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RENT School Edition - cuts and changes 
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Post RENT School Edition - cuts and changes
I am directing RENT School Edition in the fall, so I wanted to see what had been changed. There were some strange cuts made. I understand cutting for content if you are trying to sell to a high school market, but some of the cuts seem arbitrary. They cut 2 bars of music near the end of FINALE B. It is the two bars of instrumental where Angel walks out and joins the cast before the final "No day but today".

I wish the full version had been available. We would be doing the original version if it were released instead of the one with all the edits.

Here is the list of changes I have so far. Warning - this is a long post!

RENT School Edition cuts and changes:

All references to bar and measure numbers refer to the original RENT score. Libretto changes are based on comparing the MTI School Edition libretto to the Applause Books published paperback version of the original libretto


TUNE UP 1:
MARK :“Instead of my old shit” is cut. Bar 7 of score is cut in half (2/4 instead of 4/4)

TUNE UP 1:
MARK & ROGER: “Benny! (Shit!)” changed to “Benny! (No!)”
MARK & ROGER : “Great! (----!)” changed to “Great! (crap!)”

RENT:
COLLINS : Ughhhhh-- Ughhhhh-- Ughhhhh-- I can't think, Ughhhhh-- Ughhhhh-- Ughhhhh-- I need a drink
“I need a drink” is cut
ONE SONG GLORY : Key dropped from G flat to F.

LIGHT MY CANDLE:

Cut at bar 83 to bar 107, which cuts the following lines:

MIMI
Oh won't you light the candle?

(ROGER lights it again.)

ROGER
Why don't you forget that stuff
You look like you're sixteen

MIMI
I'm nineteen -- but I'm old for my age
I'm just born to be bad

ROGER
I once was born to be bad
I used to shiver like that

MIMI
I have no heat -- I told you

ROGER
I used to sweat

MIMI
I got a cold

ROGER
Uh huh
I used to be a junkie

MIMI
But now and then I like to --

ROGER
Uh huh

MIMI
Feel good

ROGER
Here it -- um --

(ROGER stoops and picks up a small object: MIMI's stash.)

MIMI
What's that?

ROGER
It's a candy bar wrapper

(ROGER puts it behind his back and into his pocket.)

MIMI
We could light the candle


TANGO MAUREEN:

MARK: “----' weird” changed to “Really weird”
MARK : “----' cheated” changed to “Maureen cheated”


OUT TONIGHT:
Bars 57 through 84 are cut, removing the following lines:

MIMI
When I get a wink from the doorman
Do you know how lucky you'll be?
That you're on line with the feline of Avenue B

Let's go out tonight
I have to go out tonight
You wanna prowl
Be my night owl?
Well take my hand we're gonna howl
Out tonight

Line change: from “I'll let you make me -- out tonight” to “I'll let you take me”

ANOTHER DAY:
Bar 70 cuts to bar 112 removing:

ROGER
Excuse me if I'm off track
But if you're so wise
Then tell me -- why do you need smack?
Take your needle
Take your fancy prayer
And don't forget
Get the moonlight out of your hair
Long ago -- you might've lit up my heart
But the fire's dead -- ain't never ever gonna start
Another time -- another place
The words would only rhyme
We'd be in outer space
It'd be another song
We'd sing another way
You wanna prove me wrong?
Come back another day
Another day

MIMI
There's only yes
Only tonight
We must let go
To know what's right
No other course
No other way
No day but today

WILL I? : Drops in key from G flat to E

ON THE STREET:
“Who the ---- do you think you are?” changed to “Who the hell do you think you are?”
“This lot is full of mother ---- artists” changed to “This lot is full of self righteous
artists”


SANTA FE:

ANGEL: “Times are shitty” changed to “Times are gritty”

I’LL COVER YOU:
Drops key C and F down to B flat and E flat, cuts bars 36 through 76 which removes:

BOTH
On life -- be my life

(They do a short dance.)

