The Scarlet Pimpernel


THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL is a swashbuckling action/adventure musical, based on Baroness Orczy’s famous 20th-century novel about the French Revolution and the battle for Liberty, Equality and Fraternity. With an epic, sweeping book by Nan Knighton and a rousing and passionate score by Knighton and Frank Wildhorn, THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL is a colorful window into 18th century French and British history.

The show’s most popular numbers include “Into The Fire,” “When I Look At You,” “You Are My Home,” “She Was There,” and “I’ll Forget You.”

Authorized performance and rehearsal tracks for THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL are available from The MT Pit. For more information, visit

  • Synopsis
  • Credits
  • Orchestration
  • Materials
  • Cast
  • History
  • Musical Numbers
  • Upcoming
  • Act I

    Paris. May of 1794. At the bloody peak of the French Revolution, the beautiful actress Marguerite St. Just falls in love with an Englishman, Sir Percival “Percy” Blakeney. After a whirlwind courtship, she announces their engagement at her farewell performance at the Comedie Francaise (“Storybook”). Chauvelin, a high-ranking revolutionary official and Marguerite’s former lover, is furious. On the night Marguerite leaves for England with Percy and her brother, Armand, Chauvelin blackmails her into giving him secret information about the Marquis de St. Cyr, a friend of Percy’s whom Chauvelin promises will not be harmed. But Chauvelin uses this information to trap and execute St. Cyr and his family, along with scores of other innocent Frenchmen (“Madame Guillotine”).

    In England, Percy and Marguerite are married (“You Are My Home”), but Percy’ is appalled to discover his new bride was responsible for the death of his friend, St. Cyr. Fearing he has married a French spy, Percy sends a confused Marguerite off to bed alone on their wedding night (“Prayer”).

    Determined to somehow right the wrong his wife has done, Percy persuades his friends to join him in a private war against the inhumanities of the bloody French regime. As The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel, they’ll work through disguise and diversion to save as many innocent lives as they can. Boarding a schooner to sail to France, Percy and his men fight back their fears (“Into The Fire”). By early July, Percy (a.k.a. The Scarlet Pimpernel) has pulled off one clever rescue after another, and Chauvelin responds with a fiery determination to catch this mysterious rebel (“Falcon In The Dive”).

    Back in England, Percy and his men have now become virtual caricatures of their dandified, foppish selves in order to deflect suspicion from their heroic activities in France. They facetiously speculate about the identity of their new British hero, “The Scarlet Pimpernel.” Marguerite, baffled by this new distant and inane Percy, laments their marital estrangement (“When I Look At You”).

    Chauvelin arrives in England and asks Marguerite to help him discover the identity of The Scarlet Pimpernel, but she angrily refuses. Realizing that Marguerite is unhappy in her marriage, Chauvelin reminds her of the passions they shared early in the revolution (“Where’s The Girl?”). Marguerite rejects his advances. Meanwhile, despite a lack of trust in her, Percy continues to secretly love his wife.

    Percy and his men are summoned to the Royal Palace by the Prince of Wales, who suspects they may have something to do with the League of the Scarlet Pimpernel. They persuade the Prince, however, that their frequent trips to France are merely to buy frills and frou-frou (“The Creation of Man”). Meanwhile, Chauvelin meets secretly with Marguerite, informing her that her beloved brother, Armand, has been arrested in Paris as a member of the Pimpernel’s League. He insists she spy for him at the Royal Ball that night. If she fails to come up with information about the Pimpernel, Armand will be guillotined. Marguerite, Chauvelin and Percy eye one another warily, as all three wonder who exactly can be trusted in this slippery world (“The Riddle”).

    Act II

    That night, at the Royal Ball, Percy continues his public disguise as England’s greatest fool, joking about the elusive Pimpernel and mocking the stony-faced Chauvelin (“They Seek Him Here”). Undeterred, Chauvelin commands Marguerite to uncover the identity of the Pimpernel, and she arranges to meet the Pimpernel outside on the footbridge. When Percy arrives, disguising his voice and keeping in the shadows, Marguerite confesses that she spied and attempted to expose him, but it all stemmed from Chauvelin’s coercion and blackmail. She warns the Pimpernel to run from Chauvelin, and begs him to help her save her brother. Percy sends his wife away, and releases his great joy at discovering that she has only been an innocent victim (“She Was There”).

