Plays of Social Significance

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  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...

  Time to Heal

Drama by Burton Bumgarner

57 pages

Multi-racial cast of 7 m, 7 w, 6 flexible


Jim and Lillian Fowler are having a dinner party to welcome their daughter home from college and meet her fiance. Lillian's brother, Walt, a physician, is also there, even though he and Jim get under each other's skins, especially when Walt needles Jim about losing a recent election to become prosecutor because of his conservative racial views. When Janice and her fiance David arrive, the strain increases as the idealistic young law student from "up North" treats the Wycrofts, the family who works for the Fowlers, as equals. The Wycrofts are already uneasy, f...

  Too Free For Me

Drama by R Rex Stephenson

59 pages

6 m, 7 w


The drama is based on an actual trial that occurred in Franklin County, Virginia in 1851. Indiana Choice, a black woman, claims that she and her three children are free. She sues Gresham Choice, her alleged owner, for not only her freedom but that of her three children. Gresham, a prominent citizen with political aspirations, denies Indiana is a free black. The events of the trial are recalled by Margaret Oxley who attended this trial as a child. Oxley is especially fond of Jubal Early, the lawyer for Indiana. As the trial progresses, a variety of witnesses a...

  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."

  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...

  Family Outing

Drama by Dolores Klinsky Walker

39 pages

3 m, 4 w


Ashley, one of the hottest girls in school, is shocked when, on their first date, Peter doesn't respond to her overtures. Peter, a pastor's son, knows the reason why: he thinks he is gay. He’s still hoping it’s not true, that no one will ever have to know he even suspected it. But what about Ashley? After storming out of his house, will she tell the whole school? Then there’s Craig, the youth leader at church, who saw Ashley rush out. He thinks Peter tried to go too far. How could he possibly understand Peter’s fears? But bit by bit Peter’s secret is revealed...

  Gone Tomorrow

Drama by Daniel S Kehde

26 pages

1 m, 5 w, 1 flexible, extras and audience members


Rick, an intelligent ninth grade student athlete, has his first sexual encounter with Amanda, a senior. He has four more relationships before he graduates. By the spring of his senior year, when he tests HIV positive, he has inadvertently exposed more than fifty of his classmates to AIDS. That number has little impact on most audiences until the end of the play when fifty audience members are called to the stage from the names on cards they are handed. When the name on the card is read by the actor playing the doctor, the audience member holding the card shou...

  I Know This For Sure

Drama by Peggy Welch Mershon

16 pages

4 w


Sarah, a student at a girls' prep school, isn't going home for Christmas. Her boyfriend has dumped her, her grades have bombed, and being at home with her alcoholic stepfather is unendurable. Sarah's friends try to talk her into leaving with them, but Sarah has a different trip in mind, a permanent one where she won't feel sad anymore. Then Miranda, a hippie vision from the '60s, drops in. Her message is infused with humor but unmistakable: There's no makeup exam for suicide. Finally, she tells Sarah, "I know this for sure: You've got a great future ahead of ...

  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.

  The 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...

  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 ...

  Service for Jeremy Wong

Drama by Daniel S Kehde

69 pages

9 m, 9 w


When Jeremy Wong, a 15-year-old gay student, is savagely beaten and killed by two fellow students, the whole school reels from the blows. Reporters from all over the country descend on the town. Deep divisions among the students emerge as the student council debates whether or not to hold a memorial service. The brutal murder forces each student to search his or her own conscience and beliefs. Some react with denial, some make excuses, some are outraged, and some are frightened. Others respond with courage and caring, while a few start to question and change ...

  The Friends of Julia Dark

Drama by Art C. Lennox

19 pages

11 parts, approx. 6 m, 5 w


Seven teens are brought to police headquarters to tell what they know of their friend's deadly encounter with drugs and alcohol at a party the night before. Through police questioning and the attorney's defense, we find that while no one gave Julia Dark the drugs, no one stopped her from using them either. Some of the "friends" include the cheerleader, the smart aleck, the football player, the president of the student council, and others. The teens know all about the dangers of drugs, but they don't understand the responsibilities of friendship. A compelling ...

  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...

  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...