Characters in How to Succeed in Business

Characters in How to Succeed in Business is a Broadway musical that showcases a diverse and entertaining cast of characters who navigate the cutthroat world of corporate America. This satirical comedy, with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and a book by Abe Burrows, Jack Weinstock, and Willie Gilbert, has captured audiences’ hearts since its premiere in 1961. Let’s delve into the fascinating world of the characters that make this show such a standout.

1. J. Pierrepont Finch: The protagonist and ambitious window washer turned corporate climber, Finch is charming, cunning, and unapologetically determined to rise to the top.

2. Rosemary Pilkington: A secretary at the World Wide Wicket Company, Rosemary is hopelessly in love with Finch. She represents the honest and sincere side of corporate life, contrasting the more manipulative characters.

3. J.B. Biggley: The bumbling, yet powerful, president of the World Wide Wicket Company, Biggley is constantly trying to keep control of his employees and his own secrets.

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4. Hedy La Rue: Biggley’s dim-witted mistress, Hedy is a bombshell who adds a touch of humor and chaos to the story.

5. Bud Frump: Biggley’s nephew and Finch’s main competitor, Bud is conniving and willing to do anything to get ahead. He serves as the primary antagonist, creating conflict and obstacles for Finch.

6. Smitty: Rosemary’s best friend and fellow secretary, Smitty brings a sassy and no-nonsense attitude to the show. She acts as a voice of reason amidst the madness.

7. Miss Jones: Biggley’s fiercely efficient and uptight secretary, Miss Jones is a no-nonsense character who adds a touch of strict professionalism to the mix.

8. Mr. Bratt: The head of the advertising department, Bratt is a gruff and no-frills character who often clashes with Finch.

9. Mr. Twimble/Wally Womper: Twimble is a likable, old-fashioned executive who promotes Finch, while Womper is the former president of the company and Finch’s ultimate target.


1. Is How to Succeed in Business a comedy?
Yes, the show is primarily a satirical comedy that pokes fun at the corporate world.

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2. Are the characters relatable?
The characters in How to Succeed in Business are exaggerated for comedic effect but still possess relatable qualities and motivations.

3. Is the show suitable for all ages?
While the show is generally family-friendly, some innuendos and adult humor may be better suited for older audiences.

4. Does the show have memorable songs?
Yes, the show features memorable songs like “I Believe in You,” “Brotherhood of Man,” and “Coffee Break.”

5. Can I watch the show online?
You can find recorded performances or bootleg copies of the show online, but it’s always best to support the official releases.

6. How long is the show?
The show typically runs for approximately two and a half hours, including intermission.

7. Are there any notable revivals or adaptations of the show?
How to Succeed in Business has had multiple successful revivals on Broadway, including a 1995 production starring Matthew Broderick and a 2011 revival featuring Daniel Radcliffe.

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8. Is the show still relevant today?
Despite being written in the 1960s, the show’s themes of ambition, workplace dynamics, and the pursuit of success remain relevant in today’s corporate world.

9. Can I perform the show in my local community theater?
Yes, the show is available for licensing, allowing local theater groups to perform it with proper permissions and royalties.

In conclusion, the characters in How to Succeed in Business bring humor, charm, and relatability to the stage. Their antics and ambitions make for an entertaining and thought-provoking experience, ensuring the show’s enduring popularity.

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