One-Act Plays

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  The Monkey's Paw

Horror Mystery by L. Don Swartz

22 pages

2 m, 3 w


A mysterious storyteller leaves a grisly talisman with a Midwestern farm family, assuring them that it will grant them three wishes, but warning them to pitch the monkey's paw on the fire, as it will bring them nothing but death. The father makes the first wish, but even good is twisted into evil as the family's lives spiral hopelessly out of control. (Excerpted from the author's full-length play, "Fright Night.")

  Push and Pull

Comedy Drama by Terry Gabbard

32 pages

2 m, 3 - 4 w, 1 flexible


Joel Pulley, a struggling comic book artist, has his narrow world turned upside down when an over-eager stray dog shows up at his door… repeatedly! This excitable canine is unwavering in his pursuit to be Joel’s best friend. And Joel, not exactly an animal lover, is just as unwavering in his attempts at getting rid of the dog, especially after a messy fiasco between the dog and Taylor, Joel’s shallow new girlfriend. It isn’t until the escape-artist canine is almost run over in the street by Monica, a vet, that things change… for everyone. She convinces Joel t...

  The Hearing

one-act by Brent Holland

30 pages

1 w, 12 flexible


A famous doctor, who is destined to make a world-changing discovery, has been killed in a car accident, and two angelic members of the “Representatives of Order” have 48 hours to assemble a group of possible candidates to reverse time and save the doctor’s life. The price? Three of the candidates must be willing to serve as a substitute, trading their lives for his.  What would you do for the greater good? The eight people must quickly decide during a hearing where the “Forces of Chaos” are working against them, and all are adjudicated by the ominous “Judgeme...

  The Twilight Cone

Comedy by Wade Bradford

26 pages

8 characters: 1 m, 5 w, 2 flexible


It’s Marcus’ first day on the job at The Twilight Cone, an unusual ice cream shop owned by his Great-Aunt Diane. Marcus has already been trained on the milkshake machine and scooping ice cream when suddenly his eccentric aunt needs to run to the store. She reluctantly decides to let him open the shop but makes him promise not to serve any flavor but vanilla. When five young women come in to the shop, Marcus’ promise is quickly forgotten. Little does he know that each unique milkshake flavor causes an unusual reaction. The Narrator, unnoticed by all, enters an...

  Mary Jane of Whitechapel

Drama by Julian Felice

19 pages

Approx. 8 m, 5 w, numerous flexible roles and chorus


"Mary Jane of Whitechapel" is set during the Autumn of Terror of 1888 when London was haunted by the spectre of a killer which, even now, we know only by the name of Jack the Ripper. Alternating between the investigation into the killings and the life of Mary Jane Kelly, the Ripper’s final victim, the play re-creates the dark atmosphere of a city horrified by blood and violence. Most of the play is based on real people and incidents: the frantic officers on the case, the scores of suspects, the vigilantes who attack foreigners, and ordinary people, scared of ...

  The Most Dangerous Game

Drama by Burton Bumgarner

33 pages

3 m, 3 w


Inspired by the short story by Richard Connell. In this updated version of a classic thriller, corporate headhunters give new meaning to the term "hunting." Throughout the Zaroff Corporation's long history, success is based on finding the right employees. Four professionals are invited for an interview at Zaroff's headquarters. After a gourmet meal and cordial introductions, the potential employees realize that this would be the perfect job with the perfect salary. The human resource manager of Zaroff then tells the potential employees that they are all compe...

  Hurry Up and Wait!

Comedy by Burton Bumgarner

52 pages

4 m, 4 w


Waiting in line? Waiting your turn? You don’t have time! Here’s a comedy in six scenes for those who are time-challenged. In the first scene a desperate woman has only 20 minutes to get to the airport to catch her flight and no matter what her beleaguered taxi driver says or does, they remain stuck in a traffic jam. In a different scene, things start to get physical at a restaurant when a couple with dinner reservations (and theatre tickets!) see others entering and being seated before them. In another scene, a jumpy hypochondriac is forced to wait in a docto...

  America’s Next Top Model Student!

Comedy by Alan Heckner

40 pages

5 m, 9 w, 1 flexible


Ten students from across the U.S.A. compete for the title of “America’s Next Top Model Student” in the latest TV reality show. Host Myra Thanks and the show’s judges, M’Lady Andrews, Judge Julie, and Mr. Blaine Rose, put each student to the test in a series of bizarre and hilarious challenges that hardly have anything to do with their scholastic aptitude. One by one, the students are eliminated and “expelled” from the classroom competition. No one goes down without a fight and some are even taken away literally kicking and screaming. The off-the-wall challeng...

