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M. Butterfly
David Henry Hwang : Drama 7M (3 non-speaking) 3F Flexible staging

A brilliant theatrical tour de force which is drawn from real life events involving the strange tale of Rene Gallimard, a French diplomat posted to Beijing who carried on a twenty year relationship with Song Liling, a Chinese opera star, without (he contended) realising that his 'perfect woman' was in reality a man. During the course of their affair he passes along diplomatic secrets, an act which eventually brings about his downfall and imprisonment. Underscoring the irony of Gallimard's delusion and its curious parallel to the events of Puccini's Madame Butterfly, the play combines realism and ritual with vivid theatricality as scenes between the two lovers are interspersed with scenes of Gallimard's wife and colleagues. When Song metamorphoses into his true masculine self before our very eyes, Gallimard cannot acknowledge or accept the transformation which drives him finally - and fatally - deep into the fantasy with which, over the years, he has held the truth at bay.
ISBN: 0 8222 0712 5

Madam, Will You Walk?

Comedy/Fantasy: Sidney Howard. 11 men, 4 women. Interior/Exterior

Mary Coyle, daughter of a corrupt Tammany politician who died in prison, is lonely and unhappy. She is also very rich, and wants to give back to the people of New York some of the money her father took from them. Mary tries to do this by giving free concerts in Central Park. But the concerts don't make people happy as she had hoped, and when she is visited by a Dr. Brightlee, H.D. (Doctor of Humanity) who has some suggestions on how Mary can spread more happiness, she is most enthusiastic. This enthusiasm isn't shared by Mary's aunt and guardians, who suspect Dr. Brightlee of being the devil, ... and they're right. But instead of being evil, the devil stands for the restless, rebellious individual spirit of man that hates conformity and is responsible for what human progress there is. Dr. Brightlee leads Mary away from an infatuation with a composer, the only man she has known until now, and finds her a real romance with a taxi driver who goes into a dance whenever he hears music.

Macbeth Did It

John Patrick : Comedy 12M 9F Open stage

Fast-moving and outrageously funny, this play traces the trials and tribulations of a community theatre production of Macbeth, from casting rehearsals to the breathless deadline of opening night. Gathering experience before tackling the big-time in New York, director Larry Rencher has decided to undertake Macbeth drawing on his faithful and generally ham group of local theatre buffs. The role of Lady Macbeth is assigned to Dolly Dibble, whose husband owns the theatre, and the other parts are cast with similar logic. As rehearsals begin, so do the hilarious complications and misunderstandings until, harried and out of patience, the director storms off in a huff, leaving matters in the hands of a meddlesome newcomer. Can everything be pulled together in time for that fateful moment of opening night?
ISBN: 0 8222 0711 7

The Maderati

Comedy. Richard Greenberg. 5 men, 4 women. Unit Set

Focusing on the self-centered concerns of a rather inbred group of Manhattan "yuppies," the action of the play deals with the ultimately hilarious misunderstandings which arise when one of their number, a frustrated, somewhat overweight and definitely suicidal poet named'Charlotte, is temporarily detained in a mental hospital. The news of Charlotte's plight is misunderstood by the couple to whom it is reported (Dewy, an ambitious would-be photographer, and Ritt, her stockbroker husband, who is given to sudden "epiphanies") and assuming that Charlotte has died they eagerly impart this privileged information to the others in their set. This leads to a series of inventive and brightly satiric scenes as the "news" is passed along (with incremental exaggeration) from couple to couple, and culminates in an impromptu get-together honoring the "deceased" at which Charlotte herself shows up as a surprise guest! Among the others involved in the antic doings are a literary couple, Chuck and Rena (who first reported Charlotte's absence); asexually ambivalent publisher who affects an English accent; a young poet who tends to fall asleep without warning; a man-crazy feminist named Cuddles Molotov; and the current object of her desire, a "hunky and faithless method actor, Danton, whose primitive grunts apparently have an aphrodisiac effect on the other women present, and whose hilarious obtuseness gives a fine point to the overall irony of the play.
ISBN: 0-8222-0713-3

The Magenta Moth

Thriller. John Patrick. 3 men, 5 women, Interior.

The setting is a remote mountain lodge where Dr. Polyantha Vashti Cassandra (Cassie), a world-famous anthropologist, has come to recover from a back injury. Confined to a wheelchair, Cassie is to be looked after by Grace Hollis, a fellow teacher and lifelong friend, with Grace's nephew, David, stopping by each week or so to deliver supplies and bring them news of the outside world. After David has departed the two ladies are surprised by the sudden appearance of three teenage girls who claim to be students from a nearby college who have lost their way on a hiking trip. Hospitable at first, Grace and Cassie soon sense their visitors are not what they purport to be, and when they come across a newspaper clipping which reports a Charles Manson-like ritual slaying in a neighbouring town they are shocked into awareness that their guests are the killers for whom a statewide search is now in progress. When the girls realise that their identities are known they take their hostesses prisoner and the long night of terror begins, with Cassie and Grace using all their wits to stay alive and bring their tormentors to justice - a hope which seems to be perilously in vain until an unexpected turn of events sets things right in the final, surprising moments of the play.
ISBN: 0-8222-0716 8

The Magic Act

Play Laurence Klavan. 2 men, 3 women. Unit Set.

