Our regular up-to-date selection of recently published books as well as new or re-released plays and musicals, many of which are now available for amateur performance.
Some licensors are now offering special online-performance arrangements, so please get in touch with the appropriate company to find out more.
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Eamonn O’Dwyer, Helen Watts
Full Length Musical, Drama; F8, M10; 19th Century; 978 0 573 11683 4; £9.99 paperback
England, 1820: The isolated town of Sleepy Hollow is disrupted by the arrival of a new schoolteacher, Ichabod Crane, who challenges the town’s superstitions with science, reason and fact. The locals instantly mistrust him; but Katrina van Fleet, heiress to Sleepy Hollow’s rich land is charmed by his intellect and passion. But Ichabod is mistaken: as behind each one of the villagers’ tales lies a dark and bloody truth. As the spirits of the Hollow Wood grow restless, and as the hooves of the Headless Horseman thunder ever nearer, Katrina is forced to make a choice that will change the fate of Sleepy Hollow forever.
Based on Washington Irving’s infamous short story, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a powerful and atmospheric musical by Helen Watts and Eamonn O’Dwyer. It is a story of community; a story of faith, of blood and belief; a story that asks the simple question: what happens when good people make bad choices?
The Lovely Bones by Bryony Lavery, Alice Sebold
Full Length Drama; 978 0 573 11686 5; £9.99 paperback
This title is not currently available for performance. To be informed as soon as it becomes available in the future, please submit a license application.
Susie Salmon is just like any other young girl. She wants to be beautiful, adores her charm bracelet and has a crush on a boy from school. There’s one big difference though – Susie is dead. Now she can only observe while her family manage their grief in their different ways. Her father, Jack is obsessed with identifying the killer. Her mother, Abigail is desperate to create a different life for herself. And her sister, Lindsay is discovering the opposite sex with experiences that Susie will never know. Susie is desperate to help them and there might be a way of reaching them…
Alice Sebold’s novel is a unique coming-of-age tale that captured the hearts of readers throughout the world. Award-winning playwright Bryony Lavery has adapted it for this unforgettable play about life after loss.
Mustard by Eva O’Connor
Full Length Drama; F1; 978 0 573 13221 6; £9.99 paperback
When E meets the man of her dreams, a professional cyclist, love hits her in the pubic bone like a train. For a brief period she is high on life – he’s the answer to her crippling loneliness, her self-harm issues, her non-existent career. But when the cyclist cheats on her and ends the relationship E plummets into a black hole of heartbreak. She turns to her only friend – mustard.
Winner! 2019 Fringe First Award.
Spun by Rabiah Hussain
Full Length Drama; F2; 978 0 573 13245 2; £9.99 paperback
Safa and Aisha have been best friends for years. They used to bunk off school, revise for exams together and even went to the same university.
But now they’re forging different paths for the first time: Safa to work in the City, and Aisha to teach in Newham. When London is attacked one day in July, Safa and Aisha feel the whole world spinning. As extremes from all sides take hold of the city, can their friendship survive the upheaval?
Spun is the exhilarating debut play from Rabiah Hussain. Seen through the eyes of two British Pakistani Muslim girls from East London, this funny and moving drama unravels the makings of a friendship, microaggressions in the city, and the challenge of keeping rooted through unstable times.
RODGERS & HAMMERSTEIN:
The King and I by Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Margaret Landon, Jerome Robbins
Full Length Musical; F3, M4, 2 Boys; 19th Century; The King’s Palace in Bangkok; Classic Broadway, operetta
It is 1862 in Siam when an English widow, Anna Leonowens, and her young son arrive at the Royal Palace in Bangkok, having been summoned by the King to serve as tutor to his many children and wives. The King is largely considered to be a “barbarian” by those in the West, and he seeks Anna’s assistance in changing his image, if not his ways. With both keeping a firm grip on their respective traditions and values, Anna and the King grow to understand and respect one another in a truly unique love story.
