2018 and so far in 2019…

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First, foremost, my sincere gratitude to everyone who had anything to do with selecting my work for performance, putting it on stage, or giving it a prize. My characters send their thanks as well.

February 2018—
I was notified my 30-minute one-act play Quarantine was awarded third place in the annual one-act playwriting competition at Little Theatre of Alexandria in Virginia.

June 2018—
My 10-minute play Say Goodbye to Hollywood received a staged reading as part of the “Twilight Café” show at Coachella Valley Repertory Theatre in Rancho Mirage, California. Directed by Andy Harmon.

October 2018—
Say Goodbye to Hollywood was produced as part of the North Park Playwright Festival at the North Park Vaudeville and Candy Shoppe in San Diego. Directed by Jeff Bushnell. It will also be listed in the upcoming Smith & Kraus anthology “Best 10-Minute Plays of 2019.”
Also in October, my 50-minute one-act play North received a staged reading at the Santa Fe Playhouse in New Mexico as part of their 3rd Annual Different Festival. Directed by Karen Machon.

December 2018—
My full-length play The Desert of Love received a staged reading at Coachella Valley Repertory in Rancho Mirage. Directed by Andy Harmon.
Also in December, my 10-minute play The Short Christmas Dinner was produced at Out of Box Theatre in Marietta, Georgia as part of their annual “Santa After Hours” show. Directed by Zip Rampy.

AND IN 2019 (so far)—

February 2019—
My 10-minute play A Death in the Woods was produced by Chain Reaction Theatre Project in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. Directed by Shelley Smith.
Also in February, my full-length play Crusade received a staged reading by the Baltimore Playwright Festival. Directed by Timoth Copney.

Recent reading: SAY GOODBYE TO HOLLYWOOD at CVRep

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On June 30, my 10-minute comedy Say Goodbye to Hollywood received a staged reading at Coachella Valley Repertory Theatre (CVRep) in Rancho Mirage, California. It was part of the “Twilight Cafe,” an annual evening of short works written by members of the CVRep Conservatory Writers Group.

The play, an affectionate satire on the movie business (and Palm Springs) was directed by Andy Harmon and starred Barry Cutler, Dan Graff, and Alexana Thomas. Everybody did a wonderful job. One of the actors wrote me afterward: “As I’m sure you know — and as the audience so well confirmed — Say Goodbye to Hollywood is ridiculously hilarious. A real crowd pleaser.”

Another of the actors told me that thanks to her performance she was offered another acting job at an upcoming production at another theatre. I love it when success builds on success.

And it’s great to write a comedy that makes people laugh — especially when they laugh in the right places!

CRUSADE now on NPX

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I have posted my new full-length play Crusade to the New Play Exchange. https://newplayexhange.org

Crusade recreates the traditional war drama in a new way with an urgently relevant message for today.

It is the near future. Civil war rages between Christian fundamentalists who control the federal government and rebellious U.S. military units still loyal to the Constitution. The play follows the fate of an Army patrol caught up in this conflict. Stylistically, Crusade seeks to heighten a typically realistic form through the use of sound, lighting, language, and physical action in a “total theatre” effort to confront the audience with the reality of violence and the danger of extremism.

Prize Winner

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I am very pleased to announce my play Quarantine was awarded Third Place in the 2017 One-Act Playwriting Competition at the Little Theatre of Alexandria in Northern Virginia.

In notifying me, the head of the competition said: “Out of 90+ plays, yours was the 3rd rated highest in our competition. People loved your show. They thought it was very realistic, and they loved the strong male characters…People devoured your show, and many offered to try out for it, they loved it so much….It was very compelling, and kept everyone engaged. You should be proud of your accomplishments and know that you were the “cream of the crop.”

My deep thanks to LTA for this recognition.

If interested in Quarantine, see my post below; it’s also available through New Play Exchange.

New One-Act Play: QUARANTINE

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A fast-paced military drama of roughly 30 minutes, Quarantine is based on the legend of the Black Syphilis during the Vietnam War. In the play, a reporter and a photographer, burnt-out by the war and returning home to the U.S., are forced down on an unknown island in the western Pacific, the site of a secret Army facility. There, a conscience-stricken young officer leads them to discover the island’s terrible truth – a truth the Army does not want revealed.

Cast: 7M. Due to the time period and the content of the play, all roles need to be played by men.

Production requirements of the play are minimal. There are few props, and most scenes are meant to be created by lighting effects.

History: I actually conceived of Quarantine back in the early 1970s. I was active in the anti-war movement, and we all heard the stories about a virulent strain of syphilis that was infecting our guys in ‘Nam and that the Army was covering it up. I did an early draft of the play but wasn’t happy with it and put it aside. Recently I reworked it and that is the new version.

The play should be taken at face value as an entertainment and that’s all. I’m not trying to reveal any hidden secrets or make any accusations against the military. The Black Syphilis was a legend — it was never proved. I simply used it the way other writers have used unproven legends as the basis for a good story — like, say, the Greek tragedians did with the Trojan War. However, if an audience feels the crimes in the play somehow reflect on the greater crime of the Vietnam War, it wouldn’t break my heart.