Composers and their stage works 



Play. Jean Anouilh. Translated by Lewis Galantière
M8 (20s, middle-age, 60s) F4 (19, 20s, 60s). An open space.

This play was first performed in German-occupied France and its theme is resistance to oppression. It is based on the Greek tragedy of Antigone, who tried to bury her brother's corpse against the diktat of her uncle, Creon. Creon is a dictator, but defends his position on practical grounds. In spite of her love for Creon's son, she chooses her part: to bury her brother and die.


Play. Jean Anouilh. Translated by Barbara Bray
For cast, synopsis and setting details see synopsis above.


Play. Bertolt Brecht
Translations: K. I. Porter, Robert Cannon

A prologue set in 1945 Berlin shows two sisters whose brother has deserted from the German army and is found hanged: should they risk being seen by the SS cutting his body down? In the play itself Creon becomes a brutal aggressor, who has attacked Argos for the sake of its iron ore. Tiresias, instead of prophesying the future, becomes a pessimistic analyst of the present; while the chorus of elders, always reserved in its attitude, eventually turns against Creon too.

Anthony Rose

Play Jules Feiffer. 4 men, 1 woman. Interior.

Once a renowned Broadway playwright, but now a disenchanted screenwriter, Anthony Rose has taken to travelling around the country visiting regional theatre groups who are producing his famous comedy success, The Parent Lesson. His aim is to rewrite the play on the spot to reflect his changed perspectives, and td reflect the events in his life which, he believes, have given the lie to the motives which guided him when he first wrote the play some 25 years earlier. Then he was a neglected, angry son; now he is a neglected husband and father who has left his wife and feels that his son cares only for his money. So far some nine theatres; upset by his disruptive tactics, have shown him the door but finally, in Kansas City, he finds a receptive director - and sets about working his "magic." Ignoring the objections of the actors, Rose adds new scenes, changes relationships between the characters and even transforms the very natures of the figures in the play. Consistently funny as they struggle to deal with these wild aberrations, the cast members begin to pull back as an underlying tone of arrogance and viciousness becomes more overt until, at last, Rose, having alienated the director, seduced the ingenue and insulted the topbilled actor, ends up taking over the lead role himself. He has, he believes, finally succeeded in finding the "truth" so long obscured in his play but, as an ironic coda (which takes place three years later) makes clear, the means have fallen far short of justifying the ends.
ISBN: 0-8222-0057-0

Any Wednesday

Comedy. Muriel Resnik. 2 men, 2 women. Interior.

The president of a large corporation is using the executive suite to house his young mistress, whom he sees once a week A young man who has sold his factory to the middle-aged romancer is upset to find it about to be closed for tax advantages. Directed to the suite by a new secretary, he comes upon the girl, then the wife and finally the president. But the plot takes nice little turns. When the young man meets the mistress she tells him that he was misdirected, that his is not the executive suite but 'a special arrangement - like a scholarship.' Eyeing the diamond necklace she received for a birthday gift, he remarks, 'You must have made dean's list.' When the wife finds them she assumes they are a nice young married couple and between the playful pretence of the two and the older woman's romantic concern for them, Miss Resnik builds a delightful scene ... With the completion of the mixed-up quartet by the husband's return, the fun bubbles happily along - it is a happy comedy with the giddy bubble of champagne.
ISBN: 0-8222-0059-7

Anybody for Murder?

Play. Brian Clemens and Dennis Spooner
M3 (30s, 40s) F3 (30s, 40s). A converted farmhouse on a Greek island.

Max and his lover Suzy have concocted a plot to kill Max's wife Janet, with ten thousand pounds insurance money as an added bonus. Their plan is for Janet to have a sailing 'accident'. Then two unexpected visitors arrive, in the shape of George and Mary Tickle well, who have an eye on the money, with murder plans of their own. Thus begins an intriguing round of plot and counter-plot, with a final, unexpected twist.
ISBN 0 573 01713 1

Anyone for Breakfast?

Comedy. Derek Ziegfeld
M3 (20, 40s) F3 (20, 40s) A living-room.

