Composers and their stage works 



Play. Jonathan Bolt. 5 men, 4 women. Divided Set.

Returning to the grubby North Carolina mill town in which he had grown up, a would-be Hollywood actor, Clyde Owens, rejoins his younger brother, his estranged father and his frail, sensitive mother, who is dying of cancer. Lionised by his old friends, most of whom now work at the mill, he is treated like a celebrity - although the truth is that his acting career has long since reached a dead end. When Clyde announces that he plans to stay on and take a job at the mill old tensions re-emerge - the disappointment of the mother who had dreamed of a better life for her son; and the bitterness which Clyde feels toward his mill-hand father, whose coarseness contrasts painfully with the artistic pretensions of his mother. Her death brings the play to its moving climax, in which father and son, if not reconciled, come to a compassionate understanding of their differences and an acceptance of the need to follow their separate paths in life.
ISBN: 0-8222-1137-8


Play. Derek Parkes
M2 (28, 35) F2 (22, 35). A living-room.

Seriously ill, Simon intends to spend the time left to him in luxury and blackmails Morris, an embezzler. Morris, trying to obtain money from his unsuspecting new bride - a millionaire's widow - has a nasty shock when he discovers that it is her son, not she, who has inherited the fortune and plans to kidnap and murder the child. But Simon is appalled at the turn of events and, in a thrilling climax, Morris is revealed for the ruthless fortune hunter he is.
ISBN 0 573 01572 4

Three Birds Alighting on a Field

Play. Timberlake Wertenbaker
Large mixed cast may be played by M4 F5. Various simple settings.

Timberlake Wertenbaker's award-winning play takes a witty, perceptive look at the art world in the boom period of the late Eighties in London. ' ... this rare, rich play for today, which unites the serious and the comical in one dramatic swoop ... a contemporary satire upon the art market, the stinging dealers and wheelers. But in the course of 22 scenes you become aware there is more here than meets the lazy eye.' Evening Standard

Three Days of Rain

Drama. Richard Greenberg.
2 men, 1 woman. Unit Set

A year after he disappeared on the day of his father's funeral, Walker Janeway returns to New York. He takes up temporary residence in the unused space where 35 years earlier, his father Ned, and Ned's late partner Theo, both architects, lived and designed the great house that would make them fa-mous. Sleepless and emotionally jangled, Walker scours the old empty space for clues, evidences or keys to the tortured family history. Discovering his father's journal hidden under the bed, he finds it as unforthcoming as his nearly-silent father had been. Walker is joined by his sister, Nan, and their friend from childhood, Pip, Theo's son, to hear the reading of Ned's will. It' is there that Walker forces the confrontation that the others need. After an evening of harrowing and sometimes comically inadvertent revelations, Walker disappears once more. This time he returns later that evening with a surpris-ing, but to him, definitive solution to the family puzzle. We travel back to 1960, when Ned's journal begins. We meet the parents at the same age their children are in Act One: Ned, who seems very different from the cold monster the children conjured; the charismatic and putative genius, Theo; and Lena, Walker and Nan's mother, the delightful, troubled "Southern woman who admits to thirty." In the guise of a love story, we are offered all the information needed to devise an alternative reading of the sad, unexpectedly romantic family story.
ISBN: 0-8222-1676-0

Three Girls In Blue

(in Cinzano) - Ludmila Petrushevskaya. Trans S. Mulrine
6m 6f. Drama. Flexible staging.

In this realistic portrayal of what life is like for women in modern Russia, three Muscovite women 'do battle with daily problems - lack of money, overbearing mothers, errant husbands, dubious lovers and grizzling children ... but the play is a comedy, full of affection and absurd moments' Independent
ISBN 1 85459 106 1

Three Men on a Horse

Comedy: John Cecil Holm and George Abbott
11 men, 4 women. 3 Interiors.

