Frank J. Avella

Frank J. Avella

BIO
Frank J. Avella is the recipient of a 2018 Bogliasco Foundation Fellowship.

His play, LURED, about the Russia persecution of gays, was a semifinalist for the 2018 O’Neill Playwrights Conference and was accepted into the OnStage! American Theater Festival in Rome, Italy (January 2019). In 2016, the play was accepted into the Dream Up Festival at Theater for the New City (NYC) and had 6...
BIO
Frank J. Avella is the recipient of a 2018 Bogliasco Foundation Fellowship.

His play, LURED, about the Russia persecution of gays, was a semifinalist for the 2018 O’Neill Playwrights Conference and was accepted into the OnStage! American Theater Festival in Rome, Italy (January 2019). In 2016, the play was accepted into the Dream Up Festival at Theater for the New City (NYC) and had 6 sold-out performances. LURED was featured in the 36th Annual William Inge Theater Festival in 2017. The work was also 2017 Cimientos IATI Theater Playwright semifinalist. Frank has been awarded a 2018 Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation Grant for LURED.

Frank received a 2015 Fellowship Award from the NJ State Council on the Arts for his play, CONSENT (teen version titled: #bullied), which confronts bullying and homophobia. The play was also awarded the 2016 Helene Wurlitzer Residency Grant & Bumbalo/Chesley Foundation Playwright Award. CONSENT was a 2012 semifinalist for the O’Neill, a finalist for the 2015 New Works of Merit Playwriting Award, a semifinalist for the 2016 Road Theatre’s Summer Playwrights Festival, a semifinalist for the 2018 Hidden River Arts Playwriting Award and was workshopped at the Celebration Theatre in L.A., in October 2012. In 2013, CONSENT was selected for staged readings at the Identity Theater and Urban Stages in NYC. #bullied, the alt-version, received honorable mention in the Stage Play category of the 85th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition (2016) and had staged readings at Abingdon Theatre Company and the Leslie-Lohman Museum (2016).

CONSENT was selected for the 27th Annual Fullerton College Playwrights Festival, January 2017. The play was selected from over 500 submissions from all over the world.

VATICAN FALLS, a play set against the backdrop of the Catholic sex abuse scandal, will receive its World Premiere via the Andrea Dantas New York Theater Company in 2018. The piece was selected for the 2017 Planet Connections Festivity and Frank was nominated for Outstanding Playwriting. VAT was a semifinalist for the 2014 Newborn Festival and received Special Mention at the 2013 O’Neill. The play has had numerous staged readings and workshops in New York, Cincinnati and Rome, Italy. IL VATICANO CADE, the Italian translation, was scheduled to World Premiere in Rome on May 10, 2011 at Teatro Vascello but was cancelled the night before opening amidst great controversy and claims of death threats.

His latest play, FOR MAMMA was chosen for a Scratch Night at TNC in 2017 and was featured in 2017 Healing Voices Onstage: Caregivers Stories presented by Writers Theater of NJ.

Frank has written 19 full-length plays; 10 have been produced (7 in NYC). ORVILLE STATION, was one of three finalists for the 2014 NJ Playwrights Contest, a finalist for the 2015 12 Years Theater New Play Podcast Series (Pittsburgh) and a finalist (final round) for the 2014 Kitchen Dog Theatre New Works Festival (Dallas) and has been presented in Los Angeles at the Echo Theater and in NYC at the Dramatists Guild via the Friday Night Footlights Series. ORVILLE has been published in the UK by Lazy Bee Scripts: http://www.lazybeescripts.co.uk/Scripts/script.aspx?iSS=2503

Frank has also written FOR MAMMA, NEMESIS, THE MAD ONES, LESS THAN 2 DEGREES, the Hollywood satire, SCREW THE COW as well as many one-acts & screenplays including a short titled MULTITASKING. He adapted both his plays SCREW THE COW and UNHINGING for the screen and penned an original screenplay, 3 OF 10.

The screen version of CONSENT, adapted by Frank, is about to be optioned by an independent film company.

Frank wrote the book for BLUEBIRDS IN MY BELFRY, a musical about Hollywood star Betty Hutton, that bowed in Sanford, NC in January 2008 and sold out every performance.

Produced stage works include: GREENER, THE BUBBLE, IRIS, ABOUT CHRISTINE, LEXY, MICHAEL’S #1 FAN, 3 CAINS and UNHINGING.

Upon reviewing IRIS in 2005, the Cincinnati Post wrote: “Avella’s plays tend to send earthquakes through his audience's comfort zones.” Cincinnati Newswire: “IRIS is a powerful look at what we call a family, and what ethics govern what is considered acceptable in a private sexual relationship.”

