(The official Takarazuka English summary is at the very bottom of the page.)

A Glassy Landscape

Joey Baxter Kouju Tatsuki
Laura Simmons Nagisa Aki
Gregory Clement Hatsukaze Midori
Piccola Ponti Suzuka Teru
Alto Ponti Misa Noeru
Helene Simmons Mari Yuzumi
Franco Mira Aran Kei
Pietro Greco Yumeki Noa
Mario Grande Asazumi Kei
Leonardo Barone Matobu Sei
Kent Kostner Nishiki Ai
Lisa Clement Akisono Mio
Giovanni Creo Narumi Jun
Clara Simmons Sendou Kaho


Northern Italy, 1960s

There is a dream-like prologue, where the main character, Joey Baxter, appears and talks about the summer that gave him hope, on the shores of a blue lake in the Alps -- a summer he can never return to.


Joey Baxter (Kouju Tatsuki)


The main play opens as the resort guests gather in the Simmons' villa to celebrate the beginning of the season. Among them are the spinster Ponti sisters (Alto and Piccola), the Canadian painter Kent Kostner, the Dutch Professor Gregory Clement and his lovely wife, Lisa Clement, Italian university student Leonardo Barone, the British Spencer Simmons and his wife Helene, their son Paul, their youngest daughter Clara, and her boyfriend Mario Grande, who is the son of a prominent Italian banker.


Lisa and Gregory Clement

Local Milano police inspector Franco Mira arrives to alert the guests that there are rumors of a gang of thieves in the neighborhood. He brings along his right-hand man, Giovanni Creo. Everyone begins speculating on the thieves. There is a man who's been seen around the hotel lately. Pietro, manager of the resort staff, points out that an American, Joey Baxter, a trader from Switzerland, has moved into a nearby villa.

Just as they mention him, Joey appears. He introduces himself, but pleads a prior engagement, and after charming the women he makes an early exit. Leonardo and Kent Kostner also leave quietly. Just as Mario and Clara begin to slip away, the lights go out, and in the darkness a shot rings out. Everyone rushes outside, where a man named Morris lies dead by the fountain. This is the man who has been seen around the hotel lately. Clara is collapsed nearby, a pistol in her hand. When they wake her up and she sees the body and the gun, she has a hysterical fit.


Ponti sisters


Clara Simmons

Joey appears from nearby and tells the inspector that he doubts Clara had anything to do with the murder, but when questioned says he doesn't really know anything about it. Franco asks everyone to stay in the area until the murder is solved. He pulls the resort staff in to help with his investigation.


Back at the hotel, the spinster sisters are very excited -- a murderer in their midst! They're determined to sniff out the culprit.


A short time passes, and the hotel manager's eldest daughter, Laura, arrives to help her family. The police have confirmed that the pistol was Clara's -- one she kept in her bedroom. Laura questions her parents about what they think, and Mario as well. Mario insists that he knows Clara is innocent. Laura points out that this means he is the second most likely suspect, since he's the only one who knew about Clara's pistol outside of the family, and it was his girlfriend out in the dark with a strange man, but she doesn't believe he's the murderer. She's determined for them to do something to help her sister, and she asks Mario if he can tell them anything to help.

He tells them that he and Clara share a soul, and breaks into a song that segues into outside. Clara has wandered outdoors and is still hysterical. Joey sees her race past, crying, and runs to stop her. He finds her huddled in a boat, and she doesn't even remember going out to it. He talks to her about how sad the world is, but how you have to look and wait for the peaceful moments, because pain is weak against time. He tells her to believe in Mario. She calms down.


Joey and Clara

Laura has overheard the conversation, and she introduces herself and thanks Joey. He tells her he'll do anything to help, should she need it.


The young resort staff lament the fact that everyone at the hotel seems to have something to hide. They can't tell who is lying and who is telling the truth. Franco arrives and sends Giovanni off to collect information on Joey. Then he hears the staff's report on the murder. Twenty people were at the hotel. Most of them had alibis, except: Kent Kostner, Leonardo Barone, Mario Grande, and Clara. Franco points out that Joey Baxter was there as well, though he left early.

