This original play has been submitted for research I am conducting. You can participate in the research by clicking here. Due to a possible (interesting) correlation, I am extending the time allowed for respondents to fill out the survey. You have until Sunday, 12/20 to do so.

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Ashley

Lindsey

Tessa

Jamie

Louis Tomlinson

Liam Payne

Luke Hemmings/Cole Sprouse

(The stage is empty. Lindsey enters).

Lindsey: Hello everybody! How’s everyone doing tonight? I said. . . HOW’S EVERYONE DOING TONIGHT? (waits for audience response) I just wanna say we are so excited to be here tonight doing this show for you. We are 5 Hours of Spring and we hope you enjoy the show.

Tessa: (offstage) Lindsey?

Lindsey: (annoyed) What is it, Tessa?

Tessa: (offstage) Who are you talking to?

Lindsey: Well, you know the audience. (Tessa enters)

Tessa: . . .There’s no one here.

Lindsey: (hesitantly looks at audience) Well, I mean, we still have to practice this sort of thing for when we book gigs.

Tessa: It’s our first practice. And you can’t even play anything.

Lindsey: Yeah, that’s why I’m going to be the singer.

Tessa: O.k. can you sing?

Lindsey: I dunno, but how hard can it be? Are your friends almost here?

Tessa: Yeah they should be here soon. And they can ya know, like play things.

Lindsey: Awesome! (there is a knock on the door)

Tessa: Come in! (Ashley and Jamie enter) Hey guys, this is my friend Lindsey, Lindsey this is Ashley and Jamie.

Lindsey: Great, I hear you two are musicians?

Ashley: Well, sort of. Jamie’s only a bassist.

Lindsey: And you?

Ashley: Oh, I’m legit. I play guitar.

Lindsey: You should be the drummer.

Tessa: I thought I was the drummer?

Ashley: I thought you guys didn’t play anything?

Tessa: That’s why we picked singing and drumming, those seemed like the easiest to learn.

Lindsey: Yeah, but think about it. Her name is Ashley. The drummer for 5 Seconds of Summer a.k.a. the best band that ever existed, is named Ashton. It’s like destiny or something.

Ashley: So you think we should change instruments to better reflect 5 Seconds of Summer?

Lindsey: Well, I mean it was just a suggestion. . .

Ashley: (mockingly) They’re like one of your biggest musical influences?

Lindsey: Yeah, that’s why I named the band 5 Hours of Spring. It’s like 5 Seconds of Summer but not as hot because let’s face it, no one is nearly as hot.

Jamie: (elbows Ashley and whispers to her) Which one is 5 Seconds of Summer?

Ashley: It’s the one that ripped off that band that ripped off that other band that ripped off Blink-182.

Jamie: Ohhhh, o.k.

Ashley: So, you want this band to be named 5 Hours of Spring?

Lindsey: Yeah, of course.

Ashley: 5 hos?

Lindsey: What?

Ashley: Ya know how they always abbreviate 5 Seconds of Summer as 5 s-o-s? 5 Hours of Spring equals 5 h-o-s. 5 hos.

Tessa: Well, I mean if you want to get technical isn’t the plural form of ho spelled with an e? So really we’re more like 5 Hoss or something like that. . . ya know, technically speaking.

Jamie: Why not just change the name?

Lindsey: Because I already had merch made. I have t-shirts and those little rubber band bracelets, and I already designed my action figure but we won’t be able to afford to have the action figures made until after we book our first gig.

Ashley: Are you being serious right now?

Lindsey: What, do you think a Kickstarter campaign would be better? That way people can bring the action figures to the gigs? I know if I ever went to see 5sos I would want to bring an Ashton action figure to the gig.

Ashley: That’s it, I’m not doing this. (goes to leave)

Tessa: (runs after Ashley) Ashley, come on. You don’t have to like all the same music that Lindsey likes. I’m sure as we work together as a band we’ll start to develop our own sound that will have maybe a little 5 Seconds of Summer influence and then some influence from bands that you two like. . . what bands do you like?

Ashley: Metallica.

Jamie: Black Sabbath.

Ashley: The Who.

Jamie: AC/DC.

Tessa: Well, you know as far as I’m concerned the world is in dire need of an all female group that perfectly blends Metallica, Black Sabbath, The Who, AC/DC, 5 Seconds of Summer and maybe a little One Direction.

Lindsey: Uh, excuse me! There will be NO One Direction influence on 5 Hours of Spring.

Tessa: Look, I really think you’d like them if you gave them a chance, they’re kind of like 5 Seconds of Summer.

Lindsey: Uh, no. They’re not. 5 Seconds of Summer plays instruments.

Ashley: Unlike some people we know. . .

