Part of the SHORT MUSICALS NOW COLLECTION
Cooking For Two
Book and Lyrics by Charlie O'Leary, Music by Karl Hinze
It's the first season finale of Food Network's latest, Tasty Time with Jenny and Brett - but as the cameras roll, the eponymous couple's cheary facade starts to crack. When Jenny tries to end the show in a desperate bid to save their marriage, Brett must confront a terrifying choice: relationship or career?
In a television studio at Chelsea Piers in New York City, it's almost time for the live season finale of "Tasty Time with Jenny and Brett," everyone's favorite cooking show co-hosted by everyone's favorite real-life married couple.
Brett takes in the darkened studio before the cameras turn on, “OPENING”, until he's interrupted by Nameless PA and the hustle and bustle begins. Nameless PA energizes the studio audience while Brett and Jenny fight quietly, and then not-so-quietly. The problem? He never wants the TV show to end, and she hopes this will be their final episode ever.
The cameras start rolling and the couple is forced to put on their cheery on-air personas. They begin preparing the special meal from the night they got engaged, “IT TAKES TWO”. But things go off the rails as they can't keep their off-screen tensions under wraps: during a commercial break, Jenny tells Brett the show is ruining their marriage. She wants to end the TV show and move back home to Connecticut. Brett storms off stage.
Jenny is left on-stage as we come back from commercial and has to prepare the desert alone, “SIMPLEST THING”. Brett slips on and watches from the wings, and her cooking becomes what it originally was: an act of love between them.
They both apologize, and Brett agrees, they'll move back to Connecticut, “IT TAKES TWO (reprise)”. The cameras turn on once more and Brett announces to the world: they're moving the show to Connecticut! And … they're pregnant! Brett is pleased. Jenny is horrified. The audience cheers.
BRETT - 30’s, male identifying. Favorite dish: grilled salmon steak with hoisin BBQ.
JENNY - 30's, female identifying. Favorite dish: anything with chocolate.
NAMELESS PA - 20’s, Any gender. Favorite dish: Cymbalta.
The BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, May 28, 2014, Broadcast Music International.
In Concert (excerpt), November 10, 2014, The Duplex, NYC.
Theatre Now's SOUND BITES 5.0, May 28, 2018 at The Irene Diamond Stage at The Pershing Square Signature Center.
CHARLIE O’LEARY is an alumnus of the Project Y Playwrights Group, the Brooklyn Generator, the Advanced BMI Workshop, Crashbox Theatre Company's Write Play Launch, the 24 Hour Plays: Nationals, and the Fornés Playwriting Workshop. His plays have been developed and presented by the Flea Theater, Middle Voice at Rattlestick, Jersey City Theater Center, Dixon Place, Crashbox Theater Company, Pipeline Theatre Company, Project Y Theatre, Theatre Now New York, Loading Dock Theatre, the Tank, the PIT, the Habitat, the Artist Co-op, the Dare Tactic, and the University of Notre Dame. He has been a finalist for the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, Sanguine Theatre Company's Project Playwright, and the Woodward/Newman Drama Award; a semifinalist for the O'Neill National Playwrights Conference and Ars Nova Play Group; and recipient of a New York Innovative Theatre Award and an Iowa Arts Fellowship. His song “A Date” (music by Helen Park) was a selection of the BMI Workshop Smoker; his songs have also been performed at places like Don’t Tell Mama, the West End Lounge, and the Duplex. He is currently pursuing his MFA at Iowa Playwrights Workshop.
KARL HINZE is a composer and playwright in NYC. He has been a member of the BMI Workshop since 2013, and his original musical 210 Amlent Avenue with playwright Becky Goldberg was an Official Selection of the Next Link Project at the New York Musical Festival. His play Prophesy premiered at the 2018 Fresh Fruit Festival and won awards for best acting, production, and direction. Other collaborations include Are They Edible?, an experimental puppet show by Jeanette Yew at La MaMa; Shackled Spirits, a multi-media dance drama by Lynn Kremer presented at the Bali Arts Festival; and Big Picture, with lyricist Patrick Spencer and book writer Susan Murray. Karl has a Ph.D. in Music Composition from Stony Brook University. karlhinze.com