The Ponti sisters arrive and say they're always watching... but they didn't see anything. Everyone goes off into wild theories, but Franco silences them. He wants to know the connection, the motive.

Giovanni returns with his report on Joey Baxter. Joey went to school at Boston University, then moved to New York City and began work at a securities company. There was a problem with the company which Giovanni hasn't been able to get full information on, and there's a gap after that. Now he works in Switzerland. He's 37, and a bachelor.


Franco and Giovanni

Franco: Well done.
Giovanni: Thank you, Sir!
Franco: Let's get lunch.
Giovanni: Thank you, Si-
Franco: It's on you.
Giovanni: Wha-? Sir!


Mrs. Clement and Mr. Kostner talk about the murders, and how the police are questioning everyone. Lisa says she isn't worried, because she and her husband were in the room the whole time, but Kent is because he went outside to get something he'd forgotten in his car. Mr. Clement arrives, and Mrs. Clement breaks off the conversation -- it's too gloomy for her un-well husband. She goes to him solicitously. Mr. Kostner excuses himself, and after he leaves she pulls away from her husband. It wouldn't be worth noting if we didn't see the look on his face. "If you want to go home, you can," he tells her. She smiles, bright and wide, and shakes her head. "I'll do as I've done before. Just like always." Mr. Clement also leaves. Leonardo, meanwhile, has enlisted his sister to help him set up a meeting with Lisa.

Joey and Laura talk about their progress in their own investigation. They make small talk. Laura has come from Monte Carlo, and thinks she'll stay here for a week. She is married, although five years before she worked in a theater company in London. Her father was against it. Eventually she quit the theater and got married. But some day she wants to try again.


Laura (Nagisa Aki) and Joey

Laura asks Joey for details of his life. At first he says only that he's always alone and his life isn't interesting. She presses him. He tells her about Boston and his job in NYC. He says he was too young, he was too ambitious and caught himself in a mess that he hasn't been able to recover from.

Joey sings about the paths we tread without knowing what's ahead-- the possibilities of parting and meeting and falling in love. His "glassy landscape" of possibilities.

They meet Mario and Clara, and Laura tells Mario to tell Joey what happened that night. Mario's job at the bank has to do with loans, and Morris had found out about some kind of scam and was blackmailing Mario over it. He demanded money and then made a deal to meet with Mario and Clara.

Paul comes to tell them that many people were being blackmailed by Morris. Also, many peopple didn't have an alibi that night. Among those are Mario and Joey....


Leonardo and Lisa

There's a party, and Leonardo dances with Lisa Clement. The younger people of the town dance and have fun, but an altercation breaks into a fight. Joey watches it all. After things calm down, Franco and Giovanni appear. They have been questioning the suspects. Leonardo, under pressure, says he was being blackmailed over gambling debts and woman. Joey, when confronted, is agreeable and confident. Mr. and Mrs. Clement meet them, out for a walk. The police leave.

Lisa teases her husband for liking fireworks still, like a child.

Meanwhile, Kent Kostner has a dark past. Franco tells him they've heard about the "incident" in Canada. Kent becomes upset and insists it was self-defense, and that he was proven innocent in the end. He killed someone.


Kent Kostner


In Joey Baxter's villa, two men are talking. They're impressed with their master's accomplishments this time, getting a big villa like this right on the lake. Jim Ox says he heard a rumor that it used to belong to a count. They can't believe Joey's using his real name this time.

Joey comes home, and his man warns him that the police are checking into his past. Joey replies that he expected it, and isn't it lucky that he used his real name this time so that the police can trace him to his job in Switzerland? He's taking care, so there's nothing to worry about. He wants Jim to look into something, but he doesn't get further than "that man" before there's a surprise visitor, Laura. They quickly return to their roles, and the "footman" shows the "guest" out.

Laura has brought fine scotch from her father as a thank you for Joey's help. Then she comes to her point: She has decided that she's going to return to the stage. And there's something else she wants to tell him about. She likes Joey, as if she's known him for a long time.


