

-With a T
-With a capital T

Got to rhyme it with P

And that stands for pool

Remember, my friends, listen to me
Because I pass this way but once!

-Did you drop your--?

-Didn't I meet you in--?

I'll only be in town a short while.




Hello, Mama.

Keep on, Amaryllis.
I'll be there in a minute.


That's fine, dear.
Now on with your exercises.

Library open later
than usual tonight, dear?

It always is, Mama.

Mama, a man with a suitcase
followed me home.

Oh? Who?

I never saw him before.

Did he say anything?

He tried.

Did you say anything?

Of course not, Mama.

Now don't dawdle, Amaryllis.

So, do

La, re, ti, me

A little slower
And please keep the fingers curved

As nice and high as you possibly can

Don't get faster, dear.

It wouldn't have hurt you... have found out
what the gentleman wanted.

I know what the gentleman wanted.

What, dear?

You'll find it in Balzac.

Excuse me for living,
but I never read it.

Neither has anyone else in this town

There you go again
With the same old comment

About the low mentality
Of River City people

And taking it all too much to heart

Now, Mama, as long as the....

Madison Public Library
Was entrusted to me

For the purpose of improving
River City's cultural level

I can't help my concern that
The ladies of River City

Keep ignoring
All my counsel and advice

But, darling!

When a woman has a husband
And you've got none

Why should she take advice from you

Even if you can quote
Balzac and Shakespeare

And all them other
Highfalutin Greeks?

If you don't mind my saying so
You have a bad habit

Of changing every subject

No, I haven't changed the subject
I was talking about that stranger

-What stranger?
-With the suitcase

Who may be your very last chance

Do you think that I'd allow
A common masher? Now really, Mama!

I have my standards
Where men are concerned

And l have no intention--

I know all about your standards
And if you don't mind my saying so

There's not a man alive
Who could hope to measure up

To that blend of Paul Bunyan,
Saint Pat and Noah Webster

You've concocted for yourself
Out of your lrish imagination

Your lowa stubbornness
And your library full of books


Well, if that isn't
the best l ever heard!

Thank you.

Can l have a drink, please?

-May I--?
-May I have a drink, please?

Yes, you may.



Hello, Winthrop.

Winthrop, it's after dark, dear!

I'm having a party on Saturday.
Will you please come?

It's going to be a very nice party.
And l'd especially like it if you'd--

Amaryllis asked you to her party.
Are you going or aren't you?

-No, what?

No, thank you.

You know the little girl's name.

I'll bet he won't say it.

"No, thank you," who, Winthrop?

No, thank you, Amaryllith!



He's crying!


Hello, Winthrop.

Winthrop, you didn't even
say hello to your sister.

He hates to say Amaryllis
because of the lisp.

He's ashamed.

We know all about his lisp, Amaryllis.

Why should he get so mad at people?
Just because he lisps?

-That's just part of it.
-What's the rest of it?

Never mind, dear. It's just that
he never talks very much.

Not even to you and your mother?

No, but we have to be
very patient and understanding.

I'm patient.

I even say good night to him
on the evening star.

Every night.

Good night, my Winthrop.

Good night.

Sleep tight.


And he never says anything to me.

Oh, darling, don't cry.

You'll have lots of time
for sweethearts.

If not Winthrop,
there'll be someone else.

Never! I'll end up an old maid like you.

I'm sorry, Miss Marian.

Can l play my cross-hand piece?

-May I--?
-May I play my cross-hand piece?

Yes, you may.

If a girl doesn't have a sweetheart...

...who's she going to say good night to
on the evening star?

For the time being, you can just say:

"Good night... someone."

You can put the name in
when the right someone comes along.

All right. lt's better than nothing.

Yes, it is.

Now you can play your cross-hand piece.


Good night, my someone

Good night, my love

Sleep tight, my someone

Sleep tight, my love

Our star is shining

Its brightest light

For good night, my love

For good night

Sweet dreams be yours, dear

lf dreams there be

Sweet dreams

To carry you

Close to me

I wish they may

And I wish they might

Now good night, my someone

Good night

True love can be whispered

From heart to heart

When lovers are parted, they say

But I must depend

On a wish and a star

As long as my heart

Doesn't know who you are

Sweet dreams be yours, dear

lf dreams there be

Sweet dreams

To carry you close to me

I wish they may

And I wish they might

Now good night, my someone

Good night

CHORUS [SINGlNG]: O Columbia
The gem of the ocean

The home of the brave and the free

The shrine of each patriot's devotion

A world offers homage to thee

Thy mandates make heroes assemble

When liberty's form stands in view

Thy banners make tyranny tremble

When borne by the red, white and blue

Thy banners make tyranny tremble

When borne by the red, white and blue



I'm sure we're all grateful
to my wife...

...Eulalie Mackecknie Shinn,
for leading the singing.


And to Ethel Toffelmier...

...our fine player piano player...



As mayor of River City...

...l welcome you River Citi-zeeans... the Fourth of July exercises set
up indoors here in Madison Gymnasium...

...account the weather being so chancy.







The members of the school board will
now present a patriotic tableau.


Oh. Oh. The members of the school board
will not present a patriotic tableau.


Some disagreement about costumes,
I suppose.

Instead the Wa Tan Ye girls...

...of the local wigwam of Hiawatha...

...will present a spectacle. My wife.


In which my wife, Eulalie Mackecknie
Shinn, will take a leading part.




EULALIE: I will now count to 20
in the Indian tongue.





Ah! l'm shot! Ho-ho!



Who set off that firecracker?

Tommy Djilas did it. Tommy did it!

Yes, Tommy Djilas.

Tommy Djilas, l wouldn't leave
if l were you.

Mrs. Shinn...


...will recover.


No thanks to a certain young ruffian
who is a disgrace to our city.


...and seven years ago our--

The Paine's Fireworks Spectacle,
"Last Days of Pomp-ee-eye"...

...will take place at 9:30,
providing it isn't raining.

It'll be over at the Madison Picnic Park
in the far meadow.

-Across the creek from the pest house.
-What's all this talk about rain?

The Gazette predicted fair!

That's why we prepared for a storm.

My paper's accurate
most of the time, Jacey.

I wouldn't last long
in the banking business...

...being accurate most of the time.


Will members of the school board
stop bickering in public?

Never mind!


-We heard there's a pool table in town!
-That's what I heard.

SHlNN: Just a minute!
-ls it a pool table or isn't it?

Allow me to get on with the exercises.

We don't want any more exercises until
we get this pool table matter settled.


Let's protect our children!

We've got to protect our children!

Resist sin and corruption!


Let's smite that devil
and keep our young boys pure!

Pure boys!

Folks, listen.

May I have your attention, please?

Attention, please.

l can deal with the trouble, friends

With a wave of my hand, this very hand!

Please observe me if you will
l'm Professor Harold Hill

And l'm here to organize
The River City Boys Band


Oh, think, my friends
How can any pool table

Ever hope to compete
With a gold trombone?


Remember, my friends
What a handful of trumpet players

Did to the famous
Fabled walls of Jericho

Oh billiard parlor walls
Come a-tumbling down

Well, a band'll do it, my friends

Oh, yes, l said a boys' band.
Do you hear me?

