Short synopses of my full-length plays: (click on the titles for more detail)
1m, 3 w
In the aftermath of a deadly pesticide drift, two very different families on very different farms struggle to overcome overwhelming loss of life, land, and love. Can they find a way to move forward, or will the force of their grief shatter them completely?
A love story. 1m, 1 w
Mika and Jake live on the margins of society, earning a slim living as test subjects in medical and psychological experiments. With Mika’s fiery outbursts and Jake’s extreme shyness, they seem like an unlikely pair, but as they get to know each other in medical waiting rooms they develop a friendship and romance that starts to ease their painful isolation. Lab Rats brings a fun theatricality to the lives of two people desperate to find a hand to hold on to through the twisting maze of life.
Drama. 3m, 3w
Dante and Peter are workers in the gig economy, lining up jobs to assemble IKEA furniture through the Chore Monkey web service. Dante, who is black, is forced to use his white friend to get him assignments. As they navigate the pressures of white privilege and racism, their relationship is torn apart by resentment and greed.
Lost in Lexicon
Children’s musical. Music and Lyrics by Todd Bearson. Based on the novel by Penny Noyce
Middle-school. Roles for 12-39 actors.
When thirteen-year-old cousins Ivan and Daphne go on a treasure hunt in the rain one summer day, they never expect to stumble into a whole new world where words and numbers run wild.
Blood on the Snow
Historical drama. 10m.
Commissioned by the Bostonian Society for a site specific production.
Boston, March 6, 1770. Four unarmed civilians have been killed and eight more wounded by the King’s soldiers. Acting Governor Thomas Hutchinson is presented with a stark choice–remove the troops and give in to the mob’s demands or face another night of bloodshed.
A space age love story. 3m, 2w
When an alien space ship crashes into their back yards, a group of suburban neighbors get to know each other a lot better, and faster, than they ever expected (or wanted).
Drama. 2m, 2w
Sarah spends her days in the airport, finding comfort in its organized chaos, forced anonymity, and careful security. Little does she know that beneath its clean and shining façade, the airport – like the world outside it – is littered with lives torn apart by loss. Caught in the crossfire of the airport’s lost souls, Sarah discovers there is no such thing as an innocent escape.
Fire on Earth.
Full-length historical drama. 4m.
1524. England. John Tewkesbury is a savvy trader and smuggler, smart enough to know William Tyndale’s illegal translation of the Bible will be a hot commodity. But, to sell the good book, he must elude the spies of Sir Thomas More and escape the fires of the Catholic bishops. In this true story about the struggle between dangerous information and powerful knowledge, one man journeys from merchant to martyr.
Read the first act
Constant State of Panic.: A love story for a fearful world.
(cast: 2 men, 2 women.)
This darkly comic love story follows two people trying to stay together, despite the insanity of the world around them-the story of a man afraid of everything, and a woman afraid of nothing other than losing her husband. A fresh, new play with a surprising surreal style, Panic takes a twisted look at how a couple survives in a modern society thriving on fear. Lines between reality and fantasy become blurred as we journey through the looking glass of our modern NSA-era Wonderland.
Read the first act
None but the Best.
A play with historic music.
(minimum cast: 6-8 women, 8 men, children’s chorus. Can accommodate a large cast.)
A play with lively historical music that pulls back the curtain on secretive 19th century publisher and philanthropist Daniel Sharp Ford, whose Youth’s Companion newspaper guided the nation through turbulent times and whose fingerprints still linger today across Boston and the nation. Commissioned by In Good Company.
An evening of short plays for an all-woman cast.
(minimum cast: 4 women. maximum: 18 women.)
Published by Brooklyn Publishers
The bonds of love and necessity run deep in these plays, whether in young mothers trying to cope with the pressures of parenthood, two castaways in a lifeboat trying to stay sane, a sister saying goodbye before going into space with aliens, or an adoptive mother and birthmother battling over a child they both love. Whether sisters, mothers, neighbors, or castaways, these women are deeply intertwined in each other’s lives. This is a collection of 8 of my best short plays for women.
Collection, flexible cast size, from 4-20.
Published by Heuer Publishing
This evening of short plays by award-winning playwright Patrick Gabridge presents a captivating mix of comedy and drama. Each of the eight short plays features an array of lovable lunatics whose fixations include numbers, the rapture, a co-worker, lovers, spiders, silence, an extinct bird, and the act of writing. Whether their journeys end in laughter or tears, these characters pursue their desires with singular focus and intensity.
Pieces of Whitey.
Full-length comedy about well-meaning white people. 3m,3w.
Pieces of Whitey is a fast-paced, highly theatrical exploration of our national obsession with race. Fred (a white playwright) attempts to lead a more integrated life, and ends up engaged in a bizarre journey of racial awakening. He and his wife end up adopted a black baby, and even simple things like grocery shopping and going to the video store take on a surreal tinge. Also, a new medical test reveals that a middle-aged white couple aren’t as white as they thought–and they struggle to adjust.
Read the first act
Published by Original Works Publishing
Full-length satire. 1m,3w,4 chorus members.
Scientists have discovered two people exactly alike-not twins, but two identical human beings. Their freakish celebrity power threatens to engulf the world. One newspaper reporter’s struggle to tell the truth leads her on a twisted comic, odyssey. This is a very fun play about America’s love of celebrity and capacity for self-delusion. It’s a fast-paced ride, great fun for an ensemble cast.
Nominated Best New Play, 1998, Denver Drama Critics Circle.
“Bitingly clever. A challenging, imaginative piece.” Denver Post
“A delightfully wicked satire… A zany, no-holds barred fun house.” Off-Off Broadway Review
Read sample pages
Reading the Mind of God.
Full-length drama. 5m,3w.
A fierce struggle of wills between the astronomers Tycho and Kepler in the year 1600. Young Kepler desperately needs Tycho’s help to describe the workings of the cosmos, but the powerful, older man fears losing his place in History.
Nominated Best New Play, 1997, Denver Drama Critics Circle.
Winner, Festival of Emerging American Theatre
“A wonderful script, lively and intelligent… A major triumph.” Rocky Mountain News
“Its message about the ego’s role in scientific discovery is as timeless as the stars, and its humanity is as palpable.” Westword
“Fascinating and timely.” Indianapolis Star
Read the first act
Full-length drama. 4m, 5w.
Wendyl and Tina are haunted by ghosts from their painful pasts. Their desire to love each other must find a way to drown out the cacophony of voices that threaten to overwhelm their lives. Wendyl is a man completely unable to say No to anyone. Another piece for a strong ensemble of actors.
Read the first act