We’re off to Glyndebourne?

One of the clever things about this blogging lark is that you can see what people have searched for that gets them to your page.  I am struck that a high number of people land here by searching for the lyrics for Kit & the Widow’s song Glyndebourne.  I mentioned it en passant when my proper discovery of the wonder-duo coincided with a trip to Il Turco in Italia, and a quote from the song made for a nice intro.

So you want the whole thing?  Dutifully transcribed below (the Widow’s vocal contribution indented).  I can’t vouch for 100% accuracy, but it goes by in such a hilarious, wondrous whirl, that just occasionally even Kit Hesketh-Hervey’s unimpeachable diction is difficult to capture.  If you have a correction, especially to the bits I’ve marked ‘*’ which I haven’t totally captured, I’d appreciate it!  It’s offered in the spirit of homage, so enjoy! Better yet, go and buy the CD, it’s a belter.

Glyndebourne
Kit & the Widow
to the tune of the Overture from Il Barbiere di Siviglia, by Rossini

You never listen,
it’s so easy.
At Clapham Common you turn to the right ‘un.
From then it’s peasy,
a straight line to Brighton.
Well, hello Sidcup! And you bet I’m in a flap.

Please, just read the map;
Jesus, I could do without this crap.

Alright, but never call me ‘dozy bitch’ again!

It’s now two hours,
we’ve been waiting.
No more, I thought so,
that’s what’s so frustrating.
With the M25, one hour door to door.
Leaves stacks of time to feed the cat,
I know the road,
but bugger that, you had to drive.

We’re off to Glyndebourne,
to see a rather boring opera by Rossini.
We both like Glyndebourne,
it gives us scope to be particularly queeny.
We never miss anything that they mount there,
save the boring old Harrison Birtwistle, that doesn’t count…

We’re off to Glyndebourne,
to see their challenging and thoughtful
Barbiere.
This year at Glyndebourne,
they’ve got this bearded Swedish tenor we call Mary.
We couldn’t rise quite to the private chopper.
Still, bet their eyes when they see what I’ve got in my hamper’ll pop…

I’ve done monkfish fenouil, in a wild redcurrant sauce,
and they’ll die for my brie.
I’ve done Tournedos, of course.
I dreamed of a perfect evening spent,
with Humphrey Burton in a tent,
sipping Puligny-Montrachet beneath a magic summer moon.
Instead I’ll get a molten splurge,
of what WAS soufflé à l’asperge,
I’ll get two heavy hours of Orpington in flaming, bloody June.

Stop being absurd, you made us late,
your f’ing hair.

[gasps.] Alright … not now … Tais-toi!…

Bald cow!

So what’s that rattle?
Carburettor?
You said it’s better,
you said that you’d fixed it.
We passed the last service station at Hickstead.
Oh God, this afternoon is turning out a riot.

Please, will you be quiet?
Jesus, you’re so brilliant,
just you try it…

I’m not ruining my nails on your big end…

We’re off to Glyndebourne,
to fight the Philistines with all our merry comrades.
Nowadays Glyndebourne,
is full of clients of multinational conglomerates.
They wouldn’t know that it was Agnes Baltsa,
not if she sat on their faces and sang
Come Scoglio in alt.

[whistles…]
We had to mortgage half the flat but got the stalls there.
[whistles…]
He knows the boy who does the costumes for the balls there.

No, I will not ask her the way,
No I refuse point blank, OK?
‘Cos you can’t wander around* in Sussex
when you’re wearing your DJ.
The woman’s practically blind,
D’you think it looks as though she’d find,
the way to somewhere as frankly ludicrously recherché as Glynde?

Oh Christ! And there goes my champagne,
I’m never doing this again,
dear God, and now here comes the rain,
I said we ought to take the train.
Quickly, let’s
just stick it
over here,
You’ve got
your ticket,
come on dear,
forget your programme*,
doorway B,
Well have it
your way,
doorway C.

Please excuse us, stuck in town.
Silly git, come on, sit down.

Phee-eew!  Thought I’d die…!

6 comments

  1. I used to listen to a tape of this, but I think this is a different recording? In any case, here’s what I remember. (Well, here’s your text touched up with what I remember.)

