My first full-length stage play was Worthy Sons, a drama I finished in 1989 about the three Booth brothers and their only appearance on the stage together some five or six months before John Wilkes assassinated Pres. Lincoln. Although it placed well in a few contests, it went nowhere, perhaps because I was (am) nobody and the play required an out-sized cast.
Even today, I’m still waiting for my first truly professional production of my stage writing, though I can lay claim to being an “award-winning” playwright, since Crossing Event Horizon,was the Winner of the Chameleon Theatre Circle New Play Award 2007. My two-character one act, The Coffee Date, an insult comedy, was produced upstairs at a tavern whose name I forget, on Third Street in Los Angeles in 2005 or 6. And I did produce and direct an evening of one-acts I’d written, called Continuing Education at the Hollywood Fight Club Theatre in 2007. It contained a play called The Placement, based on my short story.
I have high hopes for my full-length stage play, Doubtful Provenance, which has had a couple of readings in NYC, and has been named a semi-finalist in two contests, The Ashland New Play Festival, and the Association of American Community Theatres for 2017. Notification for both contests is in July.
Finally, I have written a full-length play called A Negro of Ours. I decided to write it after learning the Society of Jesus had owned half a dozen tobacco plantations in Maryland and about 270 slaves whom they sold in 1838 for $115, 000 which they used to finance Georgetown University, St. Joseph’s University and Xavier High School in NYC. Most of my research came from the Jesuit Plantation Project. I was intrigued by the moral contradictions of priests trying to save souls using an inherently evil system that so damages people’s lives. The play spans 24 years, from 1814 to 1838, and follows the relationship of a Jesuit just out of seminary and a slave who comes to the Jesuit manor as a bequest.