Stone Crossed is so much more than a Romeo and Juliet tale set in the Stone Ages. It is a commentary on how fear and division have pervaded humanity since the beginning of time. It is also a statement on how the power of love can bridge even the deepest of divides.
Divided by fear
Stone Crossed tells the tale of a world divided by fear of the unknown. Unlike other Romeo and Juliet-esque tales, the two sides of the Arkose fault line don't actively fight. Rather than being driven to confrontation, there is complete disengagement on both sides of the fault line, with anyone who their side believes to be an "other."
Questioning the status-quo
In Stone Crossed, Stoney and Jewel meet despite being from two sides of the fault line. As they begin to fall in love with one another, they realize that they have no idea why the fault line division exists. Everyone simply believes the division always will (and should) exist, because it always has. It's written in stone, afterall.
As Stoney and Jewel begin to test the limits, they realize that they are not a threat to one another, and that the fear-based stories passed down for generations are just that: stories. Ultimately, they choose a life together over the division that still pervades their society - despite the potential consequences.
Love bridges the divide
The themes of Stone Crossed reflect a somewhat utopian vision of a world in which asking the hard questions leads to love. In the end, the movement of the fault line serves as a reminder of our humanness in nature, and that taking the leap in the name of love is how we move into a new future of acceptance, togetherness, and freedom from the dogmas of the past.
As the song “Celebrate” goes, although on the exterior we all appear different, ‘the red blood runs through each one of you.’
When Stoney and Jewel accidentally cross the fault line that has divided their worlds since before they were born, they discover that they are more the same than they are different, contrary to what they’ve been taught to believe. Despite the fact that they may die if they stay together, they choose a shorter life together over a longer life apart.
Love the studio concept album but not sure exactly what goes down in Stone Crossed?
Here is a full synopsis of the musical, with links to each song so you can follow along with the storyline:
It’s the Stone Age and in Arkose, everyone believes what has been passed down to them through paintings and markings on cave walls.They stay away from those living on the other side of the fault line who, they are told, are diseased and dangerous (IN STONE).
Tuff is worried about his friend Stoney who explains that he just can’t escape the strange sensation that something is out there waiting for him (JUST OUT OF REACH). Tuff doesn’t understand and heads home alone. When Tuff gets home, his sister Chert picks up on the fact that he is not with Stoney and teases him into a panic attack about losing his best friend. Tuff reminisces about how he and Stoney met as cave-kids and Stoney defended him from the bullies who teased him because he was a “panter” — aka he pants like a dog when he gets nervous (HOW I KEEP MY COOL).
On the other side of the fault line, it is one day away from the official engagement party for Jewel, who has been promised to Basalt since before she was born. When she starts to question the reason why she has to “be joined” to someone just because it was written in stone, her friends try to convince her that it is the right thing to do (NOTHING IN COMMON).
Back at Stoney’s cave, his father Obsidean— a widower — is in his workshop inventing his latest creation “the Spear.” When Stoney barges in and insists that his dad teach him to hunt, Obsidian is surprised and curious to know what caused Stoney’s change of heart.When he concludes that his son might be considering going on his first date with the local huntress, he realizes there are so many things a father is supposed to teach his son (A FATHER’S JOB).
While berry-picking with Tuff, Stoney wanders across the fault line, and his heart is changed forever the moment he sets eyes on Jewel. Although they know it is forbidden, they are drawn together and instantly fall in love (LOST). Tuff and Jewel’s friend Peg find Stoney and Jewel almost touching, and they rush to break the two apart.
Peg, motivated by her desire to wear a feather bridesmaid dress at the joining, warns Stoney that he should stay away from her friend, who has been promised to Basalt. Tuff reminds Stoney that Jewel is an “other” and urges him to get out of there. Jewel and Stoney have one last exchange and promise to meet at the Tusk and Mask engagement party that night.
Basalt and Feldspar enter looking for Jewel, and chase Stoney and Tuff away. After almost being caught on the wrong side of the fault line, Stoney and Tuff celebrate their escape as they have a brotherly moment together, reflecting on the strength of their bond (JUST LIKE NORMAL).
