Keep your creativity flowing with Fishamble's #TinyPlayChallenge
In these challenging times, Fishamble - along with many of our colleagues in the wider Irish artistic community - is working hard to keep imaginations lively, communities engaged - and most of all offer people the opportunity of creative expression. We asked our audiences: Would you welcome the challenge of exploring your thoughts and feelings through drama? Do you have a dramatic story that you feel the urge to work out for yourself, and maybe share with your fellow citizens?
Below is one of the chosen plays from our global submissions.
A living room in almost complete darkness.
PHIL, a middle-aged woman, curled up on the couch, the telly on
low. She’s been crying.
The front door opens, and her husband DENNIS enters. He pulls his
DENNIS: You’re still up
PHIL: I couldn’t sleep.
DENNIS: I met Mae. She said she called, you didn’t answer. Were you out?
DENNIS: I told her to come around tomorrow. She wants to show you those photos. She thought maybe the two of you could go for something to eat or .... into town. Phil.
DENNIS: ...... I’m going to bed. Are you coming up? Right. Goodnight.
(He exits upstairs.
A minute or two passes.
He comes running back down the stairs)
DENNIS: You cleaned out his room. Phil. Look at me. You cleaned out his room!
PHIL: Don’t shout at me.
(He turns on the light. In the corner, a pile of boxes – duvets, posters,
a lamp – an entire room)
DENNIS: No. No, that’s not – that’s not staying there, I don’t care, that’s not staying there
PHIL: I couldn’t look at it –
DENNIS: I asked you, I specifically asked you –
PHIL: I couldn’t look at it.
DENNIS: We agreed to leave it as it was, you promised me –
PHIL: I didn’t throw it out.
DENNIS: That’s not the point.
PHIL: You’re not here.
PHIL: You’re never here. You’re always working or running around, carrying on like you haven’t a worry in the world –
DENNIS: You had no right touching his stuff without talking to me first
PHIL: While I’m here, like a thick –
DENNIS: You had no right –
PHIL: Then put it all back! Put it all back but when you do, you better lock that door and throw away the key because if I spend another minute lying on his bed, crying and thinking to myself “what if?”, going over it in my head again and again and again – there’ll be nothing left of me.
DENNIS: I’ve asked you every day, I’m blue in the face asking you to come out with me or to go for coffee with Mae or to the pictures but you don’t budge, you sit here, day in and day out like a zombie, what else can I do, what can I do?
PHIL: Sit with me!
After a beat, Dennis takes a breath, puts his coat back on)
DENNIS: You’re not helping yourself. I know you think ...... but you’re not. It’s going back. I’ll do it myself but it’s not sitting there. Ok?
Dennis exits. Phil is left alone.
The lights fade.)
Jamie is an aspiring playwright from Wicklow. He studied theatre performance and later creative writing in Inchicore College and since, has taught theatre in the US. He was chosen as one of ten from two hundred applicants to join AbbeyBegins, an initiative for new writers run by the Abbey Theatre and more recently, in October, took part in the Fishamble playwriting course where the idea for his piece was born.
Fishamble: The New Play Company is supported by