As the play begins. Mona Kale, an exuberant and good-natured sort, is in the dock, accused of murdering her lifelong friends Alan and Annabelle, two old high school sweethearts who were so deeply enamored of each other that, in their youth, they nearly pined away when they were parted by separate summer camps. The prosecution claims that Mona did away with her friends because they were too happy, and in revenge for her own crushing loneliness, but Monas defense is that it was love, not she, which killed them - a love so perfect and overpowering that it carried the seeds of its own destruction. Needless to say the media have a field day with the case, with the,eveningTV news offering its viewers a number to telephone. (50 cents a call) to vote on Mortis guilt or innocence, with a verdict provided at the end of the newscast, and with Mona herself becoming a national symbol for the lonely (and the insane). But as the play alternates between events and people of the present and those of the past, the truth of what Alan and Annabelle's real relationship had become is gradually (and often hilariously) revealed. In the end it is the audience which becomes the jury, and is left to wrestle with the position and pertinence of love, sex, ideals and other such components of life in our so often disjointed modern world.
ISBN: 0-8222-0715-X

Mad Forest

Play from Romania. Caryl Churchill
40 characters, may be played by a cast of 11. Various interior and exterior settings.

Focusing on two families, life before the 1989 Romanian revolution is portrayed. The play, with a large cast, was performed by eleven actors and was seen at the Royal Court Theatre in 1990. 'The work is speedy, poetic, urgent and electrifying ... The trial and execution of the Ceausescus is done as a sickening revue sketch, an indicator of the double-edged, sceptical tone throughout. A triumph! The future of our theatre, if not that of Romania, is secure.' Observer

A Mad World My Masters

Thomas Middleton
11 m 3f, extras. Classic comedy. Multipurpose set.

A grandson tries to gull money out of his senile grandfather - only to discover that the woman he wants to marry is his grandfather's courtesan. 'Middleton runs the comic gamut. He has a talent for double entendres, jokes about asking a doctor to be patient and strong farcical scenes. Here verbal comedy joins hands with physical comedy in an unpompus way that seems not to have dated' Independent on Sunday. First performed in 1605, revived at Shakepeare's Globe, 1998.
ISBN 1 85459 409 5

Made in Bangkok

Play. Anthony Minghella
M7 (20s, 30s, 50s) FS (30s), with doubling. Various interior settings.

The setting is Bangkok -market place of the world where everything is for sale; the message is a bleak indictment of commercial sex and the condemnation of human exploitation. The main characters are a bunch of British tourists who arrive in Thailand armed with good intentions but are soon unzipping their sexual frustrations of a lifetime. 'Minghella handles his powerful, complex theme with great accomplishment, building to a scarifying climax.' Time Out

A Madhouse in Goa

A double bill by Martin Sherman
M4 (Part One: 18, 20s, 30s; Part Two: 19, 20s, 40s) F2 (Part One: 60s; Pals Two: 20s, 40s). Two verandas.

Part One: A Table For a King, chronicles the experiences of a young writer, David, who takes part in a plan to blackmail another guest into giving up her favourite table for the King of Greece.

Part Two: Keeps Rainin' All the Time, moves to the volcanic island of Santorini, where the existence of several disparate expatriates is ruptured by nuclear rain, terrorism and the impending eruption of the volcano.

The Madness of George III

Play. Alan Bennett
M22 F5, with doubling. Various simple interior and exterior settings.

What, what? Is the King mad? The Whigs think so, and begin campaigning for the Bill of Regency to allow the power-hungry Prince of Wales to ascend the throne. Meanwhile the King endures humiliating, torturous treatment at the hands of incapable doctors. Bennett's clever, funny and ultimately compassionate play sheds new light on a monarch often dismissed as inconsequential. It was first performed to great acclaim by the Royal National Theatre with Nigel Hawthorne in the title role.

The Magnificent Mr Booth

William Dinner : Light Drama 2M 5F Flexible staging

Switching between the 1950s and the present day, this play re-enacts the romantic adventures of a Tory MP, Gerald Gray, with a fatal weakness for the 'fairer' sex. While the house in which these adventures took place is being demolished, Gerald's son Michael relates his father's antics to the audience along with those of his mother, whose life as a writer and long-suffering wife is only bearable when mixed with a double measure of gin. She innocently refers to her daily tipple as 'Mr Booth', a liquid companion, but later becomes convinced that he really does exist as a source of inspiration to her. Gerald's unfaithfulness, and her drinking problem build to an unavoidable confrontation which ultimately leads them both to realise that all they ever really needed was each other. Together they encourage each other to disregard their vices and start their lives anew.
ISBN: 0 85676 210 5

The Magistrate

Farce. A. W. Pinero
M 11 F5 or M 12 F4. A sitting-room, an hotel room, a magistrate's room.

