35 Original Dramatic Plays for Two Females (Forensics Duo Series)

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Overview

"This collection is ideal for a coach or competitor looking for a play with little to no cutting required to stay under ten minutes."Ken Young, Duo Coordinator, Bradley University, Peoria, IL
". . . a must-buy for all high school speech coaches."
Dr. Daniel Cronn-Mills, Prof. and Chair, Speech
Communication Dept., Minnesota State University
Great New Dramatic Plays for Female Pairs* 35 original dramatic ...
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Overview

"This collection is ideal for a coach or competitor looking for a play with little to no cutting required to stay under ten minutes."Ken Young, Duo Coordinator, Bradley University, Peoria, IL
". . . a must-buy for all high school speech coaches."
Dr. Daniel Cronn-Mills, Prof. and Chair, Speech
Communication Dept., Minnesota State University
Great New Dramatic Plays for Female Pairs* 35 original dramatic plays, written especially for forensics duo competition
* Exciting, contemporary material for student performers, from middle school through college
* A wide range of characters in situations that actresses and duo interpreters will want to jump into
* Active and complete plays that give equal weight to both performers
* All can be performed without props, with full or minimal blocking, and within the eight- to ten-minute time limit
* Brief synopses introduce each play, and an index by character age is included
* A practical tips section offers advice from coaches and judges on how to improve your presentation"An indispensable and invaluable resource for forensic coaches and students. The two-female play is the most difficult of all forms to find." Dr. Daniel Cronn-Mills, Prof. and Chair, Speech Communication Dept., Minnesota State University"What sets this book apart is that the scripts were written for forensics performance. Each script is a ready-made cutting with a beginning and ending point and linear progression of events in between. There are so many scripts contained in this book, the authors were able to encapsulate a complete array of emotions felt in various types of female relationships. The pieces are of strong social and emotional significance; this empowers young women to assert interpretations and performances reflective of their own beliefs and core values."
Mark Rittenour, J.D., Director of Forensics, University of Akron"The women in these scenes are both passionate and vulnerable; their emotional journeys and complex circumstances will give the interpreter plenty to explore. The authors clearly care for the women they've created in these pages, and you will too." Steven Spraragen, Associate Director, Playwrights Horizons Theater School, Affiliate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, Department of Drama, New York, NY.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781575254074
  • Publisher: Smith & Kraus, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/28/2005
  • Series: Forensics Duo Series
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.95 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction vii
Tips from the Pros xi
Prison Guards
Wing and a Prayer
Entanglements of Ivy
Broken
Writing Circles
Extenuating Circumstances
Moving Day
Inheritance
Always Have England
House-Proud
In Quiet Dark Places
Below Expectations
The Mating Habits of Frogs
Collisions
Twin Towers
Apple & Absinth Together
Not Everyone Sees It
My Invisible Angel
Out in the Woods
The Diversity Project
The Good Son
Hanging by a Thread
Friendly Advice
Swimming in the Colored Lights
Shrinking
Once Upon a Time in New Jersey
The Soul Mates' Café.
The New Year's Song
Third Person
Rereading Lost Horizons
Night Daughter
A Little Initiation
United Front
Tarnished
Lifting Voices
Index of Plays by Character Age
The Authors
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Introduction

