One-Acts

Sort by
Display per page

  Invisible J. Michael Hess

Drama by James D. Waedekin

35 pages

3 m, 4 w


Here's a poignant but necessary look at the problems of teenage bullying and suicide. J. Michael is a high school student and aspiring writer. Already dead, he narrates the events that lead up to his suicide. Along the way, we meet Melissa, his unrequited love, and Ms. Dodge, the hopeful English teacher. There's also Artie, a tough, rival student, and Mr. Butler, the ineffectual high school principal. Two other characters, J. Michael's overwhelmed mother and a tough district attorney, round out the cast. Together these multidimensional characters paint a comp...

  Jack-In-The-Box

Drama by Sara L. Reily

30 pages

3 m, 2 w


Jarod, a young med student, takes a journey into his own mind after an accident leaves him comatose. He meets a man who will change his life forever - his subconscious. The limited set becomes a universal playing ground where Jarod's subconscious introduces him to various places and people that encourage him to take on life's obstacles. In this 45-minute piece, the human will is not only explored but put to a test. Jarod becomes a recognizable character who discovers more about himself than he ever knew existed.

  Kangaroo Court

Drama by Nicholas Checker

32 pages

2 m, 3 w, 3 flexible, extras


Hunting, animal testing, tender veal? In this surreal satire, two ordinary people are forced to represent "humanity" before a hooded judge and animal court. In a tongue-in-cheek manner, the Animal Kingdom expresses its displeasure with the callous attitudes displayed too often by many humans towards animals. The humans find their defense to be a futile one, as the stock rationale they offer is frequently twisted and turned back around on them by the animals. The play offers laughter with a sting as it gives viewers a deeper, more compassionate outlook toward ...

  What Part Will I Play?

Drama by Mary Hall Surface

43 pages

13 females (also two offstage voices, 1 m, 1 f)


This play gives a voice to young women's hopes and dreams, fears and failures, fantasies and hard-knocks. The girls arrive at a theatre to audition for a promising new play. Each girl has come with her own ambitions, even secrets. But upon arrival, the girls learn that the director will be late. The stage manager takes them through a series of improvisations. But the girls, confused and anxious, are soon left to "wait." Each one must decide how she will respond to the situation and to each another. As the play progresses barriers are broken down, friendships ...

  Adagio and the Death of Love

Drama by Reid Conrad

28 pages

5-6 m, 4 w, optional extras


The Imarovas were once the royal family and held sway over the social and political arenas of the country. But a new regime gained power and the Imarova children became captives in their own home. They live under a repressive guard, yet each sibling remembers or knows a different kind of love: romantic love, paid love, love of a child and pet, and most of all, Anabella’s childlike, colorful love of life itself. It is only their family wealth and figurehead status that keep them from joining the work colonies. Today is Anabella’s fourteenth birthday and as the...

  Adventure of the Speckled Band

Reader Theatre by Al Rodin

34 pages

3 m, 2 w


Helen Stone, a frightened and distraught young woman, has come to Sherlock Holmes for help following the recent death of her twin sister Julia. The young women were living with their stepfather, the austere and heartless widower, Dr. Roylott. They had returned from India to Stoke Moran, his family’s dilapidated country mansion, where wild exotic animals and gypsies now wander the grounds. Helen tells Holmes and Dr. Watson that the night Julia died, her sister had run from her bedroom screaming “the band, the speckled band.” Julia was soon to be married and wo...

  Commedia Aladdin

Commedia by Lane Riosley

45 pages

2 m, 2 w


The zany antics of the commedia style, with lots of bumbling, scheming, incorrigible improvisations and very physical comedy, allows just four traveling actors to create this fast-paced story of Aladdin. Arelquin, Punchin, Columbine and Rosetta portray all the many roles in the story of a lazy young boy who needs to work to help support his mother, especially since his father froze up and is standing in a forest where birds nest in his hair! Aladdin almost falls for the machinations of an evil magician, but instead he saves himself and gains access to the Gen...

  Office Zone

Comedy by Burton Bumgarner

33 pages

5 m, 5 w


The employees of Sly-Tech Corporation are bored, uninspired, and unhappy with their jobs, which consist of generating reports no one will ever see. They don't know from one day to the next who will even own the company or if they'll have jobs. When a perky young woman fresh out of college is hired to be their manager, they are exasperated. They are even more incensed when she insists on starting off the day with team-building exercises to enhance their P.M.A. (positive mental attitude) and making them hold a teddy bear when they wish to speak at meetings. Whe...

