John Scavone

John Scavone

Thirty years' experience in theatrical production as a stage manager, technical director, prop master, carpenter, electrician and rigger. Currently a member of the Dramatists Guild and the Playwrights' Center.

Plays

  • Closing Argument
    The Woodwards’ adopted daughter, Elizabeth, is missing; Paula has hidden her away. The girl’s original family wants her back, and a court hearing has been ordered to decide the issue, but Paula isn’t taking the slightest chance that she could lose the case, and thus, her daughter. As an attorney for the State, Alan is deeply devoted to his job and the letter of the law, but now finds he must choose between that...
    The Woodwards’ adopted daughter, Elizabeth, is missing; Paula has hidden her away. The girl’s original family wants her back, and a court hearing has been ordered to decide the issue, but Paula isn’t taking the slightest chance that she could lose the case, and thus, her daughter. As an attorney for the State, Alan is deeply devoted to his job and the letter of the law, but now finds he must choose between that devotion and his family. Legal arguments and procedure mesh with a domestic battle, in which morality, the law and their marriage are put on trial before the audience as jury.
    Closing Argument concerns parental and marital love vs. duty, a mother’s right to protect and keep her child, and the true purpose of the law.
  • Fortune's Fools
    The owner of the Royale Theater is throwing out the troupe who occupied it and selling the place. In contemplating the future, Jasper and Solomon find a common dream and set out to make it come true, hoping to convince whoever buys the Royale to put them back in the theater to perform with a new company and a radical idea. Two sides are vying for ownership, each with their own ambitions and desires. Alliances...
    The owner of the Royale Theater is throwing out the troupe who occupied it and selling the place. In contemplating the future, Jasper and Solomon find a common dream and set out to make it come true, hoping to convince whoever buys the Royale to put them back in the theater to perform with a new company and a radical idea. Two sides are vying for ownership, each with their own ambitions and desires. Alliances are formed and broken as religion, vice and Shakespeare compete for the prize, at the beginnings of Chicago’s history with racism and corruption. In the end, though, it’s Fate which will ultimately decide the outcome.
    Fortune’s Fools is a Shakespearean style comedy about the pursuit of dreams and the right to dream as one wishes. It demonstrates that love and friendship can conquer selfishness and intrigue, and how it’s only by coming together that we can hope to get close to realizing our goals.
  • The Weed Garden
    On the day before his brother’s funeral, Charlie Slater has to write his eulogy. It’s no easy task for a religious man who firmly believes in a literal bible. Buddy was everything Charlie has tried not to be, yet always seems to have been rewarded in life, while Charlie has struggled along. Making the job even harder, Buddy is still on his case, not only to get the eulogy written, but also to face up to his own...
    On the day before his brother’s funeral, Charlie Slater has to write his eulogy. It’s no easy task for a religious man who firmly believes in a literal bible. Buddy was everything Charlie has tried not to be, yet always seems to have been rewarded in life, while Charlie has struggled along. Making the job even harder, Buddy is still on his case, not only to get the eulogy written, but also to face up to his own life of resentment as being of his own creation. Charlie must eventually admit to and try to repair his failures with his wife and son, before confessing to having committed the worst sin of all against his brother.
    The Weed Garden is about jealousy. It shows the folly of holding inflexible definitions of right and wrong and how the motivations for doing so are selfish, leading to disaster.
  • An Imperfect Storm
    Cliff Hale is preparing to leave the hospital, waiting for his wife, Joan, to come pick him up. Only Cliff doesn’t quite remember why he’s in the hospital, how he got there, or how long he’s been there. Dr. Reyes must guide him along a torturous path through changing memories, his fears and prejudices, to the horrifying truth of what really happened one dark and stormy night.
    An Imperfect Storm is about...
    Cliff Hale is preparing to leave the hospital, waiting for his wife, Joan, to come pick him up. Only Cliff doesn’t quite remember why he’s in the hospital, how he got there, or how long he’s been there. Dr. Reyes must guide him along a torturous path through changing memories, his fears and prejudices, to the horrifying truth of what really happened one dark and stormy night.
    An Imperfect Storm is about how our concerns for security, well-being and control over life can mushroom into paranoiac angst that instead controls us and our actions. It addresses the great American symbol, the handgun, as an instrument of that fatal course.
  • Nor Iron Bars a Cage
    Clarence Marsh, just released after serving twenty years in prison for a rape he didn’t commit, appears at the home of James Burke, the man who sent him there. He’s come to fulfill his one remaining goal in life, to exact justice from a rogue cop who didn’t make a mistake, but a deliberate judgment based on race and circumstance. Their confrontation, interspersed with flashbacks, reveals how the actions of one...
    Clarence Marsh, just released after serving twenty years in prison for a rape he didn’t commit, appears at the home of James Burke, the man who sent him there. He’s come to fulfill his one remaining goal in life, to exact justice from a rogue cop who didn’t make a mistake, but a deliberate judgment based on race and circumstance. Their confrontation, interspersed with flashbacks, reveals how the actions of one man destroyed both lives. It's now between two men consumed by hate, one for the other, the other ultimately for himself. Still, Burke steadfastly clings to justifications for what he did, believing himself a victim who was deserted in his time of need; his admission of guilt comes only under physical duress, and has the same hollow ring as Marsh’s confession years earlier. Marsh is not only obsessed with his need to make Burke pay, he’s also sick and dying; the ability to choose how the rest of his life unfolds is precious, and he’s chosen to embrace the bitterness he’s nurtured for so many years. With apology and forgiveness rendered impossible, the two will forever be at each other’s throats.
    Nor Iron Bars a Cage is about loss, blame and vengeance, and the cancerous nature of hatred. It is symbolic of racism in America.
  • Unto Dust
    A routine inquiry into a young boy’s apparent accident evolves into a psychological investigation, wherein Father Riley is forced to confront himself and admit the truth of what he is: a coward and weakling, a monster created by his own innate and tragic flaws. Monsignor Benson is inquisitor, judge and jury, but it is neither a trial of the courts nor of the Church; ultimately, he is conducting Riley’s trial of...
    A routine inquiry into a young boy’s apparent accident evolves into a psychological investigation, wherein Father Riley is forced to confront himself and admit the truth of what he is: a coward and weakling, a monster created by his own innate and tragic flaws. Monsignor Benson is inquisitor, judge and jury, but it is neither a trial of the courts nor of the Church; ultimately, he is conducting Riley’s trial of himself, for wanting, for needing, for being sadly human. A finding of “guilty as charged” is inevitable. Riley is left hanging on a precipice, utterly broken, upon which Benson, as representative of the Church, washes his hands of him. The monsignor leaves him to decide between life and death, to question whether he has the courage to live with himself, and to complete the final act of cowardice and despair, as Benson knows he must.
    While the Church’s role regarding priest pedophiles is portrayed in Benson’s final actions, Unto Dust is more deeply concerned with what makes a pedophile. It examines need and self-justification, and questions the definition of sin and the true nature of love.