The Eighth Circle

Winner, Red Bull Theater's Short New Play Contest, 2016.

[10-minute] A corrupt politician and his wife find themselves in the eighth circle of Dante's Inferno. Can they swindle their way out?
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The Eighth Circle

Recommended by

  • Michael C. O'Day:
    22 Feb. 2024
    A delightful, poetic, and weirdly heartwarming take on Dante, as a corrupt politician and his complicit wife wind up exactly where they're meant to wind up. If that's all this was, it would be a perfectly satisfying and stylish entertainment - but the hereafter winds up being a journey of discovery for these two, and Portman has some insightful and pointed things to say about the resentments we carry with us and the strength it takes to reclaim our (after)lives. A tremendous amount of fun.
  • Robyn Ginsburg Braverman:
    9 Sep. 2021
    Immensely satisfying read and a worthwhile ten minutes.
  • Cheryl Bear:
    26 Jul. 2020
    The politicians are sent to Dante's Inferno and it's fantastic! A perfect political short!

Character Information

  • Ron
    A recently-deceased politician. Greedy, unethical and manipulative.
  • Barbara
    His wife. A poet who missed her calling.
  • Calcabrina
    A demon. Has a poetic flair.

Development History

  • Reading
    Red Bull Theater