Playwrights Canada Press

Playwrights Canada Press

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In the meantime, be sure to check out some recent author interviews and book reviews featured below.
 

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A review of The List by Jennifer Tremblay, translated by Shelley Tepperman in the Montreal Review of Books

 

 

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The Open Book: Toronto interview with Anusree Roy, author of Brothel #9 and Pyaasa & Letters to my Grandma
 

 

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The Open Book: Toronto interview with Trina Davies, author of The Romeo Initiative and Shatter
 

 

Xtra! interview with Ronnie Burkett, author of Penny Plain, Billy Twinkle, 10 Days on Earth, and String Quartet.

 
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Iphigenia and the Furies (On Taurian Land) & Antigone: “
Excerpt

The square swells with conflict
But for a dream like second
The Chorus speaks:

Note: This can be performed solo, by CHORUS 4
Or can be performed chorally, with each member of the chorus
(Minus Antigone or the Guard/Chorus 5)
Taking one line at a time.

Chorus
How strange is the world
How confusing
How clear
How incredible
How disappointing
How angry
How funny
How utterly strange is our world.

But compared to mankind . . .
Well,
The world sits back to
How confusing
How clear
How incredible
How disappointing
How angry
How funny
How utterly strange we humans are.

We fly through the skies
Sail through the seas
Conquer our lands
Inch by inch
As if the world belongs to us alone

The winged creatures that share our skies
We shoot them down and scream
THE SKY IS OURS

The fanged beasts that share our earth
We trap them and scream
THE LAND IS OURS

The fish, the sharks, the submerged entities
We take our nets, our knives, and scream
YOUR FLESH IS OURS

We, men, masters of animals
Of cities
Of countries
Of each other
Whipping through our tongues
Speaking like thunder to show just how smart we are
Flaunting our hair
Brushing our faces to show just how beautiful we are
We answer every unknown with an arrogance of
We know it all, we know it all
We know everything

But
Do we?
What happens afterwards?
After the fall?
After we disappear?

What happens when we die?

We vibrate between the law and our lives
Between being good and being bad
If man veers and stays with the good
Well.
Good for him.
But if man derails.
Finds himself warping his tongue
Into bitterness and anger.
Finds himself disappearing others
For the sake of his own appearances. Finds himself
A leader, leading us to the end instead of the light.
If man stays with evil.
Well.
Good for him.
He proves just how utterly strange we are.

close this panel
Interdependent Magic

Interdependent Magic

Disability Performance in Canada
edited by Jessica Watkin
edition:Paperback
More Info
Mortified
Excerpt

We hear a phone ringing as the Woman enters.

WOMAN
I need your help! I screwed up.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 4
Who are you?

WOMAN
Jesus!

GIRL
Relax!

WOMAN
Who are they?

GIRL
They’re, they’re my friends.

WOMAN
Well, I’ve never met them before.

GIRL
They usually disappear when you show up . . .

WOMAN
This isn’t good. I’m getting worse.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
Is she your mom?

WOMAN
No!

GIRL
She’s—

WOMAN
I’m her!

GIRL
But I’m not her.

WOMAN
(taken aback) You’re me.

GIRL
But I’m not you. Not yet. Thank god.

WOMAN
What the hell is this?

The Woman starts tearing down the cartoon penises.

GIRL
Hey!

The Girl steps in to gather up the drawings.

WOMAN
(to Girl) I did a bad thing.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 2
What did you do?

WOMAN
It’s none of your business!
(to the Girl) He’s going to call any minute.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 4
Who?

WOMAN
Nobody!!
(to Girl) It’s my fault—

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
Why is she lying?

WOMAN
What do I do?

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 2
What’s the secret?

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 4
Yeah.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
What did you do?

WOMAN
Shut the fuck up!

SYNCHRO SWIMMERS
(overlapping) Whoa. That is— I can’t believe you just said that . . . that is so . . . why would you say that?

WOMAN
(to Girl) I texted him.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
“Tested him?”

WOMAN
No, “texted.” I texted . . .

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
“Texted.”

WOMAN
It’s like leaving an e-mail—

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
E-mail?

WOMAN
Forget it. I “paged” him, okay? I told him that we should meet.

SYNCHRO SWIMMERS
Oooh . . .

WOMAN
It’s not like that.

The Woman’s phone vibrates.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 3
Oh my god, what is that?

She pulls it out of her back pocket.

What is that?

