Three Hundred, A Musical

Act II


Scene 3

(The BOWLING ALLEY. The LIGHTS come up after a brief pause. ARNIE, HARRY, WALTER and FRED are seated at a table near CENTER STAGE.)

FRED

I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so!

ARNIE

Whoíd believe it?

HARRY

Yeah, well you were a lotta help. You barely broke one-twenty the second game!

WALTER

(To FRED.)
It was your wife who started all this.

FRED

Well, I said I didnít like the looks of it.

ARNIE

Me, too. (Points at HARRY.) Youíre the one who said there was no way they could beat us. A buncha broads!

WALTER

And now we gotta bowl with Ďem!

HARRY

I need a drink.

WALTER

(As BILLY enters STAGE RIGHT and crosses to them.)
Uh-oh, thereís Billy.

HARRY

Donít tell him.

BILLY

Donít tell me what?

FRED

Heíll find out sooner or later. We just lost a match to our wives.

BILLY

You gotta be kidding. To your wives?

ARNIE

Hey, itís not funny. Now we gotta join the mixed league with Ďem.

HARRY

Tell me there arenít any openings left.

BILLY

(Still laughing.) Oh, I think thereís room for four more teams!

WALTER

Great. Now we gotta buy Ďem balls and bags and shoes.

BILLY

This is great! You guys donít know how much I needed a laugh right now. (Sees that THEY arenít laughing.) Hey, cheer up. At least you and your wives are all still together.

ARNIE

No telling how long that will last.

FRED

You still having problems with Marie?

BILLY

Yeah. I think itís pretty much over.

ARNIE

Hey, Iím really sorry to hear that.

HARRY

Yeah, tough break, Billy. Sheís a cute kid.

BILLY

Well, I canít let it bother me. Especially not tonight.

WALTER

Thatís right! The Tournament! Donít worry about it. Youíll do great.

FRED

Weíll all be here to cheer you on, right, guys? We just havta take our wives home.

JUDY

(Entering STAGE LEFT with the other WOMEN.)
Hey, are you guys coming?

HARRY

Yeah, weíre coming.
(The MEN rise.)
Good luck, Billy.
(The MEN cross to STAGE LEFT and EXIT.)

BILLY

(Crosses to counter as MARVIN enters from behind counter.)
Iím punching out now, Marv. Gotta get cleaned up.

MARVIN

You better hurry, kid. Itís almost time.

BILLY

Donít worry. (HE exits STAGE LEFT.)

MARVIN

Worry? Why should I worry? Iíve only got a million people showing up here tonight. And my best employee canít help out because heís in the finals. And whatís more, heís having trouble with his girlfriend and thinking of taking up tennis. My back is killing me, and Iím slowly going broke. Aside from that, lifeís a bowl of cherries!

MCDONALD

(Enters STAGE LEFT, looks around tentatively, crosses to counter.) Hello?

MARVIN

Mr. McDonald, isnít it? From the hotel?
(THEY shake hands.)
Ted. We met at the Rotary Club Luncheon last year.

MCDONALD

Yes, I remember. Marvin, right?

MARVIN

Right. What can I do for you. Planning to bowl a few games? I can get you right on.

MCDONALD

No, thank you. Bridge is more my game, Iím afraid.

MARVIN

To each his own, I guess.

MCDONALD

Yes, quite apropos, actually. Iím here to see Billy.

MARVIN

You just missed him. But heíll be back in a while for the tournament. Say, youíre Marieís father, arenít you?

MCDONALD

Yes, I am.

MARVIN

Those two are having some problems, eh?

MCDONALD

Yes. Thatís what I wanted to talk to Billy about. You see, I offered him a job, and . . .

MARVIN

A what?

MCDONALD

A job. At the hotel.

MARVIN

But he already has a job. Here.

MCDONALD

Yes, I know, but Marie feels that Billy is too enamored of bowling, and perhaps if he came to work for me, it would steer him in another direction.

MARVIN

Look, Ted, I know you mean well and everything, but Billy doesnít need to be steered in another direction. Heís gonna be a great pro bowler some day. He might not make a lot of money at first, but heíll do okay. And if those two kids really love each other, theyíll find some way to work it out.

MCDONALD

I know. Thatís what I wanted to tell him. As a matter of fact, I came here to withdraw my offer.

MARVIN

Really? Does Marie know this?

MCDONALD

Not yet. I wanted to talk to Billy First. But I canít...

MARIE

(Entering, STAGE LEFT. Sees her father.) Daddy, what are you doing here?

MARVIN

Why did I just know sheíd be the next person through the door?

MCDONALD

Hello, dear. I came to see Billy.

MARIE

(Brightening.) Did he change his mind about working for you?

