Labels by Miriam Gallagher

Comedy/ 8 Characters, 4 Men, 4 Women/ Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis:
Mrs. Dunphy is concerned that her son has been acting erratically lately. She consults his doctor, who’s preoccupied with his golf game and home renovations. So he writes her a prescription for an anxiety drug and sends her on her way. But when the head of an inquiry into doctors over-prescribing arrives to examine his clinic’s records — and Mrs. Dunphy’s son disappears — Dr. Porter suddenly has a lot more to worry about than his tee-off time.

Playwright’s Notes:

“Influences that compelled me to write this surrealist comedy include the death of Elvis from addiction to prescription drugs, the case in Dublin of four doctors accused and found gulty of over-prescribing, and the increasing dependence on pharmaceutical means to treat sick people. Working in the paramedical sector, I became a witness to this.

“While there is no ‘era’ for this play, it is set in Dublin in the early ’80s, when four doctors were found guilty of over-prescribing. The problems and situation addressed by the play still exist.”

“This full length play is based very much in the real world of tough human existence. Set in the medical world, Labels is a hard hitting social statement fused with ironic humour.”
– Phyl Herbert, Theatre Director, Dublin

Read it Now
Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
Miriam Gallagher
E-mail: gallaghermiriam@eircom.net
Playwright’s website: http://www.miriamgallagher.ie/
Address: 53 Upper Beechwood Ave.
Ranelagh, Dublin 6
Ireland

About the Playwright: Miriam Gallagher, Irish playwright, novelist and screenwriter, studied drama in London (LAMDA). Her work, staged and screened in Ireland, London, Paris, USA, and Canada with Irish, Dutch, Finnish and Russian translations, is included in the Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing and profiled in Irish Women Writers: An A-Z Guide (Geenwood Press). Her plays have been published in Fancy Footwork and 12 Other Plays (Soc. Irish Playwrights) and Kalahari Blues & Other Plays (2006). Commissions include The Ring of Mont de Balison (Ranelagh Millenium Project); Kalahari Blues(Galloglass Theatre Co), which toured nationwide; The Gold of Tradaree (Clare Arts Award); The Mighty Oak of Riverwood (Betty Ann Norton Theatre School 40 years celebration) performed at the Gate Theatre; and Fancy Footwork (Dublin Theatre Festival). Recently her play The Parting Glass was an international prizewinner of the Near & Far Playwrighting Contest (USA).

Miriam’s other books include Let’s Help Our Children Talk (O’Brien Press) and a novel, Song for Salamander (Trafford). She received Arts Council and European Script Fund Awards for her feature length screenplay Girls in Silk Kimonos (celebrating the Gore Booth sisters), and her film Gypsies has been screened at Irish Film Centre, Galway Film Fleadh, Foyle Film Festival, New York’s Lincoln Center, Plaza cinemas, San Francisco and at the International Children’s Film Festival at Hyderabad, India. A member of Irish PEN, Miriam has served on its committee and as vice president. She has also served on the Irish Writers Union committee, the council of the Society of Irish Playwrights, as a judge for the O.Z. Whitehead Play Competition, and on the Awards Panel for Arts and Disability Forum. She has been a guest lecturer at universities in Dublin, New York, Boston, and Pretoria, and her manuscripts are in the National Library, Dublin and film work in the Irish Film Archive.

Labels was first performed at the Dublin Theatre Festival by Alternative Theatre in October, 1985.

Just Desserts: Three one act plays by Miriam Gallagher

The plays in Just Desserts may be produced separately or as a triple-bill

“Easter Eggs”
Comedy/ 7 characters, 3 Men, 4 Women/ One Act
Synopsis: Lucy’s magic birthday party is full of strange surprises. Will Mrs Lockett get her just desserts?
“Lemon Soufflé”
Comedy/ 7 characters, 4 Men, 3 Women/ One Act
Synopsis: Set in an old abbey, an engagement party causes friction as family secrets are revealed.
“Omlettes”
Comedy/ 8 characters, 3 Men, 2 Women, double casting possible for Waiters (men or women)/ One Act
Synopsis: A strange trio of waiters serve omelettes with a difference to a married couple, a young pair on their first date, and a tramp. But what happens when the young people cannot pay?
Playwright’s notes