Tessa: Fine. No One Direction. In fact, I don’t even think we need to talk about our favorite bands anymore. I think we need to start playing together. We need to let Ashley and Jamie teach us what they know about music so we can get this thing off the ground.

Ashley: (begrudgingly) Alright. Where’s your kit?

Tessa: Like a drum kit?

Ashley: You’re the drummer, right?

Jamie: It’s kind of important for drummers to have drums.

Tessa: Ya know, it is on my to do list but I never quite got around to it. I will have them for the next practice though. In the mean time I can. . . beatbox? (makes feeble attempt at beatboxing)

Jamie: That was pretty bad.

Tessa: O.k. fine. What about Lindsey? What does Lindsey need to know about singing?

Lindsey: (singing badly) She looks so perfect standing there, in my American Apparel underwear… and I know now. . .

Ashley: Does she really have to be the singer?

Lindsey: Excuse me, but I am the founder of 5 Hours of Spring. And I sing wonderfully.

Tessa: I think all Ashley means is that. . . there’s always room for improvement.

Ashley: Sure, we can go with that.

Jamie: Ya know, if we’re really serious about this, we need to hit up a music store. We need drums.

Lindsey: But there’s no drums in the beginning of Amnesia.

Ashley: Please stop pretending you know things.

Tessa: But I can’t afford drums until I get my next check.

Jamie: Some of the practice rooms have drums in them, you wouldn’t even have to buy your own.

Tessa: Don’t you have to pay for those rooms?

Ashley: (sarcastically) We can sell some of our merch to help pay for the room.

Jamie: I know a dude that works there. He says I can use a practice room whenever I want as long as it’s not reserved for paying customers.

Ashley: (sighing) Better than staying around this old dump.

(Lights go down. When lights go up, Liam Payne is behind the counter at a music store. Jamie, Tessa, Ashley and Lindsey enter. Tessa begins to hyperventilate. Lindsey has an annoyed look on her face).

Ashley: What’s wrong?

Tessa: Umm. . . that’s Liam Payne.

Ashley: Who?

Tessa: He’s in One Direction.

Lindsey: More like Dumb Direction.

Jamie: Huh. All this time and I never knew.

Liam: Hello Jamie, nice to see you around again. Can I help you with anything?

Jamie: Are you really in One Direction?

Liam: Umm, yes actually. I sometimes need a break from the papparazzi you see, and so I needed to find such a terrible hellhole that not even the most dedicated paparazzi would follow me into it. And I found it. York, Pennsylvania.

(Ashley, Jamie, Lindsey and Tessa nod in agreement)

Ashley: Don’t you have better things to do than work at a music shop though? You could enjoy the delightful views of, I dunno, the Harley Factory?

Liam: I’m actually helping out a friend who owns this shop. You might know him. (yelling to someone offstage) Louis!

(Louis Tomlinson enters).

Louis: Hello all, how can we help you?

Tessa: Oh my god, you are my favorite. I like you, a lot.

Lindsey: You are an embarrassment to me.

Louis: Excuse me! I’m just as good a favorite as any of the others. I mean, except Niall.

Liam: Ugh, Niall. What a dick.

Lindsey: It’s not that you’re her favorite it’s that she HAS a favorite. All you pretty boys look the same to me.

Tessa: Unless they’re named Ashton.

Louis: Oh, Ashton is the most attractive one, I agree. (All look at him, confused) What? A straight man can’t evaluate the attractiveness other men? Straight women do it to other women all the time!

(all look at him awkwardly)

Ashley: Are you done?

Louis: Fuck the patriarchy! Now I’m done.

Jamie: Why does a member of One Direction own a music store in York?

Louis: Rupert Grint bought an ice cream truck. (All shrug and accept this explanation.)

Ashley: O.k. well the reason we came here in the first place is because we’re trying to start a band but our drummer doesn’t have any drums. Jamie said that the practice rooms have drums and that we could potentially use one for free. So now we’re here. Are there any practice rooms available?

Liam: I think all the ones with drums are actually being used at the moment. I’m happy to support your band though. What are you calling it?

Lindsey: Five Hours of Spring!

Ashley: 5 hos.

Louis: But there are only four of you.

Lindsey: There’s only four guys in 5 Seconds of Summer.

Louis: I suppose.

Liam: Louis, don’t.

Jamie: Don’t what?

Louis: Never mind, pretend I didn’t say anything.

Ashley: (frustrated) When CAN we use a practice room?

Louis: I’ll tell you what. We have a gig on Saturday.

Liam: Wait in York?

Louis: Yeah, didn’t you know? We have a Google Calendar.

Liam: No. I just wait until someone tells me where to go and I show up.

Louis: Whatever. (turning back to Lindsey) We have a gig on Saturday. There will most certainly be drums there and I suppose that between sound check and doors opening, you can use the venue as your own personal practice space.