BOTH
Just slip me on
I'll be your tenant
Wherever -- whatever -- I'll be your coat

ANGEL
You'll be my king
And I'll be your castle

COLLINS
No you'll be my queen
And I'll be your moat

BOTH
I think they meant it
When they said you can't buy love
Now I know you can rent it
A new lease you are, my love,


CHRISTMAS BELLS:

ANGEL: “Kiss me, it’s beginning to snow” changed to “Honey, it’s beginning to snow”

Bar 37 cuts to bar 61, removing:

VENDORS
Hats, bats, shoes, booze
Mountain bikes, potpourri
Leather bags, girlie mags
Forty-fives, AZT

VENDOR #1
No one's buying
Feel like crying

ALL
No room at the Holiday Inn, oh no
And it's beginning to snow


Huge cut from 177 to 227, removing:
THE MAN
And it's beginning to snow

BENNY
(entering, talking on his cellular phone)
Wish me luck, Alison
The protest is on

COAT VENDOR
L.L Bean
Geoffrey Beene
Burburry zip out
Lining

JUNKIES
Got any C man?
Got any D man?
Got any B man?
Got any crack?
Got any X?

SQUEEGEEMAN
Honest living --

ROGER
Mark, this is Mimi --

MARK & MIMI
Hi

ROGER
She'll be dining -- with us

COAT VENDOR
Here's a new arrival

THE MAN
That is an ounce

VENDORS
Hats, dats, bats

COLLINS
That's my coat!

COAT VENDOR
We give discounts

MARK
I think we've met

ANGEL
Let's get a better one

COLLINS
It's a sham

MIMI
That's what he said

THE MAN
I said it's a gram!

COLLINS
But she's a thief!

ANGEL
But she brought us together

BENNY
Which investor is coming??

COLLINS
I'll take the leather

BENNY
Your father? -- damn!

(The following is sung simultaneously.)

HOMELESS & VENDORS
Christmas bells are swinging
Christmas bells are ringing
Christmas bells are singing
In my dreams -- next year
Once you donate you can go
Celebrate in Tuckahoe
You'll feel cheery
I'll feel cheery
Tho' I don't really know that theory
No bathrobe
No steuben glass
No cappucino makers
No pearls, no diamonds
No 'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire'
Chestnuts roasting on an open fire
No room at the Holiday Inn, oh no --

POLICE OFFICERS
I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Jingle bells -- prison cells
Fa la la la -- fa la la la
You have the right to remain
Silent night holy night
Fall on your knees oh night divine
You'll do some time
Fa la la la la
Fa la la la la

JUNKIES
Got any C man?
Got any D man?
Got any B man?
Got any X? -- Crack?
I'm willin' -- I'm illin'
Gotta get my sickness off
C-D help me
Follow the man -- follow the man
Follow the man
Jugie boogie -- jugie boogie
Follow the man -- follow the man
Any crack any X any jugie boogie boy
Any blow any X any jugie boogie boy
Got any D man, got any C man
Got any crack -- any X -- any jugie boogie?

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-five

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-five

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
No way
Twenty-four

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-four

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Not today
Twenty-three

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-three

ANGEL
Fifteen
It's old

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-two

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Twenty-one

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Seventeen

ANGEL
Fifteen

COAT VENDOR
Fifteen

ANGEL & COAT VENDOR
Sold!

MARK & ROGER
Let's
Go to
The lot -- Maureen's performing

MIMI
Who's Maureen?

ROGER
His ex

MARK
But I am over her

ROGER
Let's not hold hands yet

MIMI
Is that a warning?

ALL THREE
He/You/I
Just
Need(s)
To take it slow
I should tell you I should tell you
I should tell you I should tell you
I should tell you I ...