Oklahoma! by Lynn Riggs, Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Agnes de Mille
Full Length Musical; F4, M6; 1900 – 1910, Wild West; Indian Territory; Classic Broadway, country/western
Rodgers and Hammerstein’s first collaboration remains, in many ways, their most innovative, setting the standards and rules of modern musical theatre. In a Western territory just after the turn of the 20th Century, a high-spirited rivalry between local farmers and cowboys provides a colourful background for Curly, a charming cowboy, and Laurey, a feisty farm girl, to play out their love story. Their romantic journey, as bumpy as a surrey ride down a country road, contrasts with the comic exploits of brazen Ado Annie and hapless Will Parker in a musical adventure embracing hope, determination and the promise of a new land.
The Sound of Music by Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse, Maria Augusta Trapp
Full Length Musical; F7, M4, 5 Girls, 2 Boys; 1940s / WWII, 1930s; Austria, 1938, pre-occupation; Classic Broadway
The final collaboration between Rodgers & Hammerstein was destined to become the world’s most beloved musical. Featuring a trove of cherished songs, including ‘Climb Ev’ry Mountain,’ ‘My Favorite Things,’ ‘Do Re Mi,’ ‘Sixteeen Going on Seventeen’ and the title number, The Sound of Music won the hearts of audiences worldwide, earning five Tony Awards and five Oscars. The inspirational story, based on the memoir of Maria Augusta Trapp, follows an ebullient postulate who serves as governess to the seven children of the imperious Captain Von Trapp, bringing music and joy to the household. But as the forces of Nazism take hold of Austria, Maria and the entire Von Trapp family must make a moral decision.
South Pacific by Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Joshua Logan, James A. Michener
Full Length Musical; F3, M7, 1 Girl, 1 Boy; 1940s / WWII; Two Pacific islands; Classic Broadway
Nellie, a spunky nurse from Arkansas, falls in love with a mature French planter, Emile. Nellie learns that the mother of his children was an island native and, unable to turn her back on the prejudices with which she was raised, refuses Emile’s proposal of marriage. Meanwhile, the strapping Lt. Joe Cable denies himself the fulfillment of a future with an innocent Tonkinese girl with whom he’s fallen in love out of the same fears that haunt Nellie. When Emile is recruited to accompany Joe on a dangerous mission that claims Joe’s life, Nellie realises that life is too short not to seize her own chance for happiness, thus confronting and conquering her prejudices.
An American in Paris by Ira Gershwin, George Gershwin, Craig Lucas
Full Length Musical; F4, M5; 1940s / WWII; Paris, 1945; Classic Broadway
Set in the French capital in the wake of World War II, An American in Paris tells the romantic story of a young American soldier, a beautiful French girl, and an indomitable European city – each yearning for a new beginning in the aftermath of international conflict. Inspired by the Academy-Award winning 1951 film, the new stage musical features a ravishing score by George and Ira Gershwin and a fresh, sophisticated book by Tony nominee and Pulitzer Prize finalist Craig Lucas.
The show’s timeless musical numbers include ‘I Got Rhythm,’ ‘’S’Wonderful,’ ‘But Not For Me,’ ‘The Man I Love,’ ‘Shall We Dance?’ and ‘(I’ll Build A) Stairway To Paradise.’
A Chorus Line by Marvin Hamlisch, James Kirkwood, Michael Bennett, Nicholas Dante, Edward Kleban
Full Length Musical; F9, M10; 1970s; A Broadway theatre, 1975; Pop/Rock, Contemporary Broadway
A Chorus Line is a stunning concept musical capturing the spirit and tension of a Broadway chorus audition. Exploring the inner lives and bittersweet ambitions of professional Broadway performers, the show features one powerhouse number after another. Memorable musical numbers include ‘What I Did for Love,’ ‘One,’ ‘I Can Do That,’ ‘At the Ballet,’ ‘The Music and the Mirror,’ and ‘I Hope I Get It.’ A brilliantly complex fusion of song, dance, and compellingly authentic drama, A Chorus Line was instantly recognised as a classic.
Hello, Dolly! by Michael Stewart, Jerry Herman, Thornton Wilder
Full Length Musical; F5, M4; 1900 – 1910; Yonkers, New York and New York City; Classic Broadway
This musical adaptation of Thornton Wilder’s hit play The Matchmaker bursts with humor, romance, energetic dance, and some of the greatest songs in musical theatre history. The romantic and comic exploits of Dolly Gallagher-Levi, turn-of-the-century matchmaker and “woman who arranges things,” are certain to thrill and entertain audiences again and again.