Liam: I don’t think you have the authority to let them do that.

Louis: (ignoring Liam) I can possibly arrange a personal lesson with Mr. Irwin. They’re opening for us you know.

Lindsey: Oh my god, really? You have to, please, I love him so much!

Jamie: (whispering to Ashley and Tessa) Who’s Mr. Irwin?

Tessa: That’s Ashton’s last name.

Liam: You’re really not allowed to do that, Louis. I don’t think you are.

Louis: See. I bet you don’t think so little of One Direction now, do you? You might even say I’m your favorite.

Lindsey: (ignoring Louis) I can’t believe I’m actually going to meet Ashton Irwin.

Liam: What made you think you’re allowed to offer them that?

Louis: So I’ll see you ladies Saturday?

Lindsey: (giddy) Yes.

(Lights go down. When they come up, Louis and Liam lead Ashley, Tessa, Jamie and Lindsey onto the stage of a One Direction concert.)

Louis: Here you go!

Lindsey: Thank you so much, where’s Ashton?

Louis: Oh, I don’t know, but those are his drums.

Lindsey: (screams) Oh, my God. (touches drums) I touched his drums. I touched. . . his drums!

Tessa: I’m the drummer though.

Louis: So play us a tune! We’d love to hear you. Ya know we’re gonna need a new opening act when 5sos finally decides to do their own tour. What kind of music do you play?

Tessa: We’re an all-female group that perfectly blends the styles of Metallica, Black Sabbath, The Who, AC/DC and 5 Seconds of Summer.

(Luke Hemmings enters)

Luke: Did someone say 5 Seconds of Summer?

Lindsey: Oh my God, it’s Luke Hemmings. You’re Luke Hemmings.

Luke: Yours truly. Who are you?

Liam: They’re 5 hos.

Luke: Oh really (puts arm around Ashley) I only count four, but still, I appreciate the gesture, mate!

Ashley: Please get off me, it’s just the name of our band.

Lindsey: It stands for 5 Hours of Spring!

Luke: (disappointedly walking away from Ashley) You could’ve thought that one through a bit better.

Ashley: I know. Believe me, I know.

Luke: So, let’s hear your band.

Ashley: Umm, yeah about that.

Jamie: We have never practiced before.

Ashley: Nor are any of my bandmates real musicians. I mean, Jamie’s a bassist, so sort of but the other two. . .

Tessa: We know nothing.

Louis: Well, what instruments are you. . . aspiring to learn?

Tessa: I’m supposed to learn drums, Lindsey’s going to be the singer, Jamie’s on bass, Ashley already knows guitar.

Liam, Louis and Luke: Ooohhhh.

Liam: Which one is Lindsey?

Lindsey: Me!

Liam: (hiding his annoyance) Oh. That one.

Luke: Well. Let’s hear you sing!

Lindsey: (clears throat and sings badly) Your lipstick stain is a work of art, I got your name tattoooed in an arrow heart. (stops singing) No seriously I do! (Lifts up shirt to reveal heart tattoo and shows it to Luke)

Luke: That says Ashton Irwin on it.

Lindsey: Oh right. I forgot. But I hope you appreciate the sentiment. And my singing.

Luke: I once heard a dead cat sing better than that. When she was dying. At least a dead cat is quiet.

Lindsey: (offended) Excuse you.

Luke: (attempting to comfort Lindsey) I didn’t say you couldn’t be successful. I just said you can’t sing. There are plenty of popstars who can’t sing! You just need to get a gig on the Disney Channel or something.

Lindsey: (curious) Really? Do you think that would work?

Luke: Of course you could! I know plenty of people who —

Lindsey: What? You know plenty of people who what?

Luke: I really shouldn’t say anything else.

Jamie: Ya know, I thought you looked familiar.

Luke: I don’t know what you’re talking about.

(Jamie approaches Luke and removes his fake lip ring. Tessa, Lindsey and Ashley gasp)

Jamie: That’s right! It’s not Luke Hemmings! It’s Dylan Sprouse from the Suite Life of Zack and Cody! Or Cole Sprouse. I don’t really know.

(Luke/Cole angrily grabs lip ring back and drops his Australian accent.)

Luke: It’s Cole. And I personally like to call it the Street Life of Shaq and Kobe. (All but Ashley laugh)

Ashley: It’s really not that funny. . .

Tessa: Jamie, how did you know?

Jamie: I got suspicious when Louis hinted that there were more than four people in 5 Seconds of Summer. After I got home and finally got a chance to figure out what the hell 5 Seconds of Summer was to begin with, I couldn’t help but think that Luke Hemmings looked like the Sprouse twins. And after all, if you take all the letters in Dylan Sprouse and all the letters in Cole Sprouse and you rearrange them, and then take some letters away, and add some other ones, it spells Luke Hemmings.

