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DEAR EDWINA A Musical in 1 Act. Book by: Marcy Heisler; Lyrics by: Marcy Heisler; Music by: Zina Goldrich The Premiere of this musical was produced by the Orange County High School of the Arts in 2002 Rattlestick Playwrights Theater - July 2006 DR2 Theatre - Off Broadway - 14 November, 2008 - 19 April, 2009 (197 perfs) SYNOPSIS Thirteen year-old Edwina Spoonapple would do just about anything to be a part of the Kalamazoo Advice-a-palooza Festival. While her siblings both have proof “up on the fridge” of their accomplishments, poor Edwina has nothing. When a talent scout from the convention visits her hometown of Paw Paw, Michigan, she trots out her musical advice giving shows live from the family garage in hopes of finding her place in the spotlight. She is assisted by her older siblings (on piano and drums) and a host of quirky friends and neighbors: Becky, the perky cheerleader; Kelli, the cool, sophisticated ballerina; Annie, the girl-scout cookie-selling champion; the Vanderploonk triplets; Bobby, the befuddled new kid on the block; and Scott, who is helplessly and hopelessly in love with Edwina. Together they set out to tackle the world’s problems, in number after hysterical number about everything from birthday party etiquette to the proper way to set a table (“salad fork, fork, plate, knife, spoon”). This beguiling one-act charmer can be played anywhere, with extremely modest sets and costumes. Sweet, smart and tuneful, it appeals to audiences of all ages, as Edwina doles out advice, and finally learns to listen to some of it herself. STORY In sunny Paw Paw, Michigan, 13-year-old Edwina, advice-giver extraordinaire and director of the Spoonapple Repertory theatre, is taking her company through their final rehearsal in her parent’s garage. As the kids run through their paces, there is huge excitement, for rumour has it that the talent scout from the Kalamazoo Advice-a-palooza Festival will be in the Paw Paw audience tonight, looking to fill a final festival spot! When one of the kids suddenly breaks his ankle just before show-time, Edwina tries to convince her new next-door neighbour, Bobby, to join their troupe as a last-minute replacement. She sadly reveals to a reluctant Bobby that while her siblings Katie, Myra and Joe all have prizes for their various achievements tacked up on the family fridge, Edwina has nothing to show for her own talent of giving advice. However, if she can get an invitation to the Kalamazoo festival, she will finally have something of her own to be proud of. Bobby is persuaded to help out, and Edwina hugs Bobby in relief, causing Scott, a troupe member, to wish his unrequited crush on Edwina could be returned. Edwina makes her show entrance in a wheelbarrow filled to the brim with letters. In the first letter, written by Aphrodite (played with gusto by Annie, a troupe member), Edwina is asked what to do about Aphrodite’s little brother, who constantly refuses to eat the delicious foods his mother serves him. Edwina, with help from that fabulous rock group, Susie and the Napkins (a.k.a. Becky and the rest of the kids), demonstrates how a similar little boy named Johnny learned the trick to being polite. Edwina cues Scott to bring out the next letter, interrupting Becky’s attempt to demonstrate her cheerleading routine. As he hands her the letter, however, Edwina immediately notices that it isn’t the one they rehearsed. Over Scott’s protests, Edwina reads the audience a letter by Abigail instead, who wants to know how to make her brother stop acting like an ‘obnock’ before her upcoming birthday party. The answer is given by Edwina’s scary uncle Vladimir (a.k.a. Cordell) of Transylvania, who tells the story of the rudest, most rambunctious guest in the world, who was finally cured when everyone stopped paying him any attention. As troupe members Billy, Cordell, Kelli and Annie vie for the audience’s attention, Scott again tries to