ONE-ACT PLAYS

 
"POPPER"
"CUT"
"TV TIMES"
"MY NAME IS MARTHA"
"TRUDY'S CHILD"
"THE HOUSE OPPOSITE - PART ONE"
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"POPPER"
Winner of the 2008 Geoffrey Whitworth Award for the best new writing in the
All Britain One Act Festival
 
Cast Needed
3 male - 1 aged 40 to 50 - 2 aged 30 to 40.
2 female - both aged 30 to 40
plus a very short appearance at end for male or female of any age.
Duration about an hour. 
  Synopsis

It is a pleasant, early autumn evening in the mid-nineteen eighties, and POPPER is enjoying a beer in a pub garden. He proceeds to involve the other pub customers in conversation by making bizarre accusations and worrying insinuations; and he is very clever at appearing to know more about them than he actually does. He creates an atmosphere of absurdity and menace as he picks their lives apart, but we cannot help laughing at our recognition of much of the behaviour. Popper's motives are not clear except he does seem desperate to keep the others with him, and when verbal means fail, he falls down in a sort of fit to stop them leaving.

TONY, the very proper middle manager is accused of trying to pick Popper up, and filled with anxiety about the fidelity and well-being of his wife, ANGELA, who learns of her husbands "homosexual tendencies", and is tricked into revealing an extra-marital affair. When JOHN, the builder, and his "tarty" wife VICKI arrive, Popper uses the fact that Tony and Vicki know each other from the office to infer marital infidelity, and thus setting them all at each others' throats. In the resulting fracas, Popper is knocked to the ground.

The unexpected spin-off from Popper's behaviour is that his "victims" start being brutally honest with each other. Steadily they reveal their deepst most private secrets to each other, and in the process tackle various issues surrounding male/female relationships, and sexuality in general. By the end of the play however, Popper has diminished in strength, whereas the others have become stronger than before. Popper is left to move on to his next "victim".

What the Adjudicators said:

"With its clever blend of the absurd and of menace, led by the enigmatic, manipulative central character, one could detect shades of Ionesco & of Pinter. One could only be sure of the unpredictable - apart from what would happen when MAN enters in the final seconds of the play."   Scott Marshall

A fascinating, intriguing, sometimes frustrating and occasionally vicious piece of writing. It has much to say about fidelity, male, female relationships, attitudes, sexuality, machismo and feminine intuition and rationality.............A sort of modern Morality Play perhaps?"   Russell Whitely

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Perusal Copies of all these plays, details about Performing Royalties,
and new script prices can be obtained from Chris Adams.
Go to:  CONTACT ME
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"CUT"
Winner of Best Original Play Award in Bristol One Act Drama Festival 2010.
Winner of Best Original Play Award in the Avon Association of Drama Festival 2010
 
Cast Needed
3 male - 1 aged 20 to 30 - 2 aged 30 to 40.
3 female - all aged 20-30.
plus two male or female stage-hands of any age who appear briefly.
Duration about an hour. 
 
Synopsis

This play explores layers of reality. The natures, personalities and relationships of the various characters make sudden shifts at various points in the play leaving us wondering exactly who they are as we are carried along by the suspense of the story.

As the play opens, BRENT, an accountant with a large firm, is trying to catch a bus to work because his car has broken down. However, MARCIA, a complete stranger who he meets at the bus stop, ALAN a film director, HAROLD a scriptwriter, and PHILLIPA his first wife who apparently doesn't recognise him, all treat him as if he's acting in a film with them. When Brent protests that he is not an actor and tries to get away, Alan beats him up, and JANE, his second and present wife, comes on to tell him she is leaving him because he's so boring. This all causes Brent to have a total breakdown, and he collapses into the foetal position centre stage where he remains until almost the end of the play.

The scene now changes. Marcia, Harold, Phillipa and Jane re-appear, but now they are medical staff at a psychiatric hospital where Brent is a patient. They discuss Brent's escape into the local town from the hospital, and they try and decide what to do about him. Alan, still the director, comes on to bring this discussion to a halt because they are all actors rehearsing for a film, and it is time for them to break for the day. They all, except Brent, who is still on the floor, start to move off when Brent suddenly leaps to his feet, and gives them a bollicking for their bad acting. Apparently, he is the real director of this film, and he soon becomes as threatening and violent as Alan was at the beginning. Just as he is about to attach Alan with a large stick, a voice off shouts “Cut”, and the actors freeze. This is the voice of the real director who we never meet because the lights go out.