“‘Omlettes’ [is] a macabre dance of characters locked in an illusion of choice.”
– City Limits

“‘Lemon Soufflé’ has nice touches of character observation and good jokes.”
– Time Out

Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
Miriam Gallagher
53 Upper Beechwood Ave.
Ranelagh, Dublin 6
Ireland.
Ph/Fax: 353-1-4976880
Email: gallaghermiriam@eircom.net

About the Playwright: Miriam Gallagher, Irish playwright, novelist and screenwriter, studied drama in London (LAMDA). Her work, staged and screened in Ireland, London, Paris, USA, and Canada with Irish, Dutch, Finnish and Russian translations, is included in the Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing and profiled in Irish Women Writers: An A-Z Guide(Geenwood Press). Her plays have been published in Fancy Footwork and 12 Other Plays (Soc. Irish Playwrights) andKalahari Blues & Other Plays (2006). Commissions include The Ring of Mont de Balison (Ranelagh Millenium Project);Kalahari Blues (Galloglass Theatre Co), which toured nationwide; The Gold of Tradaree (Clare Arts Award); The Mighty Oak of Riverwood (Betty Ann Norton Theatre School 40 years celebration) performed at the Gate Theatre; and Fancy Footwork (Dublin Theatre Festival). Recently her play The Parting Glass was an international prizewinner of the Near & Far Playwrighting Contest (USA).Miriam’s other books include Let’s Help Our Children Talk (O’Brien Press) and a novel, Song for Salamander (Trafford). She received Arts Council and European Script Fund Awards for her feature length screenplay Girls in Silk Kimonos(celebrating the Gore Booth sisters), and her film Gypsies has been screened at Irish Film Centre, Galway Film Fleadh, Foyle Film Festival, New York’s Lincoln Center, Plaza cinemas, San Francisco and at the International Children’s Film Festival at Hyderabad, India. A member of Irish PEN, Miriam has served on its committee and as vice president. She has also served on the Irish Writers Union committee, the council of the Society of Irish Playwrights, as a judge for the O.Z. Whitehead Play Competition, and on the Awards Panel for Arts and Disability Forum. She has been a guest lecturer at universities in Dublin, New York, Boston, and Pretoria, and her manuscripts are in the National Library, Dublin and film work in the Irish Film Archive.

Just Desserts was first produced by Andrews Lane Theatre, Dublin.

For Left Handed Piano With Obbligato by George Freek

Dark comedy / 4 Characters, 2 Men, 2 Women / Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis: 
When Jack and Diane, directors of an “art academy,” are suddenly confronted by a Young Woman and a strange Man who claim to be the new owners of the property, they discover their own pasts are eerily linked to the histories of the intruders.

 

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Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
George Freek
515 Douglas St.
Belvidere, Illinois
USA 61008
Phone Number: (815) 547-7521
E-mail: gfreek@juno.com

About the Playwright: George Freek’s plays have been produced by the Organic Theater in Chicago, the Milwaukee Repertory, the West Coast Ensemble in Los Angeles, and the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, as well as the 13th Street Theater, Love Creek Productions, and the Theater-Studio in New York. He has been playwright-in-residence at the New American Theater in Rockford, Southern Methodist University, and Southern Illinois University, and has received grants from the Illinois Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

For Left Handed Piano With Obbligato was first produced by the Midwest Playwrights Lab, Madison, Wisconsin.

The Cellar by George Freek

Comedy-Drama/ 5 Men, 2 Women/ Full Length, Three Acts

Synopsis:
(from The Denver Post): “The Cellar is the story of the kind of family unit that Tom Wolfe used to call ‘Mom-Dad-Buddy-Sis’ in his satirical excursions across middle-class America. Playwright George Freek has created his own nuclear family unit called Mom, Dad, Sunny, and Honey — plus a blind man who lives in their basement.

