The Love Note
Musical in 2 acts by Gail Phaneuf : Book, music and lyrics by Gail Phaneuf
It's the beginning of a new school year, and 10-year old Jessie has been asked to give a "show and tell" presentation at her new middle school. She and her imaginary friend Airy have decided that she should talk about how she learned to milk a cow named Bessy on her grandfather's farm. The show and tell presentation is met with snickers and the other kids begin to mock her with moos. We are introduced to the colorful characters at Jessie's new school as they "Walk Don't Run" to the school cafeteria. Characters include the Lunch Lady, some wacky Bookworms, a cute boy named Peter, a bully named Adam, an even worse bully named Brittany and her three underlings, Natty, Patty and Katty.
Sitting alone at the lunch table, Jessie is comforted by the tiny pink love note that her mother packs in her lunch bag as she sings The Love Note". Brittany enters with a flourish and sings her signature song "My Name is Brittany" just before she descends upon Jessie and cleverly convinces her to trade lunch with her every day in exchange for friendship and popularity. Jessie tentatively agrees and is then bound by her promise. Brittany proceeds to read Jessie's love note out loud and then takes Jessie's lunch and leaves. She crumbles the love note and tosses it to the ground. Unable to stomach Brittany's nasty lunch, Jessie goes home hungry and begins to make a huge after-school snack. Her imaginary friend Airy tries to give her some advice about how to make friends at her new school, but clearly wants to stay #1 with Jessie. Jessie reassures Airy that they are the best of friends even though he's "Very Imaginary'.
The Bookworms continue to be tormented by the bullies and they sing about the travails of being "Bookworms". Jessie endures another day in the school lunchroom as Brittany reads Jessie's pink love note out loud for all to hear. Brittany then lies to Jessie and tells her that she thinks that Peter likes her. Brittany says that she'll "talk" to Peter for Jessie to find out for sure. This sends Jessie into a spin because she has never even spoken to Peter, but she does secretly think he's cute. Brittany has her own agenda for Peter and is trying to get him to ask her to the upcoming Halloween dance. When Adam sees that Brittany is talking to Peter, he threatens that a "Food Fight" is coming, and gels the entire lunchroom involved. Just before the food fight gets out of hand — the Lunch Lady is there to break up the fight and send the perpetrators to Detention. The Bookworms are intrigued by Jessie and they try talk to her, but they are interrupted by Brittany and Natty, Patty and Katty.
The Lunch Lady who has been picking up each of Jessie's discarded, crumpled pink love notes from the floor is beginning to understand what Brittany is doing to Jessie. The Lunch Lady sings about her own experience with a bully when she was young in "White Patent Leather Shoes". Act one ends with a raucous scene full of bullies in "Detention".
Jessie is tormented by her ever increasing hunger, and the fact that Brittany keeps mentioning how much Peter likes her. Jessie and Airy talk about how to handle Brittany and Jessie tells Airy about Peter. Airy asks what Peter is like and Peter appears as in a dream and sings "Jessie". Airy can tell that Jessie really likes Peter and he is a little jealous about her having affection for someone else. Jessie tries to reassure Airy, but she is beginning to feel that she just might be outgrowing her imaginary friend. When Airy asks what they should play, Jessie decides that they should play "Chefs" since she's always hungry. Jessie and Airy get out lots of ingredients and make an elaborate and imaginative snack for the king in "We Are Chefs!"
Meanwhile, Natty, Patty and Katty convene in the girl's bathroom and work to convince Brittany not to befriend Jessie since she simply refuses to engage with them in "Girl Talk".
Jessie sits alone again at the lunch table and the Bookworms gain enough courage to talk to her a little. They want to invite Jessie to sit with them, but they are too afraid of Brittany to do it. Brittany continues her lunchroom torment of Jessie and warns her not to talk to the Bookworms, because they are weirdos and no one likes them. Jessie goes home hungry again.
As Jessie makes another huge snack after school, she and Airy try to figure out what to do about Brittany and the Bookworms. Should she sit with the weird kids? Airy decides that Jessie should no longer give her lunch to Brittany. Jessie tells Airy that he has no idea what it's like to be unpopular. As Jessie makes a sandwich, she gets an idea for how to outwit Brittany. Jessie and Airy work to make a disgusting sandwich full of catfood, rotten bananas, and Habanero hot sauce in a reprise of "We are Chefs". Jessie and Airy pack up the nasty sandwich for the next day of school.