Frank proudly served on the Advisory Board and Festival Committee for In Scena!, the first and second annual Italian Theater Festival in NYC in 2013 and 2014 and 2017.

Frank did his grad work at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He is a current member of the Playground Experiment, the Italian American Writers Association and is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild.

https://newplayexchange.org/users/5582/frank-j-avella

Plays

  • Vatican Falls
    VATICAN FALLS, a fictional work based on factual accounts and events, takes on the Catholic sex abuse nightmare by chronicling the journey of one survivor amidst the backdrop of the (still) ever-growing scandal. The epic work bounces back and forth in time and location from Boston in 2002 when the scandal first broke to Benedict being elected Pope in 2005 to his stepping down and Francis becoming Pontiff…and...
    VATICAN FALLS, a fictional work based on factual accounts and events, takes on the Catholic sex abuse nightmare by chronicling the journey of one survivor amidst the backdrop of the (still) ever-growing scandal. The epic work bounces back and forth in time and location from Boston in 2002 when the scandal first broke to Benedict being elected Pope in 2005 to his stepping down and Francis becoming Pontiff…and beyond.

    The story centers on Riccardo, late 20s, an Italian-American based in Rome, Italy. Riccardo is a member of SCAR (Survivors of Catholic Abuse Refuge), a group of survivors who initially band together to seek an apology from the Vatican but decide retribution is the only way to counter the Church’s unrepentant complicity in the scandal. These strong-willed militants apprehensively turn to terrorism.

    Seemingly by chance, Riccardo meets the stunning Claudia, a devout Roman. After an unconventional courtship, they fall in love. Alas, neither is who they appear to be. Claudia is a Vatican operative whose sacred mission is to keep tabs on Riccardo. And he has orders to watch her every move.

    As the play unfolds, we meet Riccardo’s paradoxical abuser, Father David, and become privy to his turbulent home life with his pious but troubled mother, Teresa. Riccardo must come to terms with his abuse and how his relationship with Father David forever permeates his identity, psychologically, sexually and spiritually. In confronting his past, Riccardo must also decide how far he is willing to go to exact revenge on an impervious institution, realizing his choices could cost him his dignity and humanity.

    VATICAN FALLS is a play about power, conscience and forgiveness. The play does not condemn the Church as much as it takes it’s leaders to task for decades of allowing the rape and torture of children to go on unpunished.

    The play examines retaliation as a means to affect change and how violence is never the answer and can destroy, physically as well as psychologically.
  • Consent
    CONSENT confronts bullying, homophobia and sexual abuse. Set in AnySmallTown, USA, the piece has five characters and minimal set demands.

    CONSENT chronicles the story of a boy trying to get along in today’s America—an increasingly divided America where the fates of kids who are ‘different’ seem to be at the mercy of geography. At the heart of the piece is an unapologetic gay teen love story....
    CONSENT confronts bullying, homophobia and sexual abuse. Set in AnySmallTown, USA, the piece has five characters and minimal set demands.

    CONSENT chronicles the story of a boy trying to get along in today’s America—an increasingly divided America where the fates of kids who are ‘different’ seem to be at the mercy of geography. At the heart of the piece is an unapologetic gay teen love story.

    Seth is a unique individual who frequently questions rules and accepted modes of behavior. He lives in a town that expects conformity and capitulation. Seth is also coming to terms with his sexuality. All these things make him the target of bullying by his fellow students.

    Seth's mother, Diane, has returned to town after a two-year, three-month absence. She wants a relationship with her son and in getting to know him discovers some disturbing details about his current living situation, specifically, his relationship with his baseball coach. Seth crushes on fellow schoolmate, Brian, who happens to be the main bully’s brother. Brian returns Seth’s feelings and the two begin to get to know one another.
    Seth soon finds his life spinning out of control and he attempts suicide and fails. And decides to fight back.

    CONSENT explores the responsibilities we all have to communicate with our youth and teach our children to celebrate their differences instead of denigrating them. The play also warns against taking advantage of the trust teens place in the adults they look up to.

    This is the original version of #bullied where it's much more obvious that Coach as been inappropriate with Seth.
  • Lured
    In Russia, in the last several years, gays have been persecuted, with the blessing of the Russian government and Russian-Orthodox Church. Much of the action in LURED is based on factual accounts and events.

    Valentin, an angry young gay man is about to seek revenge on two members of Occupy Pedophilia, a group that targets LGBT people in an attempt to destroy their lives, often maiming and/or...
    In Russia, in the last several years, gays have been persecuted, with the blessing of the Russian government and Russian-Orthodox Church. Much of the action in LURED is based on factual accounts and events.