What the adjudicators said:

"This modern, psychological black comedy is a play in two parts, which creates for the audience a nightmare maze of changing situations and relationships. It is a play full of conflict and tensions and underlying violence, which often erupts, and all of this has to orchestrated as the play progresses. Characters, in the main, are of the gutsy in-your-face variety..................You are aiming to both amuse and disturb your audience............................an unusual and tantalising script."   Mike Tilbury.

"The dialogue is very sharp, witty, amusing and often very clever.....................A clever idea given and interesting treatment and likely to carry any audience along with its whirlwind of words..............."   Geoffrey Whitworth Judges.

 

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 Perusal Copies of all these plays, details about Performing Royalties,
and new script prices can be obtained from Chris Adams
Go to: CONTACT ME
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"TV TIMES"
Performed bythe Kelvin Players, Bristol, in front of a "Rose Bowl" adjudicator

 Cast Needed
4 Male - 1 elderly - 1 aged 25 to 40 - 2 any age.
3 Female - 1 elderly - 1 aged 18 to 25 - 1 aged 20 to 40.
Duration about an hour. 
 
 Synopsis

FRED and DORIS seem just to be one of those old couples whose life is ruled by the television. Then one Saturday evening their house in invaded by strangers including a VOICE that keeps shouting biblical quotations from outside their front-door; a girl HOODIE who threatens them with a gun and a knife as she tells them she's a "symptom of urban decay and the collapse of family values"; a POLICEMAN dressed in traditional helmet, and uniform, who says that he is merely playing a "stereotype", and keeps going off and changing into other stereotypes of policemen; and a NEWSREADER who brings only bad news. We never see Voice but Policeman eventually runs through the front-door and chases him away which gives Hoodie and Doris a chance to go out for a walk, contrary to Fred's strictorders. Eventually Voice gets them all to join in singing the hymn, "The Old Rugged Cross", during which the last visitor, ROSIE, the tart with a heart comes on. She reminds them that they're not real, but only television characters, and that the times has come to say 'goodbye' to FredDoris is very sad at this as she's grown fond of him, but she's the one who has to tell him they're all going because he is dying.
A very amusing play with a philosophical undercurrent.  The ending is strangely touching.

What the adjudicator said:

"The challenge of this play, it seems to me, is that it initially presents itself as realistic, and then gradually realism crumbles, revealing the tone and the true nature of its characters.  There is much well-written dialogue - succint, witty one-liners - used to portary this realism.  This is contrasted with the longer diatribes of cliches as the stereotypes gradually reveal themselves..........................there are so many layers in the text, so many unanswered questions (maybe too many?) so many surprises, some brilliant moments of wit and parody.  I was certainly left feeling both stimulated and intrigued.  Thank you.

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 Perusal Copies of all these plays, details about Performing Royalties,
and new script prices can be obtained from Chris Adams
Go to: CONTACT ME
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 “MY NAME IS MARTHA”
(Now published by Spotlight Publications, 259 The Moorings, Dalgety Bay, Fife, KY11 9GX)
www.spotlightpublications.com

Cast Needed

2 Male - 1 late fifties, early sixties - 1 any adult age
3 Female - 1 late fifties early sixties - 1 late thirties early forties - 1 late teenage

Duration about an hour.

Synopsis

MARTHA appears to be a down-and-out spending her time with GEORGE on a piece of wasteland. George is a complete pessimist with no self-regard, whereas Martha is full of hope and self-confidence; and she spends her time shouting drunken advice at the passers-by. Her motto is: ”My name is Martha and I’m as good as anybody.” Nevertheless they obviously like each other. However, George wonders where she disappears every night, and in the flashback scene that takes place in Martha’s daughter MEGAN’S house, we find out that Martha has a house of her own but she recently lost her much-loved husband, and has started drinking heavily and shouting out her socialist ideas all over the town. She is an embarrassment to her son-in-law who is standing for the council as a Conservative, and he tries to keep her in his house until the election is over. Martha’s only ally in the house is her granddaughter SADIE who inadvertently gives her an idea of how to escape; and this is how she ends up on the wasteland with George.

