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Ruthless! - Full Length Musical, Comedy

Ruthless!

Marvin Laird, Joel Paley

Customer Rating: starstarstarstarstar (Rate this!)

Full Length Musical, Comedy

1m, 6f

ISBN: 9780573704680

Book and Lyrics by Joel Paley
Music by Marvin Laird

"A spoof that has enough absurd plot twists and multiple identities to fill several old movies.... The fun comes from the sheer brazenness!" - The New York Times


Note on Digital Perusal: Samuel French's new digital perusal process grants easy, digital access to music perusals while protecting the intellectual property of our composers, book writers, and lyricists. Samuel French perusals are intended to be used for finding the perfect show to fit your theater, casting pool, and resources. Perusals should be used to get acquainted with the music and script. They cannot be used to hold auditions, produce the show without a license, or find sheet music for a separate performance.

$9.95
: Acting Edition
$4.95
Digital Perusal Score Rental
$17.95
: Large Print
$19.95
: Stage Manager

Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.


Description

Full Length Musical

Comedy

Farce, Parody / Spoof

Time Period - Contemporary, 1960s, 1950s

Settings Of Play - An era reminiscent of the 1950's and 60s.

FEATURES / CONTAINS

Unit Set/Multiple Settings

Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes

TARGET AUDIENCE

Adult, Pre-Teen (Age 11 - 13), Teen (Age 14 - 18)

PERFORMANCE GROUP

High School/Secondary, College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Dinner Theatre, Professional Theatre, Large Stage, Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

RECOGNITION / AWARDS

From Off-Broadway

Revised in August 2015 to reflect the 2015 Off Broadway production.

Eight-year-old Tina Denmark knows she was born to play Pippi Longstocking, and she will do anything to win the part in her school musical. Anything includes murdering the leading lady! This aggressively outrageous musical hit garnered rave reviews during its long Off-Broadway run.

REVIEWS

"A spoof that has enough absurd plot twists and multiple identities to fill several old movies...The fun comes from the sheer brazenness!" - The New York Times

"Hilarious...It is beyond praise!" - New York Daily News

"Wild amusement." - New York Post

"A demented pleasure. Cheery, cheeky burlesque humor that evokes Your Show of Shows." - New York Newsday

"Merry mayhem...Malicious, delicious and a total joy." - New York Observer

"Brilliant." - USA Today

"A wonderfully smart and funny send up of every Broadway brat from Gypsy to The Bad Seed...loaded with campy wit and charm." - Variety


RELATED ARTICLES ON BREAKING CHARACTER

Staff Picks: RUTHLESS
by Courtney Kochuba with Annette Storckman
November 11, 2014


Ruthless! was first presented at the Players Theater in New York City on May 6, 1992. Directed by Joal Paley.

Characters

CASTING

1m, 6f

CASTING ATTRIBUTES

Drag performance, Features Children, Local Celebrity Cameo, Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle), Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)

CASTING NOTES

All the characters (With the exception of Fredrick, who makes a surprise entrance at the end of the play to speak the final line of dialogue) are females. The show can be performed with an all female cast, though the role of Sylvia St. Croix originally was, and is often performed, by an actor in drag. Ultimately, the show can be mounted with any combination of male and female actors.

The same actor can play both Louise Lerman and Eve, although this is not necessary.

The role of Tina Denmark can be played a youngster or an adult. The show is effective either way for different and valid reasons. At the Triad Theater in New York City a thirteen-year-old actress and the author (a man in his fifties) played Tina in alternating scenes, appearing together on stage for a few well-chosen and crucial moments.

CHORUS SIZE

No Chorus

SYLVIA ST. CROIX
JUDY DENMARK
TINA DENMARK
MYRNA THORN
LOUISE LERMAN
LITA ENCORE
EVE
MISS BLOCK
Rental Materials

SIZE OF ORCHESTRA

Small/Combo

MUSICAL STYLE

Classic Broadway

VOCAL DEMANDS

Moderate

8 Piano 1/Vocal  Scores

1 Piano 2/Vocal Score

Song Samples

Prologue

Tina's Mother

Born to Entertain

Talent

To Play This Part

Teaching Third Grade

Where Tina Gets It From

The Pippi Song

Kisses and Hugs

Teaching Third Grade [Reprise]

Talent [Reprise #1]

I Hate Musicals

Angel Mom

Entr'acte / Montage

A Penthouse Apartment

It Will Never Be That Way Again

I Want The Girl

Parents and Children

Ruthless!

Talent [Reprise #2]

Ruthless! [Reprise]

Videos
  • I Hate Musicals

  • Tina's Mother

  • Bernadette Peters - Angel Mom

Author(s)
Marvin Laird

Marvin Laird

Marvin Laird is the composer of the award-winning Off-Broadway musical, Ruthless!. His collaboration with Joel Paley, the author/lyricist of that show, has been ongoing for 25 years. Their recent piece, The Yiddish are Coming...! The Yiddish are Coming...! is currently playing regionally throughout North America. Since the 1960s, he has conducted and/or written dance and vocal arrangements for ... view full profile

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Reviews
Erik Stein 1/22/2014 1:05 PM
Breanne McDonagh 4/23/2013 12:53 AM
In “Ruthless,” Laird and Paley are able to take the nightmare of overbearing stage mothers and spoiled rotten children from one extreme to the other, resulting in a musical comedy laden with uproars of laughter.  Though the musical itself is relatively small and fairly twisted in its sense of humor, the impact it leaves on its audiences is huge and strangely heart-warming.  Playing with tropes from its showy predecessors, such as “Gypsy,”  “Ruthless” offers a fun parody of a look into talent and the effects it has on people.  “Ruthless” is a surefire way to have an entertaining show for all involved, both performers and audiences.
Alexander Rice 4/18/2013 4:07 PM
“What is talent?” asks a booming voice at the start of Ruthless! The Musical. In this case, talent is synonymous with that intangible, indefinable thing known as Star Quality, and it can turn housewives into movie stars, grandmothers into grand dames, and children into vicious murderers. All in good fun, of course.

  Paying homage to retro showbiz musicals like Gypsy and Funny Girl as well as over-the-top films that showcase larger-than-life (if a little crazy) mothers and daughters like The Bad Seed and Mommie Dearest, Ruthless!  stands on its own as a dark comedy about the American Dream. But in its finest moments, it is nothing but wildly entertaining.

   The lively musical score by Joel Paley provides plentiful opportunities for a cast of six women to show off their pipes, and the book by Marvin Laird is filled with intentionally cheap jokes.  Even without knowing the sources it spoofs, audiences should have no trouble laughing at the outrageous characters and their actions. Plus, with shows like Toddlers and Tiaras and outrageous real-life characters like Honey Boo Boo enjoying popularity, Ruthless! has found a whole new generation of absurd stage mothers and fame-hungry rugrats to mock. Guaranteed fun.  

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