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A Night of One Acts

Show Dates: January 27th & 28th


The American Century

by Murphy Guyer

Presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service Inc.

Synopsis:World War II has ended and Tom, just discharged from the Army, returns to his young wife, Margaret, full of hope and enthusiasm, and dreams of a bounteous future. But as they plan their life together they are joined by a brash young stranger who, to their amazement, proceeds to make himself very much at home. He is, he explains, one of the children they will have, and he fills them in so completely about their past and present lives—and the future which awaits them—that Tom and Margaret soon find themselves moving from incredulity to panic. In the most casual, blithely humorous manner he tells of a world gone mad with space races, Watergate and the threat of atomic annihilation; of his siblings who have come to a variety of bad ends; and of Tom and Margaret's own descent into bankruptcy, booze, and pill-popping. Increasingly aghast as one horror is casually (and hilariously) piled on another, Tom rushes for the door, determined to escape before any of this can occur only to be pursued by his unloving but pragmatic son who suddenly realizes that without a father, his own existence, chancy as it may be, will never happen.


Black Comedy

by Peter Shaffer

Produced by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

Synopsis:In one hilarious act, the action supposedly in the dark is illuminated; when the lights are to be on, the stage is the dark. Lovesick and desperate, sculptor Brindsley Miller has embellished his apartment with furniture and objects d'arte "borrowed" from the absent antique collector next door hoping to impress his fiancee's pompous father and a wealthy art dealer, Schuppanzigh. The fussy neighbor, Harold Gorringe returns just as a blown fuse plunges the apartment into darkness and Brindsley is revealed teetering on the verge of very ripe farce. Unexpected guests, aging spinsters, errant phone cords and other snares impede his frantic attempts to return the purloined items before light is restored.


Special Guest

by Donald Elser

Produced with special arrangements with Baker's Plays, Boston, Massachusetts

Synopsis: Long years of hardship and poverty have embittered Nora. Directing her hate against a young detective who killed her son in self-defense, Nora invites him to her home, toys with him, then attempts to kill him. But her plan is thwarted by the dead son himself, who returns in time to prevent tragedy.

Persephone

by Ford Ainsworth

Presented by special arrangement with I. E. Clark Publications, Woodstock, Ill

Synopsis: This one-act comedy retells the myth in which Hades, god of death, kidnaps Persephone, goddess of life and spring. But while Persephone is usally presented as the sad-eyed queen of the underworld, here she is a happy breath of spring that makes life glitter wherever she is—even in Hades. Her conflict with the dead, who are tyring their best to rest in peace, makes one of the most imaginative as well as meaningful literary works of the decade.