WOMAN
(to Girl) It’s him.

SYNCHRO SWIMMER 4
It’s a flashlight!

GIRL
Answer it!

WOMAN
What . . . ?

SYNCHRO SWIMMERS
Answer it!

WOMAN
I don’t want to.

The Synchro Swimmers grab at the phone, as the Woman attempts to evade them. “What is it?” “A computer?” “How do you answer it?” “It’s so tiny and flat? Somehow, in the scuffle, the phone is answered.

TY’S VOICE
Hello?

They all go dead quiet and listen to TY’s voice coming through the phone.

Princess? It’s Ty. You there?

GIRL
Yes. Say yes!

WOMAN
Yes. Hi.

TY’S VOICE
What you up to?

WOMAN
Uh, nothing. Just here with some, friends, or, (fading out) um . . .

TY’S VOICE
Hello?

WOMAN
Sorry, this feels a little weird.

TY’S VOICE
No kidding.

WOMAN
It’s been a long time.

TY’S VOICE
You haven't changed.

WOMAN
I still look thirteen?

TY’S VOICE
Nah . . . You’re still pretty.

The Synchro Swimmers shriek and giggle. A few follow the Woman offstage.

close this panel
Too Good to be True
Excerpt

lisa: So, if we live here, is he going back to school.

maria: Yes.

beat.

Eventually.

beat.

lisa: If he doesn’t go to school, everyone will think we’re inbred.

beat.

jude: How come only I have to go to school.
How come she doesn’t have to go back to school.

beat.

maria: Your sister’s gonna have a full-time job as a mom.

beat.

And also, she must take time to find healing.

beat.

Honey, after what you’ve been through, you can’t expect to-

lisa: So you’re going to homeschool him.

maria: Yes.

beat.

Homeschool.
Homeschool on the fly.

beat.

lisa: Is there an official paper you’re supposed to get.

maria: We don’t need some paper that shows how smart we are.

jude: Colleges might.

beat.

maria: Haven’t you been learning a lot.

beat.

All that history, at those national monuments.
All that math, calculating the miles to the next hotel.

beat.

I’ve taught you both how to drive.

beat.

You wouldn’t have learned that in fourth grade.

beat.

Now, for the first lesson, in the great, Maria Grace, homeschool experiment: living every day like it’s the last episode of the season.

beat.

jude: Whoa, awesome.
The last episode of the season is where the whole world almost falls apart but then he hero risks it all to save what he cares about most.

beat.

maria: That’s right.

beat.

maria: I’ve still got a few more tricks to show you.
Then we’ll go back to school.

beat.

jude: I have a question I’ve been meaning to ask you.

beat.

maria: Let the homeschooling begin.

beat.

jude: What’s a fugitive.

beat.

beat.

beat.

maria: A fugitive is someone who wants to clear their name.

beat.

jude: That’s not what she said.
She said a fugitive is someone who everyone is chasing because they want to know all about you.

beat.

lisa: That’s celebrities . . . not fugitives.

beat.

jude: What’s the difference between fugitives and celebrities?

beat.

maria: Public opinion.

beat.

jude: Hmm . . .

beat.

lisa: Mom, I need to know, no kidding: is this our—

maria: Yes.
Why do you keep asking me that.

lisa: It just seems . . .
Doesn’t it.

jude: What.

beat.

lisa: A little too good to be true.

beat.

jude: nope.

beat.

maria: Honey, nothing is too good for you.

beat.

maria: Now grab the rest of your stuff.

Rock music.

jude exits.

lisa exits.

maria exits.

close this panel
Wasp
Excerpt

ISAAC.
So what are you going to do?

WASP.
The same thing as I did before. Whiskey, cigarettes, secret ingredient—

ISAAC.
Not answering my phone calls.

WASP.
You deleted my number, remember?

ISAAC.
I lied. Still got it.

WASP.
I mean up until today I didn’t really think you’d be calling me anyways.

ISAAC.
Does James know?

WASP.
No.

ISAAC.
How is that even possible? He was in the same grade as us.

WASP.
She. Isaac. And . . . I don’t know. Janey’s forgetful. I lied.

ISAAC.
You lied about your birthday?

WASP.
She thinks it’s later in the year. I don’t really make a habit of sharing the information.

ISAAC.
Damn, you really like to go it alone.

WASP.
I can take care of myself. You should try it sometime.

ISAAC.
Yeah yeah whatever, Wasp. Don’t pretend like you didn’t miss me a little bit.

