Dark Comedy in 2 Acts / Flexible unit set / 2M, 3F
While Renaissance Pope Julius II excommunicates LUCREZIA BORGIA (alleged daughter of his predecessor, Alexander VI) and her husband DUKE ALFONSO D'ESTE of Ferrara, Alfonso dallies with his young mistress ANGELA DiGHILINI. Disguised, Lucrezia goes to Rome to seek a secret audience with the Pope. Alfonso and Angela follow Lucrezia and witness her meeting with GIOVANNI, a young soldier, who doesn't realize who Lucrezia is. When he does, after a night of passion, he insults her as the worst of the hated Borgias. SISTER BIBIANA, Lucrezia's confidante, arranges for Giovanni to come to Ferrara, where he is adroitly poisoned by Alfonso. Alfonso taunts Lucrezia with the certainty that her lover will die, but Lucrezia saves Giovanni with a secret antidote. He escapes. Enraged, Alfonso takes a devastating revenge. But Giovanni may be evidence of a guilty secret even more devastating to Lucrezia. As the evidence mounts, so do the dramatic stakes.
Winner, Best Play, Toronto Fringe Festival
Published by Playwrights Canada Press
Also produced by the RCA Theatre in St. John's, Newfoundland, by Burning Passions Theatre at the Berkeley Street Theatre in Toronto, and in community theatres.
The Angel Capone
Comedy in 2 acts / Flexible setting / 3M, 3F
Aspiring New York actress LENORE SHLEMANSKY gets no respect from her dressmaker mother ANNA or her would-be fiancé SAUL ROSEN, a mortician who fancies himself a magician. Changing her name to “Laura Seymour,” Lenore meets Broadway producer HAMILTON PRESCOTT. Soon “Laura” has a major role in Hamilton’s Chicago production of a recent Broadway hit – and the attentions of gangster AL CAPONE. When Hamilton rejects a new play that Laura has written, she gets Capone to back the show. Now Capone’s an “angel” -- but the devil is in the details. Who can be certain that a new play will be a hit? And if it’s a flop, who can predict what a certain ruthless “angel” might do?
Produced by Holy Blossom Temple Theatre, Toronto, Ontario, and Barnstormers Theatre, Grants Pass, Oregon.
Comedy in 2 Acts (written with Cat Delaney) / Flexible Setting / 1M, 3F
RUFUS BROWN is a travelling insurance salesman. So is RUFUS BLACK. They are the same person. Pained by the deaths of his first wife and kids many years ago, Rufus has married both LOLA BROWN and CLEA BLACK. They are insurance against the grief of loss. Rufus spends alternate weeks with them, and drowns his sorrows at a bar. There, he meets JENNIFER, a detective who moonlights as a bartender.
Both wives suspect that Rufus is unfaithful. Independently, both Lola and Clea seek the advice of MADAME WANDA, a veiled fortuneteller. “Wanda” is actually RUFUS WHITE, a man who murdered his family years earlier and has never been caught. When they see the story of Rufus White on a TV show about “cold” cases, both wives denounce their Rufus – all the Rufuses look alike. Jennifer arrests him for murder. Lola and Clea visit him in jail and promise revenge. But the real Rufus White has a trick or two up his sleeve …
A Clean Breast
Monologue / Unit Set / 1F
On the eve of a major operation, feisty but terrified TAMMY MORGAN shares her past life and loves, her present fears, and her future plans.
Produced by Sarasvàti Productions, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Excerpted in She Speaks, Judith Thompson, ed. (Toronto: Playwrights Canada Press)
Coming Up for Air
Comedy in One Act / Unit Set / 1M, 2F
Global warming has melted the polar icecaps. Much of the world is under water. JAKE and MARION, two high school students, have stolen their entrepreneurial classmate BUNNY’s latest invention. Bunny, a cheerfully ruthless capitalist, tracks them down. She plans to enlist Jake and Marion in her plot to control the world’s supply of breathable air.
Produced by the Oregon Conservatory of Performing Arts.
Hitler Goes to Heaven
Farce in One Act / 2 settings / 1M, 2F
Berlin, 1945. As Nazi Germany nears total defeat, ADOLF HITLER’s new bride EVA BRAUN cleans their underground bunker, concerned that people will criticize her if the place is left dirty after she and Adolf commit suicide. Adolf feeds Eva a cyanide capsule, but he cannot kill his dog Blondi. Telling Blondi to bite the invading Russians, Hitler shoots himself offstage. Hitler now finds himself in heaven, where his old friend ILSE KOCH, the She-Wolf of the S.S., guards the entrance while St. Peter is on break. Ilse wants to date Adolf; now that they are dead, they can see new people. Adolf refuses. Ilse taunts him with news that thanks to the Holocaust, heaven is full of Jews! Hitler will have to spend eternity with all the people he had killed, and neither he nor they will like that. Hitler demands to go to hell instead, but soon learns that there is no hell except the one he created. He throws a fit. Ilse files her nails.
Mind Over Matter
Comedy in One Act / Unit Set / 1M, 1F
Meeting at an antiwar demonstration, two young people are attracted to each other, yet wary. He's a lout, she's a phony -- but beneath their posturing and defensiveness, both are eager for love.
Produced by the Yale Cabaret.
Comedy in One Act / Unit Set / 3M, 1F
TOSS, a wandering juggler, takes refuge in an English Catholic monastery the day it is attacked by Henry VIII's Protestant soldiers. He and two MONKS find themselves at odds, but their conflict is resolved in an unusually spiritual manner.
Produced by SABEL at the Malibu Theatre Company, Malibu, California.
That Other Thing
Comedy / Unit Set / 1M, 1F
In That Other Thing, we meet KEN, over 40, and CAROLYN, over 70. They have just finished a meal that Ken has cooked. Carolyn hopes that there’s dessert – and there is. Ken has made her a banana cream pie. She is happy. But when he reveals that he is in love with her, Carolyn is upset. She’s far older than he is, and she’s afraid of what might happen, and what people will say. Ken readily acknowledges that his feelings are unusual and that some people might have trouble with them, but they are true feelings. He wants an intimate relationship with her. Carolyn is no shrinking violet, and she is interested, despite her conventional fears. Still, she wants to be wooed. Ken points out that he has already been wooing her -- with gourmet meals, the pie, and coffee made from fresh-ground, fresh-roasted beans. A more intimate relationship isn’t out of the question, but Carolyn will set the pace of events.
Trojans for Tots
Drama / Unit Set / 1M, 1F
DUNBAR earns a living by making balloon animals out of condoms. EGRET, his partner, is a poet. On this night, their relationship will take a fateful turn.
Translations / Adaptations:
Comedy in 5 Acts / Adapted (with John Van Burek) from a play by Carl Sternheim / Multiple settings / 5M, 2F
When their beloved tenor dies just before a small German principality's singing contest, a trio of solid citizens is forced to recruit an illegitimate proletarian with a gorgeous voice to make up the necessary quartet. Despite class differences and a clash of social values, the quartet wins the competition; but when an illicit love affair comes to light, a duel to the death must follow.
Farce in 2 Acts / Adapted from Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi (1896) / Flexible unit set / 10M, 2F + extras
The first Absurdist play, it caused a riot at its opening in Paris. PA UBU, a vulgar soldier, murders WENCESLAS, the King of Poland, and usurps the throne. He and his nasty wife MA UBU establish a reign of terror (and toilet humor) until they are overthrown by PRINCE BUGGERLAS and flee to America.
Produced by the Yale Repertory Theatre, the Shaw Festival, and the University of New Brunswick, the University of Manitoba, the University of Washington, and others. Published by Pulp Press, Vancouver.
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