top of page



Fish Head Soup - The Musical

(Book/Lyrics co-written by Flora Doone & Kari Floren & Michael McKenzie, with Music by Caryl Ginsburg Fantel)


Fish Head Soup, The Musical is the story of Tristan, who is discovered behind a large copy of the book “Mime for Dummies” – when his reading is interrupted by his irate roommate Donald, demanding immediate payment of back rent. Tristan explains he was kicked out of cooking school and is now pursuing his new career, miming, here at the Fort Lauderdale Farmers’ Market. They are joined by the Fish Monger, setting up her cart for the day, and stopped in her tracks by the good looks of the between jobs actor Donald. Tristan negotiates a stay with Donald in exchange for cooking delicious meals – which will be provided by funds from his new career, and the leftover vegetables at the end of the day here at the market. Donald laments his lack of a partner in life, having instead this loser roommate. Elena, a beautifully dressed Cuban-American enters briskly, brushes off Donald’s clumsy advance, and Donald sulks off. The Fish Monger longingly yearns for a vacation and tells Elena that yes, she can again have the leftover Fish Heads to be able to feed her cat. Elena has been pounding the pavement all day in her spike heels. All re-enter and sing their disenchantment (PRETENDING). 


Day one, Tristan keeps an eye out for leftover vegetables that will furnish forth this evening’s dinner, and sees Elena surreptitiously steal one bruised tomato. Elena returns home and shares her meal with her cat (IT ISN’T FAIR). 


Meanwhile, Tristan’s first day at the market is less than successful, as the Boss, joined by Elena and the Fish Monger, comments on the very public nature of Tristan’s work (EMBARRASSING). 


Tristan is now on the lookout for the thief Elena, and we see in a flashback that she was unjustly fired and blacklisted by the heartless Boss. Elena furiously sings (WHAT DO I DO NOW?) and all join in, including Tristan dancing an angry dream ballet salsa with Elena. 


Tristan’s meals have been keeping Donald at bay, Elena has come for the Fish Heads, but Tristan has other plans for them, swoops them away from her, and cruelly forces her to leave, humiliated. Tristan decides to go back to cooking professionally (I SHOULD BE ON CHOPPED). The Fish Monger hopes Tristan’s cruelty hasn’t driven Elena to do something desperate. He vows to find Elena (SHE’S JUST LIKE ME). 


Elena, meanwhile, has been caught pilfering a pepper by the Produce Vendor, Tristan swoops in to pay for the produce and then produces the Fish Heads and admits that he acted like a jerk to her. Slightly mollified she wonders if he has a recipe for Catalon Fish Soup, as good as her Abuela’s. The Fish Monger is relieved to find Elena is OK, Donald comes in to tell Tristan his new girlfriend broke up with him, and now he has these two nonrefundable tickets to Cancun that will just go to waste. The Fish Monger swoops in and gives Donald a big smile. Donald finally notices her and smiles back. The Produce Vendor intones the moral of the story, and all join in for the finale (FISH HEAD SOUP). 



(Diverse casting strongly encouraged)

TRISTAN - A Man in his early thirties

ELENA - A Cuban American Woman in her early thirties

DONALD -  Tristan's roommate,  late thirties

BOSS* - Elena's Boss, Man, forties/fifties

FISHMONGER - A Woman, forties

PRODUCE VENDOR* -  Man, forties/fifties

(* Should be played by the same actor)

bottom of page