Wasp, ignoring him.

WASP.
I did it before. I’ll do it again. What more is there to know?

ISAAC.
It’s not the same. When they take you. It’s not the same thing. For one, they’ll expect you to be at the Altar.

WASP.
I’m gonna do it in the forest.

ISAAC.
They’ll go looking for you. The Reverend will definitely be on the prowl.

WASP.
Right, lest we forget your father-in-law the raccoon killer.

ISAAC.
Not just raccoons.

WASP.
I’ll take my chances. I’ll hide. I’m good at hiding.

Isaac gives them a look.

I am!

ISAAC.
Okay, so what if you can’t do it?

WASP.
If I have hands and a bottle of Coke, I can do it.

ISAAC.
Well what if they cut your hands off?

WASP.
What, the angels are going to come down, rape me and then cut my hands off? Pull my tongue out while they’re at it so I can’t scream?

ISAAC.
I’m just saying—what if you get incapacitated and then you can’t help yourself.

Wasp is silent.

You have to have a backup plan. You have to have . . . support. You know the story about the girl who didn’t go to The Altar. Well?

WASP.
Ah yes, the classic tale of the dumb bitch who didn’t do the ceremonial bath, who didn’t pluck her pubes for God, who didn’t do shit!

ISAAC.
Yeah. Sound familiar?

Wasp, intoning.

WASP.
The girl hid in the birch tree forest, and from the bright blue sky, the heavenly host flew down and through her like golden bullets of rape. Buzz buzz buzz. And being raped hurt so much that she had a change of heart! Maybe the cult was right all along! She staggered back into town and tried to get help at the Altar. She asked the Reverend for medical attention and he said, “You might be a child of God, but you chose to be a dumb whore! Pay for your sin!”

ISAAC.
He really has a way with words.

WASP.
So she waited in the parking lot for him to change his mind. She had no other options. And while she waited, the angel baby ate her from the inside out. No help came, so she bled out in the parking lot. And the cult came out as she was dying, collected the baby and then went back inside. And she was dead. The end.
A classic tale of the mistakes women make when they’re trying to maintain their bodily autonomy.

ISAAC.
Well what if she’d had a friend.

WASP.
I’m sure she had lots of friends, Isaac.

ISAAC.
Well what if she had a friend to do an abortion for her.

WASP.
That friend would be in just as much danger as her.

ISAAC.
Well what if the friend had special privileges because he was banging the Reverend’s daughter.

WASP.
I don’t think that’s a privilege, Isaac.

ISAAC.
I-I want to see it happen. I want to be there.

WASP.
So go ask Caroline. I’m sure she’d be more than happy to have you in the viewing room at the Altar. You’d probably get a reserved seat for “boyfriend of the sacrificial not-so-virgin.”

close this panel
Do This In Memory of Me
Excerpt

GENEVIEVE: Dear Lord: thanks for all the help! Sorry. But come on!

I don’t want to tell you what to do, but could you maybe appear to Father Paul in a vision? Or leave him a note? Or . . . I’m sure you have some better ideas.

Or maybe I could perform a miracle. Just a small one, nothing too flashy. Just something that would show everyone, but particularly Father Paul that you’re on my side about this. Maybe levitation?

I’ll let you decide. Thy will be done, amen.

A young man appears, looking to be about 14 or so, dressed in something that suggests “4th Century Rome.” A halo would be great. He is ST. PANCRAS OF ROME.

ST. PANCRAS: Genevieve!

GENEVIEVE thinks God Himself has answered her.

GENEVIEVE: . . . Lord?

ST. PANCRAS: Genevieve!

GENEVIEVE: You’re here! Of course, you’re everywhere, but . . . I’m going to get Father Paul. Don’t go anywhere.

She is about to leave when ST. PANCRAS speaks again, somewhat impatiently.

ST. PANCRAS: Behind you!

She turns around and is startled to see him.

GENEVIEVE: Oh!

ST. PANCRAS: Oh yourself.

GENEVIEVE: Who are you?

ST. PANCRAS: Ha ha, very funny.

GENEVIEVE: No, who are you?

ST. PANCRAS: Isn’t it obvious?

GENEVIEVE: No.

ST. PANCRAS: You don’t recognize me from a stained glass window or maybe a prayer card . . . ?

GENEVIEVE: Um . . .

ST. PANCRAS: I am Pancras of Rome.

