One-Act Plays

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  The Romancers

Comedy by Jenny Newell Cook Lorraine Thompson

42 pages

5 m, 4 w, 4 flexible, extras


Dreamy young lovers Lelio and Silvia must keep their love a secret from their fathers, who are fierce rivals. Will a scheme featuring the loveable Arlecchino (whose main occupation is taking money from others) and a quartet of bumbling bandits save the day? Middle and high school actors will revel in this fast-paced, uproarious one act complete with screwball antics and a cast of madcap characters including two saucy servants, a lovable miser, and a host of zanies. It is this type of slapstick humor that makes the performance style of commedia dell'arte a per...

  Saturday Matinee

Comedy by Dan Roberts

29 pages

3 m, 7 w, 4 flexible


Movie audiences can often be as entertaining as the film itself. This imaginative one-act comedy takes place during the waiting period before a movie begins, offering a rare look at the personalities and idiosyncrasies of typical teen audience members. Alice only wants to enjoy the movie alone but someone's always invading her space. Kent doesn't know how much he wants to flirt with his date Maria, and she is shocked at her reactions. Mindy is a social outcast and just ripe for snotty Laura's tricks. Meanwhile, Ben continues to chow down, while two latecomers...

  65 Mustang

Comedy With Heart by Burton Bumgarner

41 pages

With doubling: 4 m, 4 w


Set in and around a 1965 Ford Mustang, the play is made up of five scenes, each a decade apart. Each scene depicts events in the lives of people who own, drive, or come in contact with the classic car. Actors portray parents, young children, punks, spoiled brats, criminals, policemen, and winners and losers of all varieties. Throughout its existence the Mustang encounters newlyweds, birth, death, a devastating flood, destruction and restoration. From the first scene when Nicholas, a teen much too poor to ever own such a car, to the last where his grandchildre...

  The Actor's Nightmare

Comedy by Alan Heckner

31 pages

Flexible from 5 m, 6 w, to as many as 8 m and 14 w, not including extras.


The title says it all, and every actor and actress who has ever graced the stage knows it all too well. Bobby, Danni, and Christina are three high school students who share the same bad dreams of forgetting their lines, blanking on their monologues for a big audition, looking foolish in a death scene, or being in a really bad play where you don't even know what it is or any of the cast members in it! They stumble through the ridiculous scenarios by any means necessary, improvising and freaking out at the same time. Chaos and calamity reign supreme as they dea...

  Through the Looking Glass

Classic by Jim Geisel

36 pages

With doubling: 2 m, 4 w.


Before putting "Through the Looking Glass" down on paper in 1860s, Lewis Carroll told a colleague’s young daughter, Alice Liddell (the real Alice in the books), the story of talking chess pieces. The novel, of course, was a sequel to his earlier one, "Alice in Wonderland." This play is set in the early 1920s as a now elderly Alice Liddell reflects on the telling of the story. Faithful to Carroll’s expression of childhood fears of growing up, this adaptation keeps the Victorian charm and merriment by maintaining Carroll’s scenes intact. The audience is transpo...

  Capricious Pearls

Comedy by Virginia Kidd

31 pages

4 m, 9 w


When Boss and his gang reconvene after being dismissed from parts better left unsaid, they go over the original map Boss had drawn showing where he had hidden a valuable string of pearls in a vacant house. They find it is now a home for aged ladies - and what ladies! Grannie Carlson loves to scoot in her wheelchair, Mrs. Hildebrand has a caustic tongue, Mrs. Katts has eyesight that leaves something to be desired. How the crooks find the pearls and what they do with them make this one of the funniest plays ever.

  Speed Dating Nightmare

Comedy by Scott Haan

31 pages

From 5 - 13 actors.


Speed dating is a great way for singles to meet other people. Each "date" only lasts a few minutes, and if it doesn't work out, you can hope the next one will be better. For Cindy, those minutes feel like an eternity as she is subjected to a seemingly endless parade of jerks and losers. First there’s Marcus, whose questions seem more like an interrogation; then Trevor, whose career motivation extends only to getting the next new video game. Third is Scissor, an artistic man with an inflated sense of ego, followed by Ernest, a socially awkward guy who thinks s...