    Percy and his men set off for France to save Armand, but Marguerite also secretly travels to Paris. Disguising herself as a French tart, she tries to cajole information about her imprisoned brother from two soldiers. Chauvelin, however, instantly sees through her disguise, and orders both Armand and Marguerite to be sentenced to the guillotine. Embittered at his realization that Marguerite will never return his love, Chauvelin finally drives her out of his heart (“Where’s The Girl – Reprise”).

    In prison, Marguerite tries hard not to think of Percy (“I’ll Forget You”). Resolved to catch the Pimpernel, Chauvelin allows Marguerite and Armand to escape and sets a trap for all of them.

    As everyone converges on stage at the now-abandoned Comedie Francaise, Marguerite finally learns that the Scarlet Pimpernel is actually her own husband, Percy. Percy and Chauvelin confront each other in the ultimate swordfight and showdown, and although Percy seems certainly doomed to death, he manages to outwit Chauvelin one last time. Finally, Percy and Marguerite are reunited and able to trust one another (“When I Look At You – Reprise”). The full company joins in to celebrate this triumph of the human spirit (“Into The Fire – Reprise”).


    Book and Lyrics by                     Music by
    Nan Knighton                     Frank Wildhorn

    Based on the Novel “The Scarlet Pimpernel” by Baroness Orczy

    Original Broadway Production Produced by
    Radio City Entertainment and Ted Forstmann
    With Pierre Cossette, Bill Haber, Hallmark Entertainment and Kathleen Raitt

    The following credit shall appear in all programs for the PLAY:

    Orchestrations by Kim Scharnberg

    Such credits to the authors for all purposes shall be in the same type size and shall in no event be less than fifty percent (50%) of the type size used for the title of the play, and the size of the billing given to Baroness Orczy shall be fifty percent (50%) of the type size used for the billing to the authors. No billing shall appear in type larger or more prominent than the billing to the authors, except for the title of the play, and only stars billed above the title may receive billing as large or prominent as the authors. No billing box may be used. No person or entity shall be accorded possessory credit (i.e., “Director’s Production Of” or “Producer’s Production Of”) with the title of the play. The billing for the authors shall appear immediately following the title of the play. In the programs, the credits shall appear on the title page thereof.

    The title page of the program shall contain the following announcement in type size at least one-half the size of the authors’ credits:

    is presented by arrangement with
    Tams-Witmark, A Concord Theatricals Company

    Additionally, you agree to include the above language hyperlinked to on all websites on which you promote the play.

  • NOTE: Authorized performance and rehearsal tracks for THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL are available from The MT Pit. For more information, visit

    Full Orchestration

    1 Reed I: Piccolo, Flute, Alto Flute & Soprano Saxophone
    (Alto Flute music w/ interlinear transposition for Flute)
    1 Reed II: Oboe & English Horn
    (English Horn w/ interlinear transposition for Clarinet)
    1 Reed III: Flute, Clarinet & Bass Clarinet
    1 Reed IV: Bassoon & Contrabassoon

    1 Horn I
    1 Horn II
    1 Trumpet I (doubling Piccolo Trumpet)
    1 Trumpet II
    1 Trombone I (Tenor Trombone & Euphonium)
    1 Trombone II (Bass Trombone)

    1 Percussion I (Trap Drum Set)
    1 Percussion II (Mallet Instruments)
    1 Keyboard I (Synthesizer, principally piano)
    1 Keyboard II (Synthesizer, Principally string substitute)

    3 Violin (6 players)
    1 Viola (2 players)
    1 Cello (2 players)
    1 Bass (Acoustic & Electric)

    Piano-Conductor’s Score sent with rehearsal material.
    The orchestration requires 25 players unless the parts for violin, viola and cello are left entirely to the Keyboard II (Synthesizer – string substitute), then the minimum number of players required is 15.