I said River City got
To have a boys' band

And I mean she needs it today

Well, Professor Harold Hill's on hand
River City's going to have her boys' band

As sure as the Lord made
little green apples.

And that band's going to be in uniform:

Johnny, Willy, Teddy, Fred!

You'll see the glitter
of crashing cymbals...

...and hear the thunder of rolling drums
and the shimmer of trumpets. Tam-tada!

And you'll feel something akin
to the electric thrill I once enjoyed...

...when Gilmore...

...Pat Conway, the great Creatore...

...W.C. Handy...

...and John Philip Sousa...

...all came to town
on the very same historic day!

76 trombones led the big parade

With 1 1 0 cornets close at hand

They were followed by rows and rows
Of the finest virtuosos

The cream of every famous band

76 trombones caught the morning sun

With 1 1 0 cornets right behind

There were more than a thousand reeds
Springing up like weeds

There were horns
Of every shape and kind

There were copper-bottom timpani
In horse platoons

Thundering, thundering
All along the way

Double bell euphoniums
And big bassoons

Each bassoon
Having his big fat say

There were 50 mounted cannon
In the battery

Thundering, thundering
Louder than before

Clarinets of every size
And trumpeters who'd improvise

A full octave higher than the score


76 trombones hit the counterpoint

While 1 1 0 cornets blazed away

To the rhythm of Hark! Hark! Hark!
All the kids began to march

And they're marching still right today


There ain't nothing like a brass band
to stir a fella up.

When I hear them trombones....

It's them peck horns that really does it.

I bet you Estherville
ain't got anything like it.

Or even Des Moines.

I'll stake my River City band
against any town west of Chicago.

What band?

Honestly! A bunch of grown men.

Along comes this fly-by-night salesman
and you're all taken in.

She's right.
The man's a by-God spellbinder!

I haven't seen people so excited since
Frank Gotch and Strangler Lewis...

...lay on the mat for three and a half hours
without moving a muscle.

Oh, but that was exciting!

Never mind!

Men, this calls for emergency action.

I want that man's credentials.

Grab that hoodlum!
He almost blew up Mrs. Shinn.

Great honk! Let me go!

Much obliged.
Have to make an example of this one.

Everything the ringleader does
the gang does.

You wild kid, you!

Hanging around my oldest girl.

His father is one of them Nithelanians.

-You wild kid, you!
-What'd l do?

-Tagging after my oldest girl.
-l wasn't either tagging.

Don't contradict me!

We was just walking together.
Great honk!

Watch your phraseology. l know what
you was doing. Little Gracie seen you.

Stay away from my oldest or you'll hear
from me till who-laid-the-rails.

I'll talk to you Monday morning about
this band thing. Here in City Hall.

Ten o'clock sharp.


Now, constable!

I'll be responsible for him.

This kid's tough. Probably got
his gang waiting around the corner.

I'll be careful.

Tommy, I want to talk to you
about the band.

Gee, professor,
that's for the little kids.

No, not about playing in the band.

Aren't you mechanically minded?

Did you ever do anything with...

...perpetual motion?

Yeah. l nearly had it
a couple times.

You did? Well, you're my man.

Do you realize no one has ever
invented a music holder...

...for a marching piccolo player?

There's no place to hang the music.

Great honk! Where can I get wire?

Look in your cellar.
That's where people keep wire.

Oh, Tommy.

Yes, sir?

Constable, I'll show you
how to break up a gang.

Young lady!

Miss, what's your name?


I didn't have any idea you was
beckoning to me. Ye gods!

-Do you know Tommy Djilas?

Now, Tommy, this is Zaneeta.
Escort the young lady home.

Only I'm not going home.
I have to go to the library.

Ye gods!

Then escort the young lady home
by way of the library, uh-huh... way of the Candy Kitchen.

Yes, sir.

Do I have to?

Oh, you have to.

Yes, sir!

Ye gods!


You're a bright young fella,
only you made a couple mistakes.

-The mayor owns that billiard parlor...

...and that new pool table.

You don't say?
What was my other mistake?

That Zaneeta.

She's the mayor's oldest girl.



Good evening, ladies.


Just a minute, Professor Hill.

Sorry, we're the school board
and we need your credentials.

-Academic certificates.
-Nothing of the kind!

We need letters and papers.

Make him put up a bond.

What am I hearing?

You, sir.


Say "ice cream"

-lce cream. But I don't sing--
-Talk, then.

Down here

Ice cream

Ice cream.

Talk slow

Ice cream

You see? Singing is just....

Sustained talking

Now you, sir.

Ice cream

Now you, sir.
Now you, sir!

Ice cream


From now on you won't see one of
those men without the other three.

Professor, you're wrong.

Why, they've hated each other
for 1 5 years.

Ice cream

Ice cream


Go ahead, Mom.
I'll be there in a minute.


How can there be

Any sin in sincere?

Where is the good in goodbye?


Your apprehensions confuse me, dear.

Puzzle and mystify

Tell me

What can be fair

ln farewell, dear?

Why one single star shines above?


How can there be any sin in


Aren't we sincerely

ln love?



-l don't suppose you live alone or anything--

-l have wonderful caramels at the hotel--
-Mr. Hill.

Oh, please, please!

Professor Hill.

Professor? Of what?

What college gives a degree
for accosting women... a rowdy at a public dance hall?

I wouldn't know.
I'm a Conservatory man.

Gary, lndiana.
Gold Medal class of '05.

Even should that happen
to be true, Mr. Hill...

...l am not as easily mesmerized
as some people in town.

It's only fair to tell you
I'm not impressed by your credentials...

...which I've not seen,
nor your manners, which I have!


It's a golden key, as it were.

Your key to the magic world of music.

None of our family's ever been
what you'd call musical.

Madam, that you do not know.

Now the main thing is imagination
and proper instruction. Ah!

You, young man, repeat after me.


I love music, Mommy

I love music, Mommy

Now you, young man.

Me too, Mommy

Me too, Mommy

Madam, it's amazing!

Two members of the same family
with absolutely perfect pitch.

Sign here, madam.

MARCELLUS: You sure cut a swath down
at the high school yesterday.

-When you talked about them trombones... looked just like you used to
back in Joplin.


Yeah, when you used to imitate that
Italian bandleader in the park.

Oh, yeah.

[SINGlNG] Ra ta ta ta ta ta
Ram ta ra ta ram

That's kid stuff.

I'm in rare form these days, son.

Just keep your eye on me
for the next four weeks.

Four weeks? You used to get
the instruments in 1 0 days.

I still do, but it takes
four weeks for the uniforms.

Uniforms? You've added uniforms?

Uniforms and instruction books.

Why warm up if
you're not going to pitch?

You can't pass yourself off as
a music professor. You can't read music.

I have a revolutionary new method,
the Think System.

You don't bother with notes.

My boy...

...someday reading music is
going to be absolutely obsolete.

I hope it's soon. In four weeks
these people will want to hear music.

But when the uniforms arrive
they forget everything else.

At least long enough for me
to collect and leave.

This is a refined operation, son.

I've got it timed down to
the wave of the brakeman's hand...

...on the last train out of town.


-Good evening, ladies.
-Good evening, ladies.


