Evening Primrose - PLOT SYNOPSIS

Stephen Sondheim's 1966 television musical
Evening Primrose the Musical - PLOT SYNOPSIS

Poet Charles Snell takes refuge from the world by hiding out in a department store after closing ("If You Can Find Me, I'm Here"). Once there he finds a secret group who have lived in the store for years. The leader of the group, Mrs. Monday, permits Charles to stay after he convinces her that he is a poet.

Charles meets and is smitten with a beautiful young girl, Ella Harkins, Mrs. Monday's maid. Ella, who is now 19, has lived in the store since she was separated from her mother at age six, falling asleep in the women's hat department. Ella is unhappy and wants to leave, but is afraid of the "Dark Men". Should someone try to return to the outside world and risk revealing the group's existence, the Dark Men take them away and another mannequin appears in the clothing department.

Charles realizes Ella has not seen the sun for thirteen years, but she replies that she remembers ("I Remember"). Charles has fallen in love with Ella; as he plays cards with members of the group, he has a quiet duet with Ella ("When"). Ella finally decides to leave with Charles ("Take Me To The World"). Charles is initially reluctant to leave his now-comfortable life, but then understands that he loves Ella more than poetry. Mrs. Monday and the others hear their plans, and they call the Dark Men, as Ella and Charles try to escape.

The store opens the next morning with a couple on the sidewalk who resemble Ella and Charles from behind, but turn out to be strangers when the camera pans to their faces. They're looking at a window display in which Ella and Charles are now mannequins dressed as a bride and groom, with the night watchman acting as their minister.

Songs from musical: Evening Primrose the Musical Lyrics
Evening Primrose musical synopsis