The Great Gatsby - SYNOPSIS

2024 Broadway
The Great Gatsby the Musical - SYNOPSIS

Act I

Nick Carraway, a Midwestern young man who served in World War I, arrives in New York to work as a bondsman and is immediately awestruck at the wealth and excess on display, particularly by his mysterious neighbor Jay Gatsby ("Roaring On"). Nick meets his cousin Daisy and her husband, his school acquaintance Tom Buchanan; he is also introduced to Daisy's friend, golfer Jordan Baker. Daisy is excited to see Nick flourish in New York and alludes that her marriage is unhappy ("Absolute Rose"). Daisy and Jordan learn that Nick has received an invitation to one of Gatsby's famous over-the-top parties; Daisy becomes pensive at the mension of his name. Jordan goes with him to the lavish party ("New Money"). Gatsby meets with Nick privately and confesses that he had built his fortune to win back his former sweetheart, Daisy, and asks for Nick's help in reacquainting them ("For Her"), though Nick is hesitant.

In a run-down garage, George Wilson questions his station in life to a billboard advertising optometrist TJ Eckleberg ("Valley of Ashes"). George also receives regular shipments from Gatsby's business associate Meyer Wolfsheim. Tom visits the garage and it becomes apparent George's wife Myrtle is his mistress; Myrtle sings about their poverty and how exciting it is to be the mistress of a rich man ("Second-Hand Suit"). Meanwhile, Daisy and Jordan discuss Tom's indiscretions and the state of their marriage; Jordan is staunchly against getting married ("For Better Or Worse").

Tom takes Myrtle and Nick to the Manhattan apartment of Myrtle's sister Catherine and they carry on their affair. Nick becomes uncomfortable with the iniquity on display; he agrees to reintroduce Daisy and Gatsby after witnessing Tom break Myrtle's nose during a fight ("The Met"). Gatsby and Nick plan for Nick to invite Daisy to tea, during which Gatsby will drop by unannounced; however, Gatsby panics and provides Nick's cottage with lavish decorations and expensive food ("Only Tea"). Gatsby and Daisy converse privately inside the cottage while Nick and Jordan, standing outside in the rain, share a kiss. Daisy goes with Gatsby back to his mansion and the two begin an affair ("My Green Light").

Act II

The characters carry on with their affairs as Wolfsheim sings about illicit acts and secrecy ("Shady"). Nick and Jordan's relationship deepens ("Better Hold Tight"). Gatsby, convinced that Daisy will leave Tom for him, begins to plan a party recreating their relationship during the war, despite Nick's reservations and his neglect of his business arrangement with Wolfsheim ("Past Is Catching Up To Me"). At the party, Gatsby brings on performer Gilda Gray and dances with Daisy as Tom watches enviously and converses with Wolfsheim ("La Dee Dah With You"). Jordan proposes to Nick; Daisy tells Gatsby that she wants to run away with him ("Go"). A frustrated Tom demands that they leave, though is persuaded to visit a suite at the Plaza Hotel with Nick, Jordan, Daisy, and Gatsby instead. Tom, driving Nick and Jordan, stops at the Wilsons' garage; Jordan loudly says they are going to the Plaza so Myrtle (who is, unbeknownst to them, pregnant) will hear.

At the suite, Daisy and Gatsby's affair comes to light, to Tom's fury. Gatsby demands that Daisy swear she never loved Tom, but Daisy cannot; she becomes more reluctant to leave Tom after Tom reveals that Gatsby's fortune is from bootlegging alcohol ("Made to Last"). The characters leave the hotel. Myrtle begins walking to the Plaza while fantasizing about the outcomes of being pregnant with Tom's child, but is hit and killed by Gatsby's signature yellow Rolls-Royce ("One-Way Road").

A shocked Tom sees Myrtle's body being carried away by the police. Jordan and Nick quickly figure out that it was Gatsby's car that killed Myrtle, but Jordan wants to stay quiet. Nick is disappointed and calls of their wedding. Tom tells George that Gatsby owned the car; George despairs to the billboard ("God Sees Everything").

Nick goes to Gatsby's mansion and finds him alone; Daisy having retreated back into her own home. Gatsby tells Nick Daisy had been driving the car. He thinks Daisy will return to him and says he intends to take the fall, though Nick disagrees. Nick heads off to work, promising to call Gatsby, who begins to take a swim. George arrives and shoots Gatsby and then himself ("For Her (Reprise)"). Nick is the only attendee at Gatsby's funeral as people gossip about the reason for his death ("New Money ("Reprise"). Nick confronts Daisy, who is now leaving with Tom for Honolulu, about her abandonment of Gatsby. Daisy tells Nick that she hopes her young daughter has no further ambitions beyond becoming a beautiful and docile rich wife, unlike Daisy herself ("Beautiful Little Fool"). Before his return to the Midwest, Nick visits Gatsby's abandoned mansion and thinks he sees the man briefly ("Finale: Roaring On").

Review: The Great Gatsby the Musical Lyrics