    Valentin, an angry young gay man is about to seek revenge on two members of Occupy Pedophilia, a group that targets LGBT people in an attempt to destroy their lives, often maiming and/or killing them. Valentin has very personal reasons for his actions. He along with two friends turn the tables on Sergei, a seemingly heartless lug who aided in tormenting Valentin’s boyfriend, Dmitry.

    The piece then flashes back to the day of Dmitry’s being lured to a near empty apartment and tortured. The woman in charge, Tatiana, is steadfast and determined.

    The play then picks up with the Valentin/Tatiana confrontation.

    In Russia, in the last several years, gays have been persecuted and tortured, with the blessing of the Russian government and Russian-Orthodox Church. Much of the action in LURED is based on factual accounts and events.

    I’ve set out to ambitiously ask a number of political/social and cultural questions relating to the human rights violations in Russia, and I hope, in doing so, to reflect light on other countries as well, including the USA, especially with the possibility of a Trump presidency looming.

    I’ve set about to try and understand how good people can be brainwashed into believing that someone’s sexual orientation could really be at the root of economic and social strife. The Putin propaganda machine has been hard at work since he took office brainwashing Russian citizens to deflect against the government’s responsibilities and, instead, blame “deviants” influenced by the immorality of the “west” for all of Russia’s woes. And Putin’s propaganda law is nothing more than a license for homophobia, giving vigilante groups carte blanche to hunt down LGBT people as prey.

    LURED is unrelentingly honest and downright brutal in its depiction of what is going on in Russia. I have been in touch, at length, with Tanya Cooper at Human Rights Watch via phone and email during the writing of the play and she provided me with a 100-page dossier. The play reveals some of the shocking ways in which vigilante groups are involved in LGBT persecution.

    The reason behind the frank and severe depictions in LURED is to foster dialogue, not only about real and dangerous horrors happening in the world, but also how these things can happen anywhere to any group of people. Scapegoating and discrimination is the way genocide usually begins.

    I also try and examine how a country that is one of the least religious in the world, can still follow the dictates of the Church (in this case the Russian Orthodox Church) because of how steeped into the culture the institution remains.

    But LURED goes a few steps further and adds a fictional twist to the harsh realities, as the play wonders if revenge is ever an option? How much must people be maltreated and oppressed before they decide to fight back? The piece does not advocate revolution or retribution, but it does make a case for organized resistance. It also shows how easy it can be to dehumanize oneself once a people are pushed to their limits. There are no easy answers, but so many difficult questions.

    Finally, and most urgently, LURED examines hate and how it is not a learned trait but, to paraphrase the song, must be “carefully taught.” In the wake of current events, sadly, LURED has become too timely for comfort. If we can, in some way, galvanize people into caring more and taking some action, then we feel like we have contributed. As a writer, it’s the only way I know how to affect change.

    Frank J. Avella
  • Iris
    Iris is a child of artificial insemination and the play opens as she is about to have her very first encounter with her biological father, Nick. They meet. They chat. They kiss.

    Confounded and confused by her attraction to Nick, Iris visits her ultra-unorthodox therapist, Hallie. They analyze. They assess. They shop. They decide NOT to make any immediate decisions. But…Iris's headstrong...
    Iris is a child of artificial insemination and the play opens as she is about to have her very first encounter with her biological father, Nick. They meet. They chat. They kiss.

    Confounded and confused by her attraction to Nick, Iris visits her ultra-unorthodox therapist, Hallie. They analyze. They assess. They shop. They decide NOT to make any immediate decisions. But…Iris's headstrong nature and madcap imagination lead her to a taboo step that will change her already-lunatic life forever.

    As the play unfolds we follow the development of a wholly unorthodox yet loving relationship. We also meet two new characters that impact Iris and her life in significant and unpredictable way. As the revelations mount, each character must come to terms with very personal and, in some cases, deeply repressed issues.

    IRIS challenges the notion of what defines a family and questions those who would judge others for who they choose to love.
  • For Mamma
    “For Mamma” is genre-mashup that hopes to foster dialogue about race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class and prejudice in the U.S. in 2016.

    Set in North Jersey, the play unfolds in a slightly non-linear fashion, broken into 12 scenes, taking place during the span of 12 months. The sets demands are minimal and the piece requires 4 actors (one case of deliberate doubling).

    Frank, a...
    “For Mamma” is genre-mashup that hopes to foster dialogue about race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class and prejudice in the U.S. in 2016.

