4 comments on “Everything Is Already Something Week 52: Plays By Women To Read Right Now

  1. sftheaterpub says:

    Stuart here! Marissa and I were just discussing how we love lists that are personal lists, rather than “Best of!” or “Who you should read!” etc. Here’s my own personal list of six plays I love, written by women.

    1) ‘Night Mother, by Marsha Norman. This is my second favorite play of all time, and the first non-musical play I can remember seeing. Made a lasting impression on me and taught me early on that high stakes and honest character interactions can make even the simplest, smallest of plays riveting. And hey, it won the Pulitzer Prize!

    2) The Secret Garden, by Marsha Norman and Lucy Simon. My second favorite musical, I saw it twice on Broadway, and it’s been on my bucket list to direct for years. Beautiful, haunting music and excellent lyrics. The story is heartbreaking- lost little girl learns to open her heart to the world and is eventually able to find her place in it after she works to reunite an estranged father and son. The finale brings tears to my eyes, every time.

    3) Our Country’s Good, by Timberlake Wertenbaker. We studied this my freshman year of college, and it’s been on my bucket list to direct ever since. Really cool show, about a group of convicts in an Australian penal colony putting on a play. Great characters for both men and women, and a really loose staging style that offers a lot of directorial and casting freedom, which I always think is awesome.

    4) The Baltimore Waltz, by Paula Vogel. I was in this in college (played Carl) and it was one of the best theater experiences I’ve ever had as an actor. Touching story, imaginative and funny script, and it helped me come to terms with a lot of my own feelings as a gay man living in a time that was pretty scary for gay guys.

    5) Crumble; Lay Me Down Justin Timberlake, by Sheila Callaghan. I just discovered this play when Bigger than A Breadbox did it a couple of years ago, but I really love it. A House that is alive, narrating the story, and trying to kill the main characters? I love it. Give me more. Also, excellent exploration of how we cope with stress and grief, and how it changes (and stays the same) from generation to generation.

    6) You’re Going To Bleed by Melissa Fall. Still one of the best plays to come out of the Olympians Festival, in my opinion, so tightly woven and funny, so scary and irreverent and critical and nasty and unafraid and raw. And fun. Just plain fun.

  2. Unfortunately, Bob Kane had about as much to do with creating what we know as Batman as you did,

  3. miltonpat says:

    My list:

    The Nether, Jennifer Haley. Part interrogation, part Alice in Wonderland, part use of the internet to vicariously kill little children.

    Detroit, Lisa D’Amour. Two couples run amok in a post-crash US.

    Chimerica, Lucy Kirkwood. A search for the Tank Man of Tienanmen Square many years later.
    Also enjoyed Kirkwood’s play, NSFW, set in the offices of a “lad mag.”

    This, Melissa James Gibson. Friendship, grief, having a baby. Set mostly in a New York living room, but I forgive her.

    The Village Bike, Penelope Skinner. The adventures of haplessly horny pregnant woman. Sly and witty.

    Blasted, Sarah Kane. The Daily Mail called it “this disgusting feast of filth.”

  4. Allison says:

    Update: I just finished The Flick and I’m pretty obsessed with it. Somewhere (I think on the back of the book) it’s described as a “micro-epic” and I completely agree with that.
    It captures so much of what it’s like to be that age, and in the space of job and not career. And not knowing how long you’ll be hammering away at that. Possibly forever. And not knowing who you are and if you’ll always be the way you are right now.

    I kind of want to kiss it.

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