Craig Houk

Craig Houk

Feel free to click on "contact" to send me a message or "inquire about rights" if you are interested in producing any of my works. All scripts (full and partial) are available for download here and on my website at CraigHouk.com.

BIO: Craig Houk is a DC based Playwright and proud Dramatists Guild Member. His two act drama, COLD RAIN (Next Stage Press) was awarded Best Drama...
Feel free to click on "contact" to send me a message or "inquire about rights" if you are interested in producing any of my works. All scripts (full and partial) are available for download here and on my website at CraigHouk.com.

BIO: Craig Houk is a DC based Playwright and proud Dramatists Guild Member. His two act drama, COLD RAIN (Next Stage Press) was awarded Best Drama and named one of Best of Festival at Capital Fringe 2018. His other works include SYD (Next Stage Press), BRUTE FARCE (Woven Theatre's The Loom 2021 New Works Festival Finalist), RADIATOR, THE RELUCTANT HEN, HERB CLEARY MEANT NO HARM, LOST IN PLACE ANTHOLOGY, and the TETHERED companion pieces: EDWIN & ABIGAIL and ADDISON & ELEONORE. LOST IN PLACE: RHONDA & DANIELLE will be included in Smith & Kraus’s “The Best Ten-Minute Plays 2022”.

FINE PRINT: For licensing or to purchase a copy of COLD RAIN or SYD, please reach out to Next Stage Press. Otherwise, by downloading any of the plays below, you hereby acknowledge that Craig Houk is the sole owner of all rights in and to these plays. None of these plays may be produced or reproduced in whole or in part unless written application is made to and written authorization is received from Craig Houk.

A MESSAGE TO MY FELLOW ARTISTS: Find your safe space and tuck in tightly, because safe spaces are in very short supply these days. We live in a world where you’re no longer measured by your accomplishments or by what you’ve done to elevate your fellow creatives, but rather defined solely (and harshly) by your missteps. Challenging others is off limits. Admitting your errors, making amends, or striving to mature in an effort to stay relevant and engaged are no longer options. None of that is enough, not anymore, because any minor stumble will assuredly seal your fate. So, please take care of yourself first and foremost. Be authentic, be kind, stay as grounded as you can, and have faith that those who know and love you best will stay aligned. The rest of it doesn’t matter.​

Plays

  • Brute Farce
    Woven Theatre's The Loom 2021 New Works Festival Finalist
    Two Acts (~100 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: Four vengeful, narcissistic actors, with the assistance of a brutish stage manager and a cynical stagehand, abduct and hold captive a theater critic notorious for shutting down productions and ending careers through his malicious reviews. To confound matters, they intend to carry their plan out during a...
    Woven Theatre's The Loom 2021 New Works Festival Finalist
    Two Acts (~100 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: Four vengeful, narcissistic actors, with the assistance of a brutish stage manager and a cynical stagehand, abduct and hold captive a theater critic notorious for shutting down productions and ending careers through his malicious reviews. To confound matters, they intend to carry their plan out during a performance of a show they’re all currently appearing in. Less than an hour before the curtain is due to rise, their scheme begins to quickly unravel as we discover that none of the conspirators are familiar with the actual plan or its designed outcome. Brute Farce is a satirical commentary on the perpetually symbiotic, oftentimes dysfunctional, and occasionally turbulent relationship between actors and reviewers.
  • Cold Rain
    Published by NEXT STAGE PRESS
    Winner, Best Drama, DC Capital Fringe, 2018
    Winner, Best of Fringe, DC Capital Fringe, 2018
    Two Acts (~ 2.5 Hours)
    SYNOPSIS: Carly Weekes and her sisters, Lolly and Shirley, are witches. Determined to find Carly a mate, the three cast a circle to summon a popular recording artist from Colorado. However, Shirley casts what appears to be a dubious and...
    Published by NEXT STAGE PRESS
    Winner, Best Drama, DC Capital Fringe, 2018
    Winner, Best of Fringe, DC Capital Fringe, 2018
    Two Acts (~ 2.5 Hours)
    SYNOPSIS: Carly Weekes and her sisters, Lolly and Shirley, are witches. Determined to find Carly a mate, the three cast a circle to summon a popular recording artist from Colorado. However, Shirley casts what appears to be a dubious and deadly spell. Worried that Carly and her new family might now be cursed, Lolly endeavors to reverse the hex, but fails, resulting in her expulsion to an alternate world. Years later, twin sisters Tina and Rose Pacheco mysteriously drown. The case goes cold, but many believe Carly’s oldest son, Johnny, is responsible. Cold Rain is an account of a family bound by black magic, a dark and comical tale of ill-conceived machinations, misdirected resentment, and repressed desire.
  • Syd
    Published by NEXT STAGE PRESS
    Two Acts (~ 120 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: On the evening of Sunday, June 24th, 1973, thirty-two men perished in a fire at The Upstairs Lounge, a sanctuary bar for working-class homosexual men in New Orleans. On that same evening, several blocks north, nearly a dozen women, including a gifted young nursing student, Sydney (Syd) Trahan, were taken into custody and charged with...
    Published by NEXT STAGE PRESS
    Two Acts (~ 120 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: On the evening of Sunday, June 24th, 1973, thirty-two men perished in a fire at The Upstairs Lounge, a sanctuary bar for working-class homosexual men in New Orleans. On that same evening, several blocks north, nearly a dozen women, including a gifted young nursing student, Sydney (Syd) Trahan, were taken into custody and charged with lewd and lascivious conduct for dancing together at Brady’s, a notorious lesbian bar in the French Quarter. Hopeful that the deadly fire and the controversy surrounding its multiple victims might overshadow Syd’s arrest, Bud, a reputable blacksmith, and Helen, a God-fearing woman, do everything in their power to curtail the impact of their daughter’s transgression on their seemingly near perfect lives.
  • Radiator
    One Act (~90 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: Lou Brunazzi & André Cooper live across the hall from each other in the basement of a shabby apartment building in the Bronx. On the landing between their units stands a noisy radiator, which is connected to a deteriorating boiler. Determined to stop the whistling, hissing & banging that’s keeping him awake at night, André endeavors to turn the thermostat off, but is...
    One Act (~90 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: Lou Brunazzi & André Cooper live across the hall from each other in the basement of a shabby apartment building in the Bronx. On the landing between their units stands a noisy radiator, which is connected to a deteriorating boiler. Determined to stop the whistling, hissing & banging that’s keeping him awake at night, André endeavors to turn the thermostat off, but is cut short by Lou who is determined to keep the radiator running at all costs. What begins as a battlefield between two headstrong men evolves slowly into a makeshift sitting room where the pair begin to form a unique and lasting bond.
  • The Reluctant Hen
    Two Acts (~ 120 mins)
    SYNOPSIS: Set in the early 1950s, Pete, a working-class schmuck, and his beautician wife struggle to conceive, so Pete risks it all to have a child.
  • Herb Cleary Meant No Harm
    One Act (~90 Minutes)
    SYNOPSIS: Cleary’s Delicatessen has been the most popular dining destination in Clarksville, Tennessee for nearly fifty years. Nowadays the business practically runs itself. It’s best-selling item? Grandma Cleary’s potato salad. Three generations of Cleary men have reaped the rewards of its success. And now young Herb Cleary will be the next to take the reins. One minor problem,...
    One Act (~90 Minutes)
    SYNOPSIS: Cleary’s Delicatessen has been the most popular dining destination in Clarksville, Tennessee for nearly fifty years. Nowadays the business practically runs itself. It’s best-selling item? Grandma Cleary’s potato salad. Three generations of Cleary men have reaped the rewards of its success. And now young Herb Cleary will be the next to take the reins. One minor problem, however. Herb ain’t right in the head.
  • Lost In Place Anthology
    5 One Acts Collection (~75 mins)
    Lost In Place is an anthology of five short intersecting plays, many of which can stand alone, but are intended to be performed as a group:

    BARBARA & JODY: A few weeks into a world-wide pandemic, Barbara is called into a police station to provide a witness statement. Jody, the detective assigned to the case, has a special request.

    HANK...
    5 One Acts Collection (~75 mins)
    Lost In Place is an anthology of five short intersecting plays, many of which can stand alone, but are intended to be performed as a group:

    BARBARA & JODY: A few weeks into a world-wide pandemic, Barbara is called into a police station to provide a witness statement. Jody, the detective assigned to the case, has a special request.

    HANK & TEDDY: Early into a world-wide pandemic, good-natured Teddy, from across the road, checks in on his surly neighbor, Hank. A delicate exchange results in a bad decision.

    MARLENE & GINNY: Early into a world-wide pandemic, Marlene and her mother-in-law, Ginny, decide to get fancy and make martinis. Their fun, however, is interrupted by that damn lesbian from next door, who's hell-bent on stealing their rutabagas. Seems Dwayne, Marlene's infant child, has slept through the whole ruckus.

    TRINA & ADELE: A year or so into a world-wide pandemic, Adele pays Trina a visit to follow up on a commitment she made.

    RHONDA & DANIELLE: Two or more years into a world-wide pandemic, next door neighbors, Rhonda and Danielle, gossip with one another while dealing with the loss of their significant others. (Smith & Kraus’s “The Best Ten-Minute Plays 2022”)
  • Tethered
    2 One Act Companion Pieces (~20 mins)

    EDWIN & ABIGAIL: On the eve of his confirmation to SCOTUS, Edwin Spratt and his wife, Abigail, sit down for an intimate dinner that quickly turns contentious. Edwin has been accused of sexual assault. He can prove his innocence, but it would require revealing a secret that would anger his supporters and put his career and reputation at stake. Companion...
    2 One Act Companion Pieces (~20 mins)

    EDWIN & ABIGAIL: On the eve of his confirmation to SCOTUS, Edwin Spratt and his wife, Abigail, sit down for an intimate dinner that quickly turns contentious. Edwin has been accused of sexual assault. He can prove his innocence, but it would require revealing a secret that would anger his supporters and put his career and reputation at stake. Companion piece to Addison & Eleonore.

    ADDISON & ELEONORE: A retired business mogul, Addison Spratt, and his wife Eleonore are hosting a cocktail party at their stately mansion in Bethesda, MD. Heavily intoxicated, the pair unwittingly reveal curious details about their son's childhood, which raises some questions about his virility. Companion piece to Edwin & Abigail.