“Like Pinter, Freek can turn a kitchen paring knife or an ordinary screwdriver into a cottage monster . . . . The most insipid small talk about the weather or fast-food coupons or soap operas begins to build into a house of cards, all smeary-fingered and stained with misuse. For a time, the parents’ dialogue is parody, but it tilts sickeningly with the arrival of Sunny, the amoral cheat and son of the house. We realize that we are in the whitewashed interior of a cherfully clean bungalow where invisible fungus creeps. Father is a closet pederast, mother is desensitized, and daughter Honey is a prostitute.”Freek reveals all this by means of lurching and elliptical speeches . . . . For years, this family has sheltered the practitioners of incest, arson, and prostitution (as it now shelters the blind man in the cellar) while gulping an all-American diet of Cokes and potato chips.”

“Subtle and often clever . . . . Freek’s cynical message is that people with pointless and barren lives can be kept in a state of joyless euphoria through the ideals epitomized by the television commercial . . . . the play’s greatest virtue is that it is very funny while it addresses these issues”
Rocky Mountain News

“Well worth the visit.”
Denver Post

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Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
George Freek
515 Douglas St.
Belvidere, Illinois
USA 61008
Ph.: (815) 547-7521
Email: gfreek@juno.com

About the Playwright: George Freek’s plays have been produced by the Organic Theater in Chicago, the Milwaukee Repertory, the West Coast Ensemble in Los Angeles, and the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, as well as the 13th Street Theater, Love Creek Productions, and the Theater-Studio in New York. He has been playwright-in-residence at the New American Theater in Rockford, Southern Methodist University, and Southern Illinois University, and has received grants from the Illinois Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Cellar was first produced by The Changing Scene, Denver, Colorado, in April, 1988.

 

Becoming Strangers by George Freek

Dark Comedy/ 5 Characters, 3 Men, 2 Women/ Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis:
Howard and Jane are just looking for a break from the city when they show up at Duke and Betsy’s l’il ol’ cabin in the hills. But dang (as Duke and Betsy might say) if things don’t go wrong sometimes.

First there’s Duke’s curious interest in Howard and Jane’s sleeping arrangements. Then there’s the fact that Duke and Betsy haven’t slept together for twenty years. And then there’s the gun that unexpectedly shows up in Howard and Jane’s bedroom.

As Howard settles in for some hard fishing, and Jane realizes they’re not at a resort after all, Becoming Strangers gives new and blackly hilarious definition to the term “going native.”

 

Read it Now
Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
George Freek
515 Douglas St.
Belvidere, Illinois
USA 61008
Ph.: (815) 547-7521
Email: gfreek@juno.com

About the Playwright: George Freek’s plays have been produced by the Organic Theater in Chicago, the Milwaukee Repertory, the West Coast Ensemble in Los Angeles, and the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, as well as the 13th Street Theater, Love Creek Productions, and the Theater-Studio in New York. He has been playwright-in-residence at the New American Theater in Rockford, Southern Methodist University, and Southern Illinois University, and has received grants from the Illinois Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Becoming Strangers was first produced at Southern Illinois University, and received its professional premiere at the 13th Street Theatre, New York City.

 

Little Voices by Lucas Foss

Comedy/ 1 Character, 1 man/ Full Length, 80 minutes

Synopsis:
This wry and charming one-man play explores the inner dialogue of a “40-60 something” couch potato trying to make something more of himself. Caught between his voice of comfort and his voice of truth, he asks himself the big questions: Can he find love, and still get home in time for his favorite TV shows? Should he spend his money on cigarettes — or that copy of Soulful Sex at the alternative bookstore? As he proceeds on his plodding but highly amusing journey, hazarding relationship counselling with his girlfriend, Cheryl, and coming face-to-face with his deepest fears at a men’s retreat, our very ordinary “hero” discovers his true — and not-so-ordinary — self.

From The Georgia Straight (Vancouver): “Foss’s monologue doesn’t dole out any platitudes. Instead it gives voice to the texture of the unspoken, those nagging ‘little voices’ that get you moving whenever you realize that something needs to change in your life.”

