(Full-length satire, two acts. Cast: 1 woman, 3 men, 4-person chorus)
Scientists claim to discover two people exactly alike-not twins, but two identical human beings. Karen Sayer, a newspaper reporter, can clearly see that the “duplicates,” Chris and Alex, don’t even look alike (the audience shares her point of view). No one else seems to notice. Instead, the media engages in a feeding frenzy over this new scientific discovery.
With the power of the media and science behind them, Chris and Alex become instant celebrities. Karen struggles to make her dissenting voice heard, but no one will listen. She loses her job, she’s threatened by an angry mob, and her fiancé, Stack, the world’s greatest salesman, is hired to be marketing manager for Chris and Alex. Karen escapes to her parents’ house, but her family is thoroughly entranced by Chris and Alex, and they commit her to an insane asylum.
Stack’s ability as a salesman brings Chris and Alex’s popularity to new heights, as he leads them in a campaign for Presidents of the United States-their slogan is “Two Heads Are Better Than One.” Karen escapes from the loony bin to assassinate the two frauds, and receives help from The Underground Movement Operating To Stop Chris and Alex From Ruling Our Planet (T.U.M.O.T.S.C.A.F.R.O.P.). When the moment of action arrives, Karen chooses not to shoot the duplicates, afraid of making them martyrs. Instead she uses her allies at T.U.M.O.T.S.C.A.F.R.O.P. to kidnap Alex. Karen, dressed as Alex, takes his place. No one notices.
In the final presidential debate, the opposition candidate, Senator Caldwell, shoots and kills the remaining duplicate, Chris, just as Karen is about to reveal the truth on national television. The moment of truth passes, and Karen is elected President of the United States (as Alex).
Read sample pages from Blinders
What the critics say about Blinders
- “Blinders plays like a Twilight Zone episode penned by Russian masters of the politically nightmarish like Kafka or Gogol.” “This is a play that will leave you gasping, but not all the gasps will be from laughter. More than a few will be from horrified recognition.” Edge Media Boston
- “A delightfully wicked satire… A zany, no-holds barred fun house.” Off-Off Broadway Review
- “Bitingly clever… Blinders is a challenging, imaginative piece that makes successful use of irony as it zings home its point.” Denver Post
- “A provocative look at the insanity of television brainwashing and the gullibility of humans.” “Blinders begs for an audience… let’s show them that Americans aren’t asleep!” Rocky Mountain News
- “This could be the sleeper of the season. Don’t miss it”. Out Front Colorado
- “Gabridge explores the price [of thinking] in his humorous, delightful, timely comedy.” Quest Magazine
- “Gabridge has a keen sense of timing and uses rich language to describe everyday activities we take for granted.” Humboldt Times-Standard
Publication: Selection included in Best Stage Scenes of 1998, published by Smith & Kraus.
- Flat Earth Theatre, Boston, 2016
- Stage Left Theatre, Chicago, 2001.
- Sage Theatre Company, New York, 1999.
- Studio 44, Denver, November, 1998. Extended run.
- Plays-in-Progress Theatre, Eureka, CA, 1998
- Workshop, Chameleon Stage, Denver, 1997.
- Nominated, Best New Play of 1998, Denver Drama Critics Circle
- Honorable Mention, McClaren Comedy Competition, 1998
- Semi-Finalist, Mill Mountain New Play Competition, 1998
Casting and Production Requirements:
A simple set is used to suggest multiple locations. Props used are hand props. Projected slides add to the effectiveness of the piece. The action is quick and seamless. The play can be done on a small stage with no fly space.
Time: The Present
Place: Various places in America
Character Descriptions: (required: 3 men, 1 woman, 4 chorus members)
Karen Sayer, a reporter, committed to the truth, L20s-30s
Stack Thompson, the world’s greatest salesman, 30s
Chris, age 25-40 (Chris and Alex should not look alike.)
Alex, age 25-40
Roles played by a 4 person (minimum) chorus of mixed gender and race.
Dr. Cooper Gennette
Asylum inmates: Carnac, Miller, Hideout
Voice in Crowd
Voice of Reporter