LA VIE BOHEME:
Lyric changes:
“Hold an erection” becomes “make a connection”
“Benny called the cops – that ----” becomes “Benny called the cops – that jerk”
“To faggots, lezzies, dykes, cross dressers too” becomes “ To homos, lesbians, cross dressers too”

Music cut: bars 103 through 193, removing:

MAUREEN
And wipe the speakers off before you pack

JOANNE
Yes, Maureen

MAUREEN
Well -- hurry back

(MAUREEN and JOANNE kiss.)

MR. GREY
Sisters?

MAUREEN
We're close

(ANGEL jumps on top of COLLINS, who's on the table. They kiss.)

ANGEL, COLLINS, MAUREEN, MARK, MR. GREY
Brothers!

MARK, ANGEL, MIMI & THREE OTHERS
Bisexuals, trisexuals, homo sapiens,
Carcinogens, hallucinogens, men, Pee Wee Herman
German wine, turpentine, Gertrude Stein
Antonioni, Bertolucci, Kurosawa
Carmina Burana

ALL
To apathy, to entropy, to empathy, ecstasy
Vaclav Havel -- The Sex Pistols, 8BC,
To no shame -- never playing the Fame Game

COLLINS
To marijuana

ALL
To sodomy,
It's between God and me
To S & M

(MR. GREY walks out.)

BENNY
Waiter...Waiter...Waiter

ALL
La vie Boheme

HAPPY NEW YEAR B:

BENNY: “Mimi -- since your ways are so seductive” changed to since your words are so seductive “
MIMI: “Cause I kicked him and told him I wasn't his whore!” changed to “Cause I kicked him right before I walked out the door”

TAKE ME OR LEAVE ME:
Changes only to introductory lines:

MAUREEN: I didn't pierce my nipples because it grossed you out. CUT COMPLETELY

“the Clit Club” changed to “the club”

VOICE MAIL #5 : Moves location in score. Now placed after “Take Me Or Leave Me” and before “Seasons of Love B”

WITHOUT YOU :
34 bars of music cut – bars 35 through 68, removing:
MIMI
The earth turns
The sun burns
But I die
Without you

Without you
The breeze warms
The girl smiles
The cloud moves

Without you
The tides change
The boys run
The oceans crash

The crowds roar
The days soar
The babies cry
Without you

CONTACT: Entire number cut

I’LL COVER YOU REPRISE
MARK : “and then she said she'd help 'em find the Circle Line” changed to “help 'em find the Statue of Liberty”

GOODBY LOVE :

MIMI: “Don't commit -- you're full of shit” changed to “you’re full of it”


Underscore music bars 78 through 85 cut. The following lines were removed:
JOANNE
I missed your mouth.
Your --

(JOANNE gives MAUREEN a firm kiss on the lips.)

MAUREEN
Ow!

JOANNE
What?

MAUREEN
Nothing, Pookie.

JOANNE
No, baby -- you said ow -- What?

MAUREEN
You bit my tongue.

JOANNE
No, I didn't.

MAUREEN
You did -- I'm bleeding.

JOANNE
No, it isn't.

MAUREEN
I think I should know...

JOANNE
Let me see --

MAUREEN
She doesn't believe me!

JOANNE
I was only trying to...


WHAT YOU OWN :
Bars 1 through 21 cut, removing:
PASTOR
Off the premises now
We don't give handouts here!

MARK
What happened to "Rest In Peace"?

PASTOR
Off the premises, queer!

COLLINS
That's no way to send a boy to meet his maker!
They had to know we couldn't pay the undertaker.

BENNY
Don't you worry 'bout him. Hey, I'll take care of it!

(The PASTOR acknowledges BENNY and exits.)

MARK
Must be nice to have money.

ALL THREE
No shit!

COLLINS
I think it's only fair to tell you, you just paid for the funeral of the person who killed your dog.

BENNY
I know. I always hated that dog.
Let's pay him off, and then get drunk.

MARK
I can't, I have a meeting.

BENNY & COLLINS
Punk! Let's go.