When Jessie enters the lunchroom the next day, Airy secretly follows her into school and watches. The Bookworms finally ask Jessie to sit with them, but Brittany pulls Jessie away from them. Brittany makes Peter come over and talk to Jessie, thinking that she'll be embarrassed and shy. Instead, Jessie and Peter smile and sing a reprise of "Jessie" together. This makes Brittany so upset that she breaks them apart and demands Jessie's lunch. Peter is confused and Jessie suddenly sees Airy. Airy is encouraging Jessie to stand up to Brittany. So Jessie stands up and asks Brittany why she has not kept her end of their promise. Why has she not introduced Jessie to the "popular kids" and made them like her? This show of strength from Jessie makes Brittany crazy and Brittany grabs Jessie's lunch and takes a huge bite of her sandwich to prove her power. The sandwich is filled with catfood and hot sauce that makes Brittany scream for water. All the other kids back away from Brittany and she is left with her mouth agape and on fire. The Lunch Lady enters daintily wearing White Patent Leather shoes and holding a glass of water for Brittany. Jessie is watching the scene with dismay. She looks around for Airy — he is gone. The Lunch Lady gives Brittany the water and then Jessie reads the pink note from her lunch bag out loud. Jessie has written the note herself and it tells Brittany that Jessie has made her "own" lunch today. The Bookworms cheer and Brittany is admonished by the experience. The entire cast sings "The Love Note" as Peter takes Jessie's hand. We glimpse Airy keeping a watchful eye on Jessie as the lights fade to black.
Scenes and settings
Pre main action takes place in the school, classroom, lunchroom and in Jessica, kitchen at home. There is orle scene that takes place the girl's bathroom.
- On the way to school
- The classroom/ and Lunchroom
- Jessica's kitchen
- The Lunchroom
- Detention .11 classroom
- Jessica's kitchen
- The Ghl's bathroom
- The Lunchroom
- Jessica's kitchen
- The Lunchroom
.OVERTURE then instrumental underscore of Very Imaginary.
- Walk Don't Run - Ensemble
- The Love Note - Jessica
- Brittany - Brittany, Natty, Patty, Katty
- Very Imaginary - Jessica, Airy
- Very Imaginary (reprise) - Jessica, Airy
- Bookworms - Bookworms
- Food Fight - Adam, boys, Bookworms
- Walk Don't Run (reprise) - Jessica
- White Patent Leather Shoes - Lunch Lady
- Detention - Ensemble
- Jessie - Peter, Jessica
- We are Chefs - Jessica, Airy, Ensemble
- Girl Talk - Natty, Patty, Katty, Brittany
- Brittany (reprise) .
- We are Chefs (reprise) - Jessica, Airy
- Jessie (reprise) - Peter, Jessica
- The Love Note (finale - all company) - Ensemble
- BRITTANY - Bully
- JESSICA - Sweet and shy
- AIRY - JESSICA'S imaginary friend (boy or girl)
- NATTY - BRITTANY'S friend *
- PATTY - BRITTANY'S friend *
- KATTY -BRITTANY'S friend *
- PETER - Sweet boy who likes Jessie. ADAM - Bully boy who likes Brittany.
- BOOKWORM 1- Boy or Girl - Band geek
- BOOKWORM 2 - Boy or Girl - Science nerd
- BOOKWORM 3 - Girl - Math wiz
- BOOKWORM 4 - Boy or Girl - A British exchange student
- BOOKWORM 5 - Boy or Girl - Hippie
- BOOKWORM 6 - Boy - Super hero BOOKWORM 7 - Girl - Princess (BOOKWORMS sit together at their lunch table.)
- BULLY BOYS -10-12 - Boys who appear in the opening, the lunchroom and detention scenes.
- BULLY GIRLS -10 -12 - Girls who appear in the opening, the lunchroom, detention and the Girl Talk scenes.
- LUNCH LADY - She works in the school lunch room. The only "adult" in the show.
(*NATTY, PATTY and KATTY all aspire to be BRITTANY)
*Ensemble numbers can vary. Consists of actors who can sing and dance in the five ensemble numbers. (WALK DON'T RUN, FOOD FIGHT, DETENTION, WE ARE CHEFS, and THE LOVE NOTE FINALE.)
More information can be obtained from the official website: www.thelovenote.com