MCDONALD

No. I did.

MARIE

You did? What do you mean?

MCDONALD

Honey, this whole idea is wrong. Billy has to follow his own path. And if you keep trying to change him, youíll lose him.

MARIE

Itís too late, anyway. Iíve already lost him.

MARVIN

I wouldnít count on that.

MARIE

Crossing urgently to Marvin.) Marvin, is he really that good?

MARVIN

At bowling? Yes, he is. He could have a great future as a pro. And heís determined to make it, no matter what.

MARIE

With or without me, you mean!

MARVIN

I didnít say that. Neither did he.

MARIE

He may have a future as a pro, but he doesnít have any future with me!

MARVIN

Youíre wrong, Marie. Heís crazy about you.

MARIE

(Crossing DOWNSTAGE RIGHT. LIGHTS dim, except for SPOT on MARIE.)
No, heís not. If he really loved me, he wouldnít treat me so mean. Anyway, I came here today to wish him good luck in the tournament and to say goodbye.

I CANíT LOVE YOU ANY MORE.

BILLY

(Enters STAGE LEFT, picked up by 2nd SPOT.)
IíM GONNA MAKE IT ON MY OWN.

MARIE

YOU DONíT KNOW WHAT LOVE IS FOR.

BILLY

I DONíT NEED ANYONE BUT ME.

MARIE

WE DONíT SHARE A SINGLE DREAM,
THEREíS NOTHING LEFT TO SAY, BUT

BILLY/MARIE

IíM GONNA MAKE IT ON MY OWN!/ I DONíT LOVE YOU ANY MORE!

BILLY

I canít make it on my own. Who am I trying to fool? Nothing really matters without Marie.

MARIE

I do love you Billy. I always have and I always will, no matter what you do.

(THEY turn, see each other for the first time, and start to cross to CENTER STAGE, when the LIGHTS come up and the entire CAST comes pouring out onto the stage from all entrances. BILLY and MARIE canít get to each other through the crush of people. Finally, discouraged, they disappear into the wings.)

MARVIN

Welcome, everybody! Welcome to the tournament!

WELCOME, EVERYBODY, GLAD TO SEE YOU HERE.
ALL THE LANES ARE OILED,
AND THE KEGS ARE FULL OF BEER.
THEREíS A TROPHY HERE JUST WAITING FOR A NAME.
BUT IF YOU WANT TO WIN IT,
YOU GOT TO PLAY THE GAME.

CHORUS

ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
SOMEBODYíS GONNA WIN.
SOMEBODYíS GONNA LOSE.
ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
PICK UP YOUR BOWLING BALL.
PUT ON YOUR BOWLING SHOES.
LETíS GO.

1ST MAN


EVERYBODYíS GOT AN EQUAL CHANCE TO WIN,
BUT YOUíVE GOTTA KNOCK ĎEM DOWN,
EVERY SINGLE PIN!

2ND MAN


IF YOU BELIEVE, YOU CAN DO IT EVERY TIME,
BUT YOUíVE GOTTA KEEP YOUR COOL,
OR YOUíLL NEVER WIN A DIME.

CHORUS

ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
SOMEBODYíS GONNA WIN.
SOMEBODYíS GONNA LOSE.
ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
PICK UP YOUR BOWLING BALL.
PUT ON YOUR BOWLING SHOES.
LETíS GO.

(FULL CAST dance number.)

1ST MAN

ALL MY LIFE IíVE BEEN WAITING FOR THE DAY
WHEN IíD FINALLY HIT THE BIG TIME
AND BLOW THEM ALL AWAY.

2ND MAN

THIS IS IT, WHAT WEíVE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR.
THE FINAL BATTLEGROUND
IN THE BOWLING ALLEY WAR!

CHORUS

ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
SOMEBODYíS GONNA WIN.
SOMEBODYíS GONNA LOSE.
ITíS A TOURNAMENT! TOURNAMENT!
PICK UP YOUR BOWLING BALL.
PUT ON YOUR BOWLING SHOES.
LETíS GO.

(MUSIC continues, as people cross back and forth, greeting each other, shaking hands, for four bars of instrumental only.)

EVERYBODYíS READY FOR THE TOURNAMENT!
TOURNAMENT!

(BILLY enters STAGE LEFT, crosses to front desk with his bowling bag.)

MARVIN

(Handing BILLY a slip of paper.)
Youíre on Lanes Nine and Ten. Go get Ďem, kid!

BILLY

Thanks.
(HE crosses to table DOWNSTAGE RIGHT, as ARNIE, WALTER, HARRY and FRED enter, STAGE RIGHT.)

