Recommended by Philip Middleton Williams

  • Your Gaze (a monologue)
    24 Oct. 2021
    This intense moment reminds me of every time I've tried to express my own feelings to someone I love: vulnerable, unsure, afraid, yet hopeful, anticipatory, and grateful. Scott Sickle's exploration of this moment within the framing of ADHD makes it even more immediate and terrifying, yet completely relatable.
  • I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You I Love You
    20 Oct. 2021
    C'mon, you know you've been here. Yes, you have; don't lie.

    The exquisite pain of unrequited love easily overpowers the soaring and endless joy if, hope stirring hope, the courage proves to be worth the outcome. But at least you tried.
  • Initiation
    20 Oct. 2021
    Kids these days. They have no respect for age-old traditions: all they're thinking about is hanging out with their bros and scoring. That's the take on this very funny and sharp version of the current state of affairs for vampires and their struggle to just get by in this era of social networking and hipsters. Adam Richter's play has plenty of bite, and the stakes are high for both Trevor and his immortal (if not annoyed) mentor.
  • Popsicle Kisses
    19 Oct. 2021
    Franky Gonzalez has a gift for bringing the truth to his writing in such a way that you cannot forget them. This play is lyrical, compelling, heart-tearing, and loving. It's like a lullaby. I could feel every moment between this father and daughter, each with their own pain of loss but yet caring for each other.
  • I Was A Teenage Incel
    17 Oct. 2021
    A father giving his teenage son advice on matters of the heart is always a delicate balance between good sound introspection and cringe-worthy platitudes. Horace, a recovering incel, lays it on Wiley with both hilarious and heart-felt results, and not for nothing, I was hearing the echos of my own dad as I read this and suddenly remembered how wise he turned out to be so many years later. Alexander Perez gets exactly the right tone in this two-hander, and it would be so much fun to watch.
  • The Dentist
    15 Oct. 2021
    A combination of a vaudeville/W.C. Fields dentist sketch with the antics of Monty Python make this a fun and quick short piece. No need for laughing gas here; it supplies its own.
  • Hairdresser on Fire
    15 Oct. 2021
    With the wit of Noel Coward and the tension of Edward Albee, Scott Sickles takes us on a journey through the twists and turns of the relationship between Lawrence and his new friend Allan. Despite the best efforts of his ex-lover Niles and bestie Briony, this roller coaster ride is destined for trouble, and all you can do is breathlessly hold on and watch to see what happens.

    The script is available from Next Stage Press, and it is a worthy and bracing read.
  • Visitation
    14 Oct. 2021
    For reasons I cannot say, this play touched me more than I can say. Which makes it worth reading, seeing, and hearing, because if it has that effect on me, then it will reach people who need to read, see, or hear it. It is moments like this that make up our memories that never leave us. I had a feeling that I knew where Andrew Martineau was taking me, yet I still found wonder and realization when I got to the end, knowing I've been through my own visitation and finding affirmation in seeing it through his eyes.
  • The Old Railroad (a one-minute play)
    14 Oct. 2021
    No matter how old we get -- and I'm getting up there -- we can still remember moments of connection. This moment by Scott Sickles took me back more than sixty years when my brother and I shared a room in our old house and these instances came and went so quickly and without -- at the time -- any meaning. But now, this snapshot brought back sense-memories that are embedded so deeply that all I have to do is think of that moment and I am there. Thank you, Scott.
  • Lies
    13 Oct. 2021
    In "The Crucible," Arthur Miller used the Salem witch trials as the allegory for the McCarthy era, framing the paranoia of the Red Scare as a cautionary tale of the consequences for the accused and accusers. In much the same way, Jerry Slaff uses the case of an American woman convicted of treason during World War II as analogous to the time when truth vs. "alternative facts" made us all wonder where the line between reality and fiction became blurred or obliterated. There are many lessons in this intense two-hander. Ignore them at your peril.

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