Erwin Trowbridge sometimes chafes at suburban life, and at his rather uninspiring job of writing greeting card slogans for a boss who pays small wages. One day Erwin, fed up with his wife and brother-in-law, instead of going to the office, makes his way to a saloon, determined to declare his independence of home and business. There he falls in with two men and a girl whose "profession' is betting on the horses. Now Erwin's hobby is "doping" out the races and he becomes fabulously rich - on paper. He picks the right horses, but never once places a bet. He tells his new friends what horses to bet on, and to their astonishment, they win. Erwin will prove a gold mine if properly managed, and the three professionals decide to hold onto him for dear life. Though Erwin has misgivings, he is persuaded to remain with his new-found friends at a hotel and regularly dope out the races. But he becomes increasingly concerned about his job (which does really suit him) and his wife (who does really love him). Matters with Erwin and his companions come to a climax when one of them suspects him of double-crossing, and he insists on Erwin's betting on a horse to prove that he is straight. Erwin declares he will lose his power if he bets, and this is indeed what happens. Erwin's boss, wife and brother-in-law become worried, until they learn he is really interested in what he considers his lifework, the writing of verses. Erwin turns down an offer by an outside gambler who wants to buy a "slice" of him; he knows he will never again be able to pick winning horses; the poet in him predominates and he is happy to return home to his loving wife.
ISBN: 0-8222-1139-4

The Three Musketeers

Play. Willis Hall, from the novel by Alexandre Dumas
M19 F7, may be played by M13 F4. Extras. Various simple interior and exterior settings.

Willis Hall brings Dumas' swashbuckling tale to the stage in a lively, tongue-in-cheek version. D'Artagnan, a young Gascon, goes to Paris to join King Louis XIII's Musketeers, is befriended by three valiant members of that force, Athos, Porthos and Aramis, and shares their adventures, foiling the evil plans of Cardinal Richelieu and Milady de Winter to discredit Louis' wife, Anne.
ISBN 0 573 01909 6

Three Poets

Play. Romulus Linney
2 men, 3 women. Open Stage.

Three women who were astonishing poets are the subjects of this trio of linked short plays. Ono no Komachi (Japan, 9th century), Hrosvitha (Gandersheim, Saxony, 10th century), and Anna Akhmatova (USSR, 20th century) fight for their lives and their work in three brilliant plays first presented by the Theater for the New City in New York These three swift dramas are lyrical, literate, and exciting, together making an evening as enchanting as it is unusual. "...dramatizes the timeless tension between the physical and the political power of men and the spiritual and intellectual power of women." - 7 Days. "...ripples with poetic intensity ... in a time of repression, each artist survived as a secret genius ..." - NY Times. The Stories: Komachi duels with the Prince Shoso, making her verses out of their conflict, until she meets a brutal end. Hrosvitha has her play acted before Mother Superior and a censoring monk, who have a furious battle over her work and leave her to decide how dedicated a poet she is. Akhmatova is summoned to the Kremlin upon the death of Stalin and must resist the ruthless Commissar's search for the words of her masterpiece, which has been committed to her memory and to the memories of her trusted friends.
ISBN: 0-8222-1141-6

Three Rings For Michelle

Play. Patricia Joudry.
2 men, 3 women. Interior

Maud's husband left her long ago and died in some far-off place. She shares a barren, loveless home with her, son, Joe. Maud and Joe can't reach each other except to inflict pain. She nags Joe for his uselessness and for the emptiness which has opened up between them. Joe retreats behind his books, and into dreams. Lucinda is married to Maud's brother, and has son, Eddie, who is a successful and unprincipled lawyer. She calls on Maud and Joe each week. Between these two there is also a sense of alienàtion made greater by Eddies refusal to talk to his father, who is in prison. Into their midst comes Michelle. She is a gentle, other-worldly orphan, who calls Maud's long-lost husband "father," and believes that she has finally found her true home and family. Michelle has two rings - one from her mother and one from her father'. She seeks a third ring-from a friend. How she finds this, and how she brings hope to people who had known only despair is the real story, and meaning of the play. The lesson it teaches is warm with truth and understanding, and the way in which it is put forth constitutes an affecting and unique experience.

