Plays of Social Significance

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  Code Five

Drama by Marc Holland

24 pages

1 m, 1 w


A male nurse is facing a stalemate after years of sessions with his therapist…until today. Finally, the hole in his mind is filled by the actual memory of moments of terror. His realization? That in keeping a few co-workers and himself alive behind a blocked door, others were killed on the other side of the door while begging to be let in. It is, sadly, a story of a shooting that is all too timely. Here is a play that will open some conversations that we don’t really want to have about an issue we wish would go away. When the evening news no longer leads with...

  Break

Drama by Monique Brown

29 pages

4 m, 2 w


Kyle, William, Natalie, and Richard are not likely friends. With such different backgrounds, they never would have met outside of the subway station. But when their train becomes stalled unexpectedly, they have no choice but to turn to one another. Personalities clash and tensions rise. In the midst of crisis, with nothing but time, these four strangers reflect on their problems and insecurities, defining who they are now. Slowly, they begin to realize how much they really share. Despite initial difficulties, they bond and come out stronger on the other side ...

  Libby Pearce Drinks

Drama by Tim Mogford

20 pages

4 w


A teenage girl has been arrested after a car accident and charged with DUI. Four of her peers who were with her earlier that night arrive at the small-town police station. Julie, restlessly belligerent, is frustrated with Lindsay, who sits silent and brooding. Soon, Erin, who is impulsive, and Jen, a natural follower, join them. The girls wait anxiously, speculating about what the police already know...and what they will find out. A series of admissions and revelations force the girls to re-evaluate themselves and their role in the events, as an already tense...

  Her Story

Drama by Michael Norman Mann

32 pages

5 m, 9 w, extras, doubling possible


High school students Mike and Shelly are breaking up. Later, Shelly sees Mike at a party with his new girlfriend and between her depression and a few too many drinks, allows herself to be coaxed outside by an unscrupulous guy. Things go too far in the bushes and Shelly is date-raped. When she returns to school on Monday, she has a reputation and school officials want to get to the bottom of the rumors they have heard. With characters immediate and believable, this play is powerful, timely and significant.

  Carl

Drama by E. Jack Williams

24 pages

5 m, 4 w, extras if desired.


Inspired by a true story, "Carl" tells of a young man's experience with being teased and bullied throughout school. The play opens with a 10-year reunion, then flashes back to his high school days, episodes in the lunchroom and classroom. We even see a brief bit of Carl's home life. Through the moving portrayal of Carl's life and ultimate suicide, members of the audience are compelled to examine their reactions to people who may be different. "Carl" is the winner of Minnesota's "Arc of Excellence Community Media Award."

  Finis

Drama by Gay Janis

25 pages

2 m, 3 w


An award-winning play about a relevant problem, teen suicide. Without even any skid marks to show he tried to brake his speeding car, the invincible Dave is dead. Although the school play has been cancelled, the other kids try out a few dramatic scenes to see if they can't pull something together. Dave is "with" them, making his usual wisecracks. As the kids start to work through their grief and shock, they unite, realizing how precious life is. And Dave is left alone, wishing for another chance.

  In Our Own Backyard

Drama by Rachel Lopez

51 pages

4 m, 8 w, 2 flexible


When Chris, a popular, straight-A student, suffers the loss of his younger sister in a hit-and-run accident, he is left to struggle through the remainder of his high school career. But Jake Simmons, the star quarterback and class bully, won’t leave him alone and begins to torment Chris about his personal tragedy while taking bullying to a whole new level. Haunted by his sister and reeling in his pain, Chris decides to take matters into his own hands. In Our Own Backyard tells a story of profound loss, personal tragedy, teen angst and violence amongst a group ...

  Empathize It!

Drama Humor With Humor by Michelle S Uyemura

52 pages

Flexible casting: 2 - 6 m, 8 - 17 w


Alden and Sidney find themselves developing an unlikely friendship having been marked as outcasts by the “in crowd” at school. We see through their eyes what it is like to be ridiculed and picked on, what it feels like to have your “friends” turn on you because of one simple misstep. But just when life seems most bleak, enter a hero: a quirky, awkward, fun-loving, larger-than-life, sure-to-make-you-laugh superhero for the new millennium: Empathy Girl! Though unable to fly, lacking superstrength or speed, and a little hypoglycemic, Empathy Girl isn’t without a...

