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In Trousers - Full Length Musical, Drama

In Trousers

William Finn

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Full Length Musical, Drama

1m, 3f

ISBN: 9780573681530

Books, Lyrics, and Music by William Finn
"These exploits...are set to music-- funny, bouncy, cleverly constructed music...it galvanizes whatever it touches. Finn's lyrics are even more cause for celebration. Densely packed with off the wall wit, these compact poems are tough little cookies …
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: Acting Edition
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: Large Print
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Description

Full Length Musical

Drama

FEATURES / CONTAINS

Bare Stage/Simple Set

TARGET AUDIENCE

Adult, Teen (Age 14 - 18)

PERFORMANCE GROUP

College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Professional Theatre

In Trousers is the Marvin musical that precedes March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland. It centers on the women in Marvin's life-- his wife, his teacher and his high school honey-- and on his attempts to decide if he is hetero, homo or bi. Eventually, of course, Marvin does leave the rather shrewish and demanding woman in his life to find happiness with dear, delightful "Whizzer" Brown.
"These exploits...are set to music-- funny, bouncy, cleverly constructed music...it galvanizes whatever it touches. Finn's lyrics are even more cause for celebration. Densely packed with off the wall wit, these compact poems are tough little cookies that speak knowingly of the ups and downs of modern urban life." - The New York Post

"An innovative musical which succeeds as completely satisfying theatre." - Hollywood Reporter

Characters

CASTING

1m, 3f

Rental Materials

SIZE OF ORCHESTRA

Small/Combo

5 Piano/Conductor Scores

Reed 1 (Flute Piccolo, Clarinet, Alto Saxophone)
Reed 2 (Oboe, Clarinet, Tenor Saxophone)
Trumpet
Percussion
Synthesizer
Videos
  • In Trousers

Author
William Finn

William Finn

William Finn is the writer and composer of Falsettos, for which he received two Tony Awards, Best Book of a Musical (with James Lapine) and Best Original Score. He has also written and composed In Trousers, March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland (Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Musical, two Los Angeles Drama Critics Awards, two Drama Desk Awards, the Lucille Lortel Award and Guggenheim ... view full profile

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Reviews
Aaron Ricciardi 5/8/2013 10:01 AM
IN TROUSERS is not as celebrated as FALSETTOS. Perhaps it appears aimless in comparison. While wildly imaginative, FALSETTOS is easy to follow. IN TROUSERS moves around time and space like a dream, and its lyrics utilize more metaphor and less colloquial language than FALSETTOS’. IN TROUSERS contains gorgeous, but few, stage directions, and requires a great director to make sense of it. FALSETTOS is more concerned with its audience, while IN TROUSERS is more concerned with artfulness. The jury is still out on which makes for better theatre, but I believe that IN TROUSERS is the frankest, saddest, and most beautiful coming-out play ever written.

I partly miss the 1978 version of IN TROUSERS when encountering Samuel French’s revised version. The old version had a sense of sloppiness to it, as if it was not quite sure what it wanted to be—precisely what Marvin is going through. The published version is still muddled, but new songs were added to make sense of things, and most of them do not live up to the authenticity of the original tunes. One new song, “Packing Up,” does live up, however, and contains some of the show’s most moving lyrics. Another strong addition is “I’m Breaking Down,” which is in both IN TROUSERS and FALSETTOS, but fits better as a discovery in IN TROUSERS, than as a woe-is-me moment in FALSETTOS.

The frantic style of IN TROUSERS embodies what coming out of the closet feels like, while a play like TAKE ME OUT presents what coming out looks like. (Similarly, RABBIT HOLE presents what losing a child looks like, but GOD'S EAR gets at what it feels like.) It informs FALSETTOS to learn that Marvin is emotionally unstable. That stunning lyric, “Marvin always gets the things he wants, except the things he wants,” gives new meaning to the Marvin of FALSETTOS, who “wants it all,” but ends up with nothing.

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