Menotti: The Telephone
Ben and Lucy are in her apartment, where he intends to propose to her. The phone keeps ringing and her lengthy conversations continue to interrupt his proposal attempts. He finally comes up with a new plan – why not give her a call?
Barber: A Hand of Bridge
Two couples gather to play their nightly game of bridge. As the game progresses, each character’s inner thoughts reveal their fears and longings.
The announcer begins the opera (a parody of soap operas) with a commercial for Lochinvar Soap before the television show “Gallantry” begins. The soap opera takes place in a hospital, where the surgeon, Dr. Gregg, is professing his love for the anesthetist Lola, who is engaged to another colleague, Donald Hopewell.
As Lola and Dr. Gregg prepare for surgery, Lola is surprised to find Donald on the operating table for an appendix removal. Donald asks Dr. Gregg about his wife, surprising Lola who did not know he was married. Donald falls asleep and as Dr. Gregg begins to operate, he and Lola argue. Dr. Gregg threatens to stab Donald with his scalpel until Lola stops him and threatens to expose him. She leaves the operating room, and Dr. Gregg follows, leaving Donald alone on the operating table. He wakes up, confused, and sings of his love for Lola before she returns, having sent for another doctor. The announcer returns to tell the audience to tune in tomorrow for the next episode and ends the show with another commercial break as Lola and Donald sing of their love for each other.
Hoiby: Bon Appétit!
Adapted from a transcript of a 1971 episode of “The French Chef,” Julia Child teaches the audience how to make a “very special, very choc’latey, bittersweet, lovely” chocolate cake.