Leap of Faith: Abridged

leapoffaith.png
And lo, Ráúl Éspárzá saw this mockup, and said, "Yea, this shall be the vehicle for my return to musicals."  
And the people of Broadway said, "But Ráúl, it is no Company."  And Ráúl was angsty.

LEAP OF FAITH ABRIDGED
OR
HALLELUJAH: THE MUSICAL: AGAIN

Scene: the theater where "the producers", "american idiot", patti's "Gypsy", and "finian's rainbow" went to die.

Ráúl Éspárzá

Good evening New York!  Who wants to hear an unnecessary proliferation of Direct Address to the Audience!

Chorusmember Plants in the audience

WOOOO!

Actual audience

...

Ráúl Éspárzá

Does everybody in orchestra seats have the fake money the understudies were forced to hand out before the curtain? 

Orchestra people

...uh, yeah?

RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ

Good!  Remember it during any of the FIVE SEPARATE AND DISTINCT TIMES we pass a collection plate around!

Cast sings a gospel number.

You love gospel!

RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ

And now, ladies and gentlemen, a story all about how my life got flip-turned upside down...

scene: someone took pieces of a gas station, threw them onstage, and called them a "set".

Kendra kassebaum

Ráúl, we need to keep Music-Man-ing townfolks across the US to believe that we're people of God, or we'll never make any money!

RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ

(flirty)

We gotta Music-Man `em?

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

WE GOTTA MUSIC-MAN `EM!

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirty)

Well, I guess that means that we should stop in "Sweetwater, Kansas" which--IRONY ALERT--doesn't have enough water!

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

(flirty back)

You mean they've 110 In The Shade-d?

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirty beyond all belief)

THEY'VE 110 IN THE SHADE-D!

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

Well we have a gospel choir. Let's raise up the church-slash-tent!

Cast sings another Gospel number.

You love gospel!

Sheriff marla mcgowan

(entering)

Not so fast. I'm the Sheriff of this here town.

Kendra kassebaum

I thought you were a waitress in the--

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

WELL NOW I'M A SHERIFF, KENDRA!  JEEZ!

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirty)

Don't mind her, she's just my kid sister.

Sheriff marla mcgowan

Whoa--Kendra's not your girlfriend?

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirty)

Nope, I'm just Ráúl Éspárzá. I have chemistry with everything!

(to bus setpiece in background)

Why, hello there.

Overly-realistic and totally unimaginitive setpiece

(bashfully)

Who.... m-m-m-me?

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirty)

Yes you, bus.  Have you everrr hearrrrd me rrrrroll my rrrr's?

Sheriff marla mcgowan

ENOUGH! I insist that you take down this tent. There's no WAY I'm going to let you extract money from my townpeople!

Ráúl ÉSPÁRZÁ

(flirting with Sheriff)

But we're waiting for a bus part that we're not really waiting for, and that'll take three days!

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

All right, that's clearly a good enough reason to stay here and swindle money from my townspeople!  Now let's never mention that bus part excuse again.

bookwriters janus cercone and warren leight

Ten steps ahead of you.

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

I sure hope you have some supporting characters to fill all that time, Ráúl.

Ráúl ÉSPÁRZÁ

Sure do!  Ain't that right, THE-ONLY-BLACK-PEOPLE-WHO-ACTUALLY-HAVE-ACTUAL-LINES-ALL-PLAY?

Kecia lewis-evans

Hi!  I'm very protective of Ráúl Éspárzá's sinister motives for no sensible reason!

Krystal joy brown

I am her daughter, and I serve the same exact duplicate function!

Gay sports guy from "smash"

I am not part of Ráúl's choir, and I DISAPPROVE of how he takes money from folks who truly need it.

Kecia lewis-evans and krystal joy brown

You asshole! Clearly you're the bad guy!

Ráúl Éspárzá

Great, now you all stay one-note like that the whole show.

They sing another gospel number.

You love gospel numbers.  Remember?

Ráúl Éspárzá

(flirtily)

HAHA, SHERIFF!  You don't have anything that can get to me!

Sheriff marla mcgowan

What if I told you I had...
...
...
A SON IN A WHEELCHAIR!

Enter a FRIGGIN' KID IN A WHEELCHAIR.

KID IN WHEELCHAIR

Ráúl...

(a tear in his eye)

Will you help me walk again?

KID proceeds to do magic tricks the way PENN AND TELLER do (you know, when they want to show you how a trick is done).

Ráúl Éspárzá

A KID IN A WHEELCHAIR, MY ONE WEAKNESS!

Sheriff marla mcgowan

You are a complete insufferable asshole to ABSOLUTELY EVERYONE, but not even YOU could be an asshole to a KID IN A WHEELCHAIR!

Ráúl Éspárzá

Oh god then I MUST have a heart!  In that case, will you sleep with me?

Sheriff marla mcgowan

Well clearly, as I'm female, and single, and understand the laws of Lazy Musical Theatre.

scene: first night of Ráúl Éspárzá's faith revival service.

Ráúl Éspárzá

Everyone, your 110-In-The-Shade drought shall be SOLVED!  With MIRACLES from GOD!

Choir sings another gospel number.

How you never tire of gospel numbers!

scene: second night of Ráúl Éspárzá's faith revival service.

Choir sings another gospel number.

Or is in the same gospel number as before?

What do you care?  You adore gospel and can keep listening to it for hours!

