Rooms - A Rock Romance
Musical in 1 Act: Music, Book and Lyrics by Paul Scott Goodman; Book by Miriam Gordon
New World Stages, New York - 18th March, 2009
Finborough Theatre, London - 23 April - 18 May 2013 (season)
NYC: Late night, September 1980.
As Monica struggles to write lyrics to a new song, she is interrupted by a knock at the door. Her unexpected guest is Ian, who she hasn't seen in almost 3 years (ROOMS). NYC melts into Glasgow 1977 as Monica recalls their first encounter.
After Ian is hired by Monica to write music to her lyrics for a song commissioned for Hazel Katz's Bat Mitzvah, he gives her a glimpse into both his talent and his unusual view of life. Monica leaves their meeting impressed and energized by their creative partnership and where it might lead. Ian journeys to Monica's upper-middle-class home to deliver the music for the Bat Mitzvah song. Thrilled with the results, Monica invites Ian to stay for Sabbath dinner.
At the temple, Monica anxiously waits for Ian, who arrives late and inebriated for their Bat Mitzvah gig. Their creative partnership is solidified when they write a new song together which they perform at the Rum Room Talent Night, winning them a trip to London.
Immersed in the burgeoning punk scene of London, Monica lands a record contract and names their punk duo The Diabolicals. They record a single which climbs to Number One on the charts and are then invited by their record company to perform at CBGB's in New York. Their relationship intensifies as they prepare to conquer the city and they are enthralled by the excitement of New York and their new relationship.
In New York, Ian's drinking starts to take its toll, culminating in his missing their all-important gig at CBGB. Monica is forced to perform on her own at the club where she is booed off the stage. Later that night, Monica informs Ian that she has decided to part ways with thelittle bit of love that remains. When Ian protests and tries to persuade Monica to reconsider, she reveals to him that she's pregnant and has decided not to keep the baby.
Ian decides to leave NYC and faces his fear of flying as he makes his way back home to Glasgow. Monica has a shaky start to her solo career with a cabaret gig as Ian struggles with his mother's death.
Monica writes to Ian, but he doesn't respond. After hitting rock bottom, Ian builds up the courage to get clean over the ensuing years and Glasgow melts back into NYC 1980. Monica wonders why Ian never responded to her attempts to communicate with him and then reveals that there is someone else in her life, Monica and Ian's 2-year-old son.
After the initial shock of this news, Ian comes to terms with his feelings for Monica and being a father in their renewed relationship. He picks up his guitar and helps Monica complete the song that she was writing when he first knocked on the door as they pick up the pieces of their past and step into the future.
- MONICA: Early 20's. Monica is a force of nature. Her passion draws people towards her whims. She is not savvy, sophisticated or street-smart, but she is driven. Her boundless energy makes her fluid and quick in movement, not earthbound. She is very attractive but not necessarily beautiful, and neither too thin nor overweight. She has a true talent for singing and a way with words; whatever she lacks in talent, she makes-up for in personality. She is an entertainer. She dresses with fun and flair. Her favorite performers are Bette Midler, Anthony Newley, Elton John, and of course, Batbra Streisand.
- IAN: Early 20's. Ian's outwardly confident and physically loose demeanor and swagger mask many insecurities. He may be cocky, sarcastic and cynical on the surface, but inside he is extremely vulnerable and frightened. Handsome, precocious, talented, witty, charming, he is also edgy, dark, troubled and brooding. He is serious about his music. He dresses daily in trademark black jeans. His favorite performers are Springsteen, Dylan, McCartney, and of course, Lennon.