Monte Cristo The Musical

Monte Cristo The Musical by Leon Parris & Jon Smith

Synopsis

Act I

Elba 1815. We see DANTES carrying the very ill Captain Leclere on to NAPOLEON's island for medical assistance. Captain Leclere dies and NAPOLEON uses the opportunity to trick DANTES into carrying a letter from him to an influential Bonapartist, who remains in France. DANTES and the CREW of The Pharaon return to a rapturous welcome in Marseille. MORREL, the ship's owner rewards DANTES' seamanship and loyalty with the rank of Captain. DANTES proposes to his girlfriend, MERCEDES, and after some teasing from her, she agrees to marry him.

Meanwhile, a jealous shipmate, DANGLARS, and a jealous suitor, FERNAND, plot with a drunken moneylender, CADEROUSSE, to outdo DANTES of his newfound assets (his rank and future wife). They despatch an anonymous letter to the local prosecutor, VILLEFORT, alerting him to the treasonous letter DANTES unwittingly holds on his person. Before DANTES and MERCEDES are wed, DANTES is arrested. VILLEFORT interviews DANTES and understands that DANTES is clearly caught up in a vindictive plot. VILLEFORT apologises for the inconvenience and indicates that DANTES should return to his wedding. As DANTES leaves, VILLEFORT, merely out of professional curiosity, asks DANTES for the name of the recipient of the letter. DANTES replies 'NOIRTIER' and suddenly VILLEFORT is concerned. Demanding the letter, VILLEFORT reads its contents. He calls upon his GUARDS to seize DANTES and imprison him.

DANTES is welcomed and introduced to the Château D'If, an infamous prison island, by the eccentric WARDEN and JAILORS. DANTES is thrown into a solitary cell. He is without all hope. DANTES is treated to a barbaric existence within the Château. The WARDEN is psychotic and switches personalities between gentle guesthouse owner and sadist. DANTES, unwilling to continue his life, tries to kill himself, but fails.

Now 1822, DANTES, confused as to what is now reality and what is a dream, is somewhat bemused to see a stone in the floor move and the dusty head of an old man appear within his cell. Convinced that the man is an apparition; DANTES is bordering on complete madness. The man is ABBE FARIA, a prisoner trying to tunnel to freedom. The two men become friends and the learned ABBE FARIA sets about becoming teacher to DANTES. When they aren't being brutalised by the WARDEN, the two men spend their days continuing the tunnel and sharing knowledge. We briefly see life continuing in France; MERCEDES and FERNAND are married with child and the rise of VILLEFORT and DANGLARS is meteoric.

Close to completing the tunnel, ABBE FARIA now very weak, reveals the secret of a fortune buried on the island of Monte Cristo. DANTES is devastated when ABBE FARIA dies of respiratory problems intensified by a beating he received from the WARDEN. DANTES uses the death of ABBE FARIA to orchestrate his escape from the Château and is tossed into the sea in place of ABBE FARIA's corpse.

DANTES is found floating in the sea by the bizarre VAMPA and his 'band' of pirates – where non-stop choral harmony is compulsory. DANTES' life is spared because he can sing so well and he is invited to join the crew. Near the island of Monte Cristo, VAMPA reveals that he is holding a kidnap hostage on board. HAIDEE is released from the hold and as her ransom has not been paid, she is cast adrift. DANTES joins her as does JACOPO and they all end up on Monte Cristo. Making camp, DANTES goes in search of ABBE FARIA's treasure and finds it. HAIDEE completes DANTES' education by explaining the subtleties of polite society. DANTES promises to reinvent himself as the Count of MONTE CRISTO and to seek revenge on those that did him ill.

Act II

Contact Jon and Leon for the full synopsis, script and music.