Theresa Rebeck Volume III: The Complete Short Plays 1989-2005

Overview

In the theater community, Theresa is known as a generous artist who has contributed blistering short work for many of the programs mentioned earlier. Theresa has said that short plays should be just as fulfilling, challenging, and complex as longer pieces. The work in this volume clearly demonstrates her belief. For the first time, Theresa's short plays are published as a single collection. It is very exciting that this work is now available to future generations of actors, directors, and theater companies. The ...
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Overview

In the theater community, Theresa is known as a generous artist who has contributed blistering short work for many of the programs mentioned earlier. Theresa has said that short plays should be just as fulfilling, challenging, and complex as longer pieces. The work in this volume clearly demonstrates her belief. For the first time, Theresa's short plays are published as a single collection. It is very exciting that this work is now available to future generations of actors, directors, and theater companies. The collection reveals a mind carefully attuned to the rhythms of our society and a deep understanding of the personal obstacles individuals face. I have no doubt that these plays will become the staple of acting classes across the country. I am also certain that I will hear these pieces in auditions for years to come.
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Editorial Reviews

New England Theatre Journal
It is refreshing to read the work of a feisty writer like Rebeck . . . a ferocious wit and sense of rhythm . . . [she] writes with style, purpose and more than a little humor about contemporary American women.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781575254470
  • Publisher: Smith & Kraus, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/1/2007
  • Series: Plays for Actors Ser.
  • Edition description: Rev.
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 962,574
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.51 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Meet the Author

Theresa Rebeck
Theresa Rebeck's most recent work includes her play MAURITIUS, opens October 4th at the Biltmore Theater on Broadway. The play is a darkly funny story about two half-sisters who come in conflict over a book of rare, potentially priceless postage stamps. Theresa's new novel, Three Girls and Her Brother, is being brought out by Random house in the United States and HarperCollins in England, in March of 2008. The world premiere of her play, OUR HOUSE, is opening the Denver Center Theatre's New Play Summit in January of 2008. Rebeck's many other plays include Bad Dates, Spike Heels, The Water's Edge, and The Scene, which will be presented this season in New York at Second Stage, also directed by Taichman. Her work has been widely produced both regionally and internationally.
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Table of Contents

Introduction

What We're Up Against
Katie and Frank
The Contract
Sex with the Censor
Great to See You
The Actress
Funeral Play
Train to Brooklyn
How We Get to Where We're Going
Does This Woman Have a Name?
Walk
Big Mistake
Drinking Problem
Candy Heart
Aftermath
Art Appreciation
Josephina
The First Day
Off Base
Mary, Mother of God, Intercede for Us
Deliver Me
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Introduction

For the contemporary playwright, short plays too often become the forgotten jewels of a body of work. How ironic, then, that short plays have countless opportunities to be created for today's theater. Some are written "on demand" for wild events like New York's "The 24 Hour Plays" where, as the name suggests, new short plays are created, cast, and staged within one day. Others are solicited by contests like the Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville, Kentucky. Still others are submitted to theaters across the country for showcases of hot playwrights. And while this output is sometimes anthologized, it is too often lost in the capricious stream of a culture that perpetually demands something new.

I've been fortunate to personally know Theresa Rebeck for many years. But I have known of her by reputation for even longer. As a fellow graduate of Brandeis University, I heard of the "savagely funny" Theresa before I read one of her plays or before she found the success she has justifiably earned. Her presence permeated the campus even though we were in different programs (and separated by a few years). Such is the indelible impression Theresa always makes. Her vision is both unique and universal, her writing is ferocious, and her work - as I can now personally attest - is "savagely funny."

Working in the professional theater I've found a new way that Theresa's work surrounds me. Each season I sit through long days of open auditions where actors bring in their favorite monologues. Fifteen or so years ago, young actors favored Lanford Wilson, Wendy Wasserstein, Chris Durang, and Beth Henley. And while these contemporary writers have remained perennial favorites, I've noticeda marked change in the material actors select. Now, my days are filled with a procession of the plays of Theresa Rebeck: Loose Knit, Family of Mann, and Spike Heels, to name a few. Many actors, so eager to embrace her writing, often seek out her plays before they are even published; recently, I listened to several monologues from The Water's Edge several months before it was produced by Second Stage Theatre. It is usually women who prepare these monologues because Theresa has become cherished as a writer who creates strong, visceral, and unforgettable women's roles. As anyone familiar with her work could tell you, Theresa's writing is just as fascinating and compelling for men, and this collection of short plays is no exception.

In the theater community, Theresa is known as a generous artist who has contributed blistering short work for many of the programs mentioned earlier. Theresa has said that short plays should be just as fulfilling, challenging, and complex as longer pieces. The work in this volume clearly demonstrates her belief. For the first time, Theresa's short plays are published as a single collection. It is very exciting that this work is now available to future generations of actors, directors, and theater companies. The collection reveals a mind carefully attuned to the rhythms of our society and a deep understanding of the personal obstacles individuals face. I have no doubt that these plays will become the staple of acting classes across the country. I am also certain that I will hear these pieces in auditions for years to come.

Christopher Burney
Associate Artistic Director
Second Stage Theatre

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