“A Woman at War” Musical Lyrics

In yesterday’s post, I mentioned how my musical “A Woman at War” is being performed this week in Kuala Lumpur Wed-Sat as part of the Short & Sweet Musical Festival. I’ll be heading down tomorrow to take part in the festivities. But in the meantime, I thought I’d post the lyrics. “Dedicated to all the women who fought for the love on the home front.”

“A Woman in War: A Musical”

Lyrics by Mark W. Sasse

Music by Mark W. Sasse & Laura Danneker

Dedicated to all the women who fought for their love on the home front.

ACT I: The Wedding

                            SARA

I knew by the look

and the awkward shy way that you took my hand,

from that moment on,

Love could survive cross the ocean’s span

                            JOHNNY

When I hold you, the war disappears

                            SARA

When you hold me, I walk without fear

                            DUET

You are life to me, you’re all I can see

You are life to me, you help me believe

that All of my, all of my, all of my dreams are wrapped up in you

oooo-oooo-oooo

All of my, all of my, all of my hopes are wrapped up in you

oooo-oooo-oooo

                            SARA

I do (they are standing like they are getting married.)

            (They walk arm in arm after the wedding, he is waving to the crowds but she is singing in a series   and contemplative manner.)

My friends warned me what I’d become

A numberless widow by an enemy’s gun

but I feel as strong as I do

Cause I’m just a woman in war over you

I’m just a woman in war over you.

            (Face to face with each other)

SARA

Stay safe. And come home.

                            JOHNNY

Wait for me.

                            SARA

Always.

            (Johnny turns to leave as she sings, watching him go out of sight)

You are life to me, you’re all I can see

You are life to me, you help me believe

that All of my, all of my, all of my dreams are wrapped up in you

oooo-oooo-oooo

All of my, all of my, all of my hopes are wrapped up in you …

            (Air raid sirens. Johnny on stage left is acting like he is at the war front. Sara, on stage right,    acting like she is hiding in a shelter.)

ACT II: The War

                         JOHNNY

Against the pitch of the dark blood-curling night

each minute we stand on the cusp of life

all barrels wait on the slightest twitch

with our knees are half sunk in a muddy ditch

No family exists in the trench of war

and the stench of death is a common bore

the numbness I feel inside my chest

will not dissipate with relax and rest

I will wait for the fog to lift

I wait for my soul to breathe once again

I will wait for the fog to lift

But I’m afraid I’ll never see you again

            (Johnny continues acting like he is at war while Sara sings and acts out the following.)

                                 SARA

On the home front, women fight the same war

by rationing goods at the local store

and we turned all the mills into fighting machines,

and we pack all our boxes with ripped magazines

Not a patch in the ground isn’t used for a seed,

growing gardens of life, we truly believe,

will be used to feed our boys in the war

each Sunday we pray for peace restored

                  JOHNNY & SARA

and I wait for the fog to lift

and I wait for my soul to breathe once again

and I wait for the fog to lift

but I don’t know if I will see you again,

                 JOHNNY & SARA

And we fight for the glory,

And we fight for our home

and we fight for our children,

at both fronts, alone

and we fight for the crashing around our soul

and we fight for the glory, we fight for it all

 

                      JOHNNY (singing same time with Sara)

And we fight for the glory,

And we fight for our home

and we fight for our children,

at both fronts, alone

and we fight for the crashing around our soul

and we fight for the glory, we fight for it all

SARA

and I wait for the fog to lift

and I wait for my soul to breathe once again

and I wait for the fog to lift

but I don’t know if I will see you again,

         (GUN SHOT –  Johnny falls down, wounded. He crawls off stage as Sara sings the following part)

            SARA

At night when the sun

dips beneath the clouds

I hold your last letter

and I think of how proud

you make me still

How I love you still

after three long years

you’re still on my heart

and I cannot bear that we’re still apart

but I feel as strong as I do

cause I’m still a woman at war over you.

I’m still a woman at war over …

            (Bells ringing)

victory victory victory victory   (production note: this can be pre-recorded or sung by Sara)

SARA

our boys are coming home

our boys are coming home

I’ll no longer be alone

because our boys are coming home

You are life to me, you’re all I can see

You are life to me, you help me believe

that all of my, all of my, all of my dreams are wrapped up in …

            (speaking)

Johnny? Johnny?

