TCR Talks with Mart Kivastik

BY: KaiA GALLAGHER

For a small country of 1.3 million people, Estonia has a rich and long-standing literary tradition based on centuries of folklore and lyric poems. The country is located on the Baltic Sea to the south of Finland and shares its eastern border with Russia.

At the end of World War II, Estonia was occupied by the Soviet Union, forcing many of the country’s authors and playwrights into exile. A select few remained in Estonia but found themselves constrained by Soviet censorship.

Splinter (Excerpt)

BY: KAYLA HAMBEK

CHARACTERS:

REBECCA HELLER (30 years old.  Middle daughter, has anxiety.)

CATHERINE HELLER (50s/60s.  Mother.)

JACK HELLER (32 years old.  Oldest son, deadbeat “entrepreneur” living in Catherine’s basement.)

AUDREY HELLER (27 years old.  Youngest daughter, incredibly reliant on her boyfriend.)

KEITH BECKER (Late 20s-30s.  Audrey’s boyfriend.)

SETTING: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

TCR Talks with Min Kahng

By Grace Jasmine

 

Min Kahng is an inspiring and inclusive force in the San Francisco Bay area theater scene. The world premiere of his most recent play, The Four Immigrants (based on the historical, groundbreaking manga panel-drawn comic strip by Henry Kiyama), premiered at the innovative TheatreWorks, Silicon Valley, and won the Theatre Bay Area Award for Outstanding Original Musical, the Edgerton New Play Award, and an NAMT Production Grant. The Four Immigrants chronicles the lives of four Japanese students as they immigrate to the California bay area.  Kahng has also been the recipient of the Titan Award for Playwrights.

KICKING: A Coming-of-Age Tale of Two Fetuses

By Karina Cochran

 

CHARACTERS:

HAROLD (any age, any gender)

FRANK (any age, any gender)

(the names Harold & Frank are placeholders; they never say each other’s names)

SETTING: A small space (chairs, pillows, blocks) all pink, representing a womb.

 

(HAROLD and FRANK sit in two chairs next to each other. Harold is sitting on top of a chair, his feet resting on the seat. Frank is sitting in the chair with his feet solidly on the ground. Harold is slightly hunched, reaching toward Frank’s body. Frank is leaning over the chair against Harold’s legs. They are each entangled in pink ropes, surrounded and holding pink cushions.)

TCR Talks with James Comtois

BY A.E. Santana

James Comtois has long been a fan of horror and is a skilled and adventurous storyteller, writing dramatic, thoughtful, and frightening onstage scenes. As the cofounder and co-artistic director of New York–based theater company Nosedive Productions, where he also served as resident playwright, Comtois was involved with creating original and fantastically bizarre plays. He has produced more than twenty plays, including the award-winning titles The Awaited Visit and Mayonnaise Sandwiches. He is an accomplished reporter and reviewer.

Just in time for Halloween, The Coachella Review talks with Comtois on horror, crafting scripts in this genre, and his experience writing the acclaimed vampire play, The Little One.

Kennedy’s Acolytes

by Jack Gilhooley

It’s the evening of November 22, 1963, in rural Ireland. Three mid-teenage girls grapple with the news that U.S. president John F. Kennedy has just been assassinated.

CHARACTERS: Deirdre, Moira, and Eileen all speak with a brogue
PLACE: A basically empty town square (A bench? A streetlamp?). There’s a shabby sign reading “Doyle’s Public House” inconspicuously situated far left or right. The pub itself is offstage.
TIME: Evening, Nov. 22, 1963.

Deirdre and Moira are heavily dressed. Each carries an unlit flashlight (“torch”).

Jared Sampson’s Mom

 by Dallas Woodburn

CHARACTERS (in order of appearance)

GRACE:A college student and the play’s main character/narrator                 YOUNG JARED SAMPSON: A typical eighth-grade boy—not a dork, but not particularly cool either.
JASMINE:Grace’s roommate, also a college student. Self-absorbed and showy.
SASHA:Grace’s roommate. An art student in college.
JARED SAMPSON’S MOM:An attractive, pleasant middle-aged woman wearing bright red lipstick and flower-patterned capri pants.
YOUNG HENRIETTA:Grace’s best friend in eighth grade.
YOUNG GRACE:A typical eighth-grade girl—pretty, well-liked, but not one of the fashionable popular girls.
YOUNG JARED’S FRIENDS:Two or thre eighth-grade boys.
SCOTT:A college student. Grace’s boyfriend.
BECKY:A college student. Scott’s friend. Pretty and flirtatious.

SETTING:An apartment shared by three college girls. Center stage is a couch, perhaps also a coffee table littered with magazines, textbooks, empty water glasses, an empty take-out container or two. The apartment is not filthy but has a lived-in feeling to it.

Partner Of —

 By Rachael Carnes

CHARACTERS

SALLY (Born Sarah) — 14 years old.

ELIZABETH (Called “Betty”) — Sarah’s mother.

SUSANNA — Sarah’s grandmother, a ghost.

(These three women should be played by African-American performers.)

SETTING: Underneath Monticello, in the mansion’s south wing — In a cold, windowless room laid with plaster and brick.

TIME:  2018 and 1787

Poetic Statement

By: Remi Recchia

Cast of Characters:

REMI #1, 22, male, an alcoholic writer. REMI #1 should not be wearing shoes.

REMI #2, 22, male, an alcoholic writer. REMI #2 should wear a ridiculously large black beret.

REMI #3, 22, male, an alcoholic writer. REMI #3 should carry an outrageously pretentious pipe and an enormous lighter.

REMI #4, 22, male, an alcoholic writer. REMI #4 should not exist.

All four characters should wear matching nametags without numbers throughout the play. All four characters should also be holding amber bottles.

Time and Place:    Nowhere in no place. Never in the present.

The Dome

A monologue
By: Scott T. Starbuck

The rock where the scene takes place is before a backdrop of Biosphere II in Oracle, Arizona.  Cactus and sage props give the illusion of a natural desert setting. Dawn is breaking. There is a light breeze. A large live lizard stands before the rock.  The entire scene is addressed to the lizard with only short moments of reflection, or gestures toward The Dome. The speaker is a Yakima Elder, with a small flask, who decided to die instead of entering The Dome with his tribe.

I already know I won’t go in.  I know I’ll die out here. Survival may be the greatest form of justice; and greed, the greatest evil. Right now, I’m fighting for the survival of my soul, gazing as deeply into the ancestral waters as I can.  Honoring what’s there in my pinhole of light in the universe.  It’s the best I can do.