As a former Forensics competitor and now a freelance judge, I have observed that the interpretative categories (poetry, prose, dramatic and humorous interp, duo) tend to be female-heavy. I don't see that as a problem, and it's certainly not because coaches aren't encouraging all of their students, female and male, to try out various categories; it's just fascinating to note. There are a number of reasons for females to be drawn to these interpretative events. Young women are often attracted to opportunities to communicate their feelings, to put across their emotions more than young men. Now whether this is innate or due to societal pressure, I don't know, but whatever the reasons, it's unmistakably noticeable that when I judge poetry, the guys are definitely in the minority.As a high school competitor in the female-dominated categories of interp, or interpretation, I was often in search of new and unique material for myself. I usually had no problem finding poetry and dramatic or comedic interp material, but when it came to the duo category, I was at a loss. I attended an all-girls high school-putting hefty limitations on my duo pairing possibilities. Now, it's not that there wasn't a wealth of plays written with one strong, dynamic female character, but for some reason finding two equally matched, dynamic female characters in the same scene, well, that was nearly impossible. Add to the search criteria that I wanted to find characters that were close to my age range or at least material that spoke to me as a teenager, and I was sunk.In the last ten years, female playwrights have emerged on the theater scene like never before. And because of that, it is easier to find Forensic duo material for two young women-easier, but not easy. That's the feedback I hear from coaches and students competing. So when Janet brought Ira and me on board with the Forensic series and asked us to write the books of plays for female pairs, you can imagine how thrilled I was to be part of it. Finally, a collection of plays devoted to two female characters. What stories I would be able to tell! Women are energized by the relationships they have with other women. Maybe it's because women have a tendency to be more social and outwardly expressive creatures than men. Maybe women are also given more permission to demonstrate our intimacy. It's certainly not that women's relationships with men are less important, but with other women they more clearly hear and see themselves. With other women, they find sympathy, mourn collectively, uncover strength and reach out for needed support to make changes in their lives. It's for these reasons that I could not wait to dig in and get writing these plays.In this book, especially, even more than the comedic book, I wanted to write about the relationships that shape female lives-absorbing, intimate, powerful relationships that women have with other women. We started with the most cherished bonds-sisters, mothers, daughters, best friends and moved through the spectrum of possibilities. The source of inspiration for these pieces varied-sometimes Ira or I ripped the story straight from the headlines; other times it came from our personal lives. Whichever the case, it was our intention to make the characters well-rounded, fascinating, unique, and truthful. It was also our intention to make the stories accessible to young women. And I don't mean by making the material trivial or even youthful, but by dramatizing issues that are present in the newspapers of today-competition for college admission, racial and social animosity, twisted club initiations, prison brutality, and war-subjects not typically covered in "women's" plays.In the following pages, I believe you will find plenty of strong, captivating female characters-characters you recognize and relationships, though set under extreme circumstances, that I trust you will understand. It was Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a nineteenth-century women's rights leader, who once wrote, "I would have girls regard themselves not as adjectives but as nouns." In these plays, we have done our best to make the female characters the nouns and perhaps even the verbs too. I hope you enjoy reading and competing with them. I know when you find one you connect with, it will serve you well. Like Martha, from the last play in the book, Lifting Voices, says "Let the voices of the powerful women you respect and have read about and listened to at conventions talk to your heart now. Quiet the voices of common women in hat shops and a mother beaten down by terrible circumstance. You will not fail, Anna. I am certain beyond anything I've ever been certain about in my entire life."
Barbara Lhota
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Foreword

This volume extends our Forensics Series to four. Other volumes available are:     Forensics Duo Series Volume I: 35 8- to 10-Minute Original Comedic
    Plays for Duo Practice and Performance, ISBN 1-57525-308-9, $14.95, 304 pgs.
    Forensics Duo Series Volume II: 35 8- to 10-Minute Original Dramatic
    Plays for Duo Practice and Performance, ISBN 1-57525-309-7, $14.95, 303 pgs.
    Forensics Duo Series Volume III: 35 8- to 10-Minute Original Comedic Plays for Two Females, ISBN 1-57525-380-1, $14.95, 361 pgs.This series is specifically crafted to meet the needs of more than 200,000 middle school, high school, and college students competing in Forensics duo speech events yearly. These exciting short plays offer challenging new material for pairs of female actors. Forensics coaches, acting teachers, judges, and students alike will find dozens of comedic and dramatic plays that meet their criteria and tastes. Each volume provides thirty-five fresh and compelling short new plays written for pairs of female actors.
Each play can be edited to fit the 8- to 10-minute competition time limit.
Each play is active and complete on its own.
Each volume offers plays suitable for student actors from middle school through college (ages 13-22).
No play relies heavily on props or costumes.
Every play gives equal time and focus to both characters.
The plays are stylistically diverse, so actors and coaches can find material that is just right for them emotionally and aesthetically.
Interesting and unusual character types of all ages are represented.
Each play opens with a synopsis designed to make it easy to find the right material.
A "Tips from the Pros" section offers helpful hints from coaches and judges on improving presentations.
Plays are indexed by character age.These exciting volumes of new two-female plays will find a home in academic and professional theater classes and on every actor's professional bookshelf. They are ideal for scene work and forensic performance. What's more, these plays open up new possibilities for one-act play festivals and competitions. This is the series the Forensics community has been waiting for!
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