PIONEER SONG

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PIONEER SONG
A Folk Musical in two acts

In the year 1849, Ruth Maramin and her three daughters join a wagon company and begin a journey over the Oregon Trail. Seeking to find "a song" in the West she and a group of women in the company cling to each other as they face the ordeals, trials and losses of the trek. At each place along the vast western trail she struggles to make sense of an ever more difficult crossing. She becomes close to the wagon master, Josiah Bozeman, who helps her cope as she loses, in different ways, all three of her daughters. In the end she reaches Oregon and finds hope again in a new life. She has found the Pioneer Song.
   
CHARACTERS:  13+ women /7+ men/ 1 boy

RUTH MARAMIN- a widow in her mid to late forties
SARAH MARAMIN- Ruth’s oldest daughter 23-26
ESTHER MARAMIN- Ruth’s second daughter 20
TESSI MARAMIN- Ruth’s youngest daughter 15
JOSIAH BOZEMAN- The wagon master late 40’s early 50’s
MRS. JOHNSON-  a mother of five children 30-40
MARY DOVE-  a consumptive prostitute  25-30
FAITH MARTIN- a middle aged gossip 35-45
MERCY TIBBS- Faith’s constant companion and gossip 35-45
SONJA- an abused wife  25-30
HEBER FIELDS- a young Mormon boy 20-25
REUBEN- Sonya’s abusive husband 30-35
CHORUS OF WOMEN AND MEN

THE DEAD

JACK JOHNSON- a man drowned in the River 30-40
WOMAN DIED OF TYPHOID
WOMAN DIED IN CHILDBIRTH
LUNATIC WOMAN
BOY died of pneumonia
SMALL BOY drowned in the river
WOMAN DIED OF SMALLPOX
MAN DIED OF SMALLPOX
JAMES TIBBS- Mercy’s husband 35-45
The dead are double cast from the chorus of women and men.


TIME AND ACTION:
The action takes place from the spring of 1852 to the spring of 1853 on the Oregon Trail and the Willamette Valley.

SONG LISTING
ACT I
1 Far Away In The West        Ruth, Mary Dove, Sonja, Faith, Mercy & Chorus
2 Mama Be Near Me              Sarah & Ruth
3 Big Blue                               Chorus                                               
4 Marry A Yankee                  Mercy & Faith
5 Pioneer Song                        Esther, Tessi, Mary Dove & Chorus
6 Song Of The Suicide            Mary Dove
7 Day After Day                    Ruth & Chorus

ACT II
8 Chimney Rock                     Chorus
9 Come Home                         Ruth
10 Lonesome Prairie Sea         James Tibbs
11 Gold/Rain Comes Down    Chorus
12 Come Home Reprise          Ruth
13 Gold/Rain Comes Down    Chorus
14 Chimney Rock Reprise      Chorus
15 Ruth’s Lament                   Ruth
16 Ruth’s Lament Reprise      Chorus
17 Willamette Valley              Sonja and Chorus
18 Pioneer Song Finale            Chorus



SYNOPSIS
Ruth Maramin, a disillusioned widow of the 1850’s, begins the journey across the Oregon Trail with her three daughters. She is seeking a new life, hoping to find joy, a song, as she calls it, to fill the void that her loveless marriage never could.
Ruth befriends a group of women, all damaged in different ways, and they form tight friendships.  Each must face their own demons—Sonja, married to a battering drunk, Mary Dove, a consumptive prostitute, Faith and Mercy, two puritanical gossips.
As the journey progresses, we periodically meet “the dead” –who  each tell their own stories.  As Ruth says “the men count the miles, the women count the graves.”
Ruth herself must face losing her three daughters, each differently.
Ultimately, Ruth survives more than she thought humanly possible, but has also found love, and an inner strength and peace.  She has found her song.


ELEVATOR PITCH

Ruth Maramin, a disillusioned widow of the 1850’s, must face the difficulties of traveling across the Oregon trail to find “a song” in the west.