The show’s unforgettable songs include ‘Put On Your Sunday Clothes,’ ‘Ribbons Down My Back,’ ‘Before the Parade Passes By,’ ‘Hello, Dolly!,’ ‘Elegance,’ and ‘It Only Takes a Moment.’
The Wizard of Oz (RSC 1987) by L. Frank Baum, Harold Arlen, E.Y. Harburg, Herbert Stothart, Peter Howard, Larry Wilcox, John Kane
Full Length Musical; F3, M5, 16 M/F; 1930s; The Gale farmhouse in Kansas and various locations in the Land of Oz; Classic Broadway
Follow the yellow brick road in this delightful stage adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s beloved tale, featuring the iconic musical score from the MGM film. The timeless tale, in which young Dorothy Gale travels from Kansas over the rainbow to the magical Land of Oz, continues to thrill audiences worldwide.
There are two full-length versions of The Wizard of Oz: MUNY and RSC. Both include the songs ‘Over The Rainbow,’ ‘Munchkinland (Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead),’ ‘If I Only Had A Brain/A Heart/The Nerve,’ ‘We’re Off To See The Wizard (Follow The Yellow Brick Road),’ ‘The Jitterbug,’ and ‘The Merry Old Land of Oz.’ The MUNY version also has ‘Evening Star.’ The RSC version also includes ‘Poppies (Optimistic Voices)’ and ‘If I Were King Of The Forest.’
This RSC version is a more faithful adaptation of the film. A more technically complex production, it recreates the dialogue and structure of the MGM classic nearly scene for scene, though it is adapted for live stage performance. The RSC version’s musical material also provides more work for the SATB chorus and small vocal ensembles.
The MUNY Version is more theatrically conservative, employing its stage, actors, singers, dancers, and musicians in traditional ways. Using L. Frank Baum’s book – and not the MGM film – as its inspiration, this version employs story and songs as elements of a classic stage musical, adding a bit more humor to the witch and her cronies. The MUNY version does not include Toto, but instead adds new characters, including: Farmhand Joe, Gloria of Oz, Lord Growlie, Tibia (the witch’s skeletal assistant), two comical neighboring witches, and the Royal Army of Oz.
MUSICALS FOR YOUNG PERFORMERS:
42nd Street (Young Performers’ Edition) by Harry Warren, Al Dubin, Michael Stewart, Mark Bramble, Bradford Ropes
Short Musical (60 mins); F7, M6; 1930s; New York City and Philadelphia; Classic Broadway
This Young Performers’ Edition is a one-hour adaptation of 42nd Street, specially tailored for elementary and middle school-aged actors. The materials have been prepared to help your school or organisation mount the best possible production and to give your young cast and crew an exciting and rewarding experience.
Come along and listen to the lullaby of Broadway! 42nd Street celebrates Broadway, Times Square and the magic of show biz with wit, humor and pizzazz. At the height of the Great Depression, aspiring chorus girl Peggy Sawyer comes to the big city from Allentown, PA, and soon lands her first big job in the ensemble of a glitzy new Broadway show. But just before opening night, the leading lady breaks her ankle. Will Peggy be able to step in and become a star? The score is chock-full of Broadway standards, including ‘You’re Getting To Be A Habit With Me,’ ‘Dames,’ ‘We’re In the Money,’ ‘Lullaby of Broadway,’ ‘Shuffle Off to Buffalo’ and ‘Forty-Second Street.’
Anything Goes (Young Performers’ Edition) by Cole Porter, P.G. Wodehouse, Guy Bolton, Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse, Timothy Crouse, John Weidman
Short Musical (60 mins); F3, M4; 1930s; The S.S. American, a luxury liner sailing from New York to London; Classic Broadway
This Young Performers’ Edition is a one-hour adaptation of Anything Goes, specially tailored for school-aged actors. The materials have been prepared to help your school or organisation mount the best possible production and to give your young cast and crew an exciting and rewarding experience.
Anything Goes is a wacky shipboard farce featuring romance, intrigue, colourful characters and a glorious score from Cole Porter. Highlights include: ‘You’re The Top,’ ‘It’s De-Lovely,’ ‘Friendship,’ ‘I Get A Kick Out Of You,’ ‘Blow, Gabriel, Blow,’ and the title number.