HAROLD: Good evening, ladies.

Professor Hill...

...we're all agog.

Oh, yes, simply agog!

-On the qui vive.
-Everyone's excited about the band.

I'm Ethel Toffelmier,
the pianola girl.

And this is Avis Grubb.

-How do you do?
-And Mrs. Hicks.

-And Mrs. Squires.

And, of course, you've met
Eulalie Mackecknie Shinn.

-Our mayor's wife.
-Yes, indeed.

Oh, yes.

Isn't it exciting, Eulalie?

I couldn't say.

Oh, no, l could not say.

I could not say at this time.

My husband will wish to investigate,
I'm sure.

And naturally I'm reticent.

Oh, yes. I'm reticent.

Yes, of course.
I understand, Mrs. Shinn.

But part of my music plans
include a committee on the dance.

And l was thinking--

Do that again, Mrs. Shinn.

Do what? What did I do?

Your foot, the way you just raised it.

Oh, well, l have a bunion there
that bothers me.

What grace!

Oh, Mr. Hill.

What natural flow of rhythm!

Oh, Mr. Hill.

What expression of line and movement!


You must accept chairmanship...

...of the ladies' auxiliary for the
classic dance. Mustn't she, ladies?


Mrs. Shinn, your every move
bespeaks Delsarte.

Will you? Will you?

Say yes, Mrs. Shinn.

Well, l--

That is--

Dancing? Well!

Then you accept?

Indeed! And I'd like to say--

Thank you, Mrs. Shinn.




Now, the young lady
who teaches the piano.

Marian Paroo, l believe.


After all, she is the librarian.

She must've picked him out
the first crack out of the box.

Talking up to a man like that.

He wouldn't talk about her if she
didn't try turkey-talking to him.

Ought to take her ticket
and punch it for her.

Picked her out first crack
like a cheap jack.

Not much pick to her.

-Pick a little, talk a lot.
-Pick a little, talk a little.

-Cheep, cheep, cheep.
-Talk a lot, pick a little more.

Pick a little, talk a little

Cheep, cheep, cheep
Talk a lot pick, a little more.

ALL: Pick a little, talk a little
Pick a little, talk a little

Talk a lot, pick a little more

Her kind of woman
doesn't belong on any committee.

Of course, I shouldn't tell you this,
but she advocates dirty books.

-Dirty books?



The worst thing--
I shouldn't tell you this--

-l'll tell.
-The man lived on my street.

-Let me tell.
-No, I'll tell.

She made brazen overtures to a man
who never had a friend...

...till she came here.

-Old miser Madison.
-Miser Madison?


Madison Picnic Park? Madison Gymnasium?
Madison Hospital? That miser Madison?

Exactly! Who did he think
he was, anyway?

I should say!

The showoff!

He gave the town the library too.

That's just it. When he died
he left the library to the city.

But he left all the books to her.

She was seen going and coming
from his place.

Oh, yes! That woman made....

Brazen overtures
With a gild-edge guarantee

She had a golden glint in her eye

And a silver voice
With a counterfeit ring

Just melt her down and you'll reveal
A lump of lead as cold as steel here

Where woman's heart should be!

He left River City
The library building

But he left all the books to her




Just a minute here, professor.

Sorry. We need your credentials.

Certainly, gentlemen. l have just
what you want over at my hotel.

Please come with me.

Good night, ladies!

Good night, ladies

We're going to leave you now

Farewell, ladies

We're going

To leave you now





Can l visit the horses?

-"May l"?
-May I visit the horses?

It's not visiting hours, but all right.


What a beautiful evening.

Not bad at all for a little place
like River City, Iowa.


Come to the boarding house.
We got chicken croquettes tonight.

No, I'm not thinking about food.

Going to line yourself up
a little canoodling?

No, I got something to look up
at the library.

From what l've heard....

Let me fix you up with
Myrtle Toffelmier, Ethel's sister.

Real nice girl.
Teaches Sunday school.

No wide-eyed, eager, wholesome,
innocent Sunday school teacher for me.

That kind of gal spins webs
no spider ever-- Listen, boy.

A gal who trades on all that purity

Merely wants to trade
My independence for her security

The only affirmative she will file

Refers to marching down the aisle

No golden glorious gleaming
Pristine goddess

No, sir

For no Diana do l play faun
I can tell you that right now

l snarl, I hiss

How can ignorance be compared to bliss?

I spark, l fizz

For the lady who knows what time it is

I cheer and I rave

For the virtue l'm too late to save

The sadder but wiser girl for me

No bright-eyed blushing breathless
Baby-doll baby

No, sir
That kind of child ties knots

No sailor ever knew

I prefer to take a chance

On a more adult romance

No dewy young miss who keeps resisting

All the time she keeps insisting

No wide-eyed wholesome innocent female
No, sir!

Why, she's the fisherman
I'm the fish, you see


I flinch, I shy

When the lass with
The delicate air goes by

I smile, I grin

When the gal with a touch of sin
Walks in

I hope and I pray

For a Hester to win just one more "A"

The sadder but wiser girl's
The girl for me

The sadder but wiser girl for me



It's all right.

I know everything and it makes
no difference.

-l don't know what you're talking about.
-Mr. Madison.

You were probably very young.
Anyone can make a mistake.


No apologies. No explanations.

You see, I'll only be in town
a short while...

...and the sadder but wiser girl for me.

Would you please make
your selection and leave?

I have.

-What do you want to take out?
-The librarian.


Quiet, please.

The librarian.

You're not listening, Marian.




Six steelies, eight aggies,
a dozen peewees...

...and one big glassie with
an American flag in the middle.

-l think l'll drop them.


Madam librarian

Oh, what can l do, my dear

To catch your ear?

I love you madly, madly

Madam Librarian

Heaven help us
If the library caught on fire

And the volunteer hose-brigade men
Had to whisper the news to


Madam librarian

Oh, what can l say, my dear

To make it clear?

I need you badly, badly

Madam Librarian

lf I stumbled and l busted
My whatchamacallit

I could lie on your floor unnoticed
Till my body had turned to


Madam librarian

Now in the moonlight

A man could sing it

In the moonlight

And a fellow would know
That his darling

Had heard every word of his song

With the moonlight

Helping along

But when I try in here

To tell you, dear

I love you madly, madly

Madam Librarian

It's a long-lost cause

I can never win

For the civilized world accepts

As unforgivable sin

Any talking out loud

With any librarian

Such as Marian

Madam librarian




But when I try in here

To tell you, dear

I love you madly, madly

Madam Librarian

It's a long-lost cause
I can never win

For the civilized world accepts
As unforgivable sin

Any talking out loud
With any librarian

Such as

Ladies Dance Committee
meets Tuesday night.



Madam librarian


-Hey, professor.
-Hello, Tommy.

-l think l got it.

My music holder for
a marching piccolo player.

-l still haven't worked out...

...a couple of minor flaws.

Even Edison doesn't always
get it right the first time.

When you hold it tight enough
to keep the music steady... cut off the circulation
and you can't wiggle your fingers.

And meanwhile... could go blind.

I'd say it still needs a little work.

Like to check out
a few prospects with me?


You mean you're going in there?

I don't see any quarantine sign.

