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Once Upon a Mattress (1964)

The musical story of THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA, adapted from the 1959 Broadway hit, and featuring most of the original Broadway cast.


Joe Layton, Dave Geisel (co-director)


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Credited cast:
Carol Burnett ... Princess Winnifred
Jane White ... Queen Aggravain
Jack Gilford ... King Sextimus
Joseph Bova Joseph Bova ... Prince Dauntless
Elliott Gould ... Jester
Shani Wallis ... Lady Larken
Bill Hayes ... Minstrel
Jack Fletcher ... Wizard
Kellie Brytt Kellie Brytt ... Lady Rowena
Donna Monroe Donna Monroe ... Lady Lucille
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marian Haraldson Marian Haraldson ... Lady Myrthr (as Marion Haraldson)
Corinna Manetto Corinna Manetto ... The Nightingale


The musical story of THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA, adapted from the 1959 Broadway hit, and featuring most of the original Broadway cast.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

3 June 1964 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Bob Banner Associates See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The original Broadway production of "Once Upon A Mattress" opened at the Phoenix Theater (Eventually running at a total of five separate theaters!) on May 1, 1959, ran for 244 performances and was nominated for the 1960 Tony Award (New York City) for the Best Musical. Carol Burnett, Joe Bova and Jack Gilford reprise their roles. Carol Burnett was nominated for a 1960 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical. See more »

Crazy Credits

For the opening sequence, the viewer watches a closeup shot of a hand adding finishing touches to a cartoon drawing of the princess, and the title and then names are superimposed on the drawing. These drawings are also used to introduce or end different segments; for instance, when the king and prince have their man-to-man talk, the drawing is of the two. Sometimes the hand is still making changes, as when night is falling and most of the characters are going to sleep and the princess stays up studying, we see a drawing of the castle and the hand blacks out the windows, one at a time, finally leaving the window of the princess to be the only one that is lit. See more »


Music by Mary Rodgers
Lyrics by Marshall Barer
Sung by the Chorus
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User Reviews

Which is better?
8 May 2011 | by comccSee all my reviews

Owning both the 64 and the 72 versions (that heavens for DVD), I thought I'd put in my two cents about which one is better. First the 64's high points, Ms. Burnett has a energy (especially in "I'm Shy) that she doesn't have in the latter (not that she's "phoning it in by any means) and it has Eliot Gould as the jester. You have probably never thought of Mr. Gould as a song and dance man, but, after seeing "My fathers Very Soft Shoes" you'll never look at his Hawkeye in the same way. He is head and shoulders above Wally Cox in the 72. What is better about the 72 is the casting of some secondary characters. Ken Berry connects with Ms. Burnett as Prince Dantless as Joseph Bova doesn't. And as Lady Larkin, while Shani Wallis does a good job, she can't compare to a 20 year old Bernadette Peters. Also, the 74 has a great song ("Happily ever after") missing from the first on. All in all, I'd say I prefer the 74. (By the way, avoid at all cost the 2005 version). 8.5 for the 64, 9 for the 72 and 2 for the 05.

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