    Set in North Jersey, the play unfolds in a slightly non-linear fashion, broken into 12 scenes, taking place during the span of 12 months. The sets demands are minimal and the piece requires 4 actors (one case of deliberate doubling).

    Frank, a 41-year-old struggling, biracial novelist applies for Medicaid for his ailing 90-year-old Mamma with the help of novice attorney, Edgar, 35. They meet with Pia, late 40s, the caseworker in charge. Pia is not very sympathetic to Frank's case, a complicated one where Frank is trying desperately to hold onto his family home.

    The initial appointment shows Pia to be bigoted, jaded and quite aware of the power she wields. She deliberately provokes Frank, calling him “Semi-spook,” and questioning his veracity, warning him that she will be diligent during the investigation process.

    Edgar assures Frank he has nothing to worry about since he's been Mamma's caregiver for over 5 years and qualifies for the “caregiver exemption” (where the lookback period is waved). Frank worries anyway. There is an initial unspoken attraction between the very married and seemingly hetero Edgar and the decidedly single Frank, who has devoted himself solely to his Mamma for years. Mamma has started to show signs of dementia and is convince that her favorite game show host, Mark Montgomery, has a crush on her via the TV.

    Frank begins to panic as the process drags on and Mamma's health begins to decline. Meanwhile, he and Edgar begin a sexual relationship. Frank advocates for Mamma at the rehab facility where she is recovering and Mamma imparts stories about how she met Frank's black father and how most members of her Italian family weren't crazy about their union, but she went against their wishes and married him anyway.

    The Medicaid investigation takes an unexpected turn as Mamma’s health deteriorates and Frank makes a drastic decision that will change his life forever.

    “For Mamma” explores how assumptions can destroy lives and ponders notions of true prejudice vs. learned modes of bias behavior.
  • #bullied
    #bullied explores the life of a small-town gay teen that is bullied, attempts suicide, but then decides to fight back.

    The play chronicles the story of a 16-year-old boy trying to get along in today’s America—a divided country where the fates of kids who are ‘different’ seem to be at the mercy of geography and where adults rarely behave appropriately. At the heart of the piece is an unapologetic...
    #bullied explores the life of a small-town gay teen that is bullied, attempts suicide, but then decides to fight back.

    The play chronicles the story of a 16-year-old boy trying to get along in today’s America—a divided country where the fates of kids who are ‘different’ seem to be at the mercy of geography and where adults rarely behave appropriately. At the heart of the piece is an unapologetic gay teen love story.
  • The Mad Ones
    THE MAD ONES follows four actors who are about to embark on a controversial new Broadway play titled RUINED, which itself is about a tortured film director, hounded by the media and forced to flee the U.S. after he is accused of sexually assaulting a minor. Central to the work is the struggle a young closeted-gay movie star, Bridge Bannon, who must contend with keeping his sexuality a secret so he can continue...
    THE MAD ONES follows four actors who are about to embark on a controversial new Broadway play titled RUINED, which itself is about a tortured film director, hounded by the media and forced to flee the U.S. after he is accused of sexually assaulting a minor. Central to the work is the struggle a young closeted-gay movie star, Bridge Bannon, who must contend with keeping his sexuality a secret so he can continue to pursue his passion. He has chosen to marry an ambitious actress who has her own ideas about the path both their careers and lives should be on. As the play and reality begin to merge, Bridge finds himself in a desperate situation when he falls in love with another man and his wife decides to go public about his secret.

    THE MAD ONES explores how our culture loves to raise celebrities to monarchical heights only to delight in seeing them crash and burn and how the media feeds this particular ritual. The play also asks controversial questions about what defines consent in a sexual situation. The play also wonders if being forced to hide ones true nature is worth the price of fame and the power that comes with it.
  • Orville Station
    Lenny is a 25-year-old screenwriter wannabe living in a small town in NJ. He has completed one script that was met with universal rejection and has allowed fear and his family to rule his life.
    Lenny hangs out with his two best friends from high school, Xan, a rich, arrogant slacker and Janine, Xan's abrasive girlfriend, who Lenny has crushed on since high school.

    Seemingly content...
    Lenny is a 25-year-old screenwriter wannabe living in a small town in NJ. He has completed one script that was met with universal rejection and has allowed fear and his family to rule his life.
    Lenny hangs out with his two best friends from high school, Xan, a rich, arrogant slacker and Janine, Xan's abrasive girlfriend, who Lenny has crushed on since high school.

    Seemingly content with life in the small (fictional) town of Orville, NJ, the trio travel to NYC each weekend for fun. Orville happens to have the dubious distinction of most train deaths per year-usually suicides-in New Jersey (stats based on a real North Jersey town).

