Holy and Unruly
- Nick Malakhow:27 Jan. 2020“ In this engaging and relevant historical play, Beardsley explores the ways in which women have been time and again forced to carve out power in male dominated spaces through sacrifice and negotiation. "Holy and Unruly" successfully poses the question--is it worth the disempowering and limiting compromises that result? All of the characters in this play are distinctive and speak with clear and unique voices. The dialogue manages to feel of a different era but briskly-paced and cleverly worded. I would love to see the Unborn and Dudley realized with full theatricality onstage! I hope to track this play's development. ”
- Donna Gordon:21 Nov. 2019“ The apparitions/puppets have the intended effects of embodying Elizabeth's sacrifices at the altar of power. When Grace the infamous Irish aristocrat turned pirate visits Elizabeth, they get into a profound discussion of women in positions of power. The inevitable confrontation between the male followers of these leaders in in stark contrast to the understanding between the women. Beardsley's insightful look at such differences would delight any audience who appreciates history relevant to our times. Any audience would like Beardsley's wit and colorful language. ”
- Lucretia Anne Flammang:3 Nov. 2019“ How does loyalty fare when monarchs exercise their power? David Beardsley explores the question in “Holy and Unruly,” his thought-provoking speculation about what transpired when the Irish pirate Grace O’Malley met England’s Queen Elizabeth I. Eschewing straightforward history, Beardsley employs wonderful stagecraft, especially in characters who embody Elizabeth’s regrets. Like a Greek chorus only the Queen and audience see, these characters comment on the action in mime and dance. At times humorous and unexpectedly violent, the play resolves in a confrontation where the Queen and Pirate choose loyalty to each other and rewrite the script on power. ”
- Queen60,,White/EnglishFemaleQueen Elizabeth I of England.
- Grace59,,White/IrishFemaleGrace O'Malley, an Irish pirate and aristocrat.
- The UnbornAny age, but should seem young (maybe a teenager?),,Any raceAnyThe Queen's never-conceived child. Age: unknowable. Gender: unknowable.
- Dudley40s,,White/EnglishMale or UngenderedThe Queen's long-dead love.
- Burghley70s,,White/EnglishMaleWilliam Cecil, Lord Burghley, the Queen's advisor.
- Lord Essex25,,White/EnglishMaleRobert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, The Queen's cousin, advisor and rival.
- Lady Scott20s,,White/EnglishFemaleThe Queen's Lady of the Bedchamber. The actor who plays Lady Scott also plays MacNally.
- Conroy40s,,White/IrishMaleGrace's first mate. The actor who plays Conroy also plays Bingham.
- MacNally20s,,White/IrishMaleGrace's crewman and surrogate son. The female-identifying actor who plays Lady Scott also plays MacNally.
- Governor Bingham40s,,White/EnglishMaleSir Richard Bingham, the English Governor of County Mayo. The actor who play Conroy doubles as Bingham.
- ,Reading,The Depot for New Play Readings (Connecticut)2019
- ,Workshop,New World Theatre, Putting It Together New Play Readings (New Hampshire)2019
- ,Reading,AboutFACE Ireland - NEWvember New Play Festival (Dublin)2018
Bay Area Playwrights Festival
Ashland New Plays Festival
Stage Play Category
Moondance International Film Festival