One-Act Plays

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  Shakespeare on Trial

Drama by Anthony Giordano

42 pages

Approx. 9 m, 6 w, 3 flexible, extras which can be audience members


With graduation fast approaching, two groups of students of Bellefonte High confront each other in an attempt to influence the next year’s curriculum of the school. With recollections of past bullying, revealed secret lives, hinted-at romances, and numerous quotations from Shakespeare’s most famous plays, these teenagers set up a mock trial to decide if Shakespeare should be studied next year. Like current day Montagues and Capulets, the students do plenty of verbal fencing -- with a little Romeo and Juliet romance thrown in -- to ultimately decide if the Bar...

  Birthday Party

Drama by R. James Scott

26 pages

8 m, 3 w, extras


A complex and moving play as a soldier serving overseas "celebrates" a birthday by militarily taking a hill while his twin sister back home celebrates their birthday with the family and her twin's fiancée. The surreal setting and movement of the action lead to a shocking conclusion. About 30 minutes.

  DUI=DOA

Drama by Dan Roberts

24 pages

Flexible casting


The effects of drunk driving are brought home in these two very short one-acts combined under one title. In "Only Seventeen" (3 m, 4 w, 2 flexible), Corey Martin is dead from drinking and driving. At his funeral he desperately calls out to his family and friends,"I can't be dead. I'm only 17!" but no one hears him. A fellow student delivers a eulogy full of irony as Corey's friends and family think aloud about the senselessness of his death. In "The Waiting Room" (3 m, 6 w, 4 flexible), young people find themselves in a dark room, unsure of where they are or ...

  Siege of Room 304

Drama by Daniel S Kehde

45 pages

3 m, 11 w


What happens when a high schooler brings a pistol to biology class? In this tense drama, Wesley, a 17-year-old boy with a handgun, holds 13 of his fellow students as voluntary hostages as he tries to come to grips with the events that brought him there. In the 24 hours that follow, the tension of the stand-off outside mixes with the casual attitude of the students inside. By the end, we see these rich characters relate their own experiences with violence, parental authority, peer pressure, high school and the pains of outgrowing childhood. Finally, too, we le...

  The Storm

Comedy by Sophia Derise

28 pages

4 m, 2 w, 1 flexible; genders flexible


Mark, an eccentric scientist, is attempting to make things right with his cousins, Jason and Nina, after accidently putting their parents into a coma the previous Thanksgiving. During their stay with him, he has taken them on fun adventures such as apple picking, swimming with sharks, and betting on turkey fights. But when he takes them piranha fishing, they decide to head back to Aunt Helen’s house even if she’s still healing from her hip surgery. Mark decides to create a storm to prevent his family from leaving, all while trying to hide a genetically mixed-...

  Doctor Frank'n Styne

Comedy by Larry Hillhouse

39 pages

Flexible cast, approx. 4 m, 4 w, 3 flexible


Franklin Kenneth Styne, or F.K. as he’s called, inherits an old castle from a distant relative. Upon arriving, he finds that he also inherited the Styne Castle staff, consisting of Egor, a hunchback experimenter who converses with a portrait, and Hilda, the no-nonsense housekeeper. An inept local constable and his beautiful niece stop by to welcome the young Styne, and to check him out. F.K., who has a penchant for poetry, soon finds himself entwined in the centuries-old mysteries of Styne Castle! This show is perfect for Halloween or any time you want to pro...

  The Adventures of Cyclone Malone

Melodrama by Lane Riosley

35 pages

14 parts. (with doubling 2 m, 1 w, 3 flexible)


Yazoo! Get ready for one tall tale of adventure as Sheriff Cyclone Malone must protect his town, Yazoo Junction, from evil pirates! The pirate captain, along with two bumbling crewmen, has somehow managed to build a submarine – with torpedoes! – and is sailing on the river outside of town. Cyclone’s gonna need help to deal with this problem. The sweet schoolmarm (and Cyclone’s gal) Cozy Dumond tries to get a message to the neighboring sheriff, but she is tricked by the disreputable Violent Lavender, captured and tied to the submarine’s periscope. Cyclone and ...

  Aladdin and His Sister

Comedy by Janice Rider

38 pages

4 m, 2 w, 3 flexible. Some doubling possible.