    Into their complacent lives burrows Chizzy, a good looking, mysterious, potentially-dangerous young man who instantly befriends Lenny and convinces him that he must do, “something drastic” if he ever wants to succeed as a real writer. Lenny takes him quite literally and his “drastic” action causes major ripples in the lives of all the characters-especially Lenny, who is just a train ride away from escaping the comfortable but inert groove he's created for himself.

    Orville Station deals with themes of longing and desire as well as the fear and anxiety that come with change. Dreaming is safe but actively pursuing that dream can provide the ultimate terror for some.
  • Less Than 2 Degrees
    LESS THAN 2 DEGREES explores the lives of a handful of extremely damaged individuals, living in Manhattan, whose paths intersect and intertwine via happenstance and deliberate manipulation.
    Marty, a wealthy anesthesiologist, lives with and keeps young, naive Danny. His life is shaken when his estranged younger brother Brian, who he sexually abused for a long period of time, comes to town. Brian is a...
    LESS THAN 2 DEGREES explores the lives of a handful of extremely damaged individuals, living in Manhattan, whose paths intersect and intertwine via happenstance and deliberate manipulation.
    Marty, a wealthy anesthesiologist, lives with and keeps young, naive Danny. His life is shaken when his estranged younger brother Brian, who he sexually abused for a long period of time, comes to town. Brian is a successful attorney by day/sex addict by night--battling a host of demons. Marty stalks Brian, unearthing repressed feelings and unleashing a series of events that will change them both.

    Simultaneously, Danny meets Meth-addict Christof and falls for him as well as the drug. Thanks to Brian, Marty finds out about Christof. Brian seeks help via Marty's therapist, Kitty. She has no idea she is treating both brothers, nor does she know how she fits into Brian's ultimate plan.

    All five lives are altered by the play's end via a chilling climax.
  • Nemesis
    Nemesis examines the all-consuming nature of revenge as one young girl makes it her mission to
    destroy the father she never knew.

    Paul is a misanthropic, blocked writer who fills his time picking up unattractive men in gay bar
    parking lots. One night he encounters, Tyler, a ridiculously attractive 18-year-old on the prowl--for
    him. Initially apprehensive, Paul soon finds...
    Nemesis examines the all-consuming nature of revenge as one young girl makes it her mission to
    destroy the father she never knew.

    Paul is a misanthropic, blocked writer who fills his time picking up unattractive men in gay bar
    parking lots. One night he encounters, Tyler, a ridiculously attractive 18-year-old on the prowl--for
    him. Initially apprehensive, Paul soon finds himself taken with Tyler and feeling a hope he hasn't
    felt since childhood. Alas, the boy is part of a scheme to con Paul, led by his biological daughter,
    Bree. Although they've never met, Bree blames Paul for all of the misfortune in her life, including
    an upbringing that involved a drug-addicted mother.

    Bree's elaborate plot also involves hustling Paul's neurotic significant other, Luke. Bree poses as
    Jane Fonda's cousin in order to solicit Luke's bizarre “life-instructor” services. When Bree finally
    comes face-to-face with Paul, things take a startling turn.

    Nemesis blends harsh realism with black-comedy melodrama, revealing the humanity of its deeply
    damaged characters in unexpected ways and suggesting an atypical type of salvation.
  • Unhinging
    UNHINGING shows how unlikely bonds can form between very different individuals and explores how sexual attraction can blind people to more important and lasting truths.

    Andy, a neurotic, gay schoolteacher, journeys to his favorite Village Bistro and impatiently awaits the arrival of his chat room date. He is immediately hit on by Phil, an exceptionally forward waiter. Moments later, Chris, Andy...
    UNHINGING shows how unlikely bonds can form between very different individuals and explores how sexual attraction can blind people to more important and lasting truths.

    Andy, a neurotic, gay schoolteacher, journeys to his favorite Village Bistro and impatiently awaits the arrival of his chat room date. He is immediately hit on by Phil, an exceptionally forward waiter. Moments later, Chris, Andy's online date, arrives and is confused by Andy's surprised reaction to the fact that she's a she. The three spar. Chris, a gal with a history of pursuing men who are unattainable, tries to engage Andy in conversation, but soon finds herself being given motherly advice in the bistro ladies' room by Evelyn, Phil's very odd mother, who also happens to own the establishment.

    Left alone, Phil and Andy realize they have shared mutual passions. But Phil's sexy, brazen ex-lover, Denny, arrives on the scene just in time to attempt to seduce Phil. Chris soon meets Dan, a sweet Southern boy with an odd sexual past. All the while Evelyn tries to keep everyone from...well, unhinging...