Gee, I got to hand it to you, professor.

See you later.

I hope.


Just a minute here.

Are you soliciting?
You haven't got a license.

Why, no, Mr. Mayor.

Mr. Mayor, l collect doorbells.

And this specimen has an
unusual tone quality--

Flattery will not avail you.

Soliciting is statutory in this county.
Malfeasance without a permit.

Why haven't you been over at City Hall?

-l must have just missed you.
-None of your alibis!

-Your hand. Isn't that amazing?

What? What?

That spread of the little finger.
It's hereditary.

-lt is? What does that mean?

It means your son's little finger... perfectly situated for
the spit valve on a flügelhorn.

-ls that good?

It means America finally has
an artist who can...

...flügel the "Minute Waltz"
in 50 seconds.

-How can I get one of those horns?
-Sign here.

Yes, sir.

Fine, fine!

That'll be 1 7 dollars import fee.

Just think, l could've
missed this whole thing.

My son could've--

I haven't got any son!

Oh, George.

I never had a son.

-l never said you did.
-What do you know?

I'd certainly know if l gave you a son.

-l'm not talking to you.
-Who are you talking to?


Never mind!

Zaneeta, call Dr. Pyne for your father.

HAROLD: Yes, my dear Mrs. Paroo,
you must realize...

...that only one
out of every 78 adults...

...has a ganglion that reaches
the ligature clear down to the apex.

This automatically turns your
entire face into an amazing embouchure.

I never had a sick day
in my life, doctor.

Ah. Professor.

Professor! What shall l do for it?

No, you don't understand.

I'm trying to tell you,
you have the facial characteristics...

...of a cornet virtuoso.

If your boy has that same firm chin...

...and those splendid cheek muscles,

By George!

Not that he'd ever really be great.

Is that so?

And in the name of
St. Bridget, why not?

All of the really great
cornet players were lrish.

O'Clark, O'Mendez, O'Klein....

But, professor, we are lrish.


No, really? That clinches it.

Sign here, Madam.
Your boy was born to play the cornet.

Fine, fine!
That'll be 7 dollars earnest money.

Nothing more due until
the opening of band practice.

Thank you. And l'll need your boy's
measurements for his uniform.

His uniform?

-Oh, yes--

-Well, hello there, son.

Why, certainly, his uniform.

And there won't be
a penny due until delivery.

Which gives him four weeks to enjoy,
anticipate, imagine at no cost.

Never allow the demands of tomorrow... interfere with the pleasures
and excitements of today.

Would it have a--?


A stripe! Why, certainly, my boy!

A wide, red stripe down each side.
What do you think of that?


You'll have to excuse Winthrop.

We can't get him to say
three words a day.

Not even to us.

If you can get him to play
in that band...'ll have St. Michael's
own way with you.

But if anybody can do it,
I bet you can. Heh-heh.

Thank you.

You've a gift of the blarney about you,
no mistaking that.

-Where are you from, my boy?
-Gary, Indiana.

I knew it!

Where'd you say?

Gary, lndiana.
Gary Conservatory was my alma mater.

Was she now?

Yes, indeed.
Gold Medal Class of '05.

Gary, Indiana

What a wonderful name!

Named for Elbert Gary
Ofjudiciary fame

Gary, Indiana

As a Shakespeare would say

Trips along softly
On the tongue this way

Gary, Indiana

Let me say it once again

Gary, Indiana

That's the town that knew me when

Now if you'd like to have
A logical explanation

How l happened on
This elegant syncopation

I will say without
A moment of hesitation

There is just one place

That can light my face

Gary, Indiana

Not Louisiana

Paris, France
New York or Rome

But Gary, lndiana

Gary, Indiana

My home sweet home

Gary, Indiana

BOTH: Gary, Indiana
My home sweet home



How do you do, Miss Paroo?

How do you do?

Of course, Paroo!
I thought the name sounded familiar.

-l've been trying to see you.
-He wants to put Winthrop in the band.

We're not interested.

But Marian dear, the boy might have
his father's musical gift.

He does have my ganglion, you know.

Your husband is musical?
I'd like to talk to him.

Do you always burst into people's homes
prying into personal affairs?

We're not interested.


There's one for and one against.

Now, why not let
the boy's father decide?

The boy's father is dead.

Anything else?

I am sorry.

But all the more reason
he should have this!

My brother is an unhappy child who can't
understand why his father was taken away.

Would you care to explain it to him?
He's been brooding for two years.

And as for your musical tricks,
go into business with a carnival man...

...who sells painted watches
and glass diamond rings!

Musical tricks? Now, Miss Paroo!


I have a feeling she likes the idea.

A little cautious,
but I admire that in a woman.

I'll be back later in the week.

I do hope you'll excuse Marian.
She's not really--

Please, don't you worry about a thing.

I'm sure that at heart,
she's as lovely as yourself.

Good day to you, Widow Paroo.


-Has he gone?
-He has. And l hope not forever.

Darling, don't you ever think
of your future?

Now, Mama, a girl's future
doesn't depend on encouraging...

...every fast-talking,

...woman-chasing traveling man
who comes to town.

All right, darling. All right.

Only it's a well-known principle that
if you keep the flint in one drawer...

...and the steel in the other
you'll never strike a fire.

-A fine-looking man.

And educated.

Gary, lndiana Conservation
class of 'Aught-five.

That he claims his commodity is music
does not, in this case, impress me.

Nor does anything else about him.

I give up.

At your age, if you don't mind my asking,
what are you waiting for?

Not for Ed Griner, who backs me
into the history shelf...

...every time he's in the library.

He does?

Or Ed Gammage who has the buggy
with the removable back seat.

If you're waiting for a knight in shining
white armor to come riding up the street....

I'm not waiting for that either.

Then what are you waiting for?

Marian Paroo,
if you don't mind my asking...

...don't you ever think
about being in love?

Being in love?

Being in love

Used to be my favorite dream

Oh, yes

I've been in love

More than anybody else has
I guess

My first love
Heroically ran the streetcar

I tingled at every clang-clang

Next l fell for the principal

But, oh, that teacher who sang

"ln the Gloaming"

Knee-deep in love

What a lovely dream
And yet somehow

Me deep in love's

Only half of what
I'm longing for now

I still love my being
In love with someone

But tell me why couldn't there be

Somebody being in love

With me?

All l want is a plain man

All l want is a modest man

A quiet man

A gentle man

A straightforward and honest man

To sit with me

In a cottage somewhere

ln the state of lowa

And l would like him to be

More interested in me

Than he is in himself

And more interested in us

Than in me

And if occasionally he'd ponder

What makes Shakespeare
And Beethoven great

Him l could love till I die

Him l could love

Till l die

Being in love

What a lovely dream
And yet


Being in love's

Only half of what
I'm longing for now

And so then
Tonight I'll be in there dreaming

And hoping that someday there'll be

Just once!

Somebody being in love

With me

Please, Zaneeta.

I'm supposed to be parallel reading.

Just to the Candy Kitchen.

With Mama and Papa shopping
on Center Street?

Ye gods!

Meet me after supper.

I can't. lt's Epworth League tonight.

-Meet you where?
-The footbridge.

See? Isn't that what I said?

Last time the lumberyard,
now the footbridge.

