"Romance with a Double Bass" is a short story (only three pages long!) by Anton Chekhov, that was later adapted into a 1974 featurette from the United Kingdom. The adaptation was written by John Cleese, Connie Booth, and Bill Owen.
Smychkov, a bassist, shows up too early for the ball of a beautiful princess, and decides to spend his extra time skinny dipping in the nearby lake. The princess, meanwhile, has gone fishing at the lake, and later decides to go skinny dipping as well. However, things change when a thief absconds with both Smychkov's and the Princess's clothes, and while the Princess is wandering around, she meets Smychkov. After their initially embarrassing encounter, he tries to help her return to the castle by hiding her in his bass case.
Tropes in "Romance with a Double Bass":
- Downer Ending: The original story; averted in the film.
- Flying Dutchman: Smychkov in the original story, but not the film.
- Gone Swimming, Clothes Stolen: The basis for the plot.
- Karma Houdini: Arguably the thief.
- Male Frontal Nudity: In-universe only; otherwise averted in the film.
- Meet Cute: Smychkov and the princess, both nude, are embarrassed at their first meeting.
- Naked People Are Funny
- Time Marches On: The idea of a clothing thief might mystify modern readers unaware that clothing was notoriously expensive in Russia at the time the story was written.