Bye Bye Birdie (Young Performers’ Edition) by Michael Stewart, Charles Strouse, Lee Adams
Short Musical (60 mins); F6, M6, 6 F/M; 1950s; New York City and Sweet Apple, Ohio; Classic Broadway, Pop/Rock
This Young Performers’ Edition is a one-hour adaptation of Bye Bye Birdie, specially tailored for school-aged actors. The materials have been prepared to help your school or organization mount the best possible production and to give your young cast and crew an exciting and rewarding experience.
A loving musical send-up of the early 1960s, small-town America, teenagers, and rock & roll, Bye Bye Birdie remains as fresh and vibrant as ever. Teen heartthrob Conrad Birdie has been drafted, so he chooses all-American girl Kim McAfee for a very public farewell kiss. Featuring a tuneful high-energy score, plenty of great parts for kids, and a hilarious script, Bye Bye Birdie remains one of the most popular shows in schools across the country.
Hit songs include ‘Put on a Happy Face,’ ‘One Last Kiss,’ ‘One Boy,’ ‘A Lot of Livin’ to Do,’ ‘Kids!’ and ‘Rosie.’
Chicago (High School Edition) by Fred Ebb, John Kander, Maurine Dallas Watkins, Bob Fosse
Full Length Musical (90 mins); F10, M9; 1920s; Chicago, Illinois; Classic Broadway, Jazz
In roaring twenties Chicago, chorine Roxie Hart murders a faithless lover and convinces her hapless husband, Amos, to take the rap… until he finds out he’s been duped and turns on Roxie. Convicted and sent to death row, Roxie and another ‘Merry Murderess,’ Velma Kelly, vie for the spotlight and the headlines, ultimately joining forces in search of the ‘American Dream’: fame, fortune, and acquittal. Changes made for the High School Edition:
(1) Removal of adult language and overtly sexual references.
(2) Removal of ‘Class’ and ‘A Bit of Good’
(3) Transposed keys to better accommodate teen voices
Bright. Young. Things. by Georgia Christou
Full-length Play; F7, 8 F/M; Contemporary, various locations (can be simply staged); 978 1 788 50342 6; epub £8.99 (£7.19 direct from publisher)
On a reality television show, six remarkable young geniuses are competing for the coveted title of ‘Britain’s Brainiest Child’. As the contestants battle it out round after round, the pressure mounts, the spotlight gets harsher, and each is faced with questions they were never expecting. Part of Platform, a partnership between Nick Hern Books and Tonic Theatre that provides new plays written specifically for young people with majority- or all-female casts that put young women at the heart of the action.
‘[Offers] quirky characters and amusing situations… an interesting challenge for any youth group’ British Theatre Guide
Caterpillar by Alison Carr
Full-length Play; f2, M1, (plus 2m voices only); Contemporary, seaside town; 978 1 848 42794 5; epub £9.99 (£7.99 direct from publisher)
Greasy fish’n’chips, sticks of rock and a pot-bellied Spider-Man throwing himself off the pier; the annual ‘Birdman’ competition is in full flight. It’s the busiest weekend of the year in this faded seaside town, but Bayview B&B is somehow closed for business. A finalist in the Theatre503 Playwriting Award, this is a darkly funny, searing and tender drama about those moments when we find ourselves teetering on the edge.
‘Alison Carr’s ear for natural, funny dialogue distinguishes it from the outset’ The Stage
The Funeral Director by Iman Qureshi
Full-length Play; F2, M2; Contemporary, various interiors and one exterior; 978 1 848 42796 9; epub £9.99 (£7.99 direct from publisher)
Winner of the Papatango New Writing Prize 2018, this is an incisive and heartfelt story of sexuality, gender and religion in Twenty-First-Century Britain. Life as the director of a Muslim funeral parlour isn’t always easy, but Ayesha has things pretty sorted. But when a grieving young man walks in to organise his boyfriend’s funeral, Ayesha makes a snap moral decision that has profound consequences. Forced to confront a secret she has hidden even from herself, Ayesha must decide who she is – no matter the cost.
