"FAMILY’s drama is beautifully conveyed in its dozen-plus songs.  From the Sondheim-tinged “A Toast” to the oompah-pah of “Choc’late,” from the lovely harmonies of “Daddy” to the staccato patter of “Pregnant,” Asaro and Fraser show themselves brilliantly capable of rendering complex emotions in touchin, sometimes provocative ways.  And Asaro’s remarkably sophisticated score is both simple and soaring." - Brendan Lemon Theatre Critic, The New York Financial Times

Stephen and Parker have been trying to adopt a baby for a couple of years. Bob and Carol are happily pursuing their careers. Lisa is looking for a new cause. Jane, the newest member of this friendship, recommends her liberal Baptist church has many good programs. Lisa joins the Jane's church, which goes through a conservative coo, with the same fervor she gave to the sexual harassment reform.

Carol lets it slip to Stephen that she is pregnant. Carol and Stephen get into a big fight because Carol and Bob are considering abortion. Stephen supports a woman's right to choose an abortion, but he wants Carol and Bob to be parents because he is thrilled by the prospect of becoming Auntie Stephen.

Carol and Bob discuss the pregnancy and decide to offer the baby to Stephen and Parker. Stephen and Parker are thrilled and the four declare that its love that defines a family.

Lisa returns from the Baptist Convention in Dallas determined to convert her friends. When she discovers that Bob and Carol are planning to give their baby to Stephen and Parker she threatens to stop the adoption.

Lisa threatens them with Baptist Bible rhetoric while Parker debates with her quoting appropriate verses. Jane admits that she will be the child's godmother and Lisa feels intense abandonment.

All rush to the hospital to find Carol in a coma and the baby at risk. Carol was attacked by protester organized by Lisa. Stephen blames Lisa as if she had been one of the attackers, and she runs away. Jane finds Lisa and pleads for her return and support. Lisa goes to Carol's room and begins to question herself. She prays for Carol.

Stephen, Parker, Bob, and Jane gather to visit Carol. Lisa arrives to apologize to everyone. Carol says Lisa helped bring her back to life. Parker ducks out and reenters with the baby. The group agrees to accept Lisa back into the family. The baby is seen as hope for the future.


FAMILY first opened on May 7, 1999 in the Fess Parker Studio Theatre at Santa Clara University. The original Production was directed by Greg Fritsch and Assistant Directed by Jenny Zensen. Orchestrations and Vocal Direction were provided by Joseph O'Keefe.

FAMILY was then produced by Ryan Repertory Theatre at the Henry Warren Theatre in New York in October-November 2000. The production was directed by Barbara Parisi.

Music by Tony Asaro
Lyrics by Tony Asaro & Barbara Means Fraser

Click a link below to hear samples.

Song Performed by:
Carol, Lisa, and Stephen
What I Want
Carol and Stephen


Images courtesy of Sue Johnson
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Family Family Family
Family Family

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