  • Rehearsal Materials

    2       Piano/Conductor Scores
    20     Libretto/Vocal Books

    NOTE: Authorized performance and rehearsal tracks for THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL are available from The MT Pit. For more information, visit

  • Principals

    (2 female; 3 male)

    Marguerite St. Just
    Marie Grosholtz
    Percy Blakeney (Grappin and The Scarlet Pimpernel)
    Armand St. Just


    St. Cyr
    Ozzy — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Dewhurst — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Elton — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Farleigh — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Hal — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Ben — one of Percy’s Bounders
    Prince of Wales


    Mercier — aide to Chauvelin
    Coupeau — aide to Chauvelin
    Jessup — butler to Percy
    Sentry — at the Royal Palace


    SATB Chorus:

    Cupids of the Comédie Française
    Paris Street Mob
    Royal Ball Guests
    6 Girl Servants at the Blakeney Estate

    The original Broadway production had a cast of 36 performers, including chorus. Some doubling was employed in the minor parts.

  • THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL played on Broadway in a progressive series of three different versions for a total of 772 performances at the Minskoff and Neil Simon Theatres. The original cast featured Christine Andreas, Terrence Mann, and Douglas Sills. The third and final version was authorized for licensing.

  • Act I

    1. Prologue – Orchestra
    2. “Storybook” – Marguerite & Ensemble
    2a. Chauvelin’s Revenge – Orchestra
    3. “Madame Guillotine” – Chauveline, St. Cyr, & Ensemble
    4. “You Are My Home” – Percy, Marguerite, & Ensemble
    4a. Wedding Dance – Orchestra
    4b. Wedding Exit – Orchestra
    5. “Prayer” – Percy
    5a. Morning Horn Call – Orchestra
    6. “Into The Fire” – Percy, Armand, Ozzy, Dewhurst, Elton, Farleigh, Hal, & Ben
    6a. The Rescue Ballet – Orchestra
    7. “Falcon In The Dive” – Chauvelin
    8. Scarlet Pimpernel Transition – Percy, Marie, Marguerite, & Girls
    9. “When I Look At You”—Marguerite
    9a. Playoff: When I Look At You – Orchestra
    9b. Reprise: “When I Look At You” – Percy & Marguerite
    10. “Where’s The Girl” – Chauvelin
    10a. Exits and Entrances – Orchestra
    11. “You Are My Home”: Garden Reprise – Marguerite & Armand
    12. “The Creation of Man” – Percy, Ozzy, Dewhurst, Elton, Farleigh, Hal, & Ben
    12a. Creation of Man: Exit – Orchestra
    13. “The Riddle” – Part 1 – Chauvelin
    13a. The Riddle – Part 2 – Orchestra
    13b. “The Riddle” – Part 3 – Chauvelin, Percy, Marguerite, & Offstage Chorus

    Act II

    14. Entr’acte – Orchestra
    14a. Opening Act II: “The Scarlet Pimpernel” – Percy, Marguerite, & Ensemble
    15. “They Seek” – Percy, Marguerite, Chauvelin, Elton, Farleigh, Dewhurst, Ozzy, Prince of Wales, & Ensemble
    15a. Ouilles Gavotte – Orchestra
    16. “She Was There” – Percy
    17. Tag: “She Was There” – Percy
    18. Bistro Reprise: “Storybook” – Marguerite & Ensemble
    18a. Into The Prison – Orchestra
    19. Reprise: “Where Is The Girl” – Chauvelin
    19a. Into The Batcave – Orchestra
    19b. Street Drums – Orchestra
    20. Reprise: “Into The Fire” – The Bounders: Ozzy, Dewhurst, Farleigh, Elton, Hal, & Ben
    21. “I’ll Forget You” – Marguerite & Ensemble
    22a. Chauvelin’s Rose – Orchestra
    22b. In The Coach – Orchestra with offstage chorus
    22c. Chauvelin In Miquelon – Orchestra
    22d. The Duel – Orchestra
    22e. The Death of Percy – Orchestra
    22f. Return of Percy – Orchestra
    23. Finale/Reprise: “When I Look At You” – Marguerite, Percy, & Offstage Chorus
    24. Bows/Reprise: “Into The Fire” – Ensemble: Percy & Company
    25. Exit Music – Orchestra

  • Find upcoming performances near you.

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    Organization City, State First Performance Last Performance
    Williamsburg Players, Inc Williamsburg, VA 04/03/2020 04/19/2020
    Scera Center for the Arts Orem, UT 04/10/2020 05/02/2020
    College Light Opera Company Falmouth, MA 08/18/2020 08/22/2020
    CenterPoint Legacy Theatre Centerville, UT 09/25/2020 10/24/2020