Shows S

* It is possible to cast with 5 men and 5 women. A breakdown of the charac¬ters in each scene is included as an appendix to the script. Time: The 1960s. : Place: New York City, and a remote part of Long Island. CASTING NOTE Roles are open to all ethnicities. The show is set in the 1960s to the extent that it evokes the aesthetic and style of that time period, but the story does not refer to any specific political or cultural events that would indicate the characters have to be of a certain race or background. DANCE REQUIREMENT Standard musical staging/some dance. Production numbers that es-pecially feature dance/movement are: “Time Will Tell” (I.2), “Don’t Cross Kitty” (I.6), “Question Mark Stomp”(I.9), “Think Fast” (II.3), and “Finale” (II.9). In addition, there are several fight sequences (see below). STAGE FIGHTING As Sympathy Jones is inspired by the spy genre, there are a number of “action” sequences in the show, especially in Act II. As Sympathy Jones is also a comedy, there is no need to worry too much about making these sequences seem ultra-realistic. There should be an el¬ement of fun to most of the fighting, which chiefly involves people kicking and punching each other, with a couple of gun and sword showdowns thrown in for good measure. We suggest using colorful toy guns, and don’t sweat the sword fighting, as it doesn’t need to be very sophisticated. Sympathy is a student of the branch of the martial art known as Pencak Silat, so we recommend having your actress learn at least a couple simple moves (you can find video dem¬onstrations online) to add a touch of authenticity. Please also note that there is musical underscoring to the fight scenes, to add to the tension, so you will want to consider the musical accompaniment early on during the process of rehearsing these scenes. SCHOOL PRODUCTIONS A couple of substitutions are possible to tone down the few racy mo-ments/innuendos in the show. In “Question Mark Stomp,” the lyrics “You can show me yours / I might show you mine” could be replaced with “We could have some fun / later down the line.” In Act I, Scene 11, Pinkerton’s line “I know you’re a little out of touch these days, Nick, but there is a world outside of your bedroom” could use the substitute ending “.there is a world outside the Tempo Club.” And the brandy bit at the top of Act I, Scene 4 can be easily cut if needed. SCENIC WORLD Spy stories are known for moving quickly through exotic locales. Bringing a largely cinematic genre to the stage calls for a certain in-ventiveness and also presents unique opportunities for theatricality. We offer the following notes to help in conceptualizing the scenic elements of Sympathy Jones. Scenic World: Act I The overarching world of Act I is early 1960s New York City—the streets, a nightclub, the offices of an intelligence agency, and a pent-house apartment. Although Sympathy Jones is most certainly a com-edy, there should be a sense of danger and mystery in the show. In Act I, there are gunshots, chases, and shady people slipping in and out of the shadows. The various locations within this larger world can be evoked with a few well-chosen set pieces: • The Tempo Club with a microphone for Ann, a table and chairs for Kitty and Tick Tock, a sign with the name of the club, and (in Scene 9) a large potted plant.