Special Merit Award, 1999 Theatre B.C. Canadian National Playwriting Competition

“Sharp and genuinely funny.”
– The Vancouver Sun

“Funny, touching, and fresh.”
– The Georgia Straight

“A delightful, original, and compelling piece of work.”
– Jurors, Theatre B.C. Canadian National Playwriting Competition

Below is Segment 1 of a video recording of “Little Voices” posted on YouTube. The remaining segments are private; for permission to view them, please contact the playwright.

Read it Now
Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
Lucas Foss
1232 Plateau Drive
North Vancouver, B.C.
Canada
V7P 2J4
Ph.: (604) 988-4681
Email: c.LittleVoices@gmail.com

About the Playwright: Since 2000, Lucas Foss has performed Little Voices at numerous venues, including The Havana in Vancouver, the UBC Summer Festival, West Vancouver’s Harmony Arts Festival, the Vancouver Fringe Festival, the UNO Festival in Victoria, Western Edge Theatre in Nanaimo, the National Arts Centre 4th Stage (Ottawa), and various college and university theatre departments. Other credits as an actor include Uncle Vanya, The Dresser, The Memory of Water, Ten Lost Years, The Blue Room, and his own on-going production of the one-man play The Fever by Wallace Shawn.

The full-length version of Little Voices was first produced at the Vancouver Fringe Festival in 2004.

Victoria Victorious by Irving Stanton Elman

Comedy/ 10 Characters, 5 Women plus female chorus, 5 men/ Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis: A raucous, inventive comedy based on the true story of Victoria Woodhull, America’s first presidential candidate, and her equally spirited and sexually adventurous sister, Tennessee.

As they make their way from 1840s Ohio to the upper-crust of post-WWI England, they pass through various high offices and houses of ill-repute. All the while they are advised by the ancient Greek sage Demosthenes, who assures Victoria she is “marked for special favor by the gods and goddesses,” and cheered on by a chorus of well-wishers, “Victoria’s Army.”

It turns out that Demosthenes is right, and while Victoria doesn’t become President, she does emerge as an unforgettable feminist heroine for her time, and ours.

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Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
Irving Stanton Elman
2107 Ocean Avenue #415
Santa Monica, CA 90405
elman430@aol.com

About the Playwright:

Irving Elman’s career spans the dramatic arts, from Broadway playwright to Hollywood producer, his credits encompassing:

As playwright: 3 plays produced on Broadway (The Brass Ring, Uncle Willie, The First Million); plus 4 plays produced off-Broadway and elsewhere around the world (Mondo Loco, Victoria Forever!, Three Kisses, Strangers and Lovers); 1 musical (Tevye’s Daughters) sold to Rodgers and Hammerstein, and then to Michael Todd; and co-author of book for musical (Strip for Action).

As screenwriter: 8 major studio produced movies (Backlash, Strange Journey, The Crimson Key, Challenge, Roses are Red, Thirteen Lead Soldiers,Jewels of Brandenburg, Accomplice).

As television writer: over 2,000 network produced teleplays (ranging over the spectrum from Hallmark Hall of Fame and Alfred Hitchcock Presentsto head writer of General Hospital).

As producer: 5 television series (Ben Casey, High Chaparral, Slattery’s People, Eleventh Hour, Matt Lincoln) and 2 television movies (The Cliffdwellers, Roaring Camp).

As “how-to” book author: So You Want to be a Scriptwriter . . . and Make a Million Dollars.

As award winner: 1 Pulitzer Prize Play nomination, 2 Emmy nominations, 1 Golden Globe, the Alexander Graham Bell Award.

As educator: 14 years teaching film, television and theatre writing at Santa Monica College.

And a book of memoirs in progress: Abe Lincoln’s Doctor’s Dog.

Victoria Victorious was first produced in a workshop staging by The Playwrights Group at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Center, Hollywood, California.

Prisoner of Love by Irving Stanton Elman

Comedy/ 4 Characters, 2 Women, 2 Men/ Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis: Wanda Polonski of Minneapolis, still mourning the death of her son in the Great War, can’t even contemplate sexual relations with her highly-frustrated husband, Cazimir. It’s a different matter, though, when a shy, olive-skinned 19-year-old, Angelo, arrives to fix the piano. She only means to provide him with some maternal guidance, but after he declares his love for her, she decides to hide him away in the attic of the house, and hope neither Cazimir nor her nosy neighbor Lotte finds out.