WHICH YOU WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO BECAUSE YOU CAME TO SEE LEAP OF FAITH TONIGHT!  YAAAAYYY FUCKING GOSPEL MUSIC!

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Ráúl, my SON IN A WHEELCHAIR wants you to perform a miracle and make him WALK, but more importantly, he'd really love for something to actually HAPPEN in this act.

Ráúl Éspárzá

Hmm.  You've been needlessly threatening to shut me down all night, what about that?

Sheriff marla mcgowan

Well, nothing in this act has given me a good enough reason.

random woman who has been music-man'd

But he stole my wedding ring and my debt is incredibly high--

Sheriff marla mcgowan

Nope, nothing. 

RANDOM WOMAN WHO HAS BEEN MUSIC-MAN'D

(being whisked offstage)

GO BACK TO WAITING TABLES, SHERIFF!

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

So what else you got, Ráúl?

Ráúl Éspárzá

Well then, I'll promise to heal your wheelchair son.

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Ah yes that'll do it.  TO JAIL WITH YOU!

OH NO WILL RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ BE OKAY?

scene: the Sheriff's office, immediately after Ráúl Éspárzá has been brought to jail.

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Even though your character has zero likable qualities, and your endless growling angry faces means Steve Martin you ain't, something something town posted bail.  So you're free to go.

Ráúl Éspárzá

Well that was anti-climactic.

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

By the by, I want you to know that my husband died a death, and my life has been HARD.

Ráúl Éspárzá

Well my father was a bad father, so my life was also HARD.

(flirty wink)

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Oh, I can't stay mad at you!  Go STEAL MONEY from my townspeople some more.

Cast sings yet ANOTHER gospel song written by some white guys!  OH JOY!

composer alan menken

Hey, don't blame me for writing this right after I wrote SISTER ACT: THE OTHER GOSPEL MUSICAL.  I needed the money!  
NO WAIT!
I just remembered that I get royalty checks from Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, and Little Mermaid!
Nevermind, I have no excuse.

Enter the "bad guy".

GAY SPORTS GUY FROM "SMASH"

Sheriff, I have something to help you catch Ráúl Éspárzá.

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

But I now sympathize with him, cuz his Dad beat him or whatever.

GAY SPORTS GUY FROM "SMASH"

But look, he steals money and I can prove it!

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

HE STEALS MONEY?  THIS IS CLEARLY NEWS TO ME!  LET'S GO GET HIM!

scene: third night of Ráúl Éspárzá's faith revival service.

GAY SPORTS GUY FROM "SMASH"

EVERYONE!  SPOILERS FOLLOW!  (Also go Rangers.)

Ráúl Éspárzá

I guess I'll just have to show them a miracle.  CHORUS, SING!

Hey, did you know that whenever your ears bleed, your brain thinks you are hearing the sounds of gospel music?

True story!

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Ráúl, my SON IN THE WHEELCHAIR thinks you can heal him!

townspeople

Ráúl you promised us you'd perform us a miracle!

Ráúl Éspárzá

Here goes nothing.

(gets down on his knees and prays)

Dear God, please bring a miracle.

Suddenly, the heavens open up and it begins to rain onstage.

KID IN WHEELCHAIR

Oh Ráúl, I don't care if you DIDN'T make me walk--you made it RAIN!

Ráúl Éspárzá

So amazing!  But I've learned that miracles DO happen, just where you least expect them!

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

HOLD IT! 
That's not what the script says.  It says that the Kid in the Wheelchair actually walks.

Ráúl Éspárzá

What!?!?  How?!?!?

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

He just does; he can just use crutches instead of a wheelchair from now on.

RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ

They're gonna turn our show into a trope! They'll call it "making the wheelchair kid walk"!  It means the same as "deus ex machina", but less satisfying.

KENDRA KASSEBAUM

The "libretto" also says that you now basically sing "Rose's Turn", but more bitter and through gritted teeth. Cause... you know, you're RÁÚL ÉSPÁRZÁ.

Ráúl ÉspárzÁ

(sings in front of a goddamn starfield background)

I HAD A DREAM,
I DREAMED IT FOR YOU, WHEELCHAIR BOY--

SHERIFF MARLA MCGOWAN

Ráúl, I can't decide whether to send you to federal jail for your crimes, or whether to abuse my power because I like you. 
Nope--I'm gonna abuse them!

This one woman in the audience who sat next to me and didn't exactly fit into her seat so she was gracious enough to, ahem, *borrow* 1/3rd of mine

Oh yay! Didja hear that Paul?

GAY SPORTS GUY FROM "SMASH"

Ráúl, now I'M going to be a con-man in your place!

Ráúl Éspárzá

After an entire show of complaining that I'm a con-man?  Why on earth would you do THAT?

Suddenly it starts to rain.

Ráúl Éspárzá

NOW?!?!?!??  Jesus.

(sighs)

Can anyone tell me what show I'm rumored to be starring in after this one closes in five minutes? Google isn't helping, and I want to get to losing my next Tony Award as quickly as possible.

gay sports guy from "SMASH"

Pass the collection buckets again!

That HAPPENS. 

And since you already used up the fake money they gave you, any Actual Money you put in is being used to fund--what else--"LEAP OF FAITH" on Broadway.

director chris ashley

HAHAHAHAH!  NOW YOU HAVE LEARNED WHAT IT IS LIKE TO BE SWINDLED BY CON-MEN!

blackout.

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