Il Internetto


During the golden years of the Opera in Michigan, many of the great composers and librettists wandered through the glittering capital of the Midwestern risorgimento. Strangely, little of their output has been preserved, but recently, this fragment of the libretto from an unfinished work by the immortal Giuseppe Verde came to light, hidden behind a huge nude painting at the Odd Town Tavern. Wood-Charles is proud to bring to the music community even this crumbling shard of Verde's never-performed Il Internetto.

Curtain rises. It is night. A storm is gathering over the battlements of a crumbling red brick office building. In the background, the houses and lights of a fair but troubled city, An'Arbro. We hear the rumbling of distant thunder.

Enter Edmundo. He leans on the crenalations and contemplates the approaching storm.

Edmundo: Solo mio, vendro unscrupuloso, custombres sansaclu. (I am all alone, my vendors are of questionable ethics, and my customers are idiots.)

La Traciata (off): Edmundo! Edmundo!

Edmundo: Che? (What?)

La Traciata (entering): Doloroso executivo, executivo perdu, pite', pite', au secours, le boite de multiplexico delenda est. (Oh, pitious executive, help, help, the modem is broke.)

Small boy (dashing across the stage): Providitore connection, imbecilico! (Ameritech, idiots!)

(Off) sound of a news server crashing; alarms and excursions.

Don Miguele (entering): Si mentate io, periculoso meo! (If I had a brain, I'd be dangerous!)

El Zastrow (drawing a baguette from beneath her chemise): Prends ca, compteur de legumes suburbanitico! Mangez le pain de ma tante! (Take that, yuppie bean counter! Eat flaming starch!)

Enter four horsemen, Edmundo, Esteban, Owen Glynmorange, and Tim the Irascible. They begin to sing an old Provencal round consisting of four or five conflicting business plans.

La Traciata: Ai, yi yi yi yi yi, carriage de corrosion, mi corizon non di Finisterre. Reimburse' mi. (Alas, my car is a rusting heap of junk and I cannot afford clothing from Land's End. Sure would be nice to get paid.)

Lindhilde (dressed as the Kouros of Berners-Lee): Luftpost der Webdamen! Toten der Lapinnet, Toten der Lapinnet! Der krieg sind Deutchenyowlen: zu viel und laut! Wer is mein petroleum? (The flight of the web ladies! Kill the wabbitnet, kill the wabbitnet! War is like German opera: too long and too loud! Where is that damn gas tank?)

Chorus of the busy signals: Bzzz. Bzzz. Bzzz.

Night falls. The slain are born away to Valhalla or Ypsilanti. Edmundo enters dressed as a virtual transaction. As the curtain falls, he sings the plaintive and moving aria, "Yo Dudo Actuario," (I should have gone into insurance.)


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