Before long she’s carrying Angelo’s baby — which, naturally enough, Cazimir supposes is his own. Now Angelo’s the frustrated one. After some soul-searching in San Francisco, he returns and threatens to reveal the truth. Before he can, though, Cazimir makes him an offer he can’t refuse, and love, once again, finds a way.

 

Read it Now
Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
Irving Stanton Elman
2107 Ocean Avenue #415
Santa Monica, CA 90405
elman430@aol.com

About the Playwright:

Irving Elman’s career spans the dramatic arts, from Broadway playwright to Hollywood producer, his credits encompassing:

As playwright: 3 plays produced on Broadway (The Brass Ring, Uncle Willie, The First Million); plus 4 plays produced off-Broadway and elsewhere around the world (Mondo Loco, Victoria Forever!, Three Kisses, Strangers and Lovers); 1 musical (Tevye’s Daughters) sold to Rodgers and Hammerstein, and then to Michael Todd; and co-author of book for musical (Strip for Action).

As screenwriter: 8 major studio produced movies (Backlash, Strange Journey, The Crimson Key, Challenge, Roses are Red, Thirteen Lead Soldiers,Jewels of Brandenburg, Accomplice).

As television writer: over 2,000 network produced teleplays (ranging over the spectrum from Hallmark Hall of Fame and Alfred Hitchcock Presentsto head writer of General Hospital).

As producer: 5 television series (Ben Casey, High Chaparral, Slattery’s People, Eleventh Hour, Matt Lincoln) and 2 television movies (The Cliffdwellers, Roaring Camp).

As “how-to” book author: So You Want to be a Scriptwriter . . . and Make a Million Dollars.

As award winner: 1 Pulitzer Prize Play nomination, 2 Emmy nominations, 1 Golden Globe, the Alexander Graham Bell Award.

As educator: 14 years teaching film, television and theatre writing at Santa Monica College.

And a book of memoirs in progress: Abe Lincoln’s Doctor’s Dog.

Prisoner of Love was first produced in a workshop staging by The Playwrights Group at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Center, Hollywood, California.

Lockdown by Julia Edwards

Lockdown at South Coast Repertory, 2012

Comedy-Drama/ 4-6 males, 9-11 females (15 performers total)/ Full Length, 75-90 minutes

Synopsis:
It’s just another day in the CliffsNotes Library (more books, less filling!) until a siren sounds, the doors automatically lock, and the not-so-studious students discover they are trapped. What’s going on? Did the high-tech security system malfunction again? Or are they the subjects of a sinister state-sanctioned experiment? Then someone hears a gunshot (he thinks), a freaked out substitute teacher is found barricaded in the bathroom, and Crazy Lily has a diabetic seizure. In a claustrophobic pressure-cooker of fear, paranoia, and social strife, this motley crew of hackers, delinquents, surfer dudes, and prom queens must rise above the chaos to save a life and discover the meaning of tolerance along the way.

A portion of Lockdown may be read by clicking on the “Read It Now” button above. To obtain a complete reading copy, please see the Contact Information on this page.

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Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
YouthPLAYS
7119 W Sunset Blvd #390
Los Angeles, CA
USA 90046
E-mail: info@youthplays.com
Website: www.youthplays.com

About the Playwright: Julia Edwards is an LA-based playwright, children’s author and illustrator, and teacher. Her plays — some of which include Family Planning, The Rats Are Getting Bigger, The Ravaging, and Lockdown — have been seen at The Public Theatre (NYC), the LAByrinth Theatre (NYC), The Flea (NYC), South Coast Repertory Theatre (Costa Mesa), Chalk Repertory Company (LA), Circle X (LA), and Salvage Vanguard Theatre (Austin) among others. Family Planning, produced in LA-area residential homes, won the LA Ovation Award for Best Production. She is a member of the Playwrights Union of LA. Her website is at www.JuliaEdwards.com.