Pinero's classic farce follows the misadventures of Mr Posket, the mild magistrate of Meek Street, who gets disgracefully involved in the reprehensible junketings of his stepson. The hideous complications that ensue result in Mr Posket unwittingly sentencing his wife to a prison term: but needless to say all is happily resolved before the final curtain falls. Period 1880s
ISBN 0 573 01264 9

The Maiden Stone

Play. Rona Munro
M2 (30s-50s) F4 (14, 16, 30s, 40s). A boy. Children. Various simple settings.

Set in the North-east of Scotland in the early nineteenth century, this tells a story of women struggling against their circumstances, desires and ambitions in the persons of Harriet, an educated English actress leading her touring troupe in search of work, and Bridie, the Scottish traveller she engages as a wet nurse.

The Maiden's Prayer

Comedy/Drama. Nicky Silver. 3 men, 2 women. Unit Set.

The play opens at the wedding of Taylor and Cynthia, a golden couple beloved by everyone - almost. Libby, Cynthia's hard-drinking sister, is in love with Taylor herself and she can take it no longer. "The hypocrisy, the bone-chilling grotesque hypocrisy!" Fleeing to the back yard she discovers Paul, Taylor's best friend, a charming fellow, who, since childhood, has harbored a secret love for the groom himself. As Libby and Paul are forced to, deal with unrequited love, their lives change dramatically. Paul, promiscuous by nature, finds himself pursued by a young man, Andrew, who seems, at first, less interested in true love than in available real estate. And Libby, her career in a shambles, succumbs to a life without love, a life where sex is connected to monetary gain, rather than affection. When Cynthia gives birth to a still-born child, her marriage dissolves and Taylor sinks into depression and alcoholism. Surprisingly, Libby, who has viewed her sister as the enemy all her life, finds the strength to sacrifice her own desires to help Cynthia through her grief. While Paul, seemingly kind, always appropriate, betrays his dearest friend and secret love. He gambles with Taylor's life, hoping his friend will turn to him, at last, for comfort. The Maiden's Prayer follows this quartet and Andrew as they struggle to learn the difference between loving someone and needing them.
ISBN: 0-8222-1684-1

Mail Order Bride

Play. James Robson
M2 (30, 50) F3 (26, 35, 55). 2M 4F, voices only. A large kitchen.

Martin, a craggy, hardworking Yorkshire landowner and bachelor, lives with his punctilious spinster sister Ivy on the farm they inherited from their parents. Desperate for companionship, Martin pays for a Filipino woman, Maria - whom he has discovered through a video-dating agency-to come and live with them. But Ivy resents the intrusion, and, on the day of Maria and Martin's wedding, she digs up information about Mafia's past, with shocking consequences for them all.
ISBN 0 573 01847 2

The Maintenance Man

Play. Richard Harris
M1 (40) F2 (40). Two living-rooms represented by the same set.

A bitter-sweet, witty and perceptive look at the collapse of a marriage and the development and decay of an affair. Bob is a do-it-yourself enthusiast with a longing to be needed. Even after he is divorced from Chris he constantly returns to his former home, until Diana, his new love, begins to resent having to face competition for his time from his children and his Black and Decker.
ISBN 0 573 01651 8

The Majestic Kid

Play. Mark Medoff. 3 men, 2 women. Unit Set.

Aaron Weiss, a young activist lawyer, and his feminist classmate, Ava Jean Pollard, have come to the Southwest to help the Apache Indians in protecting their land from exploitation by monied interests from the East, who are looking for a site to use as a toxic waste dump. They quickly run afoul of a redneck judge, William S. Hart Finlay, who is the most powerful man in the territory (and who stands to profit from the land deal), and his erstwhile sweetheart, Lisa Belmondo, who is beginning to tire of Judge Finlay's boorishness and possessive ways. As the battle lines are drawn, Aaron, who in childhood had often fantasized that he was really "The Majestic Kid," a two-gunned hero devoted to fighting injustice, is joined by the model for his imagined persona - a former movie idol named "The Laredo Kid," who now reappears (to Aaron only) to goad and counsel his disciple. But Aaron, his resolve weakening (and especially so when he falls in love with Lisa Belmondo), is a disappointment to his mentor, who fumes and fusses (unseen by the others) while Aaron wishes he were back in Brooklyn. In the long run Aaron recovers his sense of purpose - and backbone - but not before he realizes that to be of useful service to others he must first discover himself. And this he does in a series of warm-hearted and very funny scenes, which are infused with a poignancy and gentle humor all too rare in the modern theatre.
ISBN: 0-8222-0717-6