Bruce Bonafede

Bruce Bonafede

Bruce Bonafede is an award-winning playwright based in Palm Springs, California. His first produced play, ADVICE TO THE PLAYERS, received the Heideman Award at Actors Theatre of Louisville and was published in the anthology BEST SHORT PLAYS—1986 (Applause). That same year the ninety-minute, no intermission version of the play premiered at the Philadelphia Festival Theatre for New Plays. Samuel French published...
Bruce Bonafede is an award-winning playwright based in Palm Springs, California. His first produced play, ADVICE TO THE PLAYERS, received the Heideman Award at Actors Theatre of Louisville and was published in the anthology BEST SHORT PLAYS—1986 (Applause). That same year the ninety-minute, no intermission version of the play premiered at the Philadelphia Festival Theatre for New Plays. Samuel French published the full-length version of ADVICE TO THE PLAYERS in 2015.

His one-act play QUARANTINE won 3rd Place in the One-Act Playwriting Competition at the Little Theatre of Alexandria in 2017.

His other full-length plays include NORTH, CRUSADE, and THE DESERT OF LOVE.

Bonafede was born on Long Island and was raised there and in Washington, DC. He attended Union College in upstate New York and studied at New Playwright’s Theatre in Washington, DC, where he was a founding member of the Washington Playwrights Unit. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, and the writers group at Coachella Valley Repertory in Rancho Mirage, California.

Plays

  • Crusade
    CRUSADE is an overtly political play. It warns of the threat America faces from Christian fundamentalism, while affirming humanist values like sacrifice and basic decency. It is the future. The takeover of the federal government by Christian fundamentalists, and their assault on the Constitution, has led to civil war between opposing elements of the U.S. military. On reconnaissance patrol in the Rocky...
    CRUSADE is an overtly political play. It warns of the threat America faces from Christian fundamentalism, while affirming humanist values like sacrifice and basic decency. It is the future. The takeover of the federal government by Christian fundamentalists, and their assault on the Constitution, has led to civil war between opposing elements of the U.S. military. On reconnaissance patrol in the Rocky Mountains, an Army squad is forced to take cover in an isolated cabin owned by a former professor who now wants only to be left alone. The four members of the squad each have their own reason for being part of the anti-Christian resistance, including the squad’s female member, an expert sniper on a personal mission of vengeance.

    Stylistically, CRUSADE seeks to heighten the traditional war drama through the use of sound, lighting, soldiers' language, and physical action in a “total theater” effort to confront the audience with the reality of violence and the danger of extremism.
  • Advice to the Players
    Full Length. Now available in its full-length, 90-minute form. A shorter version of ADVICE TO THE PLAYERS received the Heideman Award at the Humana Festival in 1985. This NMNI version premiered at Philadelphia Festival Theatre for New Plays a year later and is now available through Samuel French for the first time. The play is a fictionalized account of an actual event, telling the story of two celebrated...
    Full Length. Now available in its full-length, 90-minute form. A shorter version of ADVICE TO THE PLAYERS received the Heideman Award at the Humana Festival in 1985. This NMNI version premiered at Philadelphia Festival Theatre for New Plays a year later and is now available through Samuel French for the first time. The play is a fictionalized account of an actual event, telling the story of two celebrated black South African actors who have traveled to America to perform but are caught up in the world's boycott of their country's apartheid system--a system they have struggled all their lives to overcome.

    Of this full-length version, the Philadelphia Inquirer said: "…a play of remarkable distinction…rare among American dramas in that it boldly brings up a moral issue for examination in strong theatrical terms. This is not a little play about little people leading lives of no importance…Succeeds in making it all emotionally engrossing as well as intellectually stimulating…the drama is 90 intense minutes…that brooks neither an intermission nor a resolution…"
  • North
    Full Length (75 minutes, no intermission). In NORTH – a long single act covering a winter’s day and night – a strong-willed but very old man fights to retain his dignity and protect the woman he loves, but with tragic consequences. The play takes place in the dying industrial North. The set is the living room of a small apartment above a factory, now abandoned.
  • Quarantine
    3rd Place Winner of the Annual One-Act Play Competition at the Little Theatre of Alexandria in 2017. This fast-paced, 30-minute drama is based on the legend of the Black Syphilis during Vietnam.

    Production requirements: minimal props, scenes primarily created through lighting effects.

    Approximate running time: 30 minutes.
  • The Short Christmas Dinner
    Ten Minute Play. "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."
    Bare stage; a suitable table and four chairs.
  • Say Goodbye to Hollywood
    Ten Minute Play. In the land of dead celebrities, a writer goes to interview a former movie star who's not quite dead yet.

    Cast: 2M, 1F.

    Bare stage, some patio furniture.
  • Mahi-Mahi
    Ten Minute Play. In this short absurdist piece, outrage meets wisdom on a boat off Catalina Island.

    Cast: 2

    Bare stage, minimal props (the boat needn't be a real boat).
  • A Death in the Woods
    Ten Minute Play. A man is haunted by the childhood memory of a personal act of violence and a life-changing betrayal.

    Cast: 3M

    Set is a non-realistic representation of a pine grove in the Catskill Mountains.