Three Sisters

Play. Anton Chekhov, in a revised English version by Jean-Claude van Itallie.
9 men, 5 women. 2 Interiors, 1 Exterior.

Trapped in a provincial Russian town after the death of their father, three sisters lament the passing of better times and long for the excitement of Moscow. One of them has married a local high school teacher; another has become a teacher herself the third has settled for a dull job in the local telegraph office. Their principal interest is focused on the officers of the local regiment, of which their father had been commandant, men who bring a sense of sophistication and the world outside to their stultified existence. Much of the action is concerned with the events of daily life: their brother's dull marriage; bitter-sweet flirtations with the regimental officers; and the gossip and restrictions of small town life. In the end the fateful pattern of their existence is made clear - their dreams will be denied but, despite all, there must always be hope, however futile, and the ways of the world are to be accepted, if not understood.
ISBN: 0-8222-1451-2

The Three Sisters

Play. Anton Chekhov, translated by Michael Frayn
M9 F5. A drawing-room and reception room, a bedroom, a garden.

This new translation of one of Chekhov's greatest dramas was premiered by the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, in 1985 and was again produced at the Greenwich Theatre in 1987, before transferring successfully to the Albery Theatre in London's West End. Michael Frayn's translation 'is full of those little liberties and intimacies of ordinary speech which override grammar and syntax and betray moods of ordinary people and the impulses of the heart.' Daily Telegraph

Three Sisters

Play. Anton Chekhov, translated by Brian Friel
M9 F5. A drawing-room and dining-room, a bedroom, a garden.

Brian Friel's translation was undertaken primarily as an act of love and, since the only Chekhov translations available to the Irish theatre at the time (1981) were American and English, in the hope that it might make the unique experience of Chekhov more accessible to Irish audiences. Here he presents brilliantly the social atmosphere, its characters' resolution to return to Moscow, their great passions and epiphanies, and their gradual self-realization.

Three Sisters

Anton Chekhov. Trans S. Mulrine
9m 5f. Classic comedy/drama. 2 interior, 1 exterior set.

Living in a provincial army barrack town, Olga, Masha and Irina are finding life dull, and long for the vitality of Moscow. Meanwhile, their brother's wife begins to take over their house and their lives ... Original first performed in 1901.
ISBN 1 85459 221 1

Three Sisters

Play Anton Chekhovt, translated by Lanford Wilson.
9 men, 5 women. 2 Interiors, 1 Exterior
ISBN: 0-8222-1144-0

The Three Sisters

Play. Anton Chekhov, translated by Robert Corrigan.
9 men, 5 women. Exterior: 2 Interiors.

Three Tall Women

Edward Àlbee : Drama
1M 3F Flexible staging

In Act One, a young lawyer, "C," has been sent to the home of a client, a 92-year-old woman, "A," to sort out her finances. "A," frail, perhaps a bit senile, resists and is of no help to "C." Along with "B," the old woman's matronly paid companion/caretaker, "C" tries to convince "A„ that she must concentrate on the matters at hand. In "As" beautifully appointed bedroom, she prods, discusses and bickers with "B" and "C," her captives. ".'\s" long life is laid out for display, no holds barred. She cascades from regal and charming to vicious and wretched as she wonders about and remembers her life: Her husband and their cold, passionless marriage; her son and, their estrangement. How did she become this? Who is she? Finally, when recounting her most painful memory, she suffers a stroke. In Act Two, Äs" comatose body lies in bed as "B" and "C" observe no changes in her condition. In a startling coup-de-theatre, "A" enters, very much alive and quite lucid. The three women are now the stages of Äs" life: the imperious old woman, the regal matron and the young woman of 26. Her life, memories and reminiscences-pondered in the first act-are now unceremoniously examined, questioned, accepted or not, but, at last, understood. In the end, her son arrives and kneels at her bedside, but it is too late.
ISBN: 0 8222 1420 2

Three Viewings

Play. Jeffrey Hatcher.
1 man, 2 women. Unit Set

Three comic/dramatic monologues set in a midwestern funeral parlor over a three-day Christmas weekend.