Meanwhile, Jewel can’t stop thinking about how Stoney wandered into her life at just the right moment (WANDERER). Peg reminds her that it is dangerous to even think about it and they must stay away from those from the other side.Later that day, Stoney tells Tuff that he’s going to the TUSK & MASK party without him and that it is something he has to do by himself.Tuff is dejected and heartbroken, it’s the first time in their friendship Stoney wants to do something without him (ME WITHOUT YOU).
Chert and her friends badger Tuff to find out why he’s so upset. When they discover that Stoney has “the shimmer” for someone from the other side, and that Tuff is planning to go stop him, they plot to sneak into the Tusk and Mask party that night too (MAGMA DRAMA). Against all sense and the caution of their friends, Stoney and Jewel anticipate seeing each other at the Tusk and Mask later that night (I CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOU).
The Tusk and Mask party is in full swing when a disguised Stoney sneaks in, eventually followed by Tuff and then Chert and her friends.All hell breaks loose when Feldspar and Basalt discover them, and the party erupts into cacophony (CAVE ROCK).
Jewel confides to Peg that she loves Stoney, but when she realizes that Jewel is actually serious about not marrying Basalt, she is more concerned about how that affects her own lifelong dream of dazzling in her bridesmaid dress. Jewel is angry with her and leaves Peg to partake in a self-indulgent strut (THAT DRESS).
Later that night, Jewel sneaks over to Stoney’s cave and surprises him. They promise to meet the next day at Fossil’s to be joined and runaway together. Despite the fact that they may die if they stay together, they choose a shorter life together over a longer life apart (WALK AWAY WITH ME).
The next morning, Stoney’s dad announces they are going on a morning father-son hunting expedition under the glacier. With no choice but to “go along” Stoney and Obsidean set off. Later that day Fossil (the joiner) is excited when Jewel comes to his mountaintop wanting to be married and, when Stoney doesn’t show up tries to comfort her by offering some berries to calm her nerves (FOSSIL’S JOININ’ TUNE).
While under the glacier, Stoney shares with his dad that he is in love with an “other.” Obsidian’s loud reaction causes an avalanche, and Obsidean is trapped. Stoney is unable to move the fallen rock. Obsidean gives Stoney his blessing and tells him to go be with his shimmer (love) and assures him that he too will return to his. Distraught and saddened that Stoney didn’t meet her at Fossil’s to elope, Jewel wanders back to the place where they first met and eats the berries that Fossil gave her to help her sleep (IF I CAN SLEEP).
While desperately looking for their friends, Peg and Tuff run into each other. They both feel bad about how selfishly they’d acted, and want to find before it’s too late. Tuff is embarrassed when he starts to pant nervously, until Peg discloses that she too is a panter. They discover that embracing their flaws is so much better than hiding them, and that they are more alike than they are different (DISCOVERING YOU).
Euphoric over the idea of starting a new life and energized by the approval of his father, Stoney sets off to find Jewel (EUPHORIA). Stoney finds Jewel laying on a rock. As he moves closer, he is worried that something might be wrong as she lies motionless, and he thinks she must be dead. He lies down next to her takes out his dagger, and then falls motionless beside her (BREATHE). Looking for Stoney andJewel, Tuff and Peg enter, closely followed by Feldspar and others. They think Stoney & Jewel are dead (DISCOVERING).
Peg and Tuff decide that they too would rather live together than apart, and kiss.Fossil enters, unperturbed by the drama. He notices Jewel, and revives her with a waft of his guitar. When Stoney starts to wake, Fossil smiles and concludes that Stoney fainted at the sight of the blood. Everyone is surprised that the two lovers aren’t dead and start to realize that they’ve never questioned what they’ve been told (CELEBRATE).
A great rumbling sound as the fault line starts to widen. Stoney and Jewel leap across, and everyone starts to follow. They then notice that Basalt has not jumped, reluctant to take the leap and leave the old world behind. With the encouragement of everyone around him, he finally chooses the possibility of creating a new life over holding on to the limiting beliefs of a life written in stone (WALK AWAY WITH ME FINALE).