Where will we meet after that?
The black hole of Calcutta? Ye gods!


It's indecent to meet boys
at the footbridge.

First thing after supper?

All right.

-Ye gods!

The Wells Fargo wagon!

The Wells Fargo wagon?

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon

Is a-coming down the street

Oh, please let it be for me

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming down the street

l wish, I wish l knew what it could be

I got a box of maple sugar
On my birthday

In March l got a gray mackinaw

And once l got some grapefruit
From Tampa

Montgomery Ward sent me a bathtub
And a crosscut saw

-ls that the first thing l said or not?
-Yes, George.

Yes, the very first thing l said,
or l'll eat hay with the horse.

Get his credentials, l said...

...morning of July 4th...

...1 9 and 12.

Now look! My wife is off
dancing at any and all hours...

...instead of in the home.

And the school board is singing
instead of tending to city matters.

My oldest girl is boodling around
with some wild kid.

And my business's fell off so far
I can't find the balance sheet.

I found something interesting in this book
about Professor Hill's alma mater.

I know all about it.
It's all I can get out of him.

Gary Conservatory, class of '05.

If you take time to read it,
you wouldn't have to look any further.

It's on page--

Papa, the Wells Fargo wagon
is coming this way.

The Wells Fargo wagon?

It could be the band instruments!

-The band instruments?
-But Mayor Shinn!

Later, later.

ALL: Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming now

Is it the prepaid surprise or C.O.D.?

It could be curtains

-Or dishes
-Or a double boiler

-Or it could be
ALL: Yes, it could be

Yes, you're right
It surely could be

-Something special
ALL: Something very, very special now

Just for me

ALL: Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming down the street

Oh, don't let him pass my door

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming down the street

I wish l knew what he was coming for

I got some salmon from Seattle
Last September

And l expect a new rocking chair

I hope l get my raisins from Fresno

The D.A.R. have sent a cannon
For the courthouse square

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming now

I don't know how l can ever
Wait to see

It could be something
For thomeone who is

No relation
But it could be

Something special

Just for me

ALL: Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Is a-coming

Oh-ho, the Wells Fargo wagon
Don't you dare to make a stop

Until you stop

For me


Here you are, Winthrop.

My cornet!

Gee, thanks, professor.

Isn't this the most scrumptious
solid gold thing you ever saw?

I never thought l'd ever
see anything... scrumptious as this
solid gold thing. Oh, sister!

Remember, men!
Stay off the streets... attention to your instruments,
and think about the "Minuet in G."

La di da di da
Di da di da

ALL: La di da
La di da

That's it!

La di da di da

Round one for you, Mr. Hill.

But l better hear some tooting
out of them horns in short order...

...or l'll see you before
the grand jury at the county theat!


And now, Miss Marian, about that book--

George, come along.

Tempus fugit.

You watch your phraseology!

Go along, if you want. I must
get something from the librarian.

About that book....

Dance Committee meets Tuesdays
at the school.

They'll be counting on you.

La di da di da
Di da

La di da
La di da

La ra ra ra
Ra ra ra ran

Da di da di
Da di da di dan

BOTH: Tam di tam di
Tam di tam di tam

Pa ra ram
Pa ra ram

La di da di da
Di da di dam

Pa di dam
Pa di dam

Really, girls!

Hurry along, ladies.

Hurry along!

Tempus fugit.

Let's start...

...with our posture exercises.


Lovely, ladies. Lovely!

Now turn.

Take the body with you.

Lovely! Lovely, ladies.

Now for our Grecian urns.

One Grecian urn.

Two Grecian urns!

-That's just amazing!

And a fountain.

Trickle, trickle, trickle,
trickle, trickle, trickle.

Splendid, ladies! Splendid!

Our Delsarte display will be...

...the highlight of
the ice cream sociable.



Now once again.
Practice makes perfection...

...which is what we want.

Then remember, men:

If you want to play
the "Minuet in G"...

...think the "Minuet in G."

A meeting of two minds,
yours and Beethoven's.

-All together now.

I can't even think out
how to hold the horn right.

There's these little spigots
on the side...

...but which one's which?

Aha-ha. Experimentation!

Trial and error!

-Could you show me, professor?

I'll tell you what
the great Giuseppe Creatore...

...said to me once
under like circumstances.

"Professor Hill," he said,
"that is your instrument.

Hold onto it.

Cherish it.

Don't let anybody else play it.
Not even me.

Not even you.

Until you feel you're ready."


Yes, sir.

All together now.

Over and over.

ALL: La di da di da
Di da di da

La di da
La di da


La di da di da
Di da

Take charge.

Another half-hour at least
on the minuet.


-Strawberry phosphate, please.
-Right with you.

Ye gods!

Great honk!

If there's anything you
don't see there, ask for it.


Oh. Professor Hill, l didn't see you.

May I join you?

Well, really, l--

Where? They were seen!
Red-handed! Caught in the act!

-Take your hands off my daughter!

Mr. Shinn, Your Honor, your daughter
and l are going steady behind your back.

-Why, you--!
-We'd rather do it in front of your back.

Do what?

-Well, uh--
-Never mind!

Zaneeta's scared of you but l'm not.

I should think you'd hate to have your
daughter scared of you. Great honk!

I'll warn you once more:
If you ever touch my daughter...

...l'll horsewhip you
till hell won't have it!

Now, George!

Not one poop out of you, Madam.

I think he means "peep."




Now get out of this public emporium!

I got as much right in
a public emporium as anybody!

How do you get any right around here?

Aiding and abetting the swindling
activities of this cymbal salesman!

You know what l see written
all over you? Reform school!

Now get out!

Get out, you wild kid!

Papa, please!

It's Capulets like you make blood
in the marketplace. Ye gods!

You watch your phraseology,
young woman!

Go home.

Taking up with wild kids
from the wrong side of town!

If l could make you understand--

Well, you can't!

And thanks for the buggy ride.

I read that book you gave me
from cover to cover...

...and didn't find a thing.

Mr. Mayor, please--

I'll settle your hash... soon as I get these premises
off my oldest girl.

-But in the meantime...

...l'm vouching for Tommy Djilas.

He has the confidence
of every kid in town.

You'll be waiting to shake his hand...

...when our band
plays its first concert.

By that time,
my fine young feathered... feathered young,
my feathered fine--

Never mind!


Oliver! Jacey! Ewart! Olin!

I want that man's references
and l want them tonight.

He's slipperier than
a Mississippi...sturgeon.

I think Mayor Shinn behaved abominably.

And it was wonderful of you,
sticking up for Tommy Djilas.

-Oh, that was nothing.
-Yes, it was.

A man can't go back on his principles
because personal risk is involved.

What does the poet say?

A coward dies 1 000 deaths.
A brave man...

...only 500.

-Something like that.
-Thank you.

Get his papers or get him in jail!

I couldn't make myself clearer...

...if I was a buttonhook
in well water.

I want to talk to you
about Winthrop's cornet.

A beautiful instrument.
Hammered brass, mother-of-pearl keys.

But he never touches it. He said
you told him it wasn't necessary.

You must understand--

Something about a "Think System."

He says if he thinks the "Minuet in G"
he can play it.

