Sunday 2 June – Morrison!

by Emilie Collyer

The PM’s office.

PM:    So are those guys still writing the plays?

AIDE:    I believe there are quite a few women writing them as well, sir.

PM:    What?

AIDE:    Women sir, writing the plays.

PM:    Yeah?

AIDE:    You said … guys.

PM:    And?

AIDE:    Never mind.

PM:    So are they?

AIDE:    I believe for another week or so, sir.

PM:    Great. I want them to write me a musical.

AIDE:    Sir?

PM:    Like that one on Broadway. The smash hit. About that guy, the hero of the American founding fathers.

AIDE:    … Hamilton, sir?

PM:    That’s it, yeah!

AIDE:    Have you … seen the show, sir?

PM:    Nah.

AIDE:    So you don’t know the story?

PM:    Well it’s called Hamilton, right? So I reckon it’s a bloody ripper story about a great guy called Hamilton. Was he a President? I mean he must have been right? If they made a whole show about him.

AIDE:    Not exactly sir …

PM:    Anyway it’s coming to Sydney. So what I want, before it gets here, is for a new musical. An Australian musical. About a Prime Minister. An ordinary guy. A man of the people. A hero. Something brand new. Never been done before. I’ve got the perfect name: Morrison!

AIDE:    Um …

PM:    What?

AIDE:    You do know there was a musical about Paul Keating, sir.

PM:    What? Shit. What was it called?

AIDE:    Keating!

This is upsetting news.

PM:    Did people like it?

AIDE:    I believe it did very well, sir.

PM pulls himself together, he’s not one to be down for long.

PM:    Well as you know, I believe in miracles and I believe the Australian people are ready for a NEW all Australian musical about a Prime Minister. An ordinary guy. A man of the people. A hero. I’ve even got a few ideas for the words.

AIDE:    The words, sir?

PM:    Of the songs. How’s this: ‘I am not giving away my shot. I’m just like my country, I’m young, scrappy and hungry …’

AIDE:    Er, I believe those lyrics are taken directly from the musical Hamilton, sir. I’m not even sure we can put them in this play without infringing copyright. Can you … tweak them a little?

PM:    Yeah, yeah, I can do that. Just warming up. How about: ‘I am not handballing away my shot’ – footy reference, folks will love a footy reference. ‘I’m just like my country, I’m middle-aged, well-off and angry …’

AIDE:    Angry, sir?

PM:    All right. Fair enough. Um … Oh. Oh. Daggy! Yeah that’s it! ‘I’m middle-aged, well-off and daggy.’ Oh and even better, even better, how’s this: ‘I am not giving away my cap. I am not giving away my cap! I’m just like my country, I’m middle-aged, well-off and daggy and I’m not giving away my cap.’ What do you reckon?

AIDE:    Um …

PM:    Get those writers in here.

AIDE:    So you can … give them the lyrics they should write?

PM:    Head start that’s all. They can do the rest.

AIDE:    I’ll … see if I can get onto them …

PM:    And hey, that Keating musical.

AIDE:    Yes sir?

PM:    Was that an all white cast?

AIDE:    Um …

PM:    ‘Cause that’s where we can trump him. Arrogant bastard.

AIDE:    Oh he didn’t write the musical, sir.

PM:    But you can bet he likes to gloat about it. We’ll go one up. Try this on for size: Post-racial casting. Colour-blind casting.


AIDE:    You know about colour-blind casting, sir?

PM:    Course I bloody do. Why?

AIDE:    I find that … surprising.

PM:    Yeah well like I said last time, you don’t know everything about me.

AIDE:    Clearly not.

PM:    Hang on now. Back up. Did you say Keating didn’t write his own musical?

AIDE:    That’s correct, sir.

PM:    Ha. What have we got left in the marketing budget?

AIDE:    For the playwrights, sir?

PM:    Nah. Changed my mind. I can write the bastard. That’ll show that poncy Keating a thing or two. We don’t need writers. I’ve already got the first song. How hard can it be?

AIDE:    So the budget is for …

PM:    The cast! I’ve got the perfect idea for who to play me.

AIDE:    Sir?

PM:    Guy Sebastian. Beat. Genius, right! He’s a dead bloody ringer! Go on then!

AIDE:    I believe he’s judging The Voice at present, sir.

PM:    I’ll turn his red chair. I’ll bloody burn for him! Go on! Go get him!

AIDE:    Yes sir. Beat. And if he doesn’t want to?

PM:    Whaddya mean?

AIDE:    If he can’t be bought, Guy Sebastian.

The PM laughs and laughs and laughs and laughs.

PM:    Good one mate, good one. You crack me up. Go on now! Get on it!

The aide exits.

The PM is excited, humming, singing.

PM:    ‘Sco-o-o-ott Morrison. They call me Sco-o-o-ott Morrison. And there’s one or two things I haven’t done. Just you wait. Just you wait …’



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