    UNHINGING metaphorically shines a mirror into psyches of it's characters as they try to figure out why they're so hellbent on self-sabotage.

    This is an updated (2017) version of the original play.
  • 3 Cains
    Cain Gardner is suffering from a chaotic kind of dissociative identity disorder.

    Thirty-five year old playwright Cain Gardner is an emotional wreck! His wife, Jen, has left him. He has a seemingly permanent case of writer’s block. AND, the demons from his dysfunctional childhood are beginning to creep up on him. As Cain’s mind begins an implosion, he is confronted with images of himself at ages...
    Cain Gardner is suffering from a chaotic kind of dissociative identity disorder.

    Thirty-five year old playwright Cain Gardner is an emotional wreck! His wife, Jen, has left him. He has a seemingly permanent case of writer’s block. AND, the demons from his dysfunctional childhood are beginning to creep up on him. As Cain’s mind begins an implosion, he is confronted with images of himself at ages twenty-five and fifteen. Angry at what they have become these past-Cain-alters refuse to vanish without explanations about what brought them to such a frightening state.

    Cain and Jen are both haunted by their past as well as their present. As they come together to attempt to figure it all out—things take a turn for the uber-surreal.

    In order to survive, Cain goes on trial for murder. But this is no ordinary courtroom. It’s more reality-TV/game show-based where anything can and will happen. Fresh hell rules the day and with the media lurking outside, the circus/trial/show must go on--with the future of several characters at stake. In the end nothing and no one is necessarily what they appear to be, but they are all there to save Cain. Or are they?
  • Michael's #1 Fan
    Robert is in a limbo of sorts. Waiting. For Lily. Only she can decide his fate. Robert and Lily have the daunting duty of enlightening the audience about the sequence of events that have brought them to such a perilous place.

    As MICHAEL'S #1 FAN unfolds, flashing backwards and forwards, we are introduced to the family members and townsfolk who dominate the lives of Robert and Lily,...
    Robert is in a limbo of sorts. Waiting. For Lily. Only she can decide his fate. Robert and Lily have the daunting duty of enlightening the audience about the sequence of events that have brought them to such a perilous place.

    As MICHAEL'S #1 FAN unfolds, flashing backwards and forwards, we are introduced to the family members and townsfolk who dominate the lives of Robert and Lily, beginning with the boisterous, adulterous Hank, Robert's brother and Lily's fiancé and Lee, Robert's frail and peculiar older sister.

    Unlucky in love, Robert seeks the advise of his long dead Aunt Bonnie. We then move on to the local Ice Cream Shoppe where Robert has a date with a maverick reporter named Don. Their waitress is the town gossip and omnipresent know-it-all, Kristi. At the end of Act One, Robert comes face to face with the bone-chilling, octogenarian serial killer, Monstrous Molly. Robert slowly unearths shocking truths and revelations about his lineage and experiences unthinkable betrayals within his trusted inner circle.

    The “Michael” in MICHAEL'S #1 FAN is Michael Sarrazin, a promising young film star-wannabe of the late 60s/early 70s. Robert looks to an autographed photo of Sarrazin for guidance as he awakens to his devastating real world.

    Is Robert spiritually broken beyond repair?
  • The Bubble
    Quentin, a cocky director, is doing his damnedest to guide Zoe, a temperamental thespian, towards greatness in the stage melodrama, CIVIL WAR WHORE. No, wait! Quentin is really romancing the high-strung ingénue, Alice, in the TV musical version of the same play. Hold it! Quentin is actually about to get nasty with eager actor Steve in the porn version-Cut that! Quentin is now bewitched by the Brasilian...
    Quentin, a cocky director, is doing his damnedest to guide Zoe, a temperamental thespian, towards greatness in the stage melodrama, CIVIL WAR WHORE. No, wait! Quentin is really romancing the high-strung ingénue, Alice, in the TV musical version of the same play. Hold it! Quentin is actually about to get nasty with eager actor Steve in the porn version-Cut that! Quentin is now bewitched by the Brasilian bombshell Fernanda who is busy seducing Lorenzo, the “bisexual with no character development…” Okay, stop! Really. Enter, The Writer, who keeps changing the script, the genre and even the medium he is writing in.

    Act One of THE BUBBLE journeys into the mind of Phil, a determined playwright on the verge of a meltdown, as he gives mental birth to these crackpot characters that, eventually declare mutiny on him. Phil must quickly reevaluate his work, his process and a few personal issues.

