Directors' Choice Award Winner
Xmas In Las Vegas
>By Joe Bravaco, Larry Rosler, & Tony Finno
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- TITLE OF WORK: Xmas in Las Vegas
- SUBTITLE: N/A
- SELECT ONE: Adapted with permission
- REFERENCE WORK: Xmas in Las Vegas, a play by Jack Richardson
- MUSICAL STYLE: Broadway
- NATURE: Comedy
- INTENDED AUDIENCE: General
- STRUCTURE: Spoken dialogue with occasional songs
- APPROXIMATE DURATION (Hrs/Min): 2 hours
- DESIRED INSTRUMENTATION: piano, bass, drums
- BRIEFLY STATE THE THEME or MESSAGE: Life's a gamble. Roll the dice.
- NUMBER OF SETS: One
MRS. PERIAPT: alto
WILLY: non-singing role
It’s Christmas, 1961, and Edward T. Wellspot is determined to break the Olympus Casino. For years, he has spent each Christmas trying to beat Spiros Olympus, the owner of the casino, and each year he has failed. This year is no different — added to which, Edward is in debt with a $10,000 marker from Olympus.
Accompanying Edward are his pill-popping wife, Eleanor, and their children: Lionel, a perennial student, and Emily, a serial divorcee. While Edward believes his luck will change, his family doesn’t hold out much hope. Unlike their father, Lionel and Emily have retreated from the game of life rather than take a gamble.
Now Edward faces a dilemma: If he consents to the marriage of Olympus and Emily, Olympus will forgive his marker. If Edward doesn't give his blessing and fails to make good on the $10,000, Olympus will ruin Edward’s name up and down the Strip.
Just when things seem darkest, Edward meets Mrs. Edna Periapt. She has never gambled in her life but, behold, Mrs. Periapt is blessed with the Midas touch. Edward can’t lose if he follows her hunches. Rather than quit while he is ahead, he recruits Mrs. Periapt as his secret weapon in a head-to-head game of blackjack with Olympus. But Olympus has a weapon of his own, and when he employs it, Mrs. Periapt crumbles like a marionette.
Although their father has lost, Emily and Lionel have been inspired to jump back into the game of life. Now, with Olympus left waiting at the altar and certain to turn Edward into a Vegas pariah, Edward has no choice but to say good-bye to gambling, return home to Pittsburgh and work off his debts. But Eleanor knows her husband isn’t down yet. There’s always bingo at the Elks Club.
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