Posts Tagged one-acts for high schools

Photo from “The Monkey at the Wedding” in Massachusetts

The cast of The Monkey At the Wedding. From right to left, Top row: Father of Bride, Groom, Best man, Minister, Granny, Monkey, Mother of bride.  Bottom row: Pluto, Mother of groom, Zoe, Maid of Honor, Fatima, and the Bride.

The cast of The Monkey At the Wedding. From right to left,
Top row: Father of Bride, Groom, Best man, Minister, Granny, Monkey, Mother of bride.
Bottom row: Pluto, Mother of groom, Zoe, Maid of Honor, Fatima, and the Bride.

Here is the cast photo from the first day of rehearsal for my one-act THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, which will be produced in May at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School in Acton, Massachusetts.

This will be the world premiere.

Now, for an interesting story. I wrote the script several years ago, inspired by a local news story about a man who was trying to find a monkey to be ringbearer at his wedding. Don’t think he ever found one, though.

The director in Acton contacted me out of the blue — thanks, search engine! — and asked for some possible scripts. Eventually, she settled on this one.

Except, after auditions she had a problem. The show had a cast of 12 but she had 13 kids audition and she didn’t have the heart to turn one away. We bounced about some ideas, about splitting some characters in two but eventually settled on just writing in a 13th character. So I did.

I might mention that this “task mistress” of a director is a 9th grader. Bravo!

A wedding goes afoul when the ringbearer — a monkey — swallows the ring. Chaos, and comedy, ensues. Features a motorcycle gang, and someone in a monkey suit. Cast: 12 or 13 — 5 male, 5 or 6 female, 2 non-gender. Running time: 30 minutes.

So far in 2015:

* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO, Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD, Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES, Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.

* March 25-27: Production of HAMLET GOES HOLLYWOOD, High Meadows School, Roswell, Georgia.
* May 1: THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, Acton-Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Acton, Massachusetts.


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At least eight productions this fall, including one in India

The flag of India. I'm about to have my first production there.

The flag of India. I’m about to have my first production there.

I have at least eight productions this fall, including my first in India!

I say “at least eight” because some of my publishers don’t report productions until after they’ve happened, so it’s likely that number is higher.

But here are the ones I do know about, which are happening in six different states and the forementioned Republic of India!

* The one-act “The Fruitcake,” a Christmas show, remains my most frequently-produced script. It’s published by Brooklyn Publishers these four productions will take me up to the 40th production mark:

— Patrick Henry Academy, Estill, South Carolina, Oct. 29
— McCool Schools, McCool Junction, Nebraska, Nov. 1
— New Underwood School District, New Underwood, South Dakota, Nov. 23
— Mitchell High School, Mitchell, Nebraska, Nov. 26.

* The one-act “Hit the Books” continues to climb up the charts. It’s published by Eldridge Plays and Musicals and these two productions will be the 13th and 14th of this script:

— Milestone Public School, Milestone, Montana, Nov. 23
— Catholic Central High School, Burlington, Wisconsin, Dec. 14

* The hour-long one-act “Macbeth Goes Hollywood” is my second most-production script. It’s also published by Eldridge Plays and Musicals and this production will be the 26th production — and my first in India.

— Pathways School Gurgaon, Gurgaon, India, Nov. 16. (This is on the outskirts of New Delhi.)

That won’t be my first production in Asia, though. Earlier this year, a group in Singapore produced another of my one-acts, “Mac and Beth.” It also was a Shakespeare spoof, perhaps underscoring how much Shakespeare is a universal language.

On another note, I’m struck again by how many productions I get in the Upper Midwest.

Finally, as previously noted, one of my full-length scripts is scheduled for production in December in Oregon — “On the 13th Day of Christmas” at Santiam High School in Mill City, Oregon. That will be the first production of that script, but will be the sixth full-length script I’ve had produced.

Note that all these one-acts have been published, so royalties are involved. But impoverished directors take note, I have many more scripts that are unpublished and I allow those to be produced royalty-free. Here’s why.

F0r more on these and all my other scripts, see the scripts category.

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Two new one-acts added to my catalog

I’ve now officially added two new one-acts to my catalog. Both are royalty-free and both are suitable for high school or middle school.

Both are also riffs on a certain fairy tale:


A modern Cinderella story, except this Cindy doesn’t want to go to the prom. Cast: Four — three females, one male.


The rat who was turned into a coachman to drive Cinderella to the ball in a pumpkin carriage — and then turned back into a rat at midnight — longs to recapture the glory of that one magic night. Or is he simply crazy? Cast: Seven – five females, two male.

You can find my complete list of one-acts here, and the edited version of one-acts suitable for high schools here.

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One-acts scheduled for productions in Maryland and Singapore

The spring high school play season is soon here, and I have at least two scripts scheduled for production:

* “Hit the Books,” by Walkersville High School, in Walkersville, Maryland, in April.

” Mac and Beth,” by inwardBOUND, in Singapore, also in April.

“Hit the Books” is published by Eldridge Plays and Musicals. This will be the 10th production. It’s about a high school girl who tries to study by hitting herself in the head with a book. More or less.

“Mac and Beth” is a riff on “Macbeth,” this time with two ne’er-do-well bank robbers. It’s published by Brooklyn Publishers; this will be the second full production; there was a previous staged reading at the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, Va.

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Video: “Macbeth, The Prequel” in Roanoke, Virginia

I have almost an entire catalog of Shakespeare riffs, mostly one-acts aimed at schools. In fact, the very first script I had published was “Hamlet on Spring Break,” through Playscripts.

One sub-genre of Shakespeare I’ve been exploring has been prequels. I have two of them so far — “Macbeth, the Prequel” and “Hamlet, the Prequel” with two more in the editing stage.

This past week, “Macbeth, the Prequel” was staged at a private event in Roanoke, through the auspices of the Grandin Ensemble and the Star City Creators Society.

Here’s the result.

This script tells how the future Lady Macbeth came to be cursed, with deadly ramifications down the line. Her mother died in childbirth bearing her and her father, who longed for a male heir, refused to name her or acknowledge her as his heir. As you’ll see, I use the most famous (and some of the not-so-famous) lines from the actual Scottish play, but re-arrange them and assign them to different characters  as the Thane of Skye plots how he can put his family on the throne — only to conclude that “the girl” is the key.

The cast:
* The Thane of Skye: Gary Reid
* Witches: Brandon duMonde, Ashley Smith, Leisa
* Lady Macbeth: Kelly Anglim
* Servant: Darlene Fedele
* Thane of Cawdor: Owen Merrit
* Macbeth: Owen Merritt (double-cast)

Directed by Brandon duMonde.

In addition, Charles Reynolds created some very spooky music to go with it, which you can find here.

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One-acts for high schools

Here’s a list of my one-acts that I’d deem suitable for high schools and community theatres. Almost all run about 25-30 minutes; designed to fit within the time limits of most one-act contests.

A few run longer, a few run shorter, as noted.

All can be produced with minimal staging.

All are available directly from me, except those that have been published, which are noted — and are available from their respective publishers.


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