"FOOTSTEPS TO THE MOON" takes a fresh and powerful look at the horrors of war, humanity's continued inhumanity towards itself and the constant dreams and hopes for a better tomorrow…

ACT 1:

BASTION, a once great city, is beaten and devastated by the ever-continuing "Decade War". Its wasted boulevards echo to a never-ending bombardment of shell and rocket fire. The alleyways are fought over, hand-to-hand, by both enemy and inhabitants alike as they struggle to secure any remaining food and shelter.

AMIDST THE TWISTED GIRDERS and rubble of what had been the city's mental asylum stands the small figure of the child-like Alicia, a former inmate of that institute. She faces the ragged figure of a lone soldier of the invading forces, Louis. We hear the whirl of helicopter blades from above, blaring out it’s recorded war cry to the people of Bastion to suffer what they must to save their once great city. The soldier slowly raises his gun and, though at close range, takes slow and deliberate aim before killing the girl in front of him… SONG: "If This Isn't Madness". (LOUIS)

UPON ALICIA'S DEATH, we are carried back into a nightmare-ish account of how this great city was brought to its present state of devastation… SONG: "Glory". (THE COMPANY.)

UPON THE COMPLETION OF THIS NUMBER, we are taken back ten days before the shooting of Alicia. Beneath the bombed-out ruins of the asylum in the deep cellars of what was once their prison, we discover the world in which she and the other survivors live. Out of the several hundred once housed there, only six remain. Alicia, Cora, Delphi, Lynn, Otto, and the dying Max, who was a doctor in the asylum. We quickly learn a little about them. Cora knows that when Max dies, the others will look to her to take his place as leader. Reluctant though she is, Cora knows she has little choice if any of this small fragile group are to survive. Each vulnerable in their own different way, the madness of the war surrounding them brings a strange sanity to much of what they say and do… SONG: "Don't Shine Your Light On Me" (ALICIA).

MAX'S DEATH brings a sense of huge loss and futility. It now dawns on Cora that she is trapped by her feelings of responsibility to the others. She is not always appreciated by them, especially the complaining and compulsive Otto. She finds herself very much alone…SONG: "Yesterday's Tomorrows" (CORA)

EACH OF THIS SMALL BAND OF SURVIVORS have found their own way to deal with the horrors that are now part of their daily lives. Former cabaret artist Lynn still dresses in the torn relics of costumes she wore on those glamorous nights long ago. Lingering in the twilight world of the past and a present that doesn't exist, only occasionally will she allow herself to step into reality. Frequently lost in the memories of her past, she conjures up her former long-lost lover Leon, her fellow singer at the "Cafe Della Muse"… SONG: "Don't You Just Hate It" (LEON AND GIRLS). At these times she transforms the setting into a decaying wind-swept version of that long lost night club where she herself once performed… SONG: "Bastion" (LEON)

THE BURNING LANDSCAPE is under constant surveillance by the remaining Government helicopters and patrols. They try to round up all remaining pockets of survivors so that, willing or not, they can be sent to fight in the last defence of the city.

CORA AND THE OTHERS have largely managed to remain unmolested, venturing out from their cellars only at night to forage for food and water. When their hiding place is stumbled upon by outsiders they have remained free by displaying a great show of theatrical madness. Eventually, as the search becomes more desperate for civilians to be sent to the front lines, they are discovered by Louis the soldier. He remains unconvinced by their display of insanity until… SONG: "'When You’re Mad" (CORA, LYNN, OTTO, DELPHI and ALICIA). Louis is then persuaded by Cora and the others to leave them unreported in their hiding place. He agrees and diverts the other soldiers searching close by.