‘Very clever… plenty of moral meat to sink your teeth into’ Time Out
Heavy Weather by Lizzie Nunnery
Full-length Play; F5, 3 F/M, plus ensemble; Contemporary, various locations (can be simply staged); 978 1 788 50343 3; epub £8.99 (£7.19 direct from publisher)
A powerful, timely play featuring songs, about one girl’s journey through a world teetering on the brink. Amidst the chaos of competing and contradictory voices about Earth’s future, she sets off on a kaleidoscopic journey to find answers – about the planet, and her own family. Part of Platform, a partnership between Nick Hern Books and Tonic Theatre that provides new plays written specifically for young people with majority- or all-female casts that put young women at the heart of the action.
‘Wonderful… well worth a look for any teenage youth-theatre group’ British Theatre Guide
You Stupid Darkness! by Sam Steiner
Full-length Play; F2, M2; Contemporary, single interior (an office); 978 1 848 42832 4; epub £9.99 (£7.99 direct from publisher)
In a cramped, crumbling office, four volunteers spend a few hours every Tuesday night on the phone telling strangers that everything is going to be okay. As the outside world disintegrates, they teeter on the edge of their own personal catastrophes. Their hopes and fears become entangled as they try, desperately, to connect with the callers and with each other. This comic play about the struggle for optimism and community is perfect for any group interested in offering a sideways look at the world’s current situation.
‘Hilariously bleak… has a charming cynicism and compassion’ Guardian
Actors’ and Performers’ Yearbook 2021 – Essential contacts for stage, screen and radio – Foreword by Rob Ostlere
Theatre book; 978 1 350 15947 1; £16.99
This essential directory supports actors in their search for work within an industry where contacts and networking are key to career survival; now updated to include even more advice from industry experts with each listing, including valuable insight into auditions, interviews and specific tips on how to wow the crowd.
Adrian Lester and Lolita Chakrabarti: A Working Diary by Adrian Lester, Lolita Chakrabarti
Theatre book; 978 1 350 09277 8; £18.99
The creative powerhouse couple Lolita Chakrabarti and Adrian Lester recount 16 months of their working lives, including their time working on the stage adaptation of Life of Pi, an original series of monologues about the NHS (The Greatest Wealth), and the film adaptation of Red Velvet; giving us a first-hand glimpse of their experiences as two of the most proactive and versatile theatre makers today.
My White Best Friend (And Other Letters Left Unsaid) – Edited by Rachel De-lahay
Play collection; 978 1 786 82901 6; £14.99
23 letters from exciting voices in the UK and beyond – Zia Ahmed, Travis Alabanza, Fatimah Asghar and more – engage with topics from racial tensions, microaggressions and emotional labour, to queer desire, prejudice and otherness and ask: “Could you put your white best friend on stage and remind them that they’re part of the problem? Even if you love them?”
The 24 Hour Plays Viral Monologues: New Monologues Created During the Coronavirus Pandemic – Volume edited by Howard Sherman
Monologue collection; 978 1 350 18754 2; £14.99
Over 50 original monologues from writers such as Clare Barron, Christopher Oscar Peña and Jesse Eisenberg chronicle the global response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, an unprecedented moment in history which brought an end to live theatre in the USA and Europe; making for an anthology that is timely, moving, irreverent and at its best, transcendent.
Robert Icke: Works One (Oresteia; Uncle Vanya; Mary Stuart; The Wild Duck; The Doctor) by Robert Icke
Play collection; 978 1 786 82907 8; £17.99
This collection of Robert Icke’s multi-award winning adaptations includes The Wild Duck, a new version of Ibsen’s masterpiece in which a stranger’s revelation of family secrets leads to tragic consequences; Uncle Vanya, Chekhov’s late masterpiece examining the bittersweet contradiction of human behaviour; and Oresteia, a family drama spanning several decades which still resonates today.
The Greek Trilogy of Luis Alfaro (Electricidad; Oedipus El Rey; Mojada) by Luis Alfaro. Edited by Rosa Andújar
Play collection; 978 1 350 15540 4; £22.49 paperback
Featuring a new interview with Alfaro which addresses key topics such as his engagement with ancient Greek drama and work with Chicanx communities across the United States, this trilogy gathers together for the first time the three ‘Greek’ plays of the MacArthur Genius Award-winning Chicanx playwright and performance artist, each with its own introduction and summary of overall themes.
