Dirty Rotten Scoundrels springs to life in a bustling casino on the French Riviera (“Overture”). Among the glitz and glamour of the Casino, Lawrence, a con artists and general smooth talking tyke, is working a crowd of wealthy women with the intention of tricking them out of money (“Give Them What They Want”). Lawrence is the centre of attention as women swoon over him, including the particularly keen Muriel (“What Was a Woman To Do”). The mood is dampened as Lawrence’s bodyguard, Andre, warns him that there is a new conman in town who has been dubbed “The Jackal.”
Lawrence later contemplates the warning whilst travelling on a train. During his journey he spies another fraudster at work, Freddy Benson. Freddy is attempting to dupe fellow female passengers into giving him a fast franc, although Lawrence believes he could help him increase his financial yield. Taking the hoaxer under his wing, Lawrence brings Freddy to his mansion. Freddy is in awe of Lawrence’s riches and tells him of all the things he would buy when he himself comes into money (“Great Big Stuff”) and convinces Lawrence to show him the tricks of the trade. Despite Andre’s words of warning about Freddy (“Chimp in a Suit”) Lawrence enlists Freddy’s help as a crazed woman tries to force him to elope to Oklaholma (“Oklahoma?”). Posing as Lawrence’s brother “Ruprecht” (“All About Ruprecht”), the pair manage to convince the fanatical femme that Lawrence’s brother is a heinous being, and thus the wedding is called off (“What Was a Woman To Do Reprise.”)
Having experienced Freddy’s impressive deception skills, Lawrence begins to think that the Riviera isn’t big enough for the both of them. Challenging the newcomer to a race to get $50,000 from a woman, it is agreed that whoever loses will leave town. Enter the beautiful American Heiress, Christine Colgate (“Here I Am”). The second the tricksters lay eyes on her they decide to make her their target. Freddy jumps at the chance to defraud the heiress and imitates a cripple in need of money for a therapist, Dr. Shuffhausen. Taken in by Freddy’s plight, Christine pledges the required $50,000 (“Nothing Is Too Wonderful To Be True” and “The Miracle”). A delighted Freddy learns from Christine that Dr. Shuffhausen is also staying at the hotel, which leads him to great confusion. That is until he meets the good doctor who turns out to be Lawrence!
Following a swift reintroduction (“Entr’acte”) Lawrence laboriously performs painful tests on Freddy’s supposedly numb legs in front of Christine (“Ruffhousin’ Mitt Shuffhausen”). Meanwhile the obsessive Muriel meets Andre and the pair fall in love (“Like Zis/Like Zat”).
Lawrence, still posing as a Doctor, tries to move in on Christine (“The More We Dance”). On spending more time with her, he soon reaslises that perhaps she is not as rich as he first suspected. In a swift change of heart Lawrence convinces Freddy to call off the bet, re-challenging him with a new bet, only this time the winner must be the first to bed Christine.
After having Lawrence kidnapped by burly sailors, Freddy rendezvous with Christine back at the hotel. On telling her he needs her help to overcome his paralysis, Christine offers her services (“Love is My Legs”). Freddy soon seems to overcome his ailments and walks to the bed, accidentally falling on Christine. Lawrence arrives and unveils Freddy as a phoney, ordering the same pair of sailors to kidnap Freddy. Lawrence takes Christine to the train station so she can escape the fraudsters (“Love Sneaks In”). Freddy arrives on the scene having escaped the seemingly soft sailors, however he is too late.
Instead of fleeing, Christine shows up at Freddy’s hotel room declaring she couldn’t leave without saying goodbye (“Son of Great Big Stuff”). The pair climb into bed together.
Some hours later Christine arrives at Lawrence’s mansion in tears, claiming Freddy tricked her into making love and then ran away with her money. Out of guilt, Lawrence gives Christine the $50,000 she is missing in a suitcase, although she refuses the money and leaves. Freddy arrives in his underwear claiming Christine knocked him out and then stole from him. Lawrence then checks his suitcase only to find his money is also missing and discovers a note from Christine revealing herself as “The Jackal”. The men are aghast that they were scammed for a change (“The Reckoning”). Christine returns and the fraudsters agree the scam was fun (“Dirty Rotten Number”) and the trio hatch a plan to scam the entire audience together (“Finale”).
• Give Them What They Want (Broadway) – Lawrence, Andre, Ensemble
• The Only Game in Town (National Tour)
• What Was a Woman to Do – Muriel, Women
• Great Big Stuff – Freddy, Ensemble
• Chimp in a Suit – Andre
• Oklahoma? – Jolene, Lawrence, Ensemble
• All About Ruprecht – Lawrence, Ruprecht, Jolene
• What Was a Woman to Do (Reprise) – Muriel
• Here I Am – Christine, Ensemble
• Nothing is Too Wonderful to Be True – Christine, Freddy
• The Miracle (Act I Finale) – Company
• Ruffhousin’ Mit Shüffhausen – Lawrence, Freddy, Christine
• Like Zis/Like Zat – Andre, Muriel
• The More We Dance – Lawrence, Christine, Ensemble
• Love is My Legs – Freddy, Christine, Ensemble
• Love Sneaks In – Lawrence
• Like Zis/Like Zat (Reprise) – Muriel
• Son of Great Big Stuff – Freddy, Christine
• The Reckoning – Lawrence, Freddy, Andre (with spoken line by Christine)
• Dirty Rotten Number – Lawrence, Freddy
• Finale – Company