To Sing or Not To Sing

…or “It’s a Musical About What?

A vague memory of having sex with a dresser floats away into an audition for a musical. I’m in college, a senior, but it will be my first time to audition for anything. I don’t remember the audition, but it must have gone well – I got the lead!

Scripts are handed out in the strangest way possible… this musical was written to have hundreds of variations, so our songbook is a huge hardback book with leather tooling both beautiful and bizarre. The strange thing about it is the mixture of 1950’s grit with Pokémon. It’s a musical about Pokémon, but it’s also a musical meant to be “The Beginning of All Musicals!” It makes no sense now and it made little sense then.

The book only has the words to all the songs. It would be three times bigger if it was scored out, some with multiple voice parts. So along with that, each person is given a sound file to download to their phone and a personalized list of page numbers for the songs you’ll have to sing.

Classes take up a lot of my time, and even though I’m getting a Math degree none of the classes are Math classes. Rehearsals won’t start for a while, so I haven’t even cracked the book let alone listen to the music. But then someone dies. (I can’t remember who.) But it means we’re going to put on a dress rehearsal tonight, so our director wants to see how much we’ve learned since auditions.

Nothing! I mean, rehearsals weren’t supposed to start yet. I’ve had midterms and papers and… for some reason it all feels valid in the dream, but really. Landing the lead in a musical is a huge responsibility and I should have been working my ass off for it. I let the director know I’ll be a tiny bit late, late enough (I know) so that she’ll start with someone else. So when I arrive someone else is singing their song about being framed by Snorlax. I see someone else is already getting ready and check with them – yes, they’re going to sing next so I still have a little time.

I flip through the book, forgetting that there’s no score in there. Maybe I can memorize the words in time? I don’t seem to question my ability to do this, only whether or not that will be enough. My eyes flick back to my bag… but it would be too noticeable if I tried to get my phone out to listen to the songs. But before I’m put on the spot, I wake up.

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