Composers and their stage works 


At Long Last Leo

Comedy Mark Stein : 2 men, 3 women, 1 boy. Exterior

Leo Beagle has recently completed a 638 page manifesto on harmony for humanity which he hopes will be the impetus for the next major social movement for the world. Arriving home to his family which includes his depressed mother, philandering father, confused sister, introverted nephew and a neighbor who has always been in love with him. Leo tries to test his principles on this group. The only problem is ... he can't get them to read the manifesto. Leo's visit does, however, bring change to the family. Although Leo's mother accuses him of being "addicted to hope," the play's moving ending suggests that the desire to save the world and the need to dream is born with each new generation.
ISBN: 0-8222-0078-3

At This Evening's Performance

Comedy. Nagle Jackson. 5 men, 2 women. 2 Interiors (One simplified).

On tour in rural Dunsk (recently annexed by the hated socialist state of Strevia) a theatrical troupe is obliged to present corny melodramas and creaky verse plays as modern drama has been banned by their new masters. Led by a hammy egomaniac (who has amorous designs on the company's ingenue) and his Amazonian wife (who is herself in panting pursuit of the group's handsome juvenile), the actors seem more concerned with romantic assignations than politics until they discover that their new stage manager is a Strevian spy. To make matters worse, it also develops that one of the lines in the play of the evening is a secret cue for subversive activity and that the speaker (a member of the underground) will be summarily disposed of by a gunman in the audience. All this reaches its hilarious climax in a wildly funny play-within-a-play in which the wrong man is shot, the right man is spared, and the Players of Dunsk decide to head for the border - and freedom in the West.
ISBN: 0-8222-0074-0


Play. Julian Mitchell, adapted from Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov
M7 (middle-age, old) F4 (20s, old). A terrace, a dining-room, a drawing-room, a bedroom.

Chekhov's eloquent study of languid Russian landowners has been transposed by Julian Mitchell to Victorian north Wales in this stunning adaptation, which dispenses with many of the alienating Russian principles-confusing patronymics-and theatrical clichés -birch forests and samovars -that characterise most modern British productions. Anthony Hopkins played Ieuan Davies in the acclaimed original production for Theatr Clwyd in 1994.

August Snow

Drama. Reynolds Price. 2 men, 3 women. Unit set
The first in the poetic trilogy, New Music, which chronicles the Avery family and their friends through 37 years in a North Carolina town. Elegant melancholy follows these people as they live through the depression, WWII and Vietnam, and a few private wars of their own.

In August of 1937, in a small town in eastern North Carolina, we meet the Avery family. Roma Avery is the widowed matriarch who still maintains a hold on hèr recently married son, Neal. He and his wife, Taw, a former school teacher, rent a room from their friend, Genevieve Slappy, while Porter Farwell, Neal's boyhood friend, now lives in Romas house. Both Neal and Porter work at the family store, Avery's Clothing. After the first year of marriage, which has seen them drift apart, Taw gives Neal an ultimatum. He must recommit with heart and soul to his marriage vows by ending the long nights he spends out drinking with Porter. He has until supper to abide by her wishes or she will leave him. Neal begins to see life as a grown up, complete with the disappointments he's tried to avoid, and ultimately knows that Taw is the best thing to happen to him. He returns, quietly renewing his love.
ISBN: 0-8222-0075-9

Aunt Dan and Lemon

Play Wallace Shawn. 6 men, 6 women. Unit Set

The action begins in the London flat of Lenora (Lemon), a rather frail, introspective young woman who tells us, with a chilling calm, why she rather admires the Nazis for their "refreshing" lack of hypocrisy, and who then, in a series of flashbacks, explains how she came to hold these views. We meet her abrasive American-born father, to whom profit and business success are foremost, and her retiring mother who wishes that love and kindness were more prevalent, but is easily reconciled to their absence. But, most importantly, we meet a family friend, Danielle (known as Aunt Dan), an Oxford don obsessed with defending Henry Kissinger's policies in Vietnam. Beguiling Lemon with tales of her wild days as an Oxford student, and of the amoral escapades of her diverse and often dissolute friends (depicted in brief, disquieting vignettes), Aunt Dan becomes the central force in Lemon's life, eventually corrupting Lemon's moral views to the point where even Aunt Dan's death elicits no compassion. Instead Lemon, in a final, chilling monologue, methodically makes the case that bullies are our natural masters and that reasonable man is, by nature, an armed killer who destroys others not only because it is necessary for survival, but because it gives him pleasure.
ISBN: 0-8222-0076-7


Robert Thomas, after the novel by, and in collaboration with, Jean-Paul Ferriere, adapted by Tudor Gates
M2 (20, 35) F4 (24, 30s, 50, 60). A drawing-room.

The beautiful, striking but somewhat mysterious Aurelia returns to England without her husband and begins to spin a web of deceit and crime around Isabel, her father's former love, which, if successfully completed, should net her a great deal of money. Unfortunately, murder, robbery and blackmail all start to recoil on her own head. The end of the story is one of disaster.
ISBN 0 573 01593 7

The Autumn Garden

Play Lillian Hellman. 5 men, 7 women. Interior

The premise of the play is contemplating the meaning of middle age to an assorted group of people gathered together in a summer home. All of them are, in one way or another, frustrated and unhappy. Most of them are under the illusion that some day the things from which they suffer will be removed and they will be once more at peace. But when they come to see themselves, they realise that man is the sum of his past life, that they are incapable of any real revolt against their past and that what they have made of themselves in earlier years is what they are when age approaches. And yet they are not tragic figures. All of them are troubled average people, human, commonplace: but they are studied with great understanding and a touch of intelligently unsentimental compassion.
ISBN: 0-8222-0082-1

Autumn Manoeuvres

Comedy. Peter Coke
M2 (30s, 70s) F8 (30s, middle-age, elderly), doubling possible. A drawing-room.

This sequel to Breath of Spring and Midsummer Mink sees Dame Beatrice - and her lodgers Nan, Hattie and the Brigadier-embarking on a series of 'operations' to acquire funds to purchase a flat. Their complicated but well-planned manoeuvres succeed so well that by the end of this gentle comedy they are well on their way to obtaining a second flat, proving, as Bea says, that in their case age certainly isn't limiting!
ISBN 0 573 11010 7