Cole: It’s true. There are five of us, Dylan and I take turns.

Tessa: But. . . why?

Cole: (suddenly sad) We didn’t want to. We really didn’t. But Disney Corporation sent us. You see, Disney used to be responsible for all the biggest teen pop sensations. Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, the Jonas Brothers. And before them it was Hilary Duff, hell, even Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake are Disney alumni. But when One Direction burst onto the scene it marked a shift. Suddenly, Simon Cowell had the potential to take over the market, a market which Disney has been dominating for almost two decades. And so someone at corporate came up with the idea of Dylan and I disguising ourselves and taking on the role of One Direction’s opening act. It would be a way of turning the tide back towards Disney dominance.

Ashley: I knew I hated that company.

Louis: Everyone hates that company.

Cole: I hate that fucking mouse! I hate it I tell you!

Liam: (to himself) You know now that I think about it, we could’ve just bought them their own drums.

Cole: (crying) How can I ever go on now that the secret’s out? What am I supposed to do? I can’t keep living a lie!

Ashley: I dunno, make Dylan do it full time. (Cole cries louder. Ashley awkwardly pats him on the back trying to comfort him). Fine, don’t make Dylan do it full time. Just stand up to them. Tell them they can’t make you do anything you don’t want to do.

Cole: Do you know what happens to people who stand up against Disney?

Ashley: (faking interest) No. What happens?

Cole: You know how no one’s heard from Billy Ray Cyrus since he told everyone that Disney fucked up his family?

Ashley: Yeah.

Cole: Exactly.

Ashley: What? Oh whatever. I’m not good at this. Tessa, you try!

Tessa: (delicately) You know what always cheers me up?

Cole: What?

Tessa: (singing) You’re insecure. Don’t know what for. You’re turning heads when you walk through the duh-uh-oor.

Liam: (singing) Don’t need makeup. To cover up. Being the way that you are is enough.

Cole: (smiling) That does make me feel better. Doesn’t really fix anything, but I feel warm and fuzzy on the inside.

Jamie: I’ve got it!

Cole: What?

Jamie: A real solution! So Lindsey was the only one who ever really wanted to be in a 5sos knock off band to begin with right?

Ashley: Damn straight.

Jamie: So if a member of actual 5 Seconds of Summer doesn’t want to be in 5 Seconds of Summer anymore, why don’t they just switch? The band stays intact, Disney keeps raking in money-

Ashley: And we never have to put up with Lindsey again!

Jamie: Right, we never have to put with Lindsey again!

Lindsey: (offended) Umm. . . .

Liam: But she can’t sing!

Cole: I told you, she doesn’t have to be able to sing. All she needs is a little Disney Magic (holds up lip ring) put this on.

Ashley: That’s disgusting.

Cole: But it is magic. Forged in Cinderella’s castle at the Magic Kingdom! It makes the wearer talented, able to play the guitar, and unrecognizable. That’s how no one realizes that Luke is just a part played by Dylan and me. So even if this bitch put it on everyone would still see her as Luke Hemmings. (all gather around the ring and gaze at it like Gollum does in Lord of the Rings.)

Jamie: So let me get this straight. There is a lip ring that makes it impossible for others to know the wearer’s true identity, and the best use of it is making the Sprouse twins front a crappy Australian All Time Low knock-off?

Cole: What can I say, Disney has their shit together, the CIA and the Witness Protection Program don’t. In fact, I think I even have a spare one. Disney makes sure Dylan and I carry an extra at all times in case something happens and someone else has to go on as Luke.

Lindsey: (puts on the ring and begins to sing wonderfully) She looks so perfect standing there in my American Apparel underwear!

Liam: Hot damn.

Louis: Bloody hell.

Ashley: Well, fuck.

Lindsey: (excited) So this is really going to happen. Ashton Irwin is going to spend every gig staring at my ass!

Louis: Yeah, and speaking of, you have a gig in about an hour and a half so you might want to go get ready.

Lindsey: (screaming excitedly) I love my life! (runs offstage)

Tessa: Well, I guess that’s the end of 5 Hours of Spring so I suppose we shouldn’t overstay our welcome. (nods towards door)

Jamie: Yeah, you guys have a show to do. Ashley are you coming?

Ashley: (overwhelmed) Can you all just give me a minute alone?

Liam: I mean we probably shouldn’t leave her alone with all the equipment.

Louis: Yeah, sure.

Liam: He never listens to me. (All but Ashley exit)

Ashley: (sighs loudly and sings) I wish that I could wake up with amnesia. . . like all of this was just some twisted thing. . . (spoken) What can I say. . . that one’s alright. (Shrugs and walks away)