    In Act Two, the focus shifts to the rehearsal process where parallel characters are immersed in theatrical politics. The troupe includes: Fred, the dictatorial director; Lawrence, the dimwitted hottie; Xavier, the bombastic mandiva; Adam, the cheery costume designer; Callas, the directionally-impaired leading lady; Chloe, the Sapphic seductress and the Other Phil, who we, curiously, never see.

    The work culminates in the play itself (Act Three) where we become privy to Phil's family funneled through his own 'dundercloddish' version of who they are.

    THE BUBBLE examines the creative process and explores the contents of one writer's wacky head in an attempt to find meaning in his work and, perhaps, come to certain personal realizations.


  • Lexy
    Lexy is a successful Park Avenue therapist whose life is about to radically change.

    After seven years together, Lexy’s sexy significant other, Miriam, walks out on her. Her best friend, Jag, does her best to help her cope.

    Soon, via Jag, Lexy is reintroduced to Adam, an English teacher with fond memories of Lexy from their days in high school, twenty years ago. Adam pursues Lexy,...
    Lexy is a successful Park Avenue therapist whose life is about to radically change.

    After seven years together, Lexy’s sexy significant other, Miriam, walks out on her. Her best friend, Jag, does her best to help her cope.

    Soon, via Jag, Lexy is reintroduced to Adam, an English teacher with fond memories of Lexy from their days in high school, twenty years ago. Adam pursues Lexy, who has never really had an interest in men.

    Adam’s star student, Scott, has suddenly started to regress and is showing signs of violent behavior. Apprehensive at the outset, Lexy agrees to treat Scott and together they confront the dark demons that have forced him to detach.

    Lexy finds herself falling for Adam. As their relationship blossoms, Miriam returns and causes heaps of trouble for everyone; especially Scott.

    A transformed Lexy must now look to her past to understand her present situation and plot her future. Will it include Adam or Miriam? And what lengths will Miriam go to in order to get Lexy back?

    LEXY challenges the accepted norms in our lives and pursues alternative views to “black and white” issues. It’s a play about the power and danger of memory. Lexy and Scott must make choices based on revelation and realization. One will choose a new road. The other will not.

    Note: There is an alternate, more comedic version of this script which had one additional character (a female) and is much less a tragedy. The focus in the comedy is divided between Lexy and Adam and Lexy and Scott. The original play blended both the comedic and dramatic elements and never quite seemed to gel for me. So I turned it into two separate plays.
  • Greener
    Unknown twentysomething playwright Tony Scarpellini is desperate to interest 40-year old Daytime Emmy-winning soap vet Jeanetta Jamison in his new play, PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. His actor/best friend, Nando, is convinced she’ll say no.

    Unbeknownst to Tony, Jeanetta has finally read his play and, tired of doing daytime, had decided it has potential. Jeanetta’s overbearing mother, Sylvia, cannot...
    Unknown twentysomething playwright Tony Scarpellini is desperate to interest 40-year old Daytime Emmy-winning soap vet Jeanetta Jamison in his new play, PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. His actor/best friend, Nando, is convinced she’ll say no.

    Unbeknownst to Tony, Jeanetta has finally read his play and, tired of doing daytime, had decided it has potential. Jeanetta’s overbearing mother, Sylvia, cannot disagree more and will stop at nothing to make certain Jeanetta does not ruin her career.

    A determined Jeanetta decides to pay Tony a visit and before she can tell him why she’s come, she finds herself drugged, bound and cuffed to a coffee table!

    After a justified tantrum by Jeanetta, the two begin speaking to one another about PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. Jeanetta explains that she likes the play and actually came to his door to agree to do it. She pleads for him to let her go. Tony fears this would mean prison for him and refuses.

    Jeanetta accuses Tony of writing too safely and not follow through with his daring themes.

    Tony challenges Jeanetta about her personal life and about allowing her mother to control every aspect of that life.

    A twisted psycho-sexual relationship develops between the two and an act of pity leads to a violent sexual confrontation as Act One ends.

    Act Two opens with Tony accusing Jeanetta of raping him, something she scoffs at. Tony and Jeanetta must deal with the repercussions of their actions.

    What does the future hold for this unlikely pair? Will they become creative collaborators? Best friends? Arch nemeses? Torrid lovers? Will they go back to being dispassionate strangers? Or will they simply kill each other...?
  • About Christine
    Unknown twentysomething playwright Tony Scarpellini is desperate to interest 40-year old Daytime Emmy-winning soap vet Jeanetta Jamison in his new play, PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. His actor/best friend, Nando, is convinced she’ll say no.

