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Finding the Words

Book and Lyrics by Andy Roninson and Chris Critelli, Music by Andy Roninson

It's the final rehearsal at a small regional theater, and the lead actor STILL can't remember his lines. Only the director's klutzy assistant can help save the show.



Cast Size

3m, 2f, 1a


11 Mins


At a regional theater, Present


Mild Language


Romantic Comedy


Regret, LGBTQ+ Interest, Dating, Theatre/Entertainment Industry

Target Audience

Pre-Teen (Age 11 - 13), Teen (Age 14 - 18), Adult


Contemporary Musical Theatre


Piano/Vocal, Guitar

Additional Resources

Accompaniment Tracks


At a regional theater, a cast rehearses an overblown operetta, “WORDS OF LOVE”, but breaks down when dashing lead actor Tony keeps forgetting his lines. The old director charges his klutzy assistant/granddaughter Fanny with fixing things-- and maybe she’ll actually act on her feelings for Tony! Fanny psyches herself up to “TALK TO HIM”.

Fanny and Tony bond, and Tony reveals that the reason he can’t remember his lines is because he has a crush… on someone in the company… someone who probably doesn’t even notice him. Fanny nervously asks who, and Tony says that he has a crush on “STEVE” the sound guy.

Fanny pushes Tony to “TALK TO HIM (reprise)”, and she drags him around the whole theater, knocking on doors, looking for Steve. Finally, when Tony accepts that “rejection is better than regret,” he finds Steve and asks him out-- and Steve says yes!

Relieved of his stress, Tony returns to the stage to rehearse, and Fanny returns to the house to watch alongside the director. Tony remembers his lines in the “WORDS OF LOVE (reprise)”, and Fanny is vindicated for facing her own fears.


Casting Information

  • FANNY - 20's to 30's, female-identifying, Sweet, funny, alto

  • TONY - 20's to 30's, male-identifying, classic young male lead type, like a Prince Charming type. Tenor, both pop-rock and legit.

  • MORTY - 60's to 80's, wise-cracking Borscht Belt-type. Non-singing.

  • DESIREE - 20's to 40's, a total diva. High soprano.

  • STEVE - 20's to 40's, male-identifying, a soft-spoken, cool techie. Non-singing.

  • STAGEHAND - Any age. A stagehand, one line. Non-singing.


Full Show
00:00 / 13:24
Talk to Him
00:00 / 01:20
00:00 / 01:59
Talk to Him (Reprise)
00:00 / 01:54
Casting & Songs



Production History

  • 2013 - New London Barn Playhouse in New London, NH. Staged reading, directed by Andrew Lark. Starred George Merrick (Honeymoon in Vegas, South Pacific).

  • 2013 - Theatre Now's SOUND BITES. Won Best Actress for Katie Whetsell, directed by Andrew Lark

  • 2015 - Manhattan Musical Theater Lab (part of a reading of seven TAKE A TEN musicals). Directed by Emmy-winner Matt Cowart.

Author Bios

Illustrated Mountains

CHRIS CRITELLI resides in New York City, where he balances his time between acting, whether it’s voicing cartoons or getting beat up by superheroes, writing all kinds of stuff, and drawing, where he’s just wrapped up illustrating his second book - a sequel compendium of political limericks, ‘Trumpericks 2’, available through Amazon!

Illustrated Mountains

ANDY RONINSON is a composer, lyricist, orchestrator, and music director living in New York City. He is a recipient of the 2019 Jonathan Larson Grant, a 2019-2020 Dramatists Guild Foundation Fellow, and a participant in the 2017 Johnny Mercer Foundation Songwriters Project. As a member of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Writing Workshop, he was awarded the Robert B. Sherman Scholarship and the Harrington Award for Creative Excellence. For more, visit He is the creator, host, and co-writer of TAKE A TEN, the all-original ten-minute musical podcast. Recorded episodes featured Broadway voices like Laura Osnes, Rob McClure, George Salazar, and more. Episodes have been produced live around the world and have won numerous awards including Best Musical twice at Theater Now’s SOUND BITES Festival, the 2016 City Theater National Award for Short Playwriting, and the top place at the Samuel French Off-Off-Broadway Short Play Festival. To hear every episode for free, visit

Illustrated Mountains
Author's Bios
Production History
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