A New Brain musical - PLOT

1998 Off-Broadway musical by William Finn
A New Brain the Musical - PLOT


Lisa, a homeless woman, asks the audience for some change. Songwriter Gordon Schwinn works at his piano to meet a deadline, irritated because he must write a song about spring for children's television host Mr. Bungee, who dresses as a frog ("Frogs Have So Much Spring (The Spring Song) Lyrics"). Gordon takes a break from writing The Spring Song to meet his best friend Rhoda at a restaurant, where the waitress, who is a fan of Mr. Bungee, informs Gordon and Rhoda of the specials at the restaurant, including ("Calamari Lyrics"). During lunch, he clutches his head and falls face first into his meal. Rhoda calls an ambulance ("911 Emergency Lyrics") and Gordon is taken to the hospital. Gordon's greatest fear is dying with his greatest songs still inside him ("I Have so Many Songs Lyrics"), to which he ponders about what makes a song ("Heart and Music Lyrics"). Gordon's mother, Mimi, arrives and insists that ("Mother's Gonna Make Things Fine Lyrics"). A neurosurgeon, Dr. Jafar Berensteiner, explains that there's ("Trouble in His Brain Lyrics") and that an MRI is necessary.

Gordon snaps at Mimi for underestimating his condition and not listening to the Doctor, to which a hallucination of Mr. Bungee appears, telling Gordon to ("Be Polite To Everyone"), and Gordon tells it to leave. Gordon daydreams about his boyfriend Roger, who is on his way to the hospital from a ("Sailing Lyrics") trip. The nurses, sadistic Nancy D. and compassionate Richard, are introduced. Nancy D. requests a ("Family History Lyrics"), prompting Gordon to ponder why he only inherited the bad traits from his parents ("Gordon's Law of Genetics Lyrics"). He reflects on his father's abandonment ("And They're Off Lyrics"). ("Roger Arrives Lyrics") and spends some time with Gordon, who tells him to ("Just Go Lyrics"). Richard enters to give Gordon a sponge bath in preparation for his ("MRI Tomorrow Lyrics"). During the sponge bath, Richard complains that he is ("Poor, Unsuccessful and Fat Lyrics"). Gordon hallucinates and sees Mr. Bungee who continually bullies him. Gordon is visited by a minister, who tries to inflict his Protestant beliefs on Gordon, who is Jewish. Gordon asks him to leave, and goes to sleep.

Gordon is woken by Nancy, who informs him that it’s (“MRI Day Lyrics”). To cope with his claustrophobia, he thinks about a past sailing trip with Roger ("Sitting Becalmed in the Lee of Cuttyhunk Lyrics"). Dr. Berensteiner tells Gordon that he has an arteriovenous malformation, and needs a ("Craniotomy Lyrics"). Nancy D. informs him of the risks - if he doesn't go through with the operation, he could die, however, if Dr. Berensteiner is not exact with his surgery, he could also die. Gordon, given the choice by the Doctor, decides to go through with the operation, and Roger offers to sleep with Gordon that night ("An Invitation to Sleep In My Arms Lyrics"). Rhoda arrives with news that Mr. Bungee needs a new song by the next morning, so Gordon declines Roger's offer and decides to write instead. He then hallucinates about Lisa, who he encountered earlier on his way to lunch with Rhoda. Lisa implores the audience for ("Change Lyrics"), both physical money and social change. Gordon presents his new song, ("Yes Lyrics"), to Mr. Bungee, who hates it, storming off to leave Gordon dejected ("In the Middle of the Room Lyrics"). Mimi cleans Gordon's apartment, and in a rage, throws out all of his books ("Throw It Out Lyrics"). Gordon waits anxiously as his surgery is delayed ("In the Middle of the Room (Part 2)"). Then the operation commences.

Roger, distraught about the surgery, encounters Lisa who consoles him ("A Really Lousy Day in the Universe Lyrics"). In a coma, Gordon hallucinates a surrealistic mini-opera featuring people from his life ("Brain Dead Lyrics", "Whenever I Dream Lyrics", "Eating Myself Up Alive Lyrics", "The Music Still Plays On Lyrics") concluding with a friendly Mr. Bungee telling Gordon ("Don't Give In Lyrics"), leading him back to consciousness. Dr. Berensteiner celebrates the successful surgery ("Craniotomy (Reprise) Lyrics"). Gordon and Roger fool around in the hospital shower, much to Richard's dismay ("You Boys Are Gonna Get Me In Such Trouble Lyrics"). Gordon expresses his new appreciation for life ("Sailing (Reprise) Lyrics").

Months later, Gordon has recovered and is enjoying a new, more fulfilled life with Roger. They run into Lisa, who is selling Gordon's books that Mimi threw out. Gordon and Roger ask for them back, but she refuses ("The Homeless Lady's Revenge Lyrics"). She flees, leaving Gordon furious, but Roger calms him down ("Time Lyrics"). Gordon has overcome his fear of dying with his greatest songs inside him ("Time and Music Lyrics"). With his life at last in balance, he is able to write again and finishes the spring song ("I Feel so Much Spring Lyrics").

Musical Songs: A New Brain The Musical Songs Lyrics
plot to A New Brain the musucal synopsis