(COLLINS and BENNY exit.)

FINALE A :
Bars 1 through 32 cut, removing:

ALL SEVEN HOMELESS
Christmas bells are ringing
Christmas bells are ringing
Christmas bells are ringing
How time flies
When compassion dies
No stockings
No candy canes
No gingerbread
No safety net
No loose change
No change no

ONE HOMELESS MAN
Santy Claus is coming

ALL
Cause Santy Claus ain't coming
No room at the Holiday Inn -- again
Well, maybe next year
Or – when


FINALE B :
Bars 78 through 85 cut, removing:
“I die without you, I die without you”

Bars 90 & 91 cut, removing two bars of instrumental before the final “No day but today”


Last edited by Tom on Sat May 31, 2008 3:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Sat May 31, 2008 5:04 am
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That seems like a lot of important plot missing in some of those.


Sat May 31, 2008 5:55 am
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Thanks for posting that! It's very interesting. Seems like they cut all direct references to drugs/needles, to Mimi sleeping with anyone, and any scenes which involved same-sex couples kissing. They cleaned up some language both for cursing and for pejoritive slang terms. But some of the changes do seem quite arbitrary.

I'll be seeing a high school production of RENT next year, and I'm very curious to see how they work this all out.


Sat May 31, 2008 10:52 am
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Wow...they cut TONS. And I guess I kind of get it, but it seems a shame. Well...I expected the curses to be changed out, but they changed some stuff that I didn't see anything wrong with. I can't believe they cut all of the drug references out! And I'm upset that they cut out every single time the same-sex couples kiss. I mean come on!

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:48 am
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Some of these were changes that had already been made on tour ("Circle Line" to "Statue of Liberty" for those outside of NY who don't understand the slang), and I'm surprised some of the rest weren't incorporated ("Jersey" instead of "Hicksville" in the New Year's number, "CNN" instead of "Ted Koppel" in the bag lady scene) as long as they're dumbing it down.


Sun Jun 01, 2008 9:32 am
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Wow...that is a lot of cutting. Some parts seem completely reasonable, but others would have been fine, if kept in.

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 10:05 am
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So whoever on here said that Angel is just a female and Joanne is John lied?


Sun Jun 01, 2008 10:19 am
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WHUT.

Now say if we we to "accidentally" sing certain things?... (lol JK.) I understand some of the changes... like all the "f**ks" and all that... But they didn't have to change that much.

I'm in High School, and there's plenty of drugs and same sex couples. It's nothing new here...

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Mon Jun 02, 2008 8:54 am
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I think some of these cuts - particularly "Christmas Bells" - are to make the show shorter and easier to perform? There's no other reason I can see, to cut an inoffensive verse, but it makes sense to cut the most complex music.

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Mon Jun 02, 2008 12:36 pm
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Actually, having had time to go back and look at these changes, there's one "swear censor" change that I actually really like. In "On the Street," the bag lady says, "This lot is full of self-righteous artists!" instead of the typical "mother f**king" line. I think it actually makes more sense for her character, deepens it a bit.

I mean, in the show, it seems the only reason she's pissed about artists is that they don't have money, but this deepens it--from what she's seen in life, even if the artists had the money, there's always a project to save the homeless or do this or do that or live for their art. These people struggle to live day to day, and you think one protest will change their treatment? You wanna help the homeless? Give 'em a f**king dollar!

Some of the characters in Rent that we fans sympathize with do tend to have a self-righteous tone at times, and it's good to see other viewpoints reflected.

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Wed Jun 04, 2008 4:23 am
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I was thinking that. Mark does come off a bit preachy there.

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Sat Jun 07, 2008 4:15 pm
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Why did they cut "I die without you" from Finale B? Part of what makes Finale B so amazing is that it combines so many songs, and that's one of my favorite parts. Gah.

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Sun Jun 08, 2008 4:24 pm
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