L. Don Swartz

L DON SWARTZ received his BA in Theatre Education from Concordia University Chicago in River Forest, Illinois and a MA in Theatre and English from the State University of New York at Buffalo. His plays have been produced in 47 states, Novia Scotia, Ireland, Guam and British Columbia. Don has been Artistic Director of the very haunted Ghostlight Theatre in North Tonawnada, New York since 1982. Don married his favorite actress, Debby Koszelak, in 1991 and they share a noisy home with their four children, Emily, Rosemary, Donald and Michael.

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  Here We Sit

Comedy by L. Don Swartz

65 pages

5 m, 9 w


Here is an outrageous comedy for community theatres that puts the audience on the hot seat! A series of sixteen, quick-paced scenes illuminate the joys and tribulations of the modern theatre-going experience. In "An Audience of One," a single theatre patron delivers an impassioned monologue to convince the actors to perform the show just for her. The scene, "What the Crowd Is Thinking," allows us to hear the real thoughts of an audience sitting through an uninspired performance. In "Uber Ushers," a band of ushers, driven to the brink of madness by the boorish...

  Voices in the Attic

Horror Mystery by L. Don Swartz

75 pages

Large, flexible cast


Six separate stories of the macabre will test your goosebump factor. In "Effigy," members of a high school football team learn a gruesome lesson when school spirit is carried too far. In "Voices in the Attic," a sleepy father tries in vain to assure his kids that the sounds they keep hearing are only in their imagination. But can the boys' imaginations make an attic stair creak or turn a doorknob? In "Night-Screamers," why do the children who live in the ancient apartment complex on the edge of town have so many nightmares? One tale makes use of sign language...

  Silver Lady

Mystery Thriller by L. Don Swartz

66 pages

4 m, 7 w


The Dark Harbor Lighthouse, abandoned by Sheriff Wilde after his wife's mysterious disappearance, sat empty for over ten years. Now the Hanson family has moved in, but before long, strange things begin to happen in their dream house: lit candles in the windows, eerie music from the piano room, moving furniture, and a shadowy figure who walks the lighthouse tower at midnight. As Raven, the disaffected teenage daughter, and Ethan, a next-door neighbor, try to discover what dark secrets Aunt Rosemary is keeping and the true identity of little Penny's imaginary f...

  Tales From the Enchanted City

Fairy Tale by L. Don Swartz

48 pages

with doubling 4 m, 4 w


A humorous urban romp through familiar tales by the Brothers Grimm. Everybody is having a bad day in the Enchanted City. Little Theodore Hood's grandmother is gravely ill and he must get a powerful medicine to her as soon as possible. But Theodore's grandmother lives on the other side of the Enchanted City and the sinister Stranger will stop at nothing to get his hands on the medicine. Meanwhile a young lady names Summer Greene has recently inherited a large fortune, making her the wealthiest person in the Enchanted City. Summer's wicked stepmother, Bertha, w...

  The Tell-Tale Heart (Swartz)

Classic by L. Don Swartz

21 pages

4 m, 3 w


Poe's familiar story is updated here, set in the modern American judicial system. As part of a competency hearing to determine the suspect's mental ability to stand trial, the caged murderer faces a panel of legal and psychological experts as his confession is videotaped for all to see. As the experts probe deeper into the killer's psyche, the apparently motiveless murder starts to come into focus and we discover the victim's "evil eye" was just the tip of the iceberg. One interior set. (Excerpted from the full-length play, "Fright Night." Please state adapto...

  A Christmas Carol (Ghostlight)

Classic Holiday by L. Don Swartz

71 pages

17 m, 11 w, 7 b, 1 g, 2 teen boys, 2 teen girls, flexible carolers, party guests and townspeople


This unique and faithful adaptation of the holiday classic takes a closer look at the character of Jacob Marley and the circumstances which lead him to his decision to save his unrepentant friend, Ebenezer Scrooge. The play begins in "another world" where Marley is granted permission to return to Earth. A "small but powerful army" of holiday spirits is to accompany him on his adventure of converting the covetous old sinner into a Yuletide saint. The most popular scenes of the novel are dramatized with added bits that are not often included. The play is fast m...

  Final Notice

Comedy by L. Don Swartz

66 pages

5 m, 6 w


Mickey Chigger, a nasty newspaper critic, turns up dead at the Chestnut Hollow Little Theatre’s final dress rehearsal of “The Curse of Infant Isle.” The players, desperate for a box office success, will go to any lengths to avoid a scandal. And that means, yes!, moving the critic’s body from the rest room where he died to the parking lot. That way the late Mr. Chigger will keep his dignity, even thought he doesn’t really deserve it, but even more importantly, the theatre won’t get bad press such as “The play was so bad it killed him!” But just when they think...