Tell-Tale is the story of Emil, the mildmannered undertaker whose unspoken passion for . a local real estate woman who comes to all his funerals leads him to commit crimes and plot a way to confess his true feelings before time - and bodies - run out. The Thief of Tears is Mac, a beautiful Los Angeles drifter, who makes her living stealing jewelry from corpses. When her wealthy grandmother dies, leaving her nothing, Mac returns to her hometown and attempts to pry loose her inheritance, a diamond ring her grandmother promised Mac when she was a child. Her attempt leads Mac to find there are more obstacles to getting the ring off grandma's finger than she had imagined, and more revelations about her own past than she had bargained for. Thirteen Things About Ed Carpolotti is the story of Virginia; the widow of a wheeler-dealer contractor, who discovers that her husband has left her in debt to the banks, her family, and the mob. As Virginia struggles to escape her creditors and understand how her husband could have left her in such pain and doubt, a mysterious list of "thirteen things" embarrassing to Ed is offered to her if she can come up with one million dollars in three days. Virginia doesrit have the money, but she does have hidden resources, and is saved by an unseen benefactor. As the play ends, Virginia's benefactor is revealed, along with what the mysterious "thirteen things" are - revelations that resurrect the love and trust thought lost forever.
ISBN: 0-8222-1494-6

Thriller of the Year

Play. Glyn Jones
F5 (middle-age, elderly). A lounge.

Gillian Howard is a successful writer whose latest book has been voted 'thriller of the year'. Returning from a celebration, accompanied by her publisher, Irene, she goes to the kitchen to make coffee. Suddenly the gas cooker explodes and Gillian enters, badly shaken. Her doctor is called but this is only the start of a series of events which leads to murder, as Gillian finds herself caught up in situations resembling those in her own books.
ISBN 0 573 03016 2

Thunder Rock

Play. Robert Ardrey. 8 men, 3 women. Interior

The action passes in a lighthouse on Lake Michigan. Charleston, the keeper, has taken a job there to flee from a detestable world. Opposing Charleston's pessimism, Streeter, his friend, says he is giving up his job to become an active member of society again. Streeter believes our world can be brought out of its chaos if people do something about it. Filled with this determination, he leaves to become an aviator. Charleston retreats further into a fantastic world of his own building. The people of this world are half a dozen of the 60 who were shipwrecked 90 years ago. Believing that "Mankind's got one future - in the past," Charleston breathes life into these creatures of his imagination. They live again on the stage. As he talks to them we see passengers as they really were, each seeking sanctuary from a disturbed Europe, running away from life, yet needing the same hope and strength as Charleston himself. Charleston's sincerity convinces these creatures that he really has the courage to lead his fellow men into a better world, and in this faith they are content to die again. Inspired by their confidence, the lighthouse-keeper returns to useful work, determined to create a new order out of the chaos of the old.
ISBN: 0-8222-1146-7

Thursday's Ladies

Play. Loleh Bellon, translated by Barbara Bray
M 1 (40) F3 (60). A living-room.

Every Thursday, Sonia, Hélène and Marie meet in Sonia's run-down Parisian apartment for tea in a long-standing ritual where they chat, upbraid and reminisce. The action centres on three Thursdays in the winter of 1975 where the loves, jealousies and fears of these early childhood friends are revealed in a series of touching sequences alternating between the present and past fifty-five years. The London production starred Eileen Atkins, Sian Phillips and Dorothy Tutin.
ISBN 0 573 01670 4


Play. Seneca, translated by Caryl Churchill
M8, 2M non-speaking. Various simple settings.

Taken directly from the Latin, Caryl Churchill's translation is accurate, uncut and faithful to the original.
Atreus is determined to wreak bloodthirsty revenge on his brother Thyestes, who seduced Atreus's wife and usurped his throne and is in exile with his three sons. Feigning reconciliation, Atreus invites them back. He slaughters the sons, serves their flesh to the unwitting father and then tells Thyestes he has eaten his own children.