I admit it's still
in the experimental stages.

To a seasoned professional like yourself
it may seem ludicrous.

You mustn't say that.

-l mustn't?

Throughout history the true
originator is always laughed at.

I hope you don't class me with
those small minds who ridiculed--

-Yes, and his conception of the heavens.

Or Fulton.

-Yes. Or Columbus.
-And his conception of the egg--


The one thing one must remember,
no matter who one is...

...or what one is working for... can do anything
if one puts one's mind to it.

Miss Marian...

...if one could only tell you
how much you've done for one.

I would deem it a great privilege
to talk with you again.

Well, all l said--

May one call upon you some evening?

Any night this week.


Good evening, gentlemen.


Sorry, professor,
but we got our orders.

We all been deputized.

Yes, yes, yes.

Congratulations. Now let me see.

Every time l try to give you
those credentials... always try to
change the subject somehow.

It's like a conspiracy.
I'll go up in my room and get them.

-Sorry! Afraid l'll have to go with you.
-Oh, yes.

Let's see if I have my key.

What's this?

What do you know?

A testimonial from
the only female bassoonist...

...on the Redpath Circuit.
Madame Rini.

That's her stage name.
Actually she's from Moline.

-Lida Rose Quackenbush.
-Can l see that?

You never forget the name.
Lida Rose.

-Just like in the old song.
-None of that now!


Lida Rose

I'm home again, Rose

To get the

Sun back

In the sky

Lida Rose

I'm home again, Rose

About a thousand kisses shy




I can hear the chapel bell chime




At the least suggestion

I'll pop the question

Lida Rose

I'm home again, Rose

Without a sweetheart to my name

Lida Rose

How everyone knows

That I am hoping you're the same

So here is my love song

Not fancy or fine

Lida Rose

Oh, won't you be mine?

Lida Rose, oh, Lida Rose
Oh, Lida Rose

Dream of now

Dream of then

Dream of a love song

That might have been

Do I love you?

Oh, yes, l love you

And I'll bravely tell you

But only when you dream again

Sweet and low

How sweet that memory

How long ago?


Oh, yes, forever

Will l ever tell you?


Lida Rose, oh, Lida Rose, oh

Lida Rose, I'm home again, Rose

To get the sun back in the sky

Lida Rose, I'm home again, Rose

About a thousand kisses shy




I can hear the chapel bell chime




At the least suggestion

I'll pop the question

Lida Rose, I'm home again, Rose

Without a sweetheart to my name

Lida Rose, how everyone knows

That I am hoping you're the same

So here is my love song

Not fancy or fine

Lida Rose, oh, won't you be mine?

Lida Rose, oh, Lida Rose
Oh, Lida Rose


Will you ever stop arguing
with yourself?

Will you ever tell him?
Won't you ever tell him? Yes! No!

Fiddlesticks! Open your mouth
and let it come out.

-Now, Mama--
-Now, nothing.

If he ever calls again,
you see him alone...

...and if you haven't the gumption
to tell him how you feel--

MARIAN: Tell him?
-Nothing wrong with a ladylike hint.

Ah! What's that thing you got?

It's a genuine Hercules
combination pocketknife and tool kit...

...with a solid stag handle
and six sturdy steel blades.

Blessed Martin of Tours!

One spear blade, one sheep's foot blade,
one small pen blade...

...a swagging awl, a file and
a combination tack puller and screwdriver.

Where'd you pick up
that horrible weapon?

It was a present.

From Harold.

-Professor Hill?

He says if l stick around River City...

...l better learn to whittle and spit.

I got the spitting down pretty good.

Winthrop, what do you and Harold
find to talk about?

Sometimes we talk business
and sometimes just plain talk.

He talks about his hometown,
Gary, lndiana.

He said he'd take me there someday.

Isn't that nice?

He taught me a song about it
with hardly any "S"s in it.

Gary, Indiana

Gary, Indiana

Let me say it once again

Gary, Indiana

That's the town that knew me when

If you'd like to have
A logical explanation

How l happened on this
Elegant syncopation

I will say without
A moment of hesitation

There is just one place

That can light my face

Gary, Indiana

Not Louisiana

Paris, France
New York or Rome

-Gary, Indiana

Gary, Indiana

My home sweet home


All right, enough of that.
Come along, now.

You still have to change
for the sociable.


Do the Shinns live
around here somewhere?

The Shinn home is on East Elm.
This is West Elm.

Mm, criminy.

Oh. l see you're the
piano teacher here in town.

You must know about this fellow Hill
forming a boys' band here.

Don't let that worry you no more.
I got the goods on him in spades.

That swindling, two-bit

That's why I got to see Shinn.
I'm just passing through...

...and number 8 only makes
a 1 5-minute water stop and--



I wish it was 20.

Sure could concentrate five minutes
on you, girlie-girl.

Who are you?

Name's Charlie Cowell.
Anvil salesman.


But now l've got heavier things
on my mind.

I've got to protect the good name
of the traveling fraternity from Hill.

Mr. Cowell,
you're making a big mistake.

Mistake, my old lady's corset cover!

He's been the raspberry seed... my wisdom tooth just long enough.

He spoiled Illinois for me.
But he won't spoil lowa.

You're a music teacher.
You didn't see through him?

-He's no more professor--
-l know all about that.

Bandleaders are always called professor.

It's an academic courtesy.
He's a fine director--

Now wait a minute!

Fine director?

Tell me, you heard one note
of music from any band?

Well, no, but--

But nothing, girlie-girl.
He never formed a band in his life.

And you think he ever will?

Not on your previous existence!

Just listen a minute--

I'd like to.

I'd like to do more than that
if l had the time.

Sure got the inclination.


But l got to leave this dynamite
with somebody on the way to the depot.

Bye, girlie-girl. I'll see you
next time l come through.

You'll never make that train
at the depot. Catch it at the crossing.

I've got to leave word, and I can see
you ain't the one to leave it with.

Wait a minute!

Mr. Cowell.


You don't know me very well yet.


Is that an invitation, girlie-girl?

No. I mean, I don't know you.

I'd need more time anyway.

What l mean is... well as I'd like to.

Oh. There's no trouble there...


I've never met a man...

...who sells anvils before.

It's really quite...


Takes a real salesman,
I can tell you that.

Anvils have a limited appeal, you know.

What am I doing?

If l miss that train, I'll lose my job.

And l got to leave word about Hill.

Leave word with me.

Not on your tintype, girlie-girl.

How do l know
you'll deliver these letters?

Try me.




There's your train! Run for it!

You double-dealing--
Who do you think you're protecting?

That guy's got a gal
in every county in lllinois...

...and he's taken it away from
every one of them. That's 1 02 counties!

Not counting the piano teachers
like you he cozies up to...

...just to keep your mouths shut!

Neither one of you have
heard the last of me, girlie-girl!

I'll pop the question

Lida Rose, I'm home again, Rose

Without a sweetheart to my name

Good evening, Miss Marian

Lida Rose, how everyone knows

That I am hoping you're the same


Marian dear, who was you talking--?

Why, Professor Hill!

Mrs. Paroo, the top of the evening!
Miss Marian.

You and Marian come up and set.

I've got some jelly on the stove.

There's no jelly on the stove.

