Set in Damon Runyon’s New York City of the 1950s, GUYS & DOLLS follows a number of colourful characters in a humorous and touching story set in the bright lights and shady corners of Times Square and is considered by many to be the perfect romantic comedy musical.
There are two main couples, around whom the story revolves. Firstly we have Sarah Brown, the upright and pretty “mission doll,” whose life’s work is to reform the sinners she sees in the City and Sky Masterson, the slick, high-rolling gambler who whisks her off to Havana for a bet. Then we have Adelaide, the perpetually-ill nightclub performer whose ‘flu symptoms are due to the fact that her engagement has been on-going for 14 years, and Nathan Detroit, her devoted fiancé, who is always furtively searching for a venue for his infamous and illegal floating crap game.
Nathan hopes to get a $1,000 security deposit to hold the game in the Biltmore Garage by winning a bet against Sky Masterson, that he can’t take Sarah Brown to dinner in Havana, Cuba. On their return, Sarah, now in love with Sky as much as he is with her, discovers that the crap game had been held in the mission in her absence. Believing Sky to have “got her out of the way” for that purpose, Sarah rejects him.
Meanwhile, in an attempt to allay Lt. Brannigan’s suspicions, Nathan tells the police officer that he and his friends are gathering together for his wedding to Adelaide. Imagine her delight… until she realises her intended is once more involved in running his gambling ring!
Thankfully, everything works out in the end, thanks to the machinations of Abe Burrows and Jo Swerling’s hilarious, fast-paced book and Frank Loesser’s bright and brassy score. With many well-known songs, such as “Luck Be A Lady,” ”Sit Down You’re Rocking The Boat” and “Take Back Your Mink,” Guys And Dolls is a sure-fire winner.