robertisenberg

A Play is Born

In Uncategorized on November 28, 2010 at 10:29 pm

Photograph of hotel bar, Sosua, Dominican Republic.

Last spring, Duquesne University commissioned me to write a stage-play called Speak Now. The drama will be performed by the Red Masquers in 2011. I can honestly say that this is my toughest playwriting project, a script that has evolved dramatically over the past 10 months. What began as a satire of oil-drilling families later became a satire of New England yuppies and the Robin Hood legend, and for the past half-year has become something completely different.

This afternoon, I finally finished the first full draft of Speak Now. The story is a typical guy-meets-girl, guy-dates-girl, guy-dies-in-house-fire, girl-meets-new-guy, girl-and-new-guy-try-to-get-married-in-Caribbean, first-guy-comes-back-from-dead romantic dramedy. Because I’m pretty happy with the result (which is, to put it mildly, a weird, weird play), here is an excerpt to get palettes whetted.

            STEFAN: I’m gonna punch that guy.

            DORY: Are you?

            STEFAN: I would.

            DORY: You can. Go for it.

            STEFAN: What are you saying?

            DORY: I’m saying you can. If you really want. Go for it. Punch that guy. He brings you free booze, waits on you hand and foot, give you a fucking flashlight – hey, why not? Knock his lights out.

            STEFAN: Why are you being a bitch?

            DORY: Why are you being a douchebag?

            STEFAN: I… LOVE… her.

            DORY: I… KNOW.

            STEFAN: Is nobody on my side, here?

            DORY: Stefan… I’m here… for Kathryn. I’m here for both of you. I took off work. I paid my airfare. And I did it because I love you guys. So can you not go crazy? (Pinches fingers together). Little bit, not crazy?

Stefan sighs and opens bottle. He pours two shots, offers one to Dory, who accepts.

            STEFAN: We’re getting married tomorrow. Come hell or high water.

He knocks it back.

            DORY: Good.

Dory knocks hers back.

            STEFAN: I never loved anybody. Not like her. She’s the real deal, Dory. If I don’t have her, I got nothing.

            DORY: Have her?

            STEFAN: Jesus… to have and to hold… till death do you blah-blah-blah. Yes, have her. Just like she has me. Believe me, she has me way more than I have her.

            DORY: I think she just freaked out.

            STEFAN: Well… (pours another, just for himself). Who do you turn to, when you freak out? The beach? Or the guy who you said yes to?

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  1. Congratulations, Robert! This has me interested. Eager to see the production!

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