    You never listen,
    it’s so easy.
    At Clapham Common you turn to the right, an’
    from then it’s peasy,
    a straight line to Brighton.
    Well, hello Sidcup! And you bet I’m in a flap.

    Please, just read the map;
    Jesus, I could do without this crap.

    Alright, but never call me ‘dozy bitch’ again!

    It’s now two hours,
    we’ve been waiting.
    No more, I thought so,
    that’s what’s so frustrating.
    With the M25, one hour door to door.
    Leaves stacks of time to feed the cat,
    I know the road,
    but bugger that, you had to drive.

    We’re off to Glyndebourne,
    to see a rather boring opera by Rossini.
    We both like Glyndebourne,
    it gives us scope to be particularly queeny.
    We never miss anything that they mount there,
    save the boring old Harrison Birtwistle, that doesn’t count…
    ** “‘cept the electrification of — thingy — and that doesn’t count.”

    We’re off to Glyndebourne,
    to see their challenging and thoughtful Barbiere.
    This year at Glyndebourne,
    they’ve got this bearded Swedish tenor we call Mary.
    We couldn’t rise quite to the private chopper.
    Still, bet their eyes when they see what I’ve got in my hamper’ll pop…

    I’ve done monkfish fourneuilles*, in a wild redcurrant sauce, [I couldn’t remember this bit, for all I know you’ve got it right.]
    and they’ll die for my brie.
    I’ve done Tournedos, of course.
    I dreamed of perfect evenings spent,
    with Humphrey Burton in a tent,
    sipping Puligny-Montrachet beneath a magic summer moon.
    Instead I’ll get a molten splurge, ** I’ve got some molten splurge
    of what WAS soufflé à l’asperge, ** used to be asperge.
    I’ll get two heavy hours of Orpington in flaming, bloody June. ** I’ve got two hours in Orpington

    Stop being absurd, you made us late, ** Stop being unfair
    your f’ing hair.

    [gasps.] Alright … not now … tais-toi …

    Bald cow!

    So what’s that rattle?
    Carburettor?
    You said it’s better,
    you said that you’d fixed it.
    We passed the last service station at Hickstead.
    Oh God, this afternoon is turning out a riot.

    Please, will you be quiet?
    Jesus, you’re so brilliant,
    just you try it…

    I’m not ruining my nails on your big end…

    We’re off to Glyndebourne,
    to fight the Philistines with all our merry comrades.
    Nowadays Glyndebourne,
    is full of clients of multinational conglomerates.
    They wouldn’t know that it was Agnes Baltsa,
    not if she sat on their faces and sang Come Scoglio in alt.

    [whistles…]
    We had to mortgage half the flat but got the stalls there.
    [whistles…]
    He knows the boy who does the costumes for the balls there.

    No, I will not ask her the way,
    No I refuse point blank, OK?
    ‘Cos you can’t wander around* in Sussex ** ‘cos you can’t, not in deepest Sussex
    when you’re wearing your DJ.
    The woman’s practically blind,
    D’you think it looks as though she’d find,
    the way to somewhere as frankly ludicrously recherché as Glynde?

    Oh Christ! And there goes my champagne,
    I’m never doing this again,
    dear God, and now here comes the rain,
    I said we ought to take the train.
    Quickly, let’s
    just stick it
    over here,
    You’ve got
    your ticket,
    come on dear,
    forget your programme*, [I think that’s right]
    doorway B,
    Well have it
    your way,
    doorway C.

    Please excuse us, stuck in town.
    Silly git, come on, sit down.

    Phee-eew! Thought I’d die…!


    Hope this helps.

  2. Hi John – thanks for that! In particular, I am eternally in your debt for your clarification of ‘Tais-toi’, which I just could not fathom after repeated careful listens! It’s a great song, isn’t it?!

  3. Found your site when looking for other K & the W lyrics – fairly sure that it is actually “monkfish fenouil” – ie monkfish with fennell. Possibly not the most important thing I’ve done today

  4. Oo, this is turning into a ‘wiki’! Thanks for that, much appreciated and duly corrected!

    Although, I fail to see what could have been more critical task on your to-do list for the day… :0)

  5. Later than ever follow-up, but just to say I met Kit a while ago, and asked him about the “thingy” line. He said no-one had heard of the Electrification of the Soviet Union, so they swapped it out for the Birtwistle.

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