    Unbeknownst to Tony, Jeanetta has finally read his play and, tired of doing daytime, had decided it has potential. Jeanetta’s overbearing mother, Sylvia, cannot...
    Unknown twentysomething playwright Tony Scarpellini is desperate to interest 40-year old Daytime Emmy-winning soap vet Jeanetta Jamison in his new play, PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. His actor/best friend, Nando, is convinced she’ll say no.

    Unbeknownst to Tony, Jeanetta has finally read his play and, tired of doing daytime, had decided it has potential. Jeanetta’s overbearing mother, Sylvia, cannot disagree more and will stop at nothing to make certain Jeanetta does not ruin her career.

    A determined Jeanetta decides to pay Tony a visit and before she can tell him why she’s come, she finds herself drugged, bound and cuffed to a coffee table!

    After a justified tantrum by Jeanetta, the two begin speaking to one another about PENNIES FOR CHRISTINE. Jeanetta explains that she likes the play and actually came to his door to agree to do it. She pleads for him to let her go. Tony fears this would mean prison for him and refuses.

    Jeanetta accuses Tony of writing too safely and not follow through with his daring themes.

    Tony challenges Jeanetta about her personal life and about allowing her mother to control every aspect of that life.

    A twisted psycho-sexual relationship develops between the two and an act of pity leads to a violent sexual confrontation as Act One ends.

    Act Two opens with Tony accusing Jeanetta of raping him, something she scoffs at. Tony and Jeanetta must deal with the repercussions of their actions.

    What does the future hold for this unlikely pair? Will they become creative collaborators? Best friends? Arch nemeses? Torrid lovers? Will they go back to being dispassionate strangers? Or will they simply kill each other...?
  • Confusion
    Gaetano and Tom, a couple, haven’t connected with one another in quite a while. And both have been having sex with other guys. Gaetano finally confronts Tom about their lack of intimacy.
  • Cunning
    Galia and Tom, a couple, haven’t connected with one another in quite a while. Galia finally confronts Tom about their lack of intimacy.
  • Evil in His Mind
    Based loosely on factual accounts, “Evil in His Mind” centers on Alejandro, now 28, a recovering alcoholic and drug addict who alleges that a parish priest molested him 13 years ago in Plainfield, New Jersey. After the accusation, the priest, Father Luis Garcia, then 40, fled to his native country of Ecuador. Now, all these years later, Alejandro has filed charges against Garcia (there is no longer a statue of...
    Based loosely on factual accounts, “Evil in His Mind” centers on Alejandro, now 28, a recovering alcoholic and drug addict who alleges that a parish priest molested him 13 years ago in Plainfield, New Jersey. After the accusation, the priest, Father Luis Garcia, then 40, fled to his native country of Ecuador. Now, all these years later, Alejandro has filed charges against Garcia (there is no longer a statue of limitations when it comes to sexual abuse in NJ).

    The one-act explores the events that happened those 13 years ago as Alejandro confronts a now ailing Father Garcia and forces him to tell his account of the events, hoping to get at the truth and some kind of closure. Alejandro enlists the help of himself at the age of 15, who has a clearer memory of what happened. He has also brought along another being that was present when the alleged rape took place: God.

    It is God who is able to get Father Garcia to admit certain things that will hopefully enable Alejandro to find some kind of peace. But in the end, it’s possible that Alejandro is even more haunted once everyone has had their respective says.

    The piece deals with memory, responsibility, and the forever-lingering, life-altering damage caused by sexual abuse.

    “Evil in His Mind” is a genre-mash-up blending intense drama with black comedy and social satire.

  • Godforsaken
    GODFORSAKEN finds the last two Survivors on earth, both male, one an optimist, one a nihilist, trying to figure out what exactly happened and why they are still alive.

    Initially, Survivor #2 is certain Survivor #1 exists only in his head. After a deviation in what has become a mundane theme, Survivor #2 begins to think Survivor #1 may
    actually exist.

    As the two come to an...
    GODFORSAKEN finds the last two Survivors on earth, both male, one an optimist, one a nihilist, trying to figure out what exactly happened and why they are still alive.

    Initially, Survivor #2 is certain Survivor #1 exists only in his head. After a deviation in what has become a mundane theme, Survivor #2 begins to think Survivor #1 may
    actually exist.

    As the two come to an outrageous conclusion, a Mutant Female enters the situation and wreaks havoc on their insular world, threatening their existence.
  • Godforsaken Pink
    Sequel to GODFORSAKEN but also a stand alone.

    Two females wake up to fine they're post-apocalyptic survivors. Or are they?