Laura and Joey

He's startled by her confession, and warns her that perhaps he's not the nice guy he seems. She doesn't believe it. Joey, appearing stunned by things moving so fast, changes the subject to her new career, but somehow they always come back to the subject of love. He admits to liking her as well. They go sailing.

In a soliloquy, Laura says that the first one to move her heart like this, to gain her love, is Joey. She wants to work on Broadway, and she wants Joey to go with her.

In an answering soliloquy, Joey tells her that it isn't possible for him to return to NY-- the police are waiting for him. But just meeting and being with her has shown him the possibility of a new dream.


Laura talks to her parents about what they think of a woman working outside the home. They are opposed, and warn her that she won't find happiness this way. Her father tells her to think carefully.


Laura and her parents


The season is drawing to a close, and everyone goes to the ball. The Ponti sisters go over the suspects one more time. They're sure something will come to light at the party, and seeing Pietro only convinces them all the more. At the party Leonardo desperately tries to speak to Mrs. Clement, but she brushes him off, telling him that their "season of play" is over. She goes over to talk to Joey. Her husband watches coldly. She dances with Joey, and tries to seduce him. This her husband isn't so calm about. He follows them out into the gardens.


Lisa and Joey

There Joey confronts Mrs. Clement with the information he's put together. Someone saw her and Morris going into another hotel together. Also, the only one to give her husband an alibi during the shooting was Lisa herself. He accuses her of working with her husband to set up the murder. She had access to Clara's rooms because she was tutoring the girl in French, so she could get the pistol.

She congratulates him on figuring it out. Joey says it's not his job, but he'll tell the police... She then throws herself on Joey, begging him to help her. Her husband steps out of the shadows and tells her to stop. He wants to know how much Joey knows about him.

Apparently, Morris tracked down and blackmailed Clement, and he got the idea to trick money out of people using Morris. Lisa tells him that he should have killed Morris sooner, before anything happened.

Franco Mira appears from the bushes with Pietro and Giovanni, and Gregory Clement pulls his gun. In the ensuing tussle, Lisa is shot in the arm.

Franco says that he was also targeting the two tonight, because he had found the connection between Morris and the Clements. Gregory finally drops his cool mask and cracks. He admits to the murder. Morris had been working for him in their money schemes, but had gone too far with Lisa. He couldn't deal with Morris touching his wife, so he killed him.


Gregory and Lisa

Pietro has received a harsh lesson of the world. People can't be judged on their outward appearance. He can't understand the things people do and abuse for money. Joey tells him people are never satisfied with what they have. They sing about people and their greedy desires.


Afterwards, things return to normal at the hotel. The Ponti sisters decide they suspected something was off about the Clements. They also think their gossip must have been useful in uncovering the truth.


Leonardo is unhappy about how things turned out, and his friends cheer him up with a good old "Que Sera" song.


The younger generation: Clara, Mario, Leo's sister, Leonardo, Giovanni


Clara and Mario announce they'll be married in the fall. Laura talks to Joey about how it was thanks to him that she got the courage to return to her dream. He tells her she's done the same for him, but they shouldn't make any decisions too hastily. She goes in to the farewell party.

Joey's man arrives and warns him that Franco is searching for him and they should leave now, but Joey says he wants to see the detective. Franco arrives. Their research was more thorough than Joey suspected.


Joey and Franco

When he was living in NY, the woman he loved was involved in an accident and hurt badly. The operation to save her life needed more money than Joey had, so he started taking chances with clients' money. Yet in the end she died. He couldn't save her, but he was already too deep into the world of crime: money-laundering and other black market deals. Franco accuses him of criminal connections.... But it's not his job to bring in Joey.

Joey agrees, but tells him the one thing they didn't know-- Morris was blackmailing him as well. Franco realizes that Joey didn't stay to find the murderer, he stayed to keep an eye on Laura.

Joey tells him, "If you hadn't been a cop, I would have talked to you about it earlier. I like you."