  In the Game

Comedy by Brent Holland

36 pages

3 m, 6 w, 7-8 flexible, extras


For as long as they can remember, Alex and his friends Matt, Chad, and Chelsea have spent Friday nights fighting the undead, casting spells, and rescuing fair maidens with the roll of the dice, a little luck, and a lot of imagination.  This week they have invited a new player, Eddie, to join them. Because it’s his first time playing, he has a lot of questions through which audience members with no gaming experience can understand the action and enjoy the imagined scene that is actually a part of a fantasy role-playing game.  The teens’ goal is to return the “...

  Are We Scared Yet?

Comedy by Bobby Keniston

40 pages

8 m, 10 w, 4 flexible (doubling possible)


Max and Katie are lost at a spooky campsite in the middle of the woods. Fortunately, Counselor Ned, a cheerful, but rather strange, camp counselor is there to help them out until the other campers and counselors find them. To pass the time, Counselor Ned suggests they all take turns telling scary stories, a "campfire tradition as old as time." As they take turns telling their tales, the stories come to life onstage! The story of "Taily-Po," an American folklore classic, reveals an old man living in the woods with his sarcastic dog… "The Backseat Driver" gives...

  Director's Nightmare

Comedy by Wade Bradford

28 pages

4 m, 5 w, 1 flexible, possible extras


It’s five days before the premiere of the non-musical version of Les Misérables, and high school drama director, Chris, has actors who are still on script, cast members absent from rehearsal, a sick stage manager, an unbuilt set and only twelve dollars left in the budget. Oh, and the principal is bringing the superintendent on opening night to see if funding for the drama program for the district should be cut. It’s a director’s nightmare, but Chris tells the cast and crew about a pocket watch from her great-grandfather that is known to help turn everything a...

  Attack Clown Dentist Zombies

Comedy by Scott Haan

36 pages

13 - 22 plus extras


Susan and Xander patiently sit through their dad’s meeting, a gathering of local dentists, where it is decided that the best way to keep patients from being scared of regular checkups is for the dentists to dress as clowns while working. Refreshments are offered, but deciding to not eat Bernice Hoffenbridle’s cookies might be the best decision the kids have ever made, especially when they hear that her new bakery is conveniently located right between the nuclear waste treatment plant and the experimental chemistry lab. But the adult dentists do indulge in the...

  Shuffling

Comedy by Ken Preuss

29 pages

1 m, 1 w, 1-14 flexible


Lacey, a teenage girl, has finished work at the mall and is waiting – and waiting – for her boyfriend to pick her up. Left stranded yet again, she reevaluates her love life while shuffling through the songs on her iPod. Actors portraying each of the songs appear with comedic monologues that stir her emotions, offer advice, and affect her decisions. Ethan, a good-humored co-worker, offers her a ride home and the possibility of future romance. The play may be performed with anywhere from 3 to 16 actors. Actors playing Songs portray the spirit and style of the g...

  Attention Detention

Comedy by Bradley Hayward

36 pages

Entirely gender flexible cast of 6 to 21


Four honor roll students have been summoned to detention. To avoid punishment, they each come up with a preposterous excuse for their tardiness, and their wacky tales are acted out by an ensemble of performers. As one wild lie piles on top of the next, the principal gets further away from the truth. Will he be able to figure out that these creative overachievers are coming together to avoid being bullied? He'll have to think fast for he’s up against a swift and desperate bunch of kids, each with a knack for making the most ridiculous stories sound entirely po...

  Attack of the Pom-Pom Zombies

Comedy by Stephen Murray

41 pages

7 m, 16 w, 5 flexible, extras


It's the 1960s, a big nuclear blast to the past! School's out for the summer, and the teenagers of Ocean View High are ready to surf, sun and have some fun. Their favorite hangout is Barnacle Betty's Surf Club, which happens to be right next door to the evil Ivana Ratnik's nuclear power plant. But ooops! Cindy Sue, the head cheerleader, accidentally gets some nuclear slime on her hot dog instead of pickle relish, and soon the beach is overrun with pom-pom wielding zombies! Her all-American boyfriend, the beatniks, the nerds and a tough girl gang named the Bar...