Composers and their stage works 


Our Boys

Play. Jonathan Lewis
M6 (20s). A hospital ward.

1984. Five soldiers, among them veterans of the Falklands War and the Hyde Park bombing, are convalescing in a military hospital, with pornography, bragging one-upmanship and cynical humour as their only means of mental escape. Tensions arise when an officer is billeted with them, and a bitter, savage war of words, only just disguised as humour, is waged against him. After an hilarious birthday patty, the six find themselves facing charges of misconduct - and then the fighting really starts.
ISBN 0 573 14009 X

Our Country's Good

Play. Timberlake Wertenbaker. Based on the novel The Playmaker by Thomas Keneally
M17 F5 or M7 F4. Various interior and exterior settings.

This adaptation was performed at The Royal Court Theatre in 1988 and 1989 to critical acclaim. Set in Botany Bay in 1789 it tells of the rehearsals for the first play to be performed in Australia. Surrounded by forbidding conditions Lieutenant Clark attempts, under the authority of the first Governor General, to bring culture to the penal colony through a production of Farquhar's The Recruiting Officer, with a motley bunch of villains, murderers and prostitutes.

Our Girls

Farce. Conrad Seiler.
6 men, 5 women. Interior.

The Lovejoys have named their sons "Jesse," "Francis," and "Vivian," because Mildred's Aunt Jessie doesn't like boys. Aunt Jessie lives in England, so it has been easy to deceive her. She must never know that the "girls" who are to inherit her money are boys - very real boys. They "scrap" with Chester Wattles, are accused by Mrs. Wattles of breaking her windows and act as other boys do. Each will receive $5,000 on his 16th birthday and more when he comes of age. Vivian is nearly 16, and Father plans to borrow part of the $5,000 to expand his business. Then the blow falls! Aunt Jessie has decided to pay a visit and bestow on her eldest "niece" in person the $5,000. What can be done? The boys must be girls during Aunt Jessie's visit! The boys are won over, dressed as girls and carefully rehearsed. Aunt Jessie arrives and finds Mildred's "daughters" strange creatures indeed. All is well, however, until Vivian decides to put on his own clothes to see Phyllis, his girl, whom he has had to neglect. Aunt Jessie sees him slipping out - Vivian, her niece, in shirt, pants, and cap, and cropped hair! The truth is out and it looks as though all is lost. But though the old lady gives the family a scare, she relents.
ISBN: 0-8222-0868-7

Our Lady Of Sligo

Drama. Sebastian Barry.
2 men, 5 women. Unit Set

From her hospital bed in 1950's Dublin, Mai O'Hara recalls her life through morphine-induced memories and hallucinations. Dying of liver cancer caused by alcoholism, Mai reminisces on her youthful promise as a member of the Galway bourgeoisie; the death of one of her children; and of the marriage fueled by liquor, bickering, and remorse, to her husband Jack who visits her on occasions as does her daughter, Joanie. Jack's visits to her bedside are a testament to the mutual hatred they share and the mutual dependence they have on each other. Through it all, Mai uses her mordant wit and vanity to pull her out of painful realisations. Once the first woman in Sligo to wear trousers, it emerges that Mai is not only the victim of a broken marriage, but a victim of an Ireland in which the Catholic middle-class has been nullified by spiritual and political isolation after the Civil War.
ISBN: 0-8222-1690-6

Our Lady of the Tortilla

Comedy. Luis Santeiro.
2 men, 4 women. Interior

The Cruz family is volatile even in the best of times: On this particular day, Nelson, the youngest son, enters the house in a panic to hide the more obvious religious relics from the sight of his "gringo" girlfriend, who is visiting for the weekend. Nelson's mother, Dahlia, is obsessed with retrieving her husband from his new girlfriend; and Eddie, her elder son, shows up in a van with his failed life and pregnant girlfriend. But the "real" pandemonium is caused by sweet, long-suffering Dolores; Dahlia's oldmaid sister, when she sees the face of the Holy Virgin in a tortilla. This miracle brings hordes of believers and reporters to camp out on the Cruz's lawn to await further miracles. As the family struggles with beliefs and conflicts, old and new, the endurance of family love is revealed to be the real miracle.
ISBN: 0-8222-0869-5

Our Song

Play. Keith Waterhouse, adapted from his own novel
M4 (middle-age, 50s) F3 (late 20s, middle-age). Various simple settings.

Pulling himself out of the rut of his middle-aged executive lifestyle, Roger Piper stumbles into a sixteen-month tempestuous affair with the effervescent Angela Caxton, and is thrown into a whirlwind of romances and champagne. He discovers that Angie does not share his obsession with their relationship and after multiple crises the affair ends in tragedy.
ISBN 0 573 01856 1

Our Town

Play. Thornton Wilder
M 17 F7. Extras. A bare stage.

With compelling simplicity Wilder depicts New Hampshire village life through the story of two families. George and Emily grow up together as children, they fall in love and marry. All too soon Emily dies and goes into the village cemetery where the former inhabitants of Grover's Corner welcome her to the peace that can never be understood by the living. When first produced, Our Town was considered a remarkable theatrical innovation and it still has a universality that does not date. Period 1901-11
ISBN 0 573 61349 4

Ourselves Alone

Drama. Anne Devlin. 5 men, 3 women (flexible casting). Unit Set

Three women in Belfast dream of escaping the political peril that marks their lives, but cannot because of the family loyalties instilled in them and their complicated relationships with men. Frieda is a would-be singer whose pro-IRA father disowns her, sending her into the arms of a Workers' Party organiser and anti-IRA zealot. Her sister Josie is in love with an IRA leader, but ends up carrying the child of another man. And Donna, who waits five years for her lover to emerge from prison and finds that the overbearing and unfaithful man wasn't worth the wait.
ISBN: 0-8222-1672-8