THE ONLY REGULAR VISIT that ever takes place is that of The Travelling Man He can appear at anytime. Sometimes it would be days between visits, sometimes months. He brings news. Good and bad. True and false. He sells all the detritus of a city under siege. He'll sell you a ring still attached to a finger. A gramophone with a broken record. And, if you are lucky, some food. All he wants is payment… SONG: "Retail Therapy" (TRAVELLING MAN). For Cora, who despises him for what he is, the visits are as unwelcome as his attention. For Delphi, a prostitute, abused and beaten by too many tricks, he offers a chance to escape. In return for sexual favours he promises her a way out of the city. An escape that is always promised with the next visit, and the next, and the next. Leaving an ever-more embittered Delphi… SONG: " Too Few Choices" (DELPHI)

AS DISCORD GROWS amidst the ever-increasing shelling, the lack of food and Cora's crumbling belief in her ability to keep them all safe, they begin to descend more and more into their own worlds of make-believe. Lynn retreats into her world of the "Cafe Della Muse" which has disintegrated even more than when she last conjured it up. She sees, once again, her lover Leon. He croons the most romantic of romantic ballads. She eventually joins in, but once she does, the song quickly changes into something darker and colder as the dream becomes a nightmare… SONG: "Skin Deep" (LEON AND LYNN).

BY THE END OF THE SONG, with Leon seemingly abandoning her, Lynn has become so distraught that she angrily attacks Otto and Alicia. They are playing one of their frequent make-believe games. They pretend they are in a city park by a bandstand, dining on fresh coffee and croissant. Though we suspect it was a make-believe world that neither had ever enjoyed. In the confusion of Lynn's rage, Otto becomes convinced that the war has ended. Seeing a distant truckload of soldiers he rushes to greet them and is captured and taken away. Cora tries to get them all back into the cellar to hide. Unseen by the others, Alicia slips away to follow Otto. With Delphi and Lynn hidden away Cora realises too late that the child-like Alicia has gone missing.

LOUIS THE SOLDIER returns, but this time he is in a worse state than they are. Badly wounded and sickened by what he is has seen, he recounts the dreadful things that are taking place in the city at the hands of their own Government troops… SONG: "Duty Bound" (LOUIS)

AFTER COLLAPSING FROM HIS INJURIES and in spite of Lynn's declaration that he should be left to bleed to death, Cora and Delphi care for him through the night.

THE FOLLOWING MORNING as Delphi and Lynn are announcing their intentions to go in search of Otto, he returns. He is badly beaten, but alive, having made his escape with the help of Alicia who has returned with him. Act one comes to its close With Louis swearing that somehow he will get them all away from the nightmare world of Bastions destruction….
”I must be mad,” he cries, “I must be maaaad!”… SONG: “As We Stand Here” (LOUIS, CORA & COMPANY)

IN THE BLACKOUT, we here the anthemic chorus...
MUSIC: "Footsteps to the Moon" (INSTRUMENTAL.)


ACT 2:

ALMOST AS SOON AS THEY BEGIN their preparations to leave, Louis finds himself tormented with doubts over the likelihood of any plans of escape ever working with a group such as this. He becomes more and more aware of how strange a world this small band of unwanted survivors has come to exist In. Their failing ability to recognise reality as it is. And apart from Cora, the increasing need to hide in a world of ritual, pretend games, the power of the Moon, omens and signs. Plus the blinding faith they share in his ability to save them. SONG: “What She Can See In Me” (LOUIS)

THE PREPARATIONS TO LEAVE are further complicated by the return of the Travelling Man and his discovery of deserter Louis's presence in the group. The escape is even more jeopardised when Otto and Alicia give away the secret of the plan and The Travelling Man expresses his desire to join them. If not he'll give them away to the authorities. With this, he leaves for a short while to "acquire a few possessions". As he leaves, he confesses to the audience his part in the corruption of Alicia and toys with the idea of selling the group out. SONG: “Sorrow”. (TRAVELLING MAN)

OTTO AND LYNN begin to sense the urgency of it all and, for the first time, seem to comprehend fully that this is real chance to escape the nightmare. They begin to share the dreams of how their life will become when they get to… SONG: "Wherever That May Be" (LYNN AND OTTO). They decide to help. Splitting up they go in search of food.