Lucy Prebble Plays 1 (The Sugar Syndrome; Enron; The Effect; A Very Expensive Poison) by Lucy Prebble
Play collection; 978 1 350 17509 9; £19.99 paperback
Bringing together Lucy Prebble’s landmark plays from 2003-2019, this collection spans from the George Devine Award-winning play The Sugar Syndrome – following 17 year old teen truant Dani, who seeks solace from her mundane life through online chatrooms – to A Very Expensive Poison, a bizarre mix of high-stakes global politics and radioactive villainy.
Richard Bean Plays 6 (One Man, Two Guvnors; Young Marx; The Hypocrite) by Richard Bean
Play collection; 978 1 350 18365 0; £19.99 paperback
The sixth collection of plays from award-winning playwright Richard Bean showcases the world-conquering hit One Man, Two Guvnors, winner of both the 2011 Evening Standard Theatre Best New Play and Critic’s Circle Best New Play; Young Marx, his riotous take on Karl Marx’s life in London which launched London’s new Bridge Theatre; and The Hypocrite, a historical-farcical romp that lit up Hull’s year as City of Culture.
Dick Whittington by Tom Whalley
Full length pantomime; Free perusal copies available upon request
Dick is a dreamer and has his sights set on London; the city paved with gold. With his trusty pussy cat by his side, he gets a job at Alderman Fitzwarren’s Store but the city is under attack from the most villainous, vermin of them all; King Rat!
With the help of his new love Alice, Fairy Bow Bells, Sarah the Cook and her silly son – Idle Jack, will Dick be able to vanquish the vermin?
The Costume Maker’s Companion by Diane Favell
Theatre book; 978 1 785 00719 4; £25.00 paperback
Authentic historical costume is essential for any performance, to instantly communicate a period, a social standing, an occupation or an identity. The responsibility of this representation lies with the costume maker, in their knowledge of the design and their accuracy of construction. The Costume Maker’s Companion serves as an aide memoire, to novice and experienced makers alike, covering the common garments of the Medieval, Tudor, Jacobean, Restoration, Regency and Victorian eras of British history.
Learn the key styles and fashions of each period before step-by-step tutorials and detailed orders of work illustrate the costume construction process for eight popular garments, from the designer’s drawing through to the finished piece. This book also covers:
- Working with a costume designer
- Key processes and equipment
- Flat pattern manipulations
- Cutting a pattern on the stand
- Taking a pattern from an existing garment
- Costume details, including goldwork and flounces
- Making accessories, including gauntlets, corsets and ruffs
Foreword by Fiona Shaw.
Diane Favell has worked at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art for nearly twenty-five years, teaching costume and running the Wardrobe department since 2001. Before this she both made for and supervised performances in theatre and film. Diane also teaches short courses at Central St Martins, University of Arts, London.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to read any of these plays:
Celestial Error by Patricia Brooks
Celestial Error is a divine one-act comedy for women, written in 1958. Five women are called to Judgement after a clerical error has caused confusion over which of them was scheduled to meet their Maker! Two of them should not be there – but all five of them have to plead their case before the Heavenly Court!
For eight women, of mixed ages from nineteen to 60s+. The roles of the three Court officials can be played by men. The running time is approximately 45 minutes.
Blonde On The Bonnet by Jennifer Curry
Blonde on the Bonnet is a piece of absurdist theatre. It is a one-act play with a great deal of humour, tinged with the drama and sadness of an unfulfilled marriage. When George buys a new car, he is surprised when the scantily-clad girl draped over the bonnet is included. The effect on his wife and neighbours is devastating – until his wife wins a Disk Jockey in a competition!
Blonde On The Bonnet can either be staged with a large cast of ten men and nine women, or a cast of eight with doubling of parts. The running time is approximately 45 minutes.
South For The Winter by Joe Graham
South For The Winter is a two-act comedy, which is ideal for amateur drama groups as it is set within an amdram society! Michael Finch has spent the last fifteen years wasting his serious acting ambitions on his local drama group. He wants to stretch himself and branches out to set up his own group, holding open auditions for Shakespeare’s Richard III. The response is not what he hoped for, as many of the usual suspects from his usual society turn up.
