Plays & Theatre
What are my plays about?
I guess they’re mostly about trying to live a good and happy life in a complex and troubled world, where bad things happen to good people, which are sometimes bad things engineered by bad people, who undeservedly have good things happen to them.
And they’re mostly comedies. Mostly.
If you’re interested in what I’m up to in terms of self-production, you can often get some details at my somewhat creaky but still functioning website for my company, Ursa Major.
A note on the writing on this site: these are short pieces that are less serious than my substantial work. As a result, I have no problem with you copying them off and sending them to friends, as long as you attach my name, copyright info, and a mention that I’m an active member of the Dramatists Guild.
If you’d like to do a production or reading of anything I post on this site, you’re generally welcome to, as long as I’m attributed as the writer. Contact me and we can work it out.
An odd one-act about a man with a dog inside of him. Winner of the Out North New Play Competition, received a reading at the Central School of Speech and Drama, London, in Jan 1993.
1994: CAFÉ ANGST
Another odd one-act, this time about a group of young urban Seattleites trapped for an afternoon within a mysterious café, who are each given the chance to exchange angsts. Produced at Moe’s Mo Rockin’ Café, January 1995, winner of a reading at Miami’s Acme Theater Company, and given a staged reading at Southwark Playhouse, London, later that year.
1996: SCOTCH AND DONUTS
A full length comedy about friendship, with three guys awaiting a trip to sunny Mexico in a dank Sea-Tac hotel room. Produced at the Brown Bag Theater, Seattle, Jan-Feb 1997, given workshop production at Southwark Playhouse, London, September 1997.
1998: THE SCRUB ROOM
A short play about surgeons and why they choose to cut up people. Produced as part of PEEP, an evening of short plays, at the Sit and Spin, Seattle, Oct-Nov 1998.
2000: PETTING SOUNDS, HAPPY VOLES
Two short plays written for the 14/48 Play Festival. Petting Sounds concerned strange noises coming from an apartment, while Happy Voles was a cheerful look at the near-future of genetic behavioral modification. Consolidated Works, Jan 2000. Petting Sounds went on to a radio production as part of Taboo: An Evening of Live Radio for New Waves Productions, August 2000, and was staged by Olympia’s Artesian Theater in February 2001.
2000: THE ETERNAL VAUDEVILLE
A full length play with music about a theater filled with the ghosts of past entertainers, and a modern-day street performer who’s offered a lengthy run. A commission from the Seattle Theater Group. Moore Theater, Feb 2000.
2001: THE MAN WHO WAS THURSDAY
adapted from the novel by G.K. Chesterton. A poet-policeman infiltrates a cabal of anarchists bent on destroying society, only to discover that it’s possible the entire group are undercover policemen. Produced at Seattle’s Taproot Theatre in spring of 2002, and at Wyoming Seminary, PA, in winter 2004.
2001: DISAPPEARING ACT/AKA
Two ten-minute plays written for the July 2001 edition of One World Theatre’s 14/48. Disappearing Act: a woman who hates her boyfriend, her mother, her name, and her life discovers salvation in the anonymity of her gym. AKA: a blind date between a woman who believes in past lives and a man with multiple personality disorder proves difficult.
LITTLE WHITE PILL
A 40-something year old man decides to stop aging, only his life won’t allow him to forget his own mortality. Given a fully staged reading to the FringeACT new works festival in March 2002, ACT Theatre, then at Union Garage Theatre on Capitol Hill that summer.
2002: THE CENTER CANNOT HOLD/AULD ACQUAINTANCE
Another 14/48, another pair of short plays. Center is about a working menage e trois, and the odd emotional problems that even the best of all unorthodox worlds creates. Auld Acquaintance was a play for the New Year, about dinosaurs, the Pope, and wars and rumors of wars that we all have to look forward to.
A short play about the different uses, and abuses, of TV, Film, and Theatre. And selling Tequila.
2003: IMPORTANT DATES IN HISTORY
A new short play for a new 14/48 about a man who invents a time machine so he can get a new girlfriend.
HOW TO BE COOL
A one-act play in which a self-described “Student of Cool” does his best to describe its quality to a high school class in 1962. Produced at the Seattle Fringe Festival, encored at the Union Garage in 2004, as well as Port Townsend’s Peninsula College and the Bumbershoot Arts Festival in Seattle, then revived for another run in Summer of 2009 at Open Circle Theatre.
2006: Two short plays for 14/48.
GOLDEN imagines an encounter between the Gods Who Walk the Earth, otherwise known as Celebrities, at the 2006 Oscars.
A IS FOR APPLE is a story about Adam and Eve in the Garden with the Snake, but it’s not the one you think you know. Winner in the 2007 Short Attention Span Festival at New England’s Atlantis Playmakers.
MARVOLO THE ANTI-SMOKING MAGICIAN
A down-at-his-heels magician pulls it together for one last magical mystical spectacle. A play with magic, produced at Odd Duck Studios, Seattle, April 2006.
BIBLE STORIES FOR AGNOSTICS
The story of the original First Family, following their fortunes from the Garden of Eden to the first city of Enoch. “A is for Apple” was performed at 14/48, NPA’s Tacoma Reading Series, and won a slot in Atlantis Playmaker’s national “Short Attention Span” play festival. One of the plays, “E IS FOR EQUINOX,” was part of the St. Gensisus Society’s “In Preparation” 10 Page Play Festival. And several of the plays were read at Absurd Reality Theatre’s “Longenpalooza I and II” in 2006 and 2007. ART also workshopped the entire cycle in 2007.
2010: MY TIME WITH THE LADY
A new show co-written with Ron Richardson. Based on Richardson’s life, it tells the story of a young man who at 18 got his dream job: working the front desk at a strip club. An homage to Seattle’s Lusty Lady peepshow, featuring Richardson and dancer Kirsten Lauzon, produced at the Little Red Studio in August, then a year later in the Market Theatre.
1999-2010: ARCANA I and II
Twelve new short plays of a projected 22 play cycle based on images from the Major Arcana of the Tarot deck. “STARDUST” won the Irene Bashmore First Place Award in LA’s New Stages One-Act Play Festival and was published in Poems and Plays, “THE PICNIC” was produced at Little Red Studio’s Erotic Shorts, “AFFAIRS WITH THE MOON” was published in Cirque, “WILD RIVER” won Open Circle’s “Eat My Shorts!” Audience and Jury Prize, and all eight were produced at Open Circle Theatre in September of 2010. Available for purchase via Dramatic Publishing.
2010: SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE CASE OF THE CHRISTMAS CAROL
A full-length Yuletide play. The Great Detective has a very unusual Christmas, in this literary mash-up of Conan Doyle and Dickens. Enjoyed box-office smashing productions at Seattle’s Taproot Theatre in 2010 and 2012 and Portland’s Artist’s Repertory Theatre in 2011 and 2012, and available for purchase via Dramatists.
2013: ANYBODY CAN DO ANYTHING.
A brand new musical adapted from the best-selling comic memoir by Betty MacDonald. During the darkest days of the Great Depression Betty, a single mother, returns to her family in Seattle and survives the worst that the world can throw at her thanks to her large and eccentric family, in particular her incredibly bossy sister Mary.
I have several other scripts in development as well, including a four-woman thriller (The Sound in the Next Room) and a new solo piece about Professor Moriarty, Tea with the Professor. If you’ve got an interest in these or any of my other work, contact me.