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Judy: the musical

by Terry Wale

Musical Theatre: 'Judy: the musical' by Terry Wale (Judy Garland musical)


'Judy' is a play with music (and a 'jukebox' musical) which encompasses the life story of Judy Garland from early childhood to her untimely death at the age of forty-seven in 1969. The first act is devoted to her years as a young Hollywood film-star, exploited and drug-induced by the powers-that-be, while the second is largely given over to her latter-day on-stage life in concert. Her journey is punctuated with the songs that made her famous, and with the many roller-coaster relationships that accompanied her throughout her life.

For those amongst us who grew up with her, Judy Garland was, and always will be, the girl-next-door who became a movie star.  There never was, and there never will be, another film star quite like her, because there will never be another Hollywood like the one that created, used and abused her. Nor is it likely that there will ever be another film star who could move from screen to stage with such professional ease, and capture theatre audiences around the world with that same charismatic appeal to the heart.

Judy by Terry Wale, was first performed in 1984 at the Swan Theatre in Worcester, and was directed by John Doyle. After a journey via Bristol Old Vic and Greenwich Theatre, it finally opened at the Strand Theatre in London in March 1986 under the direction of John David. Lesley Mackie was awarded a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Musical at the end of that year.  The play was also nominated for a London Theatre Critics Award.

Since then, it has played in Sweden, Germany, New Zealand, Austria and Japan. It was revived in 1991 for a short Scottish tour, which opened at Perth Theatre and was directed by Clive Perry. 


A minimum cast of 3f principals (Judy, Louella & Hedda) supported by 7m, 2f will be required.

Principal speaking roles

  • Judy Garland
  • George Murphy
  • Ethel Gumm, Judy’s mother
  • Louis B Mayer
  • Arthur Freed
  • Louella Parsons, a gossip columnist
  • Hedda Hopper, a gossip columnist
  • Betty Asher
  • Mickey Rooney
  • David Rose
  • Joe Mankiewicz
  • Vincente Minnelli
  • Gus
  • Sid Luft
  • Vern
  • Dr Salmon
  • Ben Maksik
  • Mark Herron

Supporting speaking roles

  • Film Stage Crew Members
  • Clapper-Boy
  • Wardrobe and Make-up Staff
  • Secretary
  • Party Guest
  • Director
  • MGM Executive
  • Psychiatrist
  • Compère
  • Bell-Boy
  • Master of Ceremonies

Singing roles

  • Judy Garland (18 songs)
  • David Rose (1 duet)
  • Sid Luft (1 duet)
  • The Boy Friends (3 short songs)
Ensemble (2 ‘solo’ songs, 2 backing songs)

Doubling is possible as follows:

  • Louis B Mayer, Sid Luft (m)
  • Ethel Gumm, Company Member (f)
  • George Murphy, Arthur Freed, Psychiatrist, MC (m)
  • Secretary, Betty Asher, Company Member (f)
  • Joe Mankiewicz, Vincente Minnelli, Oscar Host, Ben Maksik (m)
  • Mickey Rooney, Gus, Vern (m)
  • Director, David Rose, MGM Executive, Dr Salmon (m)
  • Mark Herron, Bell Boy (m)
  • Party Guest, Compère, Theatre Manager (m)

Film-crew, wardrobe & make-up staff, party guests, backing vocalists and ‘Boy-Friends’, played by members of the company.


  1) Born In A Trunk Judy
  2) Zing! Went The Strings Of My Heart Judy
  3) You Made Me Love You, Dear Mr Gable  Judy
  4) We Welcome You To Munchkinland Ensemble
  5) I Cried For You Judy
  6) For Me And My Gal Judy & David
  7) But Not For Me Judy
  8) The Trolley Song Judy
  9) It’s A Great Big World Judy
10) Get Happy Judy & Ensemble
~~ Interval ~~  
11) Judy’s Introduction #1 The 'Boy Friends'
12) Intro to ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ #1 Instrumental
13) You Made Me Love You Judy
14) When You’re Smiling Judy
15) More Than You Know Judy
16) The Man That Got Away Judy
17) A Couple of Swells Judy & Sid
18) Judy’s Introduction #2 The 'Boy Friends'
19) Who Cares? Judy
20) You’re Nearer Judy
21) Judy’s Introduction #3 The 'Boy Friends'
22) Intro to ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ #2 Instrumental
23) Lucky Day Judy
24) Intro to ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ #3 Instrumental
25) The Man That Got Away Judy
26) Rock-A-Bye Your Baby Judy
27) Somewhere Over The Rainbow Judy
28) Curtain Calls Instrumental
29) Encore Company
30) Playout Instrumental
With the exception of Nos 11, 18 and 21 all the songs are easily available standards and as such we do not supply vocal scores or band parts. 

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