Six Award Winning Plays - On Darkling Plain & Shakespeare Revisited & Dreams & Inside & More
Published by New Concept Press
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On Darkling Plain - M3,F1
It's 1964 and Guy Leonard, a Broadway star and featured film actor, is faced with a dilemma
Would it be more honorable to work with a director he holds responsible for the death of friends and the ruin of colleagues or should he do a TV commercial for toilet paper?
He's been blacklisted for twelve years and driving a cab to support his family
The director, who helped to make him a star and then, during the McCarthy era, named names, including Guy's, has offered him the lead in a Broadway show and the assurance he would appear in the film, as well
On the other hand, a young advertising executive has offered him the opportunity to do this commercial, and this is in the days when few stars were appearing in commercials and Guy had great contempt for those who did
However Guy does have two siblings to put through college
The plot takes several ironic twists with some bitter confrontations and amusing banter between Guy and his wife, a warm intelligent woman
"A comedy-drama in the best sense, with both comic and dramatic sides complementing and enriching each other ... a must see" ~ The Daily Oklahoman
Winner, David James Ellis Memorial Award
Shakespeare Revisted - M1,F1
Shakespeare has returned to earth and has just witnessed a performance of Richard III set in a junkyard, with Lord Buckingham played by a bearded actress and Richard by an Afro-American
The director is anxious to get the great author's response to her unique production
Master Shakespeare tries to be diplomatic but is terribly confused by the strange twists wrought upon his work
The playwright and director eventually cross swords when she insists that historical accuracy or no, she has a perfect right to cast the play as she sees fit
Shakespeare asks her to withdraw his play and substitute another one. She insists that this is the slot for their Shakespearean production. He barks "Othello"! and stalks off
Winner, Maxim Mazumdar Award, One Act Division
Dreams - M2,F2
Archie and Lily Lowe, theatre royalty (read Alfred Lunt & Lynn Fontanne) have become restless in retirement and have, with great reluctance, decided to appear in a play (read The Visit), which they think is an ugly but fascinating piece
Lily is most uneasy about playing a "madam" and Archie is rather loath to appear as a grocer, but the play's the thing and it's a brilliant one, with good major roles
Unfortunately fate intervenes and Archie suffers a stroke
Lily refuses to go on with the production and, with the help of friends and two faithful servants, coaxes and bullies Archie to partial recovery
When Archie tries to take his own life because he feels that he's become a burden Lily reluctantly consents to go on with the play while Archie settles down to write his autobiography, and the two artists continue to create, in spite of life's unforeseen obstacles
The play is illumined by the love and wit of these two great stars
"Very well done ... simple & moving" ~ Katherine Hepburn
Best New Play, No Empty Space Theatre
Inside - M3,F4
A unique comedy where the speeches consist of the thoughts of the characters and the dialogue is performed in pantomime, which is only natural since we're in a library, the adult division of a charming suburban branch
The librarian is a crusty, tenderhearted soul whose life is devoted to her domain
At the moment she's fascinated by a young poet who seems to be searching for something
Two young high school girls are also fascinated by the handsome poet. A young boy roams the shelves searching for the "dirty parts," while his younger sister wanders about awed by the silence in the adult room
A soldier on leave enters and the librarian is very solicitous, but she clashes with the poet when he crushes the petals of her beautiful flowers on the catalogue case, in his intense search for the meaning of life
The poet leaves the library to continue with the marvelous adventure of life
Winner, New England Theatre Conference
The Jewel Thieves - M2,F2
A mysterious stranger arrives at the home of former film star, Gloria Desmond
His car has stalled - defective carburetor
Or is it?
Ms Desmond is the proud possessor of the legendary Mandarin Necklace
Her current house guest is a lovely young countess
But is she really a countess and is the substitute butler really a butler?
Or are they both an infamous team of jewel thieves?
And is the mysterious stranger a detective hot on their trail?
After the masquerade party that night someone, in the dark, gets into the safe and steals the necklace. But is it really the necklace or just a paste imitation?
And who observed the theft, unobserved in the dark?
And what does Gloria Desmond really know about these people?
And where does the legendary necklace finally end up?
If you love the slick sophisticated comedy-mystery films of the thirties you'll love this one
Best New Play, Ferndale Repertory Co
Deserter - M3
In the darkened room of a deserted chateau somewhere in France a young deserter (read Private Slovik, the only American soldier shot for desertion during World War II) awaits his execution
The sergeant guarding him taunts the soldier and the young man speaks of his misguided childhood and how his love for his wife gave his life a new meaning and direction
A priest arrives to give the prisoner the last rites and the deserter tries to explain that he was taught that killing, no matter what, was wrong
But the priest insists that God expects every man to do his duty
They pray together and the young soldier is led off to the firing squad
"A moving and compassionate play by a most gifted playwright" ~ Horton Foote
"Norman Beim has written so simply and so powerfully that he makes a compelling case for cowardice, elevating this trait almost to heroism with the humanity of his compassion" ~ Marshall Mason
Beim is the author of over 50 full-length plays, which have been performed all over the world
He is also a distinguished stage actor who has appeared in Broadway productions like Inherit the Wind and Off-Broadway alongside Morgan Freeman at the New York Public Theatre