AS SHE LEAVES, Lynn conjures up, for one last time the “Café Della Muse” Leon joins her and they sing the rousing and rebellious SONG: “Don’t Mention the War” (LYNN AND LEON)

LOUIS IS CONVINCED when after several hours the Travelling Man has not returned, that he has indeed gone to betray them. He knows there is little or no chance of them all getting away quickly enough. He begs Cora to leave the others and go with him now, that night, dangerous though it maybe with the full Moon. He is sure it is their last chance to escape. SONG: "Too Late for Love" (CORA AND LOUIS).

IN SPITE OF ALL SHE FEELS FOR HIM Cora refuses to leave without the others. Louis can't contain his anger, anger at the thought of losing her, his first chance at real happiness to a group of "lunatic imbeciles". Unable to persuade her, he leaves alone to make his escape through an old flooding underground railway tunnel.

THE SOUNDS OF THE GROWING GUNFIRE and screaming from the streets seems closer and more violent than ever. Cora tries to calm the frightened Alicia and Delphi. Otto suddenly appears in a violent rage having stumbled over the brutally battered body of the dead Lynn just a short distance away. Amidst the shelling and Gunfire he tries to make Cora see the agony and the madness of a world gone insane. A world he can finally see for what it really is. SONG: "Bastion" (LYNN, LEON, OTTO, AND LOUIS) and to see "that there is nowhere better to go".

LATER THAT NIGHT a strange silence and stillness suddenly descends over the city. The full moon once again breaks through the clouds and smoke. Only Alicia seems to sense the terror that will soon emerge from the silence. Desperate to play a "Pretend game" she rushes backwards and forwards and in endless circles. Until…

SONG: "To The Sound Of A Marching Band" (ALICIA)
THE GAME IS BROUGHT TO A HALT by the sound of a single Gunshot, not too far away. Soon after, another and another. This time they are random shots, the kind fired at those now too weak to fight back or escape. Louis returns to make one last desperate attempt to get Cora, with or without the others, to leave with him. The City of Bastion has finally fallen and the escape route through the old railway tunnel is flooding fast. Convinced at last by Louis and also by Alicia's insistence that they must at least try, Cora goes down to the cellars to quickly fetch Otto and Delphi.

AS ISOLATED SCREAMS RING out intermittently from the surrounding blackness, Alicia plays out one last pretend game with Louis. A game where she persuades a passing soldier that rather than being caught and having to live through another nightmare at the hands of others. It would be so much better if he released her from all the pain and humiliation now. (We have now joined the scene with the two of them which opened Act One) Louis, who deep inside already knows the futility of their attempted escape, takes slow and deliberate aim with his gun. Otto emerges just as he releases the trigger. Alicia falls to the ground dead. Louis throws the gun aside and stares down at her body. Otto grabs the gun hesitates in fear and then shoots Louis as Cora emerges from the cellars and shouts "No!"

SONG: "Footsteps to the Moon" (CORA & CHORUS) By the end of the song, Cora has taken the gun. Slowly she lifts it to her head. The clouds slide across the moon and take us into darkness.

AS THE FIRST GLIMMER OF DAWN begins to illuminate the ruins, we see the figure of Leon, dressed as a soldier. Against all odds, he is alive. He discovers the Travelling Man hiding in the ruins and questions him about Lynn. The Travelling Man is evasive and claims not to know where Lynn is. They leave; Leon to continue searching for Lynn and the Travelling Man to make friends with the enemy. As they go, Otto and Delphi, the only two remaining survivors of our small group, emerge. With a few gathered belongings they are ready to set off and see if escape is still possible through the tunnel discovered by Louis. Both question why, out of all the others, it is they who are still living. They wonder if there really is anywhere better left to go to. Delphi goes back into their hiding place for one last time.

SONG: “Requiem” (OTTO) He sings to his dead children, to his fallen friends, perhaps to all the innocent victims of war.

Delphi emerges holding Lynn’s scarf. “I wish they could all be with us.” she says. Otto smiles, perhaps for the first time. “They will be…always.”

As the lights fade, Delphi fastens Lynn’s scarf to a piece of wood that might just look like a cross.
SONG: “Soldier Boy” (PRE-RECORDED)