My Name Above The Title, from Leading Lady (Day 135)

Yesterday’s post showed our first attempt to musicalize the moment when Mae Desmond gets her first big break and lands the leading role in the national tour of The Daughter of Mother Machree. But the more we thought about it, the more it didn’t make sense that she would be so reluctant to embrace this opportunity, and so we rewrote the scene and the number. It actually opens with a tipsy reprise of As Long As We’re Together, with Frank stumbling home from the bar, only to discover there’s a guest in their Brooklyn apartment: the producer Sylvester Poli.

After Poli announces the news, he leaves the family alone to celebrate their good fortune.

MAE: My name above the title!
Up there for all to see.
The star of Poli’s newest show is me!
My name above the title!
It really is a thrill
To see “Mae Desmond” topping the bill!

No longer an unknown,
I have earned a bit of fame!

FRANK: On every ad and hand-bill,
We’re going to see your name.

MAE: And folks outside the theater
Will read it on the sign.
The name above the title is mine!

ALL: Starring Mae Desmond!
MAGGIE: Oh, my gosh!
ALL: Starring Mae Desmond!
MAE: How’s that for posh?
ALL: Starring Mae Desmond!
FRANK: Has quite a ring
MAGGIE: Sweet, sufferin’ Jesus
It’s a wonderful thing!

MAE: And did I mention money?
How much they’re going to pay?
I’ll earn a full week’s wages every day!
And if we make a profit,
He says I’ll get a share.
I thought what he proposed was more than fair!

I really had to bargain,
It took a lot of nerve,
But by the time we’d finished,
I got what we deserve,
And now I’ve got his signature right on the dotted line,
The name above the title will be mine!

It’s quite a fee-dee-dle-dee-dee-dle-dee!
How grand we’ll be deedle dee deedle dee,
Just wait and see deedle dee deedle dee.
It’s not for me,
It’s all for you and all of you doodle doo, doodle doo,
A dream come true doodle doo doodle doo
I’ll buy a slew of toys and treasures
And they’re all for you know who!

It’s what we’ve always prayed for,
Some kind of lucky break.
When you get such an offer, you take!
I can’t begin to tell you
Exactly how it feels.
It makes me want to kick up my heels!
When you’re a leading lady,
That is where your name must be!
The name above the title is absolutely vital!
Up there above the title
That’s me!

This was where Act I ended in the September 2014 reading. In the previous readings, Act I continued with The Drinks Are On Mae Desmond, which you’ll get to hear tomorrow!

One thought on “My Name Above The Title, from Leading Lady (Day 135)

  1. Pingback: Closer To Our Dreams, from Leading Lady (Day 134) | Notes from a SAVI Savant

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