Lockdown was commissioned and first produced by South Coast Repertory (Costa Mesa, CA) in March, 2012.

Nights at the Round Table by William Missouri Downs & Lou Anne Wright

Comedy/ 7 Characters, 4 Women, 3 Men (plus extras)/ Full Length, Two Acts

Synopsis: Nights at the Round Table is a love story which takes place in a quirky little rural bar. With a clientele of farmers, peat moss salesmen, and even old political candidates, it seems like time took a right at the county line and missed the Round Table completely.

Presiding over the bar are the bashful Harry and the unflappable Hazel, co-owners. Tonight they’re celebrating a recent turn of events in Harry’s usually fumbling love life. He’s met Diane, a new resident who, like Harry, is looking for love and a quiet life.

The “Governor,” a perennial candidate, is the bar’s favorite patron. In the 50’s he was a serious contender for the office, but after losing two close elections he has given up. The only reason he continues to campaign is because his father left a will which states he must run for office to get the money. He doesn’t even bother to give original speeches anymore, instead cribbing from other famous politicians. Farmers have come from as far away as Moline to hear tonight’s pontification.

Complications arise when Harry discovers that Diane has a husband: a recent parolee and no one to mess with. Diane begs Harry not to make a stand. She needn’t have bothered; Harry is an inveterate invertebrate.

Once again, Harry is a failure with love. With the election returns, the Governor grapples with his own disillusionment and lost dreams. It occurs to the Governor that he and Harry are the same kind of person – the kind that accepts failure.

Encouraged by Hazel, they both set out to change their lives, but fate is against them. Diane’s husband shows up and terrorizes the bar.

In the end, Diane’s husband is subdued, the “Governor” delivers his first original speech in twenty years, and Diane and Harry fall in love.

Nights at the Round Table is four square fun with a plenty of laughs and lots of action.”
– The Omaha Star

“Prime farce.”
– The Omaha World-Herald

Read it Now
Performance rights must be secured before production
Contact information:
Amateur and professional rights:
William Missouri Downs
PO Box 83
Centennial, Wyoming, USA 8205
Ph: (307) 742-8879
University phone: (307) 766-2227
E-mail: Downs@uwyo.edu
http://uwyo.edu/thd2/Downs/DOWNS.html

About the Playwrights: William Missouri Downs holds an M.F.A. in acting from the University of Illinois and an M.F.A. in screenwriting from U.C.L.A. He studied playwriting for several years at the Circle Rep. in New York. He has authored a dozen plays, including Kabuki Medea which won the Bay Area Critics Award for best production in San Francisco, Jewish Sports Heroes and Texas Intellectuals which took first place at the Mill Mountain Theatre’s Festival Of New Plays and Dead White Males which was a semi-finalist in Eugene O’Neill. Bill’s plays have been produced from New York to Singapore, from the Kennedy Center to the Berkeley Rep. In addition to writing plays, Bill is the author of the books Playwriting: From Formula To Form and Screenplay: Writing The Picture, both published by Harcourt Brace. In Hollywood, he wrote for such NBC sitcoms as “My Two Dads,” “Amen” and “Fresh Prince Of Bel Air,” won the Jack Nicholson Award for screenwriting and sold the movie Executive Privilege to Tri-star. He is a member of the Denver Center’s Playwright’s Unit.

Lou Anne Wright holds an MFA in Voice, Speech and Dialects from the National Theatre Conservatory. She co-wrote the play Kabuki Medea which won the Jefferson Award for Best Production in Chicago. It was also produced at the Kennedy Center. She is co-author of the book Playwriting: From Formula to Formpublished by Harcourt Brace. Her screenwriting credits include the film adaptation of Eudora Welty’s The Hitch-Hikers, which featured Patty Duke and Richard Hatch (and for which she was nominated for the Directors Guild of America’s Lillian Gish award). As an actor, she has appeared in regional repertory productions of The Last Night of Ballyhoo, The Seagull and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf.

Nights at the Round Table was first produced at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington (State), and received its professional premiere at the Firehouse Theatre, Omaha, Nebraska in 1987.