This play presents a new, fun version of the story of Aladdin! While Aladdin is a lazy, unmotivated young man, his sister, Maliha, is resourceful, courageous, and compassionate, looking after him upon the death of their parents. One day an unscrupulous sorcerer pretends to be their long-lost uncle. He cons Aladdin into retrieving a buried lamp and traps him in the bowels of the earth. Thanks to Maliha and a friendly snake, Aladdin is rescued by rubbing the ring the stranger lent him. The Genie of the Ring becomes Aladdin’s slave but is befriended and freed by...

  Pyramus and Thisbe

Adaptation Shakespeare by Paul Caywood

22 pages

6 actors


The legend of Pyramus and Thisby is known today primarily because William Shakespeare used it in his comedy "A Midsummer Night’s Dream." As a part of Shakespeare’s play, six workers, sometimes called “mechanicals” or “clowns,” decide to present a play for the festivities that will follow the wedding of the Duke of Athens. In this one-act, we see the mechanicals getting their parts, then rehearsing in the woods the night before the wedding. Of course, these men know nothing about acting or play production, and, as a result, the audience is treated to a rousing...

  Personals and Proposals

Comedy by Burton Bumgarner

37 pages

4 m, 4 w


Four men and four women perform seven hilarious scenes about dating and marriage proposals. Three scenes highlight trying to find someone special through an online dating service called Meet-interesting-people-who-will-like-you.com. As our singles find out, however, the site doesn't live up to its name! The other scenes include some of the worst marriage proposals ever; two coaches trying to lead a couple down the path of wedlock; a Monday Night Football-style coverage of a proposal; and a National Geographic television-type look at a romantic dinner. All tog...

  Martin and Malcolm: How Long Must We Wait?

Drama by Tom Quinn

30 pages

2 m 2 f (can be expanded)


Martin Luther King and Malcolm X are forever linked in the history of the Civil Rights movement. This play featuring four actors playing different roles from history and present day examines the legacy of these two men and attempts to judge where we are today in terms of realizing their dreams. Utilizing the spoken words of both Dr. King and Malcolm X, "How Long Must We Wait" looks both backward and forward in coming to grips with race in America. This is the last in a series of plays that includes "Freedom Riders" and "No Easy Road to Freedom" and is intende...

  One Million Pound Bank Note

Drama Humor With Humor by Dave Brandl

40 pages

5 m, 5 w


Dramatized by Dave Brandl From the story by Mark Twain. It's the 1800s and two wealthy British siblings, Annabel and Edward, make a bet between them whether a destitute man can survive a month in London if they give him a million-pound bank note. Because the man cannot account for the note being in his possession, he cannot cash it at the bank, yet he must be able to live on it for thirty days and keep out of jail. If he succeeds, they will offer him a high-paying position. They find the perfect candidate in Henry Adams, an American whose wits not only enable...

  Only 13

Drama by Tom Quinn

41 pages

4-11 flexible


Phoebe finds herself struggling through her first day of middle school. She is labeled by her dad, her teacher, and other students in the school. She finds herself accepting all the labels put on her, including IMPOSSIBLE, CHILD, SCARED, ALONE, SHAME, PANIC, FAT, I DON’T MATTER, TOO SMART, DISAPPOINTED, WORTHLESS, UGLY, and SLUT. In a moment of crisis, she picks up a bottle of pills, only to be interrupted by Clarice, a friend or ghost who helps Phoebe discover the unexpected value of her life. Highlighting cyberbullying, this play illustrates how real-life s...

  Not So Great Expectations

Comedy by Burton Bumgarner

49 pages

4 m, 4 w, 1 flex


Failing the literature test, students Brandon, Abbey, Tyler, Hannah, Steve, Kristen, Nick and Lily decide to impress their teacher by performing "Great Expectations." Will Mrs. Eliot go for it, especially after being told by Tyler that he’d rather be at the dentist? With only eight actors, the students dash from one role to another trying to re-enact major scenes to show off their knowledge of the great work. When the plot gets too complicated for the classroom, the students stop and just explain it in their own hilarious terms. And when the action gets to be...

  Sold

Comedy by Kory Howard

29 pages

3 m, 3 w, 1 flexible


Stumbling onto their perfect home is a dream come true for newlyweds Jim and Clara. Keys in hand, they bring a picnic into the house and begin to plan a bright future together… when in come Chris and Allison who also have keys in hand and a picnic basket! Of course the real estate agent is long gone with the money. Just as the two competitive couples think they might have a plan that will allow them all to stay, in come Roger and Lucy with - you guessed it - a picnic basket.