ACT III: The Homecoming

            (Sara comes upon Johnny who is sitting in a wheel chair, unresponsive, like he is in eternal shell-             shock. Sara tries to get his attention but to no avail. She becomes irritated and starts the           following song.)

                    SARA

I don’t understand what’s wrong

He doesn’t seem to know me

I don’t understand what happened

It’s like he never knew me

It’s like he can’t talk

he won’t look in my direction

Why won’t he talk

he shows me no affection

the doctor says to love him and treat him like he’s there

but I can’t take the burden of living with such fear

            (She comes back to him with compassion.)

Jonny, talk to me. Johnny.  (she becomes more mellow)

Why does he listen but not respond,

Why does he look but does not see

Why do I have these selfish thoughts?

Why did this have to happen to me?

He’s not the same man that I once loved

But he needs me just the same

There is no one at all to blame

But why do I feel so ashamed

of my feelings

I want to run away.

I want to leave today.

There is no one

no one at all to blame.

            (speaking)

I’m sorry, Johnny. I’m sorry.

            (She starts to walk away in tears when she hears a recorded voice, as if it is echoing in her head.)

            JOHNNY’S VOICE PRE-RECORDED

Will you wait for me?  Will you wait for me?

            (She turns and looks back in his direction, feels sympathy, and duty)

            SARA

Always.

            (She starts coming back to her unresponsive husband.)

            (tenderly)

You are life to me, you’re all I can see

You are life to me, you help me believe

that All of my, all of my, all of my dreams are wrapped up in you

oooo-oooo-oooo

All of my, all of my, all of my hopes are wrapped up in you

oooo-oooo-oooo

            (stronger)

My friends warned me what I’d become

A numberless widow by an enemy’s gun

but I feel as strong as I do

Cause I’m still a woman in war over you

I’m still a woman in war over you.

            (There is some movement from Jonny. He moves his mouth and talks for the first time.)

            JOHNNY

Sara.

            SARA

Johnny.

            (She comes to his side and he reaches for her hand.)

            (Lights fade.)

THE END

 

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Getting Ready for Short & Sweet Penang

This is the third year that I’ve been involved with the Short & Sweet Theatre Penang festival which is kicking off next week. In 2011 I submitted my short play “Drive All Night” which came home with the Audience Choice Award. That was a lot of fun. Last year my script “No in Spite of Itself” won for Best Script, which was an honor for me. Even my daughter won the award for Best Supporting Actor – Female. All the awards and honors are great, but they are certainly secondary in my book. Here’s a few things I especially like about this festival:

  • It’s a great intro to live theatre for a lot of performers. This festival attracts a lot of young people who may haven’t had the opportunity to perform. It’s a stretching and fun experience, and, hopefully, it will connect them to the magical world of live theatre for the rest of their lives.
  • Second, it’s a fun mix of professional and amateur performers. It’s great to see those who work in the performing arts take part in the festival right alongside the newbies. What a great way to learn! The mixture and interaction is fun for all involved.
  • For me it’s a great bridge into the community. I can become somewhat isolated with work and home and work and home, but this is a tangible opportunity for me to do what I love in a community setting. I meet new people, network, learn, interact, and, generally, just have a good time!
  • Lastly it’s about watching the varied performances. Some great. Some, frankly, not so great. But that is what’s engaging about this show. It’s 10, 10-minute plays. If one’s not good, it won’t be long until the next one comes. It’s also a great way to judge performances and to see what is and is not an effective way to act in or direct a piece.

The festival kicks off this week with the dance portion.

Next week starts the theatre portion. My script “A Pinch of Fate, a Shot of Destiny” will be one of the scripts being produced. I’m also directing another one called “The Surgeon’s Creed.” Two other scripts being produced were submitted by my students, so I’m proud of my drama group making some great in-roads into the local theatre scene. If you are in Penang next week, stop by PenangPAC and check it out – September 3-6.

Short and Sweet Penang 2014