Nowhere Town: Overture and Introduction
The stage is empty, the red velvet curtain down. The drums begin a tango rhythm, low and slow:
Dum dara dum dum
Dum dara dum dum
The strings come in. They seem to sing an instrumental version of a song which will recur a lttle later in the show, a song the audience will come to know. For now all that they have to go in is that velvet curtain of the deepest red. But we'll give you a little clue. The song is called, amigos, Tango For the Dead.
The music peaks, and finishes with a flourish. Now there's only silence.
Enter CHORUS, dressed in a shabby black suit with a red and black striped top underneath. Wearing a bowler hat and small round shades that hide his eyes, he seems part punk, part cabaret, Alex Harvey does Jacques Brel. Any resemblence to Hal Duncan is entirely incidental.
CHORUS wanders casually onto the stage, carrying a book in one hand, and a cigarette and a glass of absinthe in the other.
CHORUS: [reads from the book] Alone among the gods Death has no love for gifts; neither by sacrifice nor by libation can you bend his will. He has no altar, and no hymns of praise; from him alone of all the daimones Persuasion stands aloof… [closes the book]... Aeschylus. [takes a slug from the glass]. Absinthe. [clears his throat]
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls.
I bid you welcome, from a drunken poet, to a cruel world.
Call me the... Chorus; here to guide you through the play,
I offer you an Introduction. Friends, what can I say?
You'll meet our most irregular Regulars and the players as they enter one-by-one
The fiery Jack Flash, that sexy pistol, a loose cannon and a half-cocked gun
Joey and Guy, long-suffering friends, and cohorts in his band --
O, but there's Puck, the best of all! My friends, so much is planned,
If you'll just trust in us, have faith... or have a drink,
We'll give you everything but the fucking Kitchen Sink.
Oh no, this is a tale of Love and Death.
This is a tale of those two thieves of breath.
This is a tale of Ups and Downs.
This is a tale of love both lost and found.
This is a tale – we hope – to make your hearts swell.
This is a tale of how the living go to Hell.
So, if you’ll indulge me in one thing, we’ll start the show
If you will summon song with me and chant Hey Ho, Let’s Go
REGULARS [offstage]: Hey Ho, Let’s Go… Hey Ho, Let’s Go…. Hey Ho, Let’s Go… Hey Ho, Let’s Go… [etc.]