  Soldiers Young and Brave

Drama by Lorraine Thompson

38 pages

With doubling, 10 m, 8 w, many extras.


The Civil War was unlike any other war our country has ever endured. It not only severed our nation, it severed our nation’s families. Husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters were torn apart by politics, beliefs, distance, and death. Evidence of this bitter separation can be found in the abundant journals, diaries, poetry, songs, and letters of the day. This play, a one act with music, draws from these sources to provide a glimpse into the joys and struggles of “loving” during this turbulent period. The characters are based on real people, th...

  The Black Cat

Mystery by Robert Brome

21 pages

3 m, 3 w


Adapted from the story by Edgar Allan Poe. A husband and wife are known for violent quarrelling, especially over their cat. Obsessed, the man tries to kill the animal but accidentally kills his wife. He covers up the murder until the cat's howls are heard from within the cellar wall.

  Ten Actors In Search of a Cell

Comedy by James Rayfield

25 pages

4 m, 6 w


Just as the stage manager is getting ready to call "Places" for the start of the school's play, everything comes to a screeching halt. Brandy has discovered that her cell phone is missing and refuses to go on until she finds it. The other actors try to help her re-create her every move to find the exact moment the phone was misplaced, and what follows is not only the quest for a cell phone but a trip through a tangle of who said what to whom. From secret boyfriends, pet nicknames, and the confusion between Tony the boy to Toni the girl, we get a very funny lo...

  A Jury of Her Peers

Drama by Burton Bumgarner

28 pages

4 m, 4 w


Adapted from the short story by Susan Glaspell. A farmer has been found dead and his wife, Minnie, is the prime suspect. The sheriff, a deputy and other men meet at the lonely farmhouse to go over the evidence while two wives gather some clothes and necessities for Minnie, who is in jail. Two neighbor ladies, the Gains sisters, arrive to see what they can learn about the disturbing events of the previous day. As the men go about the business of investigation, the women make a remarkable discovery: the motive for the crime. Set in 1917, three years before wome...

  Screenagers

Comedy by Jim and Jane Jeffries

26 pages

10 m, 9 w, 2 flexible


In this fast-paced, technology-saturated world, can teenagers really survive without laptops, i-pads, cell phones and other mobile devices? Has high-speeding texting replaced face-to-face communication? Do apps substitute for thoughtful conversation? From breaking up on Facebook, to in-class research, to real-time dating advice, this play delves into the world of teens to see how they navigate with (or - gasp! - without) technology. "Screenagers" is a humorous look at how technology is shaping the way we socialize, communicate, and—hang on, I’ve got a call co...

  No Easy Road to Freedom: Lessons in American Diversity

Drama by Tom Quinn

27 pages

2 m, 2 w


The road to freedom for people of diversity has not been easy in American History. Students will learn of the struggles for acceptance of a wide range of minority groups through poetry, drama, and song. Hear the stories that made America and that continue to shape our nation today. From immigration to oppression to acceptance listen to the stories of bravery and determination from the likes of heroines like Rosa Parks and brave individuals who represent Asian, Italian, Latino, Jewish and Native Americans. It has been no easy road, but students can see that hi...

  The Tell-Tale Heart (Brome)

Classic by Robert Brome

18 pages

3 m, 3 w


A psychotic murders an old man and then copes successfully with the village constable, only to be trapped and betrayed by conscience and a twisted mind. Increasing the story's playability is the addition of two nieces of the old man who suspect murder, and an innocent bride of the murderer. A smashing climax with thunderous "heartbeats" of the dead man. (Please state adaptor's name when ordering.)

  Pirates of Atlantis

Comedy by Patti Veconi

48 pages

18-19 roles (2 m, 1 w, 15-16 flexible)


When a pirate ship inadvertently sails over the lost city of Atlantis, an adventure-seeking girl – who happens to be the granddaughter of Poseidon himself – makes friends with a charmingly naïve sailor, causing their two worlds to collide. As the pirates continue to arrr-gue and the Atlanteans ask an endless series of questions with no answers, new friends Duffle and Pana explore strange new worlds they have never seen before. With the help of a Narrator giving advice and a friendly dog who just wants to play, and with Poseidon’s undersea magic adding to the ...