Well, l'll put some on!

-Shall we "set," as your mother said?
-Really, I don't--

You did ask me to call. Remember?

Did I? I didn't mean anything.

I'm not suggesting
your invitation inferred...

...anything but academic enlightenment.

The Think System.

I've been by your house
to explain it to you...

...but there always seem
to be people around.

Ladies mostly, l thought.

Yes. Mrs. Squires
and several of the other ladies.

I'm glad.

I wouldn't want anyone beating my time.

"You wouldn't?"

"No, ma'am."

It's evidently not
the convenient evening.

I'll see you at the sociable.

Professor Hill, is it true
that you've had 1 00--?

-What I'm trying to say is--

I was wondering... you developed the Think System.

The Think System?

Oh, the Think System!

It's quite simple, really.
It's as simple as whistling.

No one had to develop an
elaborate technique for whistling.

You simply think the tune up here...

...and it comes out clearly here.


Now just suppose you try this yourself.

I'll take your word for it.

Why don't we all sit down?

Are all music teachers
as dense as I am?

All music teachers?

I daresay you've met dozens.
Maybe even a hundred.

-Are they all as fascinated as l...

...with the Think System?

Some more and some less.

One young lady had thought
up the same system.

She showed me a few refinements.

I see.

Have l said something wrong?

Please don't let me keep you.

You must have more important
things to do...

...than explain the Think System to me.

Nope, can't think of one.
Come, let's sit.

I must be very dull company
for a man of your experience.

Now where'd you ever get
an idea like that? Heh-heh.

One hears rumors about
traveling salesmen.

Oh, now, you mustn't
believe everything you hear.

After all, one even hears rumors
about librarians.

I presume you're referring
to Uncle Maddy?

-Uncle Maddy?
-Mr. Madison, my father's best friend.

No matter what they say,
he left that library job to me... Mother, Winthrop and l
could have security.

Surely, you don't believe--

No, but that's just what l'm saying.

Why do you suppose
people start rumors?

Narrow-mindedness, jealousy.

Jealousy mostly, l guess.


And jealousy mostly starts
rumors about traveling salesmen.

What have you heard?


Nothing about you personally.
It's just... know, generally.

What have you heard generally?

Just that--

But of course!

It stands to reason that disappointment
and jealousy can lead to--

Well, take you, for instance.
Your attentions to customers...

...and teachers might easily be
misconstrued, mightn't they?

I mean now, honestly, mightn't they?

And as you say, if a salesman
or somebody were jealous...

...they could be downright lies,
now, couldn't they?

-What could?
-Rumors and things!

Of course!

It goes to show, you should never
believe everything you hear!

I mean, if you just discuss things!

I'd be delighted to discuss...

...anything in the world with you.

But couldn't we do it sitting down?

You do sit?

Your knees bend and all?

We could sit on the steps, l suppose.

Or on the large hollow log
over at the footbridge.

No, I couldn't do that.

I've never been to the footbridge
with a man in my life.

Just to talk.

I have to dress for the sociable.

Then meet me there in 1 5 minutes.

No, I can't.


Some other time.
Maybe tomorrow.


Oh, my dear little librarian!

You pile up enough tomorrows
and you'll collect...

...nothing but a lot
of empty yesterdays.

I don't know about you...

...but l'd like to make today
worth remembering.


So would l.

The footbridge...

...1 5 minutes.

Fifteen minutes.


I told the professor l'd meet him
at the footbridge in 1 5 minutes.

Glory be and the saints be praised!

-lt works!
-What works?

I been using the Think System
on you from the parlor.


Any of you people Mayor Shinn?


Please, you got to clear this area.

Mrs. Shinn wants
to start the entertainment.


No, we want to dance.


Wait'll you see the new steps
Professor Hill taught us.

Mr. Washburn,
my group is ready to perform.


-Start her out.
-Okay, what'll it be?

"The Shipoopi!"


Now a woman who'll kiss on the

Very first date is usually a hussy.

And a woman who'll kiss on the
Second time out is anything but fussy

But a woman who'll wait
Till the third time around

Head in the clouds
Feet on the ground

She's the girl he's glad he's found
She's his Shipoopi

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

The girl who's hard to get

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

But you can win her yet

Walk her once
Just to raise the curtain

Walk around twice
And you make for certain

Once more in the flower garden

She will never get sore
If you beg her pardon

CHORUS: Do re mi fa so la si do
Si la so fa mi re do

Squeeze her once
When she isn't looking

If you get a squeeze back
That's fancy cooking

Once more for a pepper-upper

She will never get sore
On her way to supper

CHORUS: Do re mi fa so la si do
Si do

Now little old Sal's a no-gal
As anyone could see

Look at her now, she's a go-gal
Who only goes for me

Squeeze her once
When she isn't looking

If you get a squeeze back
That's fancy cooking

Once more for a pepper-upper

She will never get sore
On her way to supper

CHORUS: Do re mi fa so la si do
Si do

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

The girl who's hard to get

FEMALE SlNGERS: Shipoopi, Shipoopi,

But you can win her yet

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

The girl who's hard to get

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi
But you can win her yet

Hey, professor!
Show us some new steps!


Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

The girl who's hard to get

Shipoopi, Shipoopi, Shipoopi

But you can win her yet

You can win her yet



Professor Hill--

This is no place to talk.
You won't back down?

I'll come, but I promised
Mother and Winthrop... have a plate of cream with them.
You go along, I'll meet you.

Fifteen minutes.



SHlNN: And now we arrive
at the high-water mark...

...of the evening's festivities.

The River City Ladies'
Eurhythmic Dance Group...

...under the leadership of my wife...

...will give their interpretation of....


Grecian urns!

Yes. Grecian urns.


Psst. Psst.


One Grecian urn.


Miss Marian, you're late.

-You said 1 5 minutes.
-Not that kind of late. l meant....

I'd say about...

...26 years late.

It took you all this time to get
to the footbridge with a fella.

If you want to know the truth,
it was almost longer.

-Halfway here...

...l nearly turned back.

I suppose I'm not
the first person to discover...

...a girl doesn't think clearly
under the spell of your salesmanship.

You surely don't think I've
been trying to sell you anything?

Oh, no.

You've given me something.
That's why I had to come.

-l don't recall giving you--

Something beautiful.

That's why I came.

And l'm so glad.

Please don't be afraid
I expect too much more.

One can't expect
a traveling salesman to stay put.

There've been many ports of call
and there'll be many more.

Still, l can be grateful
for what you've left behind.

For me.


There were bells

On the hill

But I never heard them ringing

No, l never heard them at all

Till there was you

There were birds

In the sky

But I never saw them winging

No, l never saw them at all

Till there was you.

And there was music

And there were wonderful roses

They tell me

In sweet fragrant meadows

Of dawn

And dew

There was love

All around

But I never heard it singing

No, l never heard it at all

Till there was you

There was love

All around

But I never heard it singing

No, l never heard it at all

Till there was



There's lots you don't know about me.

I'm not asking.

Excuse me.

I'm expecting a telegram from Rudi Friml.

This could be it.

Who's the salesman? Looks like
she's selling and you're buying.

I have to keep her off balance.

She's as off balance as
a catboat in a hurricane.

