Three One-Act Plays
September 29 @ 7:30 pm
Three wonderful “one-acts”-Trifles/The Dark Lady of the Sonnets/Out at Sea: From the cornfields of Iowa, to Buckingham Palace, to the middle of Lake Michigan-intriguing, fun and thought-provoking one-act plays.
In Trifles, Minie Wright is under investigation for her husband’s murder. When the sheriff and county attorney arrive to investigate, they are accompanied by Lewis Hale. While the men look for clues, overlooking the “trifling” details that could solve their case, the sheriff’s wife, Mrs. Peters and Mrs. Hale piece together a picture of an unhappily married woman for whom murder was the only way out. The play was first written and performed in 1916. In it, Susan Gaspell explores the difference between the male and female experience in that time period. Susan and her husband, George Cram, were the founding members of the Provincetown Players.
The Dark Lady of the Sonnets-George Bernard Shaw
In 16th century Elizabethan London, Shakespeare attempts to meet his girlfriend, the Dark Lady, on the sly, but is halted near the palace gates by a Beefeater guard. A cloaked woman arrives but is soon revealed to be none other than Queen Elizabeth I who Shakespeare immediately crushes on. Shaw has Shakespeare attempting a midnight tryst with the “dark lady” he immortalized in his sonnets, only to run into a sleepwalking Queen Elizabeth instead. Along the way, Will’s ears perk up whenever he hears an interesting turn of phrase either from the Queen or the Beefeater guard, which he then records in his notebook for future use in his plays. Everything is light and playful, with lots of in-jokes for fans of Shakespeare, theatre and intrigue.
Out at Sea-Slawomir Mrozek
Out at Sea is the story of 3 men (or women) stranded on a raft at sea. Like Life of Pi, it takes a surreal twist when the fattest of the three men declares that one of the other two must be eaten. The more politically savvy of the other two men allies himself with the fat man, leaving the hesitant, mousy third man to his fate. They hold mock elections and force a sham vote, then butter up the third man (no pun intended) with high talk of self-sacrifice to the greater good. But strangely, he buys into it, and becomes radiant with his newfound sense of purpose. The closer he comes to be eaten, the happier he becomes. The parallels to 1984 are obvious.