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Rare 1956 Poster “The Most Happy Fella” started a critical debate about whether it was a musical or an opera, and the question lingers. Inspired by the Italian element of the story, Loesser, who wrote the book, lyrics and music (based on Sidney Howard’s play “They Knew What They Wanted”), created an intricate, quasi-operatic score. There are melodies that befit opulent operatic voices, as well as trios and quartets in which individual characters voice their inner thoughts.