Books by A. C. H. Smith, Author of Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal
Cover image for Doctor Love by A. C. H. Smith

Doctor Love

A musical farce in two acts based on Molière

with composer David Lyon

About this book | Read an excerpt | How to buy this book

After Albert's Bridge, the composer David Lyon and I wrote Doctor Love. I adapted the libretto from Molière's L'Amour Médecin. I was asked if I had taken liberties; the answer was yes, liberties and egalities and fraternities. I put Molière himself on stage, complaining about the indignities of theatrical life, and introduced Louis XIV into the action. I'd like to think the greatest of French writers would not have disapproved of what I did with his piece, which he had knocked off in five days.

Doctor Love was staged at the Tobacco Factory theatre, Bristol, in 2008. A reviewer described the production as "Commedia dell'arte meets Carry on Camping."

Excerpt from Doctor Love

  VENDOR approaching, a tray slung around his neck.
He is attended by dancing CRONIES. Sung -
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
SCANDRELL I must buy some for her. It's a well-tried standby.
VENDOR The ills that flesh is heir to,
Just count them, and be sure
You'll not enumerate all those
This magic box will cure.
CRONIES The ills that flesh is heir to,
Just count them, and be sure
You'll not enumerate all those
This magic box will cure.
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
SCANDRELL Sir, I'll take a box of your specific.
CRONIES Sir, he'll take a box of your specific.
VENDOR (with interventions from CRONIES)
  Measles, or sneezles, irrational fear of weasels.
Scabies, or rabies, and things you can get from babies.
Mumps, or bumps, or down in the dumps.
Diphtheria, hysteria, a rash on your posterior.
The value of the gold, sir,
Of every land on earth
Is nothing in comparison
With what this box is worth.
CRONIES The value of the gold, sir,
Of every land on earth
Is nothing in comparison
With what this box is worth.
SCANDRELL Sir, I believe every word you say. Nothing begins to pay you adequately, but here's a sou. Will that do?
  VENDOR snatches the coin, inspects it carefully, turns to the cronies grinning, and selects a box. He sings slowly and slyly:
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES (slowly and conspiratorially): Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
ALL (in tempo, triumphant) Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
VENDOR Contusions, confusions, premature conclusions.
Shingles, and tingles following a flingles.
Aches and pains, migraines, balding heads, chilblains.
Pox, and shocks, and ill-matching socks.
Flushes, blushes, indifference to thrushes.
Winter chills, unpaid bills, dull quadrilles, blunted quills, illicit thrills.
CRONIES Illicit thrills!
  A dance starts.
VENDOR The ills that flesh is heir to,
Just count them, and be sure
You'll not enumerate all those
This magic box will cure.
VENDOR + CRONIES   The value of the gold, sir,
  Of every land on earth
Is nothing in comparison
With what this box is worth.
CRONIES With what this box is worth.
VENDOR This magic box is worth.
CRONIES This magic box is worth.
  CRONIES have been dancing around him to express their satisfaction.
They begin to exit, with VENDOR.
VENDOR Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
VENDOR (song fading) Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
CRONIES Doctor Patrick's Prophylactics!
*

How to buy this book

Copies of Doctor Love, signed by the author, are available directly from the publisher:
Jeremy Mulford, Loxwood Stoneleigh, 225 Gloucester Road (Top Floor), Bristol BS7 8NR, UK.
Tel: 0117 942 4361 (from outside UK +44 117 942 4361).
Cost (including postage): UK £6.50 / Europe €8 / USA $12.10. Cheques made out to Falling Wall Press.

Alternatively, signed copies are available to buy here online.
Price includes postage and packing. Please select destination:
 

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