Plays

Enemies: Foreign and Domestic

Because counter-terrorism begins at home…

One act, 90 mins. 4f.  A darkly comic intersection of foreign “black ops” and family politics.  When the rebel among three odd sisters returns home to reconcile with her estranged mother, cultures clash, sibling rivalries erupt, and bombs start falling.  An incisive domestic comedy with a sharp political edge. Premiered February 21, 2015 at Central Works in Berkeley, CA. Awarded “Outstanding World Premiere Play” in 2015 by the Theatre Bay Area Awards. Download the play on the New Play Exchange (may require registration.)

Without Mercy

A full-length, one-act drama that explores issues surrounding the death penalty, our unequal justice system, and family trauma. World Premiere February 24, 2017 by Off Broadway West Theatre Company, San Francisco, CA.

Hearts of Palm

A satirical comedy in two acts. 85 mins. 4f, 1 m. Unrequited love meets unregulated capitalism.

Hearts of Palm follows the personal ethical crises that play out among a group of United States land negotiators intent on expanding a Southeast Asian palm oil plantation. Relaxed safety standards, nonexistent environmental regulations, and dirt-cheap labor – these are the qualities that attracted Empire Holdings to the island of Marititu. Idealistic negotiator Vi Wells is faced with what seems like an impossible choice: close a land purchase that will destroy the habitat of endangered orangutans, or, procure a tract that’s home to indigenous families – forcing them to relocate from their ancestral land.

Reduction in Force

An “economic” comedy in two acts. 2f, 1m.

The Icarus Wealth Management Group has hit financial whitewater.  Behind closed boardroom doors, profits plunge, questionable investments surface, and a crisis erupts. What’s the solution?  Fire the “little people,” of course!  A reduction in force puts career secretary Anita Green on the chopping block.  Will she keep her job or her self-respect?  An hilarious clusterf*** of backstabbing, ageism, class warfare, and—romance! A Central Works Method play, premiered Summer 2011. Voted “Best Local Play” by BroadwayWorld. Download the play on the New Play Exchange (may require registration).

Solving Sunflowers

a comedy in two acts. 3 f, 2 m.
Prizewinner, 2009 Eudora Welty New Play Competition.

This fanciful comedy follows Nessa, a recent widow, on a journey from grief to recovery. She fights to preserve the habitat of the puzzle sunflower from encroachment by the development of an alien-themed amusement park near Roswell, NM. The play explores the themes of surviving a random universe and how an outsider can redeem a town.

Believers

an apocalyptic romantic comedy in two acts. 2f, 2m.

Rockwell Wise is is determined to create a love vaccine so he will never again feel the pain of heartbreak. Then the source of his heartbreak, Grace Wright, arrives to lead his drug development team. Is it better to have loved and lost — or to pharmaceutically protect yourself? A comedy about love, drugs, and unexpected side effects. Premiered Summer 2012, Wily West Productions, San Francisco, and was produced in Istanbul by Lavanta Productions and in Monterey, CA by Paper Wing Theater. Download the play at the New Play Exchange (may require registration).

 Moments of Truth

a chamber musical, Music and lyrics by Caroline Altman. 2m, 2f.

A floundering marriage. A scandalous interloper. A lie detector. What could possibly go wrong? This comedy-drama asks provocative questions about truth, lies, love, and art. Premiered at 3Girls Theatre September 19, 2015 in San Francisco. Contact me for script and music.

The Only Virgin in Jubilee County

a one-hour play. 1m, 5f.

Winner, 2007 Hill Country Community Theatre Playwriting Contest.
Sometimes it takes a miracle to screw up the perfect wedding! An iconic image of the Virgin Mary makes a miraculous appearance on the back of a woman’s wedding gown in a bridal shop in rural Texas. Chaos ensues. Five women reveal secrets, let down their hair, and each reconsiders her attitudes towards marriage, men, morals, and miracles. Ultimately, everyone gets her heart’s desire. Available through Eldridge Publishing.

Driven

a Christmas comedy in two acts. 4 f.

When Joy and Jessie Wilder show up in Bad Axe, Michigan for Christmas, Daddy has fled and Mother has taken up with an imaginary friend. Or has she, really? This comedy examines abandonment, skewed family memories, and the pursuit of celebrity. Contact me for the script.

Plays co-authored with Andrew Black include:

Porn Yesterday, Strange Bedfellows, and It’s Murder, Mary!

Short Plays