Welcome to Starbucks (2019)

Scarlett Gilmartin-Castillo (Joy) & Sam Libutti (Ivan) in Sophia Verde’s play, Welcome to Starbucks

Welcome to Starbucks

by Sophia Verde

The Ross School

Click here to watch Welcome to Starbucks

(Optimist, Joy, and a pessimist, Ivan, walking into a Starbucks)

Enter stage left. Joy holds the imaginary door for Ivan. Walk stage right

JOY: Ivan, you first.

IVAN: Thank you, Joy.

JOY: Ivan … why do you have an umbrella? It’s sunny out …

IVAN: There’s a 15% chance of rain!

JOY: Well there’s also an 85% chance of sunshine! I think with those odds, you’ll be alright.

IVAN: Well you’re better safe than sorry … (taps foot) Ugh! Look at this line. Can’t we just go somewhere else?

JOY: Don’t worry. It’ll go fast. It always does, besides this place has the best coffee so it’s totally worth it!

IVAN: If you say so…

They take their places in the imaginary line. Both facing stage right. IVAN in front of JOY. IVAN will talk to JOY over his shoulder and they will slowly move forward as the play goes on. From time to time, they will be shoved by others in line. JOY may get shoved, causing her to bump into IVAN.

JOY: (picks up an imaginary newspaper) Oh! Look at this! The stock market’s up! Isn’t that so exciting?

IVAN: Don’t get ahead of yourself. What goes up must come down.

JOY: Don’t be so negative. Things are going well and that’s enough for now. I mean, think about all of the investors and their family! They must be so excited.

IVAN: I don’t know. If I were them I would start preparing for the future. And let me tell you, it’s not looking so good to me.

JOY rolls her eyes. JOY gets shoved forward, knocking her into IVAN

IVAN: Hey!

JOY: Sorry!

IVAN: I wasn’t talking to you. Anyways, I’m just being realistic. I mean, you can’t expect everything to go perfectly all the time.

JOY: Why can’t you just try to see the positive instead of the negative? I mean, doesn’t it make you sad to be so … so… negative?

IVAN: I’m not being negative, I’m being realistic. If you only see the positive then you’re gonna have a much harder time if or when something bad happens. Only me and my fellow pessimists will be ready.

JOY: Or maybe I will have lived my life being happy and trying to find the best in any situation or person. Being grateful for now and really being present and happy. Any you? You will have never trusted anyone or anything your whole life!

IVAN: You know, sometimes I don’t even know why I’m friends with you! You’re just so naive! I mean, not everything can go perfectly and you need to learn to be ready for that! You know what… you’ve just been disinvited to my zombie apocalypse bunker!

IVAN and JOY begin to argue intelligibly in the middle of the line at Starbucks. The sound builds up gradually. Just when it feels like they could not get any louder…

OFFSTAGE VOICE: Next! Hi, welcome to Starbucks! What can I get for you today?

JOY: Hi! Can I have a pumpkin spice latte with extra foam, please?


JOY: Joy

OFFSTAGE VOICE: Oh what a lovely name.

JOY: Thank you so much! My mother was very happy when I was born.

OFFSTAGE VOICE: I’m sure she was. Next! Hi, welcome to Starbucks! What can I get for you today?

IVAN: Yeah, hi. Can I get black coffee?


IVAN: Ivan

OFFSTAGE VOICE: Oh what a lovely name.

IVAN: Thanks. My mother is Russian

OFFSTAGE VOICE: I’m sure she is. (quieter) Next! Hi, welcome to Starbucks! What can I get for you today?

IVAN and JOY step into another line as they wait to pick up their drinks.

IVAN: (taps foot) Ugh! I forgot we have to wait again for the coffee!!

JOY: Don’t worry. It’ll go fast. It always does.

Play Ends

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