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A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE A musical in 2 acts: Book by Terrence McNally; Music by Stephen Flaherty; lyrics by Lynn Ahrens; based on the film A Man of No Importance produced by Little Bird Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre, Lincoln Center Theater, New York - 10th October, 2002 SYNOPSIS: ACT I Lights come up on St. Imelda's social hall, an ordinary church hall in 1964 Dublin. Alfie Byrne, a Dublin bus conductor, enters. With nostalgia and sadness, he recites a few lines from Oscar Wilde's play, Salome. Father Kenny, the parish priest enters, and we learn that Alfie has been barred from putting on his amateur production of Salome at St. Imelda's because it has been judged "a dirty play" by the parish elders. Alfie reluctantly begins to pack up the theatrical props. Soon memories overwhelm him, and in his imagination, his actors begin to put on their own play - the story of Alfie Byrne himself and the events which brought him to this moment. In song we are taken through the course of Alfie's ordinary day; we meet the most important people in his life - his sister Lily, the butcher Carney, his bus driver Robbie Faye, and the "blue coated girl," Adele Rice, as well as the members of the St. Imelda's Players, who ride his bus every day. That night, Alfie tells his sister Lily Byrne about the girl who got onto his bus. At first Lily is thrilled that her unmarried brother has finally met a girl. This will allow her to get on with her own life. But Alfie tells her that the girl is not for him, she's for his new production. Leaving Lily to fume, he goes off to inform the St. Imelda's players that they will soon be opening with a new production. Mr. Carney, the butcher who always plays the lead, is delighted. Back on the bus, Alfie tells his eager troupe that they will soon perform Oscar Wilde's play Salome, and reveals his idea that Miss Rice, a newcomer, will play the title role. Miss Rice can't understand why he would want to cast her as a princess but in the end, his enthusiasm for art wins her over, and she agrees. Father Kenny hands over the keys to the church hall, and Alfie and Baldy (Alfie's friend and stage manager) prepare the hall for the first rehearsal. The troupe enters, scripts are distributed, and as the players form their intimate circle, Alfie tells them why the theatre means so much to him. At the bus garage, Alfie tries to convince his driver Robbie Faye to join the production, but Robbie refuses. He has no interest in acting or poetry and takes Alfie out to a pub instead to show him the poetry of real life on the streets of Dublin. At the pub, Alfie is approached by a seductive and menacing young man named Breton Beret. Distressed and confused by the experiences of the evening, Alfie hurries home. Meanwhile, Lily is spending an evening with her suitor, the butcher William Carney. Carney is outraged at the salacious language in Salome. He and Lily decide while getting drunk that Alfie has been led down the wrong path by the many books he keeps in his room. An upset Alfie comes home from the pub and hurries to his room, while Lily and Carney continue to drink. In his room, Alfie confronts his own unhappy reflection - a man who is afraid to admit to himself who he really is. The specter of Oscar Wilde appears and urges Alfie to be honest with himself at last. At the end of a rehearsal Lily enters and invites Miss Rice for tea in the hope of fixing Alfie up. At Lily's urging, Alfie reluctantly agrees to walk Miss Rice home. Alone, Lily hopes that her brother will grow up and give her a chance to have her own dreams. As they stroll together, Adele confesses that she already has a boyfriend, and bursts into tears, telling Alfie that "people can be harsh judges." Alfie comforts her, telling her simply to love who she loves. Alfie asks Adele