The sudden and unwelcome arrival of his father, Birdy, and his personal issues, throws the group into a chaotic spiral as skeletons and real feelings are exposed. A comic but hard look at a world that appears to be Care Bear Land, but often hides secrets and desires.
For three men and five women, ranging from their twenties up to 56. The running time is approximately 90 minutes.
Be My Guest! by Kay Macauliffe
Be My Guest! is a best-selling, zany comedy from a well-respected author. A mix-up over the identities of Mary’s Mother-in-law and the Guest Speaker causes confusion and chaos. Espcially when the Guest Speaker’s rescued baby badger is mistaken for a child!
For six women – four younger and two of whom are older. The running time is approximately 30 minutes.
The Cardboard Cavaliers by John Waterhouse
The Cardboard Cavaliers is a one-act social farce. Lil, Will and Bill are a family living on the streets, in three cardboard boxes underneath a railway arch. The play is basically a domestic comedy. Young Bill returns from begging in the West End with news that a TV presenter wants to interview them for a real, human-interest documentary series. The family’s eagerness to impress is confounded by Bill’s ineptitude. It does not end happily for the family, but there is plenty of humour along the way. At the end, the police move them on, but as they leave, a new family moves in. And so the cycle goes on.
For four men, four women and three extras (1m, 1w, 1b). The running time is approximately 30 minutes.
Blush Pink by Jean McConnell
Blush Pink is a one-act comedy for an all-women cast. Well-meaning ladies from the local Townswomen’s Guild or WI have decided to re-decorate an elderly lady’s home as a treat for her. After a variety of mishaps and squabbles, the old lady drops a bombshell which puts them back to square one.
For six women, one of around 80, five any age younger. The running time is approx. 30 minutes.
Black Velvet by Winifred Trentham
Black Velvet is a one-act murder mystery set in the late 1940s. The Moir family has gathered for a reunion. Dinner is about to be served when the son’s wife, who is hated by every member of the family, is found dead. With the family Doctor ruling the death to be unnatural, the police are called. As several members of the family seem to have good cause to murder Louise, who will be revealed as the killer? And what does it have to do with the cat?!
For four men (two older) and four women (one older). The running time is approx. 30 minutes.
The Burning Glass by Charles Morgan
The Burning Glass is a three-act drama. Set in the 1950s as the suspicions and rivalries of the Cold War begin to grow. A British scientist has stumbled upon an immense new power which harnesses the Sun’s rays. In the enemy’s hands, it could be a devastating weapon. With spies closing in, Christopher turns to the Prime Minister for protection, but have they acted too slowly.
For six men and two women, with most of the cast of a younger age and two in their 50s or higher. The running time is approximately 90 minutes.
Answers On a Postcard by Andrew Rock
A one-act comical play. Harold relieves the boredom of unemployment by advertising for lady visitors. In the midst of an appointment, his wife, a successful business woman, unexpectedly returns home and her reaction surprises her errant husband. Festival winner.
For one man and three women, two in their forties, two younger. The running time is approximately 35 minutes.
Alas, Poor Yorick! by Leonard de Francquen
Alas, Poor Yorick! is a one-act play set in the 1950s-1960s. Peter, an actor, is being painted in his role of Hamlet by his beloved Norah, an artist. Norah is resisting his proiposal of marriage yet again. Molly, Norah’s impetuous younger sister, invites Norah’s ex-fiancé and his wife round for tea. Will seeing him finally lay the ghost of their love to rest and allow her to move on?
For two men and three women, in their 20s to 30s. The running time is approx. Running time is around 35 minutes.
Afternoon Theatre by Beatrix Carter
Afternoon Theatre is a gentle, one-act play for women. Sybil has submitted a radio play to the BBC for its ‘Afternoon Theatre’ slot. To her joy, it has been accepted and is being broadcast this afternoon. She has gathered some of the villagers to listen to her radio play. Some have come to celebrate with her, others to sneer where they can. A heart-warming blend of humour and compassion.
For five women, middle-aged and above. The running time is approx. 35 minutes.