Franco gives him some advice--"as a friend, not a cop"-- to not throw away this opportunity with Laura.

Joey angsts. He can't bring a lover into his current life.


Joey


Laura realizes that Joey has gone and searches desperately for him. She can't believe he's left without telling her. She almost finds him, but he ducks out of sight in time. She decides to trust that he'll meet her in NY someday. Joey begins to run to her, but is brought back to his senses by his men. Now is not the time. However, she's given him hope and a reason to rebuild his life and start again. He's going to quit his current job and turn over a new leaf.


Joey and Laura

Fine



The Glassy Landscape

Official Takarazuka English summary. (They use the name Joy Buxter, but I can't find it in myself to change my Romanization of the name....)

Every year, the scenic shores of Lake Como in northern Italy turn into a sort of social club for wealthy people who come to escape the heat of summer. Their lavish villas adorn the lakeside, and the villa of the Simmonses is found among them. In the early summer of 1972 just like other years, the Simmonses are celebrating in the living room the opening of their villa with the residents of the neighboring villas. These residents include artists, university professors, and businessmen. They all enjoy the reunion after a year's separation. In the course of the party, a young gentleman who has recently become a resident in the neighborhood shows up. He introduces himself as Joy Buxter, an American trader living in Switzerland. Immediately, the eyes of the guests converge upon him, and he becomes the topic of all conversation. Soon after he leaves, the guests hear a gunshot. Alarmed, they rush to the backyard, where they find a man lying on the ground. Clara, the younger daughter of the Simmons family, is standing aghast by his side, clasping a pistol in her hand. Maurice, the victim, had been seen in the neighborhood from time to time since the end of last season, but no one knows precisely who and what he was. Did Clara really shoot him? Pietro, the superintendent of the villas, and Inspector Mira of the Milan police station, responsible over the resort area, undertake an investigation.

On the next afternoon, Laura, the elder daughter of the Simmons family who is married and living in Paris, rushes to the villa after learning of the murder. Later that night, Clara, still stupefied by the shock of the incident, suddenly jumps aboard a motorboat on the shore of the lake and starts it at full speed. At that very moment, a man jumps into the boat and rescues her safely to the shore. He turns out to be none other than Joy. Laura, who has followed Clara to the lake, comes face to face with him, finding the same distress as hers in his eyes.

Some people cannot provide an alibi on the day of the crime. They include the painter Kent, Leonardo, a student, Mario who is the son of a banker, Clara and Joy. Kent indulges in drawing Lisa, the wife of Professor Clement. Leonardo is in love with Lisa. Moreover, Kent, Leonardo and Mario confess that they had been blackmailed by the man who was killed. Is this new fact linked to the murder? And who is the real criminal? Joy, who felt a curious presentiment from the murder, has started to investigate on his own.

Joy and Laura have felt deeply attracted to each other since they first met by the lake. As they confide about their past, they come to feel that they are both standing at the crossroads of their lives. Laura, who in the past gave up a career as an actress, finds in her encounter with Joy the motivation to nurture again her dream of acting. She tells Joy of her decision and of her irrepressible passion for him. Their love grows into a quiet flame, but Laura is married and Joy cannot tell her who he really is. Aware of each other's situation, neither of them can make a move forward.

Three weeks after the murder, a party takes place at Joy's villa. Knowing that all the suspects have been invited, the guests waver between staying and leaving. Joy, who is confident that he has found the truth, prepares to approach the culprit...

The culprit was a most unexpected person. The case is near conclusion and the short summer of the lake is showing signs of its end. The social life of the resort is restoring its gaiety. But Inspector Mira uncovers Joy's concealed past and identity. Conscious of a crime he committed in the past, Joy has refrained from professing his love to Laura. He now resolves to leave the resort without telling her. However, he realizes he cannot suppress his feelings for her and returns to the lake to tell her that he will come back when he deserves her. Laura, who has been told of Joy's secret by Inspector Mira, again shows her determination to become an actress and promises to wait for him in New York. They pledge to meet again and embrace while the song "Arrivederci" is heard in the background.