Bonnie Milne Gardner

Bonnie Milne Gardner

Bonnie Milne Gardner, PhD, is an award-winning playwright and educator. A lifelong member of Dramatists Guild, she’s written over 40 scripts with productions in New York, Florida, Ohio, N.C., Michigan, Alaska, and California. Gardner received two Excellence in Playwriting awards from the Ohio Arts Council and was a finalist in the AACT NewPlayFest 2022, the Edward Albee Playwriting Conference, and San Diego’s...
Bonnie Milne Gardner, PhD, is an award-winning playwright and educator. A lifelong member of Dramatists Guild, she’s written over 40 scripts with productions in New York, Florida, Ohio, N.C., Michigan, Alaska, and California. Gardner received two Excellence in Playwriting awards from the Ohio Arts Council and was a finalist in the AACT NewPlayFest 2022, the Edward Albee Playwriting Conference, and San Diego’s Human Rights Theatre Festival. Her adaptation "Fashion!" received an Equity reading at NYC’s New School for Drama. Bonnie's scripts have been published by Next Stage Press, Scripts for Stage, Flowersong Press, and numerous literary magazines. She is a proud member of Honor Roll! and currently lives in Asheville, NC.

Plays

  • At the Wall
    Ten Minute Play. At the Vietnam Memorial: A young soldier returning from duty looks up his grandfather’s name, and encounters a strangely inquisitive civilian with a bag of Oreo cookies.
  • Blast Off
    Ten minute monolog. Watching the first NASA launch of her career, Berniece remembers a mentor.
  • Bus Fare
    Ten minute play. BUS FARE is an unlikely encounter at a bus stop between two people in crisis. A well-dressed middle aged woman with a secret is approached by a desperate young man who attempts to scam her for a handout. They eventually reach a surprising connection. Included in the collection "A Wealth of Bank Holidays"
  • Cockpit
    Ten minute play. During a layover, a pilot stages a protest in a remote airport gate. Someone stole her stuffed lucky Bilby! Two of her attendants try to convince her to return to the plane and salvage her job. Included in the collection "A Wealth of Bank Holidays"
  • Condo Condo
    One Act play. A young couple linger in bed on a lazy Sunday morning, relishing their new high-tech condo. Suddenly, they hear the front door open and are faced with an astonishing reality. Remember to read the fine print.
  • Daddy's Home
    Ten minute play. Teenage Johnny finds his older sister Amy at their abandoned childhood home, where they relive a night that changed their lives forever. Can Johnny convince her to leave the past behind?
  • Day Old Bread
    Ten minute play. Three older women meet at McDonald’s and learn how far they’re willing to go in order to save a piece of their past. Included in the collection "A Wealth of Bank Holidays."
  • The Dog and the Scientist
    Ten minute play. Linney, age 13, is desperate to make the bus for school, in order to take the entry exam for the prestigious STEM magnet school. But the neighborhood dog won't let her through the gate. A challenge for her critical thinking skills! Included in the collection "The Seven Ages of WoMan."
  • Fashion!
    Full length. A comedy in two acts adapted for the 21st century from the original by Anna Cora Mowatt, which was the hit of the season in NYC in 1845.

    “Fashion adorns fools, my dear, but cannot feed them!”

    The comedy focuses on the Tiffany family, whose sudden rise from the merchant class has allowed them to buy their way into the trendy social circles in mid 19th century NYC....
    Full length. A comedy in two acts adapted for the 21st century from the original by Anna Cora Mowatt, which was the hit of the season in NYC in 1845.

    “Fashion adorns fools, my dear, but cannot feed them!”

    The comedy focuses on the Tiffany family, whose sudden rise from the merchant class has allowed them to buy their way into the trendy social circles in mid 19th century NYC. Obsessed with the outrageous styles of the upper class, their vulgar display of wealth attracts numerous suitors for the Tiffany’s daughter. They become piled with debts, which Mr. Tiffany tries desperately to hide. Will Jolimaitre, the fake French Count, fleece the family and “spoil” their precious debutante? Will the blackmailing clerk, Snobson, besmirch the family’s good name? Mistaken identity, betrayal, and family secrets add to the treachery and hilarity. Leave it to an old family friend, Adam Trueman, to unravel the mess and return the family to simpler, honest American values.

    Adaptor’s Notes:

    This play, in its original version, was the most popular American comedy of the 19th century. It premiered at the Park Theatre in New York City on March 24, 1845, setting a record for sold out performances. It was the first play to successfully satirize American life with some degree of naturalism, and it was the first commercially successful play written by a woman in this country. While this adaptation is careful to retain the original strengths of the work, it has been revised and edited to appeal to the audiences and theatres of today.
  • Gammer Gurton's Needle
    One Act comedy. In a quaint English village, Dame Chat and Gammer Gurton live peacefully plying their trades and tending their chickens. Then a scheming wanderer comes along with a bag of tricks that sets the whole village into turmoil. Did Dame Chat’s rooster get roasted? Who stole Gammer’s precious needle? Why is Doctor Rat’s head bandaged? Can the magistrate ever set things right?
  • Is This My Support Group?
    Ten minute play. Welcome--have a cookie and bring the crazy!
  • Lady Susan: Jane Austen's Distinguished Flirt
    Full length. Published by Scripts for Stage. This intrigue of love and deception is adapted from Jane Austen's novella, LADY SUSAN, written in the 1790s, before she wrote her six well-known novels. It is an epistolary novel, told entirely in letters over a period of months. This new play adaptation combines the letters with scenes depicting the action. The actors move from letters to dialogue and back...
    Full length. Published by Scripts for Stage. This intrigue of love and deception is adapted from Jane Austen's novella, LADY SUSAN, written in the 1790s, before she wrote her six well-known novels. It is an epistolary novel, told entirely in letters over a period of months. This new play adaptation combines the letters with scenes depicting the action. The actors move from letters to dialogue and back seamlessly.
    Lady Susan is a thirty-ish, beautiful but despicable aristocrat who marries men for money and delights in manipulating friends and lovers. In a few short months she seduces three men, threatening the peace of her husband's family and horrifying her own daughter. The delightful story suggests a DANGEROUS LIASONS meets AN IDEAL HUSBAND.
  • One Last Mass
    Ten minute monologue. In a mountain village in Peru, the rebels are moving in. A young priest faces a difficult choice before morning.
  • The Secret War of Emma Edmonds
    Full length. In 1882, Sarah Emma Edmonds, age 40, applies to the Department of War for a military pension for service as a Civil War soldier twenty years earlier. Did she really serve, undetected, as a man, for two years in the Union Army? Was she actually Frank Thompson of the 2nd Michigan Infantry Regiment? Was she a postmaster, medical steward, officer’s aide, and spy? While some champion her bravery, skill...
    Full length. In 1882, Sarah Emma Edmonds, age 40, applies to the Department of War for a military pension for service as a Civil War soldier twenty years earlier. Did she really serve, undetected, as a man, for two years in the Union Army? Was she actually Frank Thompson of the 2nd Michigan Infantry Regiment? Was she a postmaster, medical steward, officer’s aide, and spy? While some champion her bravery, skill, and dedication, others dismiss her as a strumpett, a braggart, and a fraud. The play, based on a true story, reveals Emma’s tense days in camp, and follows her unrelenting quest for public recognition and personal retribution. Are her astounding claims true? And why did she do it?
  • The Seven Ages of WoMan
    Full length. Published by Next Stage Press. A collection of contemporary characters chronicling the seven stages of a woman’s life. A reimagining of Shakespeare’s soliloquy shared through short plays and monologues.
  • Splitting Butternuts
    Ten Minute Play. A bleeding cook discovers the new normal of gaining entry into emergency rooms.
  • Tonka Mom
    Ten minute play. At a midwest Mega store, it’s mayhem on Christmas Eve in a toy store, minutes to closing. A teenage Mom and a tenacious Grandma battle over the right to the last Cyborg City Tonka Truck. A funny and touching tale of connections between strangers. Included in the collection "The Seven Ages of WoMan."
  • Viral Spiral
    Two page comedy. BLEEDER attempts to enter the emergency room, but first, SCRUBS has a few questions.
  • Wedding Blisters
    Full length. A comedy of nuptials somewhere on the Great Lakes; based very loosely on the ridiculous antics in Jane Austen’s own saga of three sisters, Persuasion.

    Anna is summoned to the surprise wedding of her widowed father to a much younger woman who threatens to ruin the Ellsworth family’s beloved Indiana home. And she’s Canadian! The ceremony is timed to occur during the fall Equinox on a...
    Full length. A comedy of nuptials somewhere on the Great Lakes; based very loosely on the ridiculous antics in Jane Austen’s own saga of three sisters, Persuasion.

    Anna is summoned to the surprise wedding of her widowed father to a much younger woman who threatens to ruin the Ellsworth family’s beloved Indiana home. And she’s Canadian! The ceremony is timed to occur during the fall Equinox on a remote Great Lakes island resort where, seven years ago, Anna met and lost the love of her life. Since then, she’s become a bitter and withdrawn technical writer who loses her lunch at the first hint of an “I do”. (A nauseous spinster!) As the family gathers for the ceremony, they uncover alarming details – Wiccan rituals, carnival schemes, dubious land deals. In desperation, Anna, her two sisters, and their Aunt Rusty plot to abduct the bride and enlighten the clueless groom. But who’s the handsome sailor with cousin Louella? Why is Aunt Rusty strangely protective of Anna? What is the bizarre report from the family doctor? Will Anna unscramble the mystery and discover who she can trust before it’s too late?!
  • A Wealth of Bank Holidays
    Collection of six different ten-minute plays that take a chronological journey through a year’s worth of encounters, some amusing, some outrageous, some touching. Each play has a different locale and set of characters, but they are all grounded in the American cultural experience. Includes Good Neighbors, Driven to Distraction, Cockpit, At the Wall, Bus Fare, Day Old Bread.
  • White Squirrel
    Ten minute play. In a seedy port city of the Caribbean, an exiled doctor gets a strange request from a desperate young wanderer. What measures are justified for social cast-offs to survive?