At the end of another scene on the wasteland in which Martha and George reveal a lot more about their pasts than they ever have before, Megan arrives with a POLICEMAN to take her home. George tries unsuccessfully to prevent this.

Back at Megan’s house Martha is very heavily sedated and Megan has started to feel guilty about their treatment of her mother; but her fear of her husband forces her to play along with it. However, Sadie, who is not afraid of her father, takes Martha back to her own house.

The final scene is when Martha, recovered from the drugs, returns to the wasteland. George doesn’t want anything to do with her at first, but Martha wins him around; and they end up chanting Martha’s motto.
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Perusal Copies of all these plays, details about Performing Royalties,
and new script prices can be obtained from Chris Adams
Go to: CONTACT ME
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  "TRUDY'S CHILD"
 
 Cast Needed
 
2 Male - Aged 30 to 40
2 Female - Aged 30 t0o 40 
 
Duration about an hour.
 
 Synopsis 
 TRUDY used to be married to SAM and they had a child that was born dead.  Sam is now married to MARIANNE who is pregnant and they live in the house that Sam used to share with Trudy.  Trudy cannot accept that the child is dead and continually comes to Sam's  house and claims she can see her baby and it’s really alive, something which Sam doesn't seem to discourage.    Eventually this makes Marianne leave Sam and go to her mother’s.  This also causes trouble between Trudy and her second husband, JOHN, who ends up hitting her and taking refuge with his old mate Sam, and the two men set up a sort of ‘odd couple’ household, in which Trudy keeps appearing but only Sam sees her.  Then Sam finds out that Trudy was murdered on the day John left her, and the police are looking for him.  John denies killing Trudy but won’t go to the police or move out.  Eventually Sam forcible gets rid of John,  and refuses to have Marianne back when she has a miscarriage; and he opts to settle down to a contented married life with Trudy’s ghost and the baby that he can also now see is not dead.   This dark theme has plenty of lighter moments with amusing dialogue, as well as plenty of pathos and suspense.
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Perusal Copies of all these plays, details about Performing Royalties,
and new script prices can be obtained from Chris Adams.
Go to:  CONTACT ME
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"THE HOUSE OPPOSITE - PART ONE"
 
Cast Needed
4 Male - 2 in early thirties - 1 in late thirties
2 female - Both in early thirties
Duration about an hour

 Synopsis

This is a farce with darker undertones.  All the action takes place in ANDY and PENNY’s sitting room where there is a large window looking out on to the house opposite.  Andy is constantly complaining that it blocks their view, but he is fascinated by the sight of the lady of the house who often parades naked in front of her own window.

The plot quickly develops and becomes complicated.  GAYLE, Penny’s sister, turns up hysterical because she has discovered her husband, LEO, having a homosexual affair with the estate agent, COLIN,  with whom Gayle was also having an affair.  When CHARLIE the husband from opposite, arrives to accuse Andy of exposing himself at the window, we discover that he and Gayle had an affair in the past, and they’d obviously like to start it up again.

Andy’s father is a continual presence in the background, and we learn he is always promising, and then failing, to tell Andy about something valuable he will leave Andy in his will.  Penny is completely fed up with Andy, mainly because he ignores her, but also because of his many irritating habits. This explosive situation quickly hots up when Leo turns up looking for Gayle,  and Colin arrives looking for Leo.  They all end up pursuing each other around Debenhams.  By the end of the first act, Gayle has come to live with Penny, Colin has tried to seduce first Andy and then Charlie, and Penny has gone off to live with Andy’s dad.

This one-act has been extended to full-length and is included in the full-length secion entitled:
"THE HOUSE OPPOSITE - THE FULL STORY" 
 

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Perusal Copies of all these plays, 
details about Performing Royalties
and new script prices can be obtained from:
Chris Adams
53 Thornleigh Road
BRISTOL
BS7 8PQ
Tel: 0117 924 3960
E-Mail:  Go to CONTACT ME.

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