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THE RINK A Musical in 2 acts. Book by Terence McNally: Music by John Kander; Lyrics by Fred Ebb Martin Beck Theatre, Broadway - 9 March, 1984 (204 perfs) Cambridge Theatre, London - 17 February, 1988 This innovative musical is set in a Coney Island of the mind, on the ragged fringe of the New York show-biz world. Anna's roller rink is about to be demolished and with it Anna's sour memories of her husband and daughter. The rink becomes an extra arena in which mother and daughter examine their past, present and future. SYNOPSIS Act 1 Angel Antonelli is discovered with suitcase and knapsack at a bus station. She sings about her days of loneliness and confusion and dreams of returning to her childhood past. It is the late 70s. Six Wreckers have come to begin the demolition of a once glorious Roller Rink that sits sadly at the edge of a seaside Amusement Park. They meet Anna Antonelli who has sold the Rink and is today flying off to Rome free of the responsibilities of running the Rink. This is the "home" Angel returns to after an absence of fifteen years. It is bad timing for a reunion of mother and daughter. Right away resentments surface. In no uncertain terms Anna tells Angel what she thinks of Angel's abandoning her for the life of a hippie. As if the Rink had ghosts of the past trapped in the high girders flashbacks' unfold the story of how these two women got to this point in their lives. It is suddenly 1950 and Dino, the young charming husband and father, appears with presents of rare Venetian blue crystal: In the present, one of the Wreckers offers to buy the blue crystal goblets. Angel resists. She wants everything left as it was. She tries to explain that she has nowhere left to go. She has come home to find peace. But, how did the Rink get so run-down? Where is the mirror ball? This triggers the memory of Angel's fifth birthday, when Dino, having returned from the Korean War, comes home in the middle of the night, drunk, with his buddies and wants a party. He has a mirror ball for his little girl. His song turns into a dance and a toast to the Rink. But the friends disperse when Dino becomes violent and moody. Nothing is the same after the war. Alone, Anna tries to comfort him. It is only at this point that Angel becomes aware that the Rink has been sold. Mother and Daughter are at it again. "This is my home. Nobody's tearing this place down. I live here!". "Wrong. You used to live here!" They storm upstairs into the apartment. The Wreckers make fun of the two ladies' reunion. Angel comes flying downstairs waving a document. In order to sell the Rink, her mother has forged her name. Angel tells of her plans she has for a new rink and social centre. Now Angel is waiting for the lawyer to call back. She intends to get a court order to stop the demolition. Anna tries to explain that it's not just the Rink, the whole Amusement Park is coming down. Times have changed. The boardwalk is not theirs anymore. Teenage punks carrying radios roam the park with the threat of violence. In a flashback, Anna and her friends, Mrs. Silverman and Mrs. Jackson wonder what happened to the old days and Angel learns that Anna has been brutally mugged right on the boardwalk. With great sadness, Angel stands firm. She won't give up her dream, her coloured lights. Act 2 Angel offers her mother a "toke" of marijuana. At first, Anna refuses then smokes expertly, having seen it done on TV. For a "stoned" moment the two come close together, realising they're not so very different . Angel wants to know who's going to Rome with Anna. They recall Good Old Lenny who, since high school, has loved Anna; how Anna married into the Antonelli family, although the disgusting Uncle Fausto objected; and how, after a while, Dino, trapped and restless, leaves his wife, his child and the Rink forever. But Anna tells the young Angel her father is dead. The lie, like a nightmare, evolves into a quintet. Alone, the young