"Next to Normal" Synopsis - Broadway musical
Diana Goodman, a suburban housewife, struggles through life as she battles mental demons in the form of bipolar disorder coupled with hallucinations that stem from a trauma sixteen years earlier. Her husband Dan, an architect, fights to keep her mind and his family stable but that fight becomes increasingly problematic as Diana decides to stop taking the pills given to her by her doctor. After several failed attempts to stem the tide by means of talk therapy with a different doctor, she eventually falls into an even darker place and attempts suicide. At the suggestion of her new doctor, Diana is convinced by her husband to submit to electroconvulsive therapy that causes her to have short-term amnesia. Throughout her struggles, Diana's relationship with her daughter Natalie becomes strained because Natalie feels invisible in the eyes of her mother, who prefers the superhero-like image she has created for her son.
Release date: 2008.
Type: Broadway musical.
Next to Normal is a musical with book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey and music by Tom Kitt. Its story concerns a mother who struggles with worsening bipolar disorder and the effect that her illness has on her family. The play also addresses such issues as grieving a loss, suicide, drug abuse, ethics in modern psychiatry, and suburban life.
Next to Normal received several workshop performances before it debuted off-Broadway in 2008, winning the Outer Critics' Circle Award for Outstanding Score and receiving nominations for Drama Desk Awards for Outstanding Actress (Alice Ripley) and Outstanding Score. It then played at the Arena Stage in Arlington, Virginia from November 2008 to January 2009 and is scheduled to open on Broadway in April 2009.