In this merry comedy of marital mishaps the scene is set for an evening and morning of riotous misunderstandings and mistaken identities as the guilty parties in question try desperately to keep their romantic secrets secret! Your audience will be kept on a roar for two hours and at the end of the play we realise that the complications and confrontations - far from ending - are only just beginning ...
ISBN 0 573 01715 8

Anybody Out There?

Farcical Comedy John Patrick. 7 men, 3 women. Unit Set

Poor Oliver Pankey is a born loser. His landlady charges him when someone else breaks his window. His fiancée leaves him for a married man. His boss at the bank cuts his pay when he asks for a raise. And a thief takes everything he has - including his only suit. As the last straw, when he visits a doctor to check on the results of a blood test the files get switched and he is told that he'll be dead within six months. Fed up, and reconciled to his fate, Oliver turns into a raging lion, performing feats of dazzling bravery and ending up as the new branch manager of the bank. He even agrees to help the FBI by becoming a sitting duck for a gangland shoot-out - only to learn, at the eleventh hour, of the doctor's horrendous error. Needless to say our stalwart hero's knees turn suddenly to jelly, but the action spins zanily on, deftly finding its way to a happy - and hilarious - conclusion.
ISBN: 0-8222-0058-9

Apocalyptic Butterflies

Play. Wendy MacLeod. 2 men, 3 women. Unit set

Cooped up in their cramped cottage in a remote part of Maine, Hank and Muriel Tarer are beginning to get on each others nerves. They have still not agreed on a name for their sevenweek-old daughter, Muriel refuses to accept motherhood and housework as a full time occupation, Hank is having an affair with a busty checkout girl ar the local IGA store and, to top it all off, Hanks father has dumped a load of totem poles in their front yard, hoping to jar Hank out of his "traditional thought patterns." In fact, a general shaking-up is what Hank and Muriel need if they are to overcome the resentment and constant bickering which have beset their young marriage and, in a series of wildly funny scenes, that is exactly what they get. It all comes to a boil when Muriel catches Hank in the arms of Trudi, his supermarket bimbo, but as things can't get worse they actually (and miraculously) get better, much to the bemusement of Hank's delightfully eccentric parents. In truth, Hank and Muriel really do love each other, and somehow Hanks infidelity, and the anguish he feels when he is found out, mark a sea change for both of them, leading to their joint recognition that, to find the happiness which has eluded them thus far, they must seek out the "transcendence" which, they know, can yet transform and enrich a marriage well worth saving.
ISBN: 0-8222-0060-0

Approximating Mother

Play. Kathleen Tolan. 2 men, 5 women (double casting).

Fran and Molly are best friends; Molly is already a mother and is expecting again, but Fran is approaching 40 and has yet to find a potential father, let alone husband, amid a comic slew of failed suitors and blind dates, each of whom we hear about in hysterically funny and embarrassing detail during Fran and Molly's frequent days out together. When Molly delivers, Fran is so moved and slightly envious that she sets out to explore the possibilities of single motherhood, eventually winding up with a shady lawyer who will arrange for Fran to adopt an unwanted baby if she'll cover the mother's medical costs. Meanwhile, the mother, an Indiana teenager named Jen, is debating her decision to give up the baby. When the baby is born, Fran makes the mistake of showing up at the hospital where she accidentally runs into Jen and begins to realise that she's just taken part in an illegal adoption. After she's returned to the city with the baby, Fran has dreams about the baby's natural mother that haunt her, along with the doubts about the impact of what she's done, even as baby Tara sustains her.
ISBN: 0-8222-1298-6

April in Paris

Comedy. John Godber
M1 (30s) F1 (30s). Various simple settings.

Bet and A1 lead a quiet, humdrum life in their small Yorkshire home until Bet wins a 'Romantic Breaks' competition in a magazine. The prize, a holiday in Paris, represents their first experience abroad and has profound effects on the way they look at the world around them once they return home. They sort out French cuisine, wrestle with their phrase book, and fend off would-be muggers on the Metro in this hilarious depiction of the English abroad.
ISBN 0 573 01714 X