ARNIE

There he is, guys!
(All four MEN cluster around BILLY, while he sits down, opens his bag, takes out his ball and shoes, and puts his shoes on.)

HARRY

All right, this is it!

WALTER

Youíre gonna kill Ďem, I know it.

FRED

Now, donít be nervous, okay? Just stay loose and throw it like you know it.

BILLY

I donít know. I think Iím coming down with something.

ARNIE

Ah, youíre as healthy as I am.

HARRY

Then heís in a lotta trouble!

BILLY

No, really, I feel kinda feverish.

WALTER

Címon, you never missed a night. Iíve seen you bowl when you had pneumonia!

FRED

Youíre just nervous, thatís all. You gotta loosen up.

BILLY

(Finished tying his shoes, stands up and picks up his ball.)
Right, youíre right. Iím ready. Okay.

ARNIE

Thatís the spirit!

(BILLYíS team members pat him on the back and shout encouragement as he descends the stairs leading to the approach, which is offstage. The lights slowly dim. Then the sound of a ball rolling down the alley is heard, followed by pins exploding and the crowd cheering.)

HARRY

Thatís one!

(Dream sequence. Again the sound of rolling ball and falling pins is heard. The entire crowd begins to count, quietly at first, and then louder, with each strike. MARIE enters, STAGE LEFT, and stands watching.)

CHORUS

Two! Three! Four! Five! Six! Seven! Eight! Nine! Ten! Eleven!

(Suddenly BILLY appears, stumbles up the stairs and begins crossing to CENTER STAGE.)

WALTER

Hey, where you going?

BILLY

I donít know. I canít take it any more!

MARVIN

(Crossing quickly DOWNSTAGE from the desk area.)
Billy, donít quit now. You almost got it!

BILLY

I canít do it, Marv. I feel like Iím gonna explode!
(HE pulls away from MARVIN and continues on toward the STAGE LEFT exit. MARIE, still standing near the exit, crosses to BILLY.)
Marie!

MARIE

What are you doing?

BILLY

Iím freaking out. I didnít know it would be like this

MARIE

But this is what youíve always wanted. You canít quit now.

BILLY

Isnít that what you want?

MARIE

No, not like this. If you quit now, youíll never know whether you could have done it or not.

MARVIN

Billy, youíve gotta come back now, or youíll be disqualified.

MARIE

Go on! Go do it, now.

BILLY

(HE starts to turn away, then turns back.) I love you, Marie.

MARIE

I love you, too, you big jerk. Now hurry up!

BILLY

Right, right.
(HE crosses quickly to Lane One, descends the stairs. After a moment, there is the sound of a ball rolling down the alley. The crowd lets out a long ďoooooooĒ sound, which cuts off suddenly as the ball hits the pins. There is a moment of silence, then the entire crowd erupts in cheers. BILLY appears, dazed, and climbs the stairs, is greeted by his team and other crowd members, in a frenzied display of emotion. BILLY sees MARIE, standing at CENTER STAGE. He crosses to her as she runs into his arms. They embrace.)

CHORUS

THREE HUNDRED!

BILLY

OH, WHAT A BEAUTIFUL SOUND!

CHORUS

THREE HUNDRED!

BILLY

SO STRONG, SO SURE, SO ROUND.
NOW IíVE GOT MY PERFECT GAME,
TO MY SURPRISE IíVE FOUND
THEREíS ONE IMPORTANT THING IíVE GOT TO DO.
I DONíT WANT TO BE A MILLIONAIRE.

CHORUS

THREE HUNDRED

BILLY

IíVE BEEN BUILDING CASTLES IN THE AIR.
NOW I KNOW THAT THERE IS MORE TO LIFE.
NOW I WANT A HOUSE, A KID, A WIFE.
IíLL EVEN TAKE THE WORRY AND THE STRIFE.

CHORUS

THREE HUNDRED!

MARIE

YOUíVE BOWLED A GAME
WHERE EVERY FRAME
HAS AN X INSIDE.

BILLY

GONNA MAKE A START
AND GIVE MY HEART,
AND MAKE MARIE MY BRIDE!
NOW IíVE FINALLY FOUND MY TRUE ROMANCE.

CHORUS

THREE HUNDRED!

BILLY

IF SHEíLL JUST GIVE ME ANOTHER CHANCE.
I HAVE FOUND A MORE EXCITING GOAL.
NOW MY LIFE IS REALLY ON A ROLL.

MARIE

YOU COULD EVEN TEACH ME HOW TO BOWL . . .
(BILLY and MARIE pause, then embrace and kiss at CENTER STAGE, as the CHORUS movies in around them.)

ALL

THREE HUNDRED!

CURTAIN

THE END

SOME CLOSING WORDS