XI. Serenade for Rita, 1946

Screen #1

Screen #2

Screen #3

ORSON recalls the 30 June 1946 radio broadcast in which HE announces that his wife’s likeness adorns the fourth atomic bomb ever exploded.

A section
ALL THREE ORSONS
Rita’s face is not on the bomb by her own choosing…,
(Variously)
Is this the face?

RADIO BROADCAST ORSON
Rita Hayworth

ALL THREE ORSONS
(Variously)
Is this the face?
…but by election of the fliers who will drop the bomb.

ORSON #2
Rita’s face is not on the bomb by her own choosing…,

RADIO BROADCAST ORSON
Rita Hayworth

ALL THREE ORSONS
(Variously)
Is this the face?

RADIO BROADCAST ORSON
The young lady named Rita Hayworth.


ALL THREE ORSONS
As regards [her] selection, I find their taste beyond reproach. 

ALL THREE ORSONS
(Variously)
Is this the face?

ORSON #3
But the bomb-dropping itself … well that better be worthy of the accompanying photograph.

ORSON #1 &  #2
But the bomb-dropping itself … well that better be worthy of herself!

ALL THREE ORSONS
(Variously)
Is this the face?

RADIO BROADCAST ORSON (Variously)
I want my daughter to be able to tell her daughter … my daughter…
(Rita Hayworth) (Rosebud)
That her grandmother’s picture was on the last atom bomb.

ORSON #3
“’Is this,’ Faustus claimed of Helen of Troy,
‘the face that launched a thousand ships and burnt
the topless towers of Ilion’?”
Rita Hayworth?

ORSON #1 & #2
“’Is this,’ Faustus claimed of Helen of Troy,
‘the face that launched a thousand ships and burnt
the topless towers of Ilion’?” 

ALL THREE ORSONS
Rita Hayworth?
 
ORSON #3
I want a better toast…,

ORSON #1 & #2
…a better boast, for Rebecca. 

ALL THREE ORSONS
I want my daughter to be able to tell her daughter
that her grandmother’s picture was on the last atom bomb.