Recommended by Donald E. Baker

  • Right Now (short)
    28 Feb. 2022
    The language is of this short play is wonderfully nuanced as phrases are repeated, subtly varied, and passed between characters at different stages of a relationship that begins and ends over time. It was a pleasure to hear read and would be lovely on stage. Excellent work.
  • Composure
    21 Feb. 2022
    The Book of Common Prayer says, "We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things we ought not to have done; and there is no health in us." As perpetrators or victims, Scott Sickles' characters in this powerful play must deal with strong feelings of denial, regret, and anger resulting from sins of omission and commission. The background of a controversial college production of "Romeo and Juliet" on the anniversary of a love-triangle murder-suicide make it all the more powerful. A stunning work that will resonate with many audience members.
  • The Lady Demands Satisfaction
    18 Feb. 2022
    Scheming servants, bumbling masters, farcical concealments, disguises, mistaken identities, deliciously silly Python-esque wordplay, equally silly but also skillful swordplay--had Rossini seen this script he would have turned it into a comic opera to rival "The Barber of Seville." Inspired hilarity throughout.
  • THE SECOND TOSCA
    14 Feb. 2022
    So many questions. Who is the ghost? Is the young man a stalker? Of the several possibilities, who ends up with whom? But at least there's no question the ambitious understudy will replace the aging star. Right? Well, maybe, maybe not. At every turn, Rowan brilliantly uses our well-worn "Phantom"-"All About Eve"-"42nd Street" expectations against us. You do not have to appreciate opera to appreciate this excellent, entertaining play, but if you love opera, you will love the play all the more. Very highly recommended.
  • A CHANCE
    13 Feb. 2022
    A woman in an ominous setting and a stranger who knows a little too much about her. Paul Smith doles out information about their relationship in small doses as their conversation leads to an gobsmacking conclusion. Excellent work and a delight to read.
  • And Be Gay
    9 Feb. 2022
    DC Cathro is a master of the surprise ending, the zinger that lurks in the last line of dialogue or the final stage direction and leaves the reader gasping in delight. Here the build-up is perfect and the ending is truly the best of all possible finales. Loved it.
  • AVALON WAVES
    7 Feb. 2022
    In this delightful take-off on Noel Coward's "Private Lives," first- and second-wives discuss the size of a French mastiff's "output," the invention of the "vertical fly," and, of course, the shortcomings of the former/current husband. The repartee is even more delightful because Jones couches it in a parody of Coward's idiosyncratic speech cadences. Highly recommended.
  • MAY DIVORCE BE WITH YOU
    4 Feb. 2022
    I'm simply mad about the boys in this same-sex reimagining of the first act of Noel Coward's "Private Lives." Arthur and Edward are wonderfully campy and waspish as the ex-couple and Sonny and Vincent are suitably hapless as the current spouses caught in the verbal cross-fire. Coward himself could never have presented the private lives of gay couples on stage. Bravo to Marj O'Neill-Butler for doing so in this delightful homage.
  • Tinnitus, Static, and Him
    27 Jan. 2022
    Luca is in college, a playwrighting student with a creative imagination. He is also schizophrenic and alcoholic, all of which means that he is not always certain whether what is happening around him is delusion or illusion or reality. And the play is so well conceived that at times the audience shares those uncertainties. After causing a horrible accident, Luca vows to get the help he needs and to do the work he knows will not be easy. I hope college-age actors everywhere will accept the challenge of this masterful, unsettling work from the creative mind of Jarred Corona.
  • Egg and Chips
    22 Jan. 2022
    The past and present, recollection and reality, flow together seemlessly as feisty waitress Daphne reflects on her decades-long working life alongside her friend Vera. People fade in and out of her memories--the men she and Vera married, the working-class guys who came in for breakfast and lunch, the girls who hit the place for some food on their way to the clubs. The play is a sometimes heart-warming, sometimes heart-breaking portrayal that will leave audiences with a smile and a tear. Beautifully done.

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