  Echoes From the Titanic

Drama by Pat Cook

35 pages

15 m, 7 w, extras, much doubling possible


The survivors of the Titanic disaster tell you in their own words about their escape to lifeboats in this adaptation of the 1912 Senate hearings, which began just one day after they arrived from their fateful trip. "We have nothing to conceal," proclaims White Star Lines President Bruce Ismay, but then has to explain why he was able to get in a lifeboat. Hear Fifth Officer Lowe's report why some lifeboats were not completely filled when they departed and why he fired a pistol to control the crowds. As parts of their testimony are re-enacted, we begin to see t...

  Emperors' New Clothes - The Bare Facts

Fairy Tale by Vern Adix

52 pages

7 m, 7 w.


This play is a new twist on the old-fashioned fairy tale. Two emperors from tiny, neighboring kingdoms are good friends but compete in wearing the latest fashions. Because they each continually want new, sumptuous wardrobes, their kingdoms are broke! Even their wives have to resort to doing dirty castle chores because there’s no money to pay any staff. Finally an elaborate ruse is planned where both emperors are taught a lesson about vanity and trying to impress others by clothes. If there were flashlights and spotlights in this historic time when men wore be...

  Fair Game

Comedy by Patrick Rainville Dorn

40 pages

2 m, 6 w, 4 flexible, plus extras


Three teenagers are lured into malevolent Professor Carny Barker’s Once-in-a-Lifetime Traveling Career Fair. There they are tempted with futures of glamour, riches and power by warped and wicked counterfeit pretenders from the military, medical, legal, and business professions. The teens, with the oddball assistance of a janitor, think about what they’re willing to trade off to achieve career “success.” This modern morality play is loaded with slapstick comedy, wry satire and a flexible cast of bizarre characters.

  Good Trouble

Drama by Dolores Klinsky Walker

25 pages

9 m, 7 w, extras


Get a glimpse of the Civil Rights Movement in 1965 in Selma, Alabama, through the eyes of young Sandra. This play reveals the realities of segregation that prompted ordinary people to risk their security and sometimes their lives in pursuit of justice. Despite her father's disapproval and her mother's reluctance, Sandra skips school to attend Movement rallies, marches with adults to seek voting rights, and participates in "Bloody Sunday," the infamous failed march from Selma to Montgomery. A realistic but upbeat drama that can be a life-changing experience fo...

  Hand

Drama by Burton Bumgarner

21 pages

3 m, 3 w, 4 extras


Adapted from the tale by Guy de MaupassantAn arrogant hunter shocks his dinner guests by showing them his prized trophy, a human hand chained to a board and mounted on the wall of his library. The next morning the hunter's mother demands he make amends to the guests and remove the hand. But the police have now heard about it and plan to check it out. The hunter wants to hide the hand but admits to his maid he feels safer keeping it in sight. The hand is the only thing he fears because the person it used to belong wants it back. That night the hunter finds the...

  Code 40: Verona

Drama by Dwayne Lee Yancey

44 pages

6 m, 2 w, 14 flexible


This play begins at the ending of Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" but envisions a modern twist - it's a police drama, in which incompetence and political pressure rule the day. Balthasar and Friar Lawrence still flee the bloody scene in the Capulet family tomb and are apprehended by church security guards. But this time, security calls the police, who proceed to investigate the crime. The police release the friar because they can't imagine how he would be involved and instead try to pin the crime on Balthasar. The mayor, Escalus, is under political pressure ...

  Commencement

Drama by Tim Mogford

29 pages

4 m, 4 w (all teen roles)


It’s Steph’s high school graduation party. Her friends are all around, her family will be back shortly, and she is supposed to be adding the final touches to the house. But this “commencement” is anything but easy or simple. She and her boyfriend Brandon have news that will devastate her father, has already caused an upheaval with her mother and sister, and will no doubt upset her best friend Gina’s careful plans. Everyone has an opinion about what Steph should do, but naturally everyone tells her it’s “her decision.” As the news filters through her network o...