GENEVIEVE: Who?

ST. PANCRAS: Pancras of Rome. Saint Pancras of Rome? The patron saint of children?

GENEVIEVE: I thought Saint Nicholas was the patron saint of children.

ST. PANCRAS: There are enough children in the world to have more than one patron. But since you asked, I also look after jobs, health, cramps, false witnesses, headaches and perjury.

GENEVIEVE: That’s a lot of things.

ST. PANCRAS: Thank you.

GENEVIEVE: Are you a virgin martyr?

ST. PANCRAS: We just say “martyr”.

GENEVIEVE: So you’re not—

ST. PANCRAS: Well aren’t you nosy? In fact, I am. But with men it’s not necessary to specify. It’s just implied. So how can I help you?

GENEVIEVE: I’m not sure.

ST. PANCRAS: Well you called for intercession, didn’t you? I’m here to intercede.

GENEVIEVE: With Father Paul?

ST. PANCRAS: With God.

GENEVIEVE: Really?

ST. PANCRAS: Really.

GENEVIEVE: Can’t I just ask Him directly?

ST. PANCRAS: Sometimes you need someone to put in a good word for you. Besides, maybe I can even help you myself.

GENEVIEVE: I...

ST. PANCRAS: Yes?

GENEVIEVE: It’s just that . . .

ST. PANCRAS: Yes, speak up.

GENEVIEVE: I want to be an altar server.

ST. PANCRAS: And?

GENEVIEVE: Girls aren’t allowed.

ST. PANCRAS: Yes. And?

GENEVIEVE: And I want to change the rule.

ST. PANCRAS: Oh. That’s it?

GENEVIEVE: What do you mean that’s it?

ST. PANCRAS: Well, that’s easy.

GENEVIEVE: It is?

ST. PANCRAS: You can’t.

Beat.

GENEVIEVE: But you didn’t even try!

ST. PANCRAS: I’m going to give you a valuable piece of advice: Pick your battles.

GENEVIEVE: Just give up? What kind of advice is that?

ST. PANCRAS: Do you know how I was martyred?

GENEVIEVE: I’ve never even heard of you.

ST. PANCRAS: And it’s so kind of you to keep reminding me. I was beheaded.

He puts his hands on his head as if he were about to remove it.

Want to see?

GENEVIEVE: No!

ST. PANCRAS: Fine. But it was because I refused to give up my faith. You know, my head, my actual head is underneath a basilica that’s named after me.

GENEVIEVE: Really.

ST. PANCRAS: Yes, really! You’re not even a little impressed? I’m sure you have several basilicas named after you!

GENEVIEVE: It’s not that—

ST. PANCRAS: I am very popular in Europe.

GENEVIEVE: Maybe I should talk to someone else.

ST. PANCRAS: You don’t get to choose! And you don’t get to change things to suit yourself.

GENEVIEVE: It’s a silly rule.

ST. PANCRAS: But it’s still a rule.

GENEVIEVE: I want to ring the bells. And carry the wine.

ST. PANCRAS: Can’t you just—

GENEVIEVE: Don’t say Ladies’ Auxiliary.

ST. PANCRAS: Become a nun?

GENEVIEVE: I’m twelve.

ST. PANCRAS: I’m fourteen. And look where I am.

GENEVIEVE: I don’t think you’re supposed to rub it in people’s faces. And it doesn’t have to be a change. Just an exception.

ST. PANCRAS: You think you’re worthy of an exception?

GENEVIEVE: . . . Yes.

ST. PANCRAS: Really.

GENEVIEVE: Yes.

ST. PANCRAS: Fine. I’ll ask for an exception. But I can’t guarantee what the answer will be.

GENEVIEVE: Thank you!

ST. PANCRAS: Exceptions are very rare.

GENEVIEVE: When will you find out?

ST. PANCRAS: I’ll let you know when I hear.

GENEVIEVE: Should I wait here?

ST. PANCRAS: You don’t have to wait here. I can find you anywhere.

GENEVIEVE: Really?

ST. PANCRAS: Trust me.

GENEVIEVE: I’ll wait here.

ST. PANCRAS: Go home to your father and brothers. And wait for a sign.

GENEVIEVE: How will I know when—

ST. PANCRAS: It’ll be a big one.

GENEVIEVE: Okay.

ST. PANCRAS: Anything else?

GENEVIEVE: Do you know anything about missing people?

close this panel
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