My Fair Lady is a musical related to the George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion and with book and lyrics written by Alan Jay Lerner and music composed by Frederick Loewe. The story concerns Eliza Doolittle, a Cockney flower girl who takes speech lessons from a professor named Henry Higgins, a phoneticist, so she can pass as a proper lady.
The musical's 1956 Broadway production was a hit, setting what was then the record for the longest run of any main musical theater production in the history. It was followed by a hit London production, a famous film version, and various revivals. It has been known as "the perfect musical". In the middle of 1930s, film producer Gabriel Pascal obtained the rights to create film versions of many of George Bernard Shaw's plays, Pygmalion among them.
Though, Shaw, having had a bad experience with The Chocolate Soldier, a Viennese operetta based on his play Arms and the Man, refused permission for the Pygmalion to be adapted into a musical. After Shaw’s death in the year 1950, Pascal asked the lyricist Alan Jay Lerner to write the musical adaptation. Lerner agreed. Lerner and his partner Frederick Loewe started the work, but they quickly came to know that the play violated many key rules for constructing a musical.