It's just until those uniforms arrive.

They're here and the kids are in them.

Tommy passed out the uniforms
and collected most of the money.

Now he's pretending there's
a band practice at the lumberyard.

-What time's the freight train go?
-9:40 from the junction.

It isn't even 8:30 yet.

You better cheese it now while you can!

I came up through the ranks
on this skirmish.

I won't resign without my commission.

Now go on, beat it!

Never a peaceful moment
in the music business.

Now where were we?

You were going to tell me
what I don't know about you.


But we don't have to go
into that right now.

Of course not.

We never have to go into that, Harold.

Madam Librarian, you are a lady
from the ground up.

The librarian hasn't felt much like
doing research lately.

But she did plenty of it
when you first came here.


About what?

Oh. About Professor Harold Hill...

...Gary Conservatory of Music,
Gold Medal Class of '05.


...there wasn't any
Gary Conservatory in '05.

Well, there most cert--

The town wasn't even built until '06.

Walk me home.

I have to get something
to draw around my shoulders.

You knew all the time.

I've known since
three days after you came here.

I tore this out of the Indiana Journal.

I meant to use it against you.

Now I give it to you with all my heart.

But if you knew--

It's your sweet "Hello, dear"

That sets me up

And it's your "Got to go, dear"

That gets me down


It's you on my pillow

In all of my dreams

Till once more the morning--

Stop! Stop!

Stop! Stop, l tell you!

Listen to this man.

Why, you boneheaded, square-toed...

...tank town boobs!

I've been trying to tell you!

Can't you see this music fella's
giving you the double shuffle!

He's putting the shake on you...

...taking out your eyeteeth
while you look the other way.

What are you saying?

I'll tell you what l'm saying!

This burglar's in the bedroom
while you're fiddling in the parlor!

Whose bedroom are
the burglars fiddling in?


I'm talking about Harold Hill.

A shell worker.

A flimflammer!

An eighteen-karat thief!

You mean the music professor?

Music professor?

Not on your fireless cooker, mister!

Fellow that organized the band?

There ain't any band.
There ain't never been a band.

There ain't never going to be a band!

Unless you hunt this man down now
like a mad dog...

...there won't be a Harold Hill either.

He'll be on his way to the state line.

I said all along,
get his credentials, didn't l?

I got his credentials right here!

Well, what are we waiting for?

I want my money back.

I want his hide!

Find him and bring him to the school.

Roped and hogtied, if you have to.

And don't let him give you the slip.

All right, after him!


Have you seen Professor Hill?

Haven't been looking for him.

I'll only be a minute.


While 1 1 0 cornets played the air

Then I modestly took my place

As the one and only bass

And l oompahed up and down the square

Good night, my someone

Good night, my love

With 1 1 0 cornets right behind

Our star is shining

Its brightest light

There were horns of every shape and--

Sweet dreams be yours, dear

lf dreams there be

While 1 1 0 cornets played the air

I wish I may

And l wish I might

Now good night

My someone

Good night.


He's not in there.
Try the livery stable!

Try the freight depot!


Let's go, Greg.

The flivver's in the alley,
all cranked up!

They're onto you!
That anvil salesman... running all over town
spilling everything!

Come on!

Run, professor!
They're talking about tar and feathers.

I've looked all over for Winthrop.
He's run away.

Maybe he's in his room.

It's not often I'm at a loss for words--

It's all right.
Don't you know that?

You don't owe me a word,
not a word.

Now hurry, please!


He's not around here, folks!

Let's try by the creamery.

-Whoa. Hold on a minute, son.
-l'm not your son. Leave me go!

Not until I talk to you a minute.

I won't listen.
You wouldn't tell the truth anyway.

-l would too.
-Would not!

Tell you anything you want to know.

Can you lead a band?


-Are you a big liar?

-Are you a dirty, rotten crook?

Then leave me go, you big liar!

You wanted the truth, didn't you?

I'm bigger than you,
and you're getting it all.

So just stop wiggling.


There are two things
you're entitled to know.

One, you're a wonderful kid.

I thought so from the first.
That's why I wanted you in the band... you'd stop moping around
and feeling sorry for yourself.

What band?

I always think there's a band, kid.

WlNTHROP: What's the other thing
I'm entitled to know?

That's none of your business,
come to think of it.

I wish you never came to River City.

No, you don't, Winthrop.

Sister, you believe him?

I believe everything he ever said.

But he promised us!

I know what he promised us,
and it all happened just like he said:

The lights, the colors,
the cymbals and the flags.

Where was all that?

In the way every kid in town
walked around all summer...

...and looked and acted.

Especially you.

And the parents too.

Does Mama wish he'd never come?

Well, you do, don't you?

No, Winthrop.

You'd better go, Harold. Please!

Go on, professor.

Hurry up.

I can't go, Winthrop.

Why not?

Well, for the first time in my life...

...l got my foot caught in the door.

There was love

All around

But I never heard it singing

No, l never heard it at all

Till there was you.


Greg, they're here!

Run this way!

Go on, professor! That way, that way!


SHlNN: And always remember,
fellow River City-zeeans...

...l did everything in my power
to prevent this dire...

...happening from...



How will you get our money back?

That professor collected almost
$300 on uniforms just tonight.

I haven't seen a uniform or my boy
either since just after supper.

He's a kidnapper!

That's a fine situation we have here!



Just a minute!

Virtue has triumphed!

The sword of restibution...

...has cut down...

...Professor Harold Hill.


And if there are those,
as l've heard...

...who are melting tar
and plucking feathers...

...l will not say them nay!

I should think some of you could forget
your everlasting Iowa stubbornness...

...long enough to remember what
this town was like before Harold Hill came.

Do you?

-Well, do you?
-Hold up, there!

And then after he came!

Suddenly there were things to do...

...and things to be proud of...

...and people to go
out of your way for.

Surely some of you can be grateful
for what this man has brought to us.

I'd think you'd want to admit it!

You're wasting a great deal of time!

If there's a person in this hall...

...who doesn't want this man
Hill tarred and feathered...

...let him, by God, stand up!


Eulalie, sit down!


And the rest of you, who are standing
there like Shropshire sheep!

Maybe you can remember other things.

Like what you paid for uniforms...

...technical instruction books
and band instruments.

With the understanding...

...your children would be taught
to play in a band!

Well, where's the band?

Where's the band?!





No, I couldn't!

Now, think, men.



That's my Barney!

That tuba's my Barney!

Wonderful, Barney.

That's Eddie! That's Eddie's clarinet!
Oh. Oh.


Play to me, son!

Play to me!


That's my Davey!



76 trombones led the big parade

With 1 1 0 cornets close at hand

They were followed by rows and rows
Of the finest virtuosos

The cream of every famous band

76 trombones caught the morning sun

With 1 1 0 cornets right behind

There were more than a thousand reeds
Springing up like weeds

There were horns
Of every shape and kind

There were copper-bottom timpani
In horse platoons

Thundering, thundering
All along the way

Double bell euphoniums
And big bassoons

Each bassoon

Having his big fat say

There were 50 mounted cannon
In the battery

Thundering, thundering
Louder than before

Clarinets of every size
And trumpeters who'd improvise

A full octave higher than the score!