  Hangman

Drama by A. W. Richardson

69 pages

3 m, 7 w, 1 flexible, optional doubling


Mary Beth Langmeyer is charged with first-degree murder after she shoots her husband while he sleeps. She claims he had been physically and emotionally abusive during their marriage, and that she feared for her life if she reported it. The case becomes a battle of personalities between the district attorney and the defense attorney as they stretch the limits of civility and flirt with contempt charges. The jury of five women and one man deliberate, ultimately finding themselves deadlocked. In the end, the audience votes as to whether the lone male juror will ...

  The Little Theatre

Drama by Con Chapman

22 pages

2 m, 2 w, 1 flexible


Four speech and drama students and their coach are preparing for a tournament. Charles is the team's supremely confident extemporaneous speaker. Patty is the group's entry into the category of original oratory. Cathy is both a debater and, at least in her own mind, a talented actress. And then there's Chris Higgins, a former football player whose mother is forcing him to participate in public speaking as a way of overcoming his stuttering problem. Unable to join in the athletics that used to bring him glory, he's reluctantly joined this group, a group which h...

  Girl Who Fell in Love With a Squirrel

Drama by Gwen Hansen

17 pages

3 - 4 m, 2 w


Braz, a soft gray squirrel, easily captures the heart of Ann, a nurturing teenager who wants only to please. “I love you, Ann,” Braz proclaims, “but I need you to do a few things for me. Do you think you could bring me some nuts—cashews are my fav, Ann.” But he really isn’t appreciative of her best efforts: “Peanuts! I thought I said cashews!” he complains. In this allegory Ann makes Braz very happy, seeing to his every demand, but what is this love-professing squirrel doing for Ann? Ann has to think about this when she sits with a boy named James while an en...

  Love Is Not an Angry Thing

Drama by Daniel S Kehde

35 pages

2 w


Tina has fallen hard for Greg, an upperclassman, but her best friend, Margie, is worried about the relationship with its subtle and not so subtle bullying. Greg meets Tina after every class, gets her to quit the soccer team because it takes too much time away from him, and basically manipulates her to do exactly what he wants to do. Soon his controlling personality leads to violence, and Tina's family gets a restraining order against him. But he's determined to see Tina one more time. With Margie as our narrator, we see how a girl's youthful dream of love can...

  A School Like Ours

Drama by Joe Cherubino

64 pages

5 m, 5 w, extras


Chris, an all-American student, is healing. Having survived a shooting at his old school, he is starting to get on with his life. He has moved to a new school and meeting new friends: Allison, a girl with a big heart; Trent, the most popular kid in school with problems at home; and Randy, the kid no one seems to like. While dealing with everyday issues like homework and relationships, Chris and the others find themselves in the middle of an ongoing battle between Randy and Trent. What starts as name-calling escalates to a fight and then turns much darker when...

  The Straight Skinny

Drama Humor With Humor by Frank Cerabino

42 pages

9 m, 9 w


What happens when a sympathetic teacher slips an advance copy of the algebra midterm exam to a struggling student and warns him not to share it with the rest of the class? In two words: cheating scandal! Come sort out the vagaries of honor, friendship and the straight skinny with the 18 members of Mr. Bolton's fourth-period algebra class. Join them as they discover the value of truthfulness, morality and higher math in a way that is at times hilarious, touching, and provocative. The one-act play is chockful of vividly drawn characters, generously explored eth...

  Freedom Train

Drama by Kate Emery Pogue

56 pages

With doubling: 4m, 4w, plus ensemble to play various small roles


When Mandy Kate, a young slave girl, overhears a threat to sell her brother-in-law Robert, she rushes to warn her sister Sarah. The family plans to escape together, but Mandy Kate is inadvertently left behind when trying to help another slave, Old Job. Together the old man and young girl must set off on their own. They disguise themselvesOld Job as a woman (Josephine) and Mandy Kate as a boy (Abe)and are initially helped by a clever country boy and his eccentric elderly aunt. Mandy Kate and Old Job are later guided through several stops on the Underground Rai...