Synopses & Reviews
Eric Lane and Nina Shengold have been editing contemporary theater anthologies for more than twenty years. Eric Lane's award-winning plays have been published and performed in the United States, Canada, Europe, and China. Plays include Ride, Times of War, Heart of the City, Dancing on Checkers' Grave,
and Filming O'Keeffe. Floating
, a PlayPenn finalist, was workshopped at Raven Theatre. Eric's short plays are published in Best American Short Plays, Poems and Plays
, and the Foreign Language Press
(Beijing). He wrote and produced the short films First Breath
, which he also directed; both films screened in more than forty cities worldwide. For TV's Ryan's Hope
he received a Writers Guild Award. Honors include the Berrilla Kerr Playwriting Award, the La MaMa Playwright Award, and fellowships at Yaddo, VCCA, and St. James Cavalier in Malta. Eric is an honors graduate of Brown University, and artistic director of Orange Thoughts, a not-for-profit theater and film company in New York City.
Nina Shengold's plays include Finger Foods, War at Home, Homesteaders, and Romeo/Juliet, and have been produced around the world. Her one-act No Shoulder was filmed by director Suzi Yoonessi, with Melissa Leo and Samantha Sloyan. Nina won a Writers Guild Award for her teleplay Labor of Love, starring Marcia Gay Harden; other teleplays include Blind Spot, with Joanne Woodward and Laura Linney, and Unwed Father. Her books include the novel Clearcut; River of Words: Portraits of Hudson Valley Writers (with photographer Jennifer May), and a growing posse of pseudonymous books for young readers. A graduate of Wesleyan, she is currently teaching creative writing at Manhattanville College. Nina lives in New York's Hudson Valley, where she has been books editor of Chronogram magazine since 2004.
Nina Shengold won the ABC Playwright Award and the LA Weekly Award for her play "Homesteaders." Her one-acts have been performed all over the country, and her TV scripts include Hallmark Hall of Fame's "Blind Spot," starring Joanne Woodward, and "Silent Night." She is also the author of the novel Clearcut
. A founding member of the theater company Actors & Writers, she lives in upstate New York.
Eric Lane's plays have been performed at theaters in New York and around the country. Works include "The Gary & Rob Show," "The Heart of a Child," and "Dancing on Checkers' Grave." He is artistic director of Orange Thoughts, a not-for-profit theater and film company in New York City. Shengold and Lane are the editors of eight previous Vintage anthologies and three Penguin anthologies.
David Ives, VENUS IN FURS
Steven Dietz, SHOOTING STAR
Frank Higgins, BLACK PEARL SINGS!
Anthony Clarvoe, THE ART OF SACRIFICE
Elizabeth Meriwether, 90 DAYS
Kitt Lavoie, BANK & TRUST
Ean Miles Kessler, FUNNY VALENTINE
Simon Fill, THE GIFT
Michael Mitnick, HAIL CAESER!
Pete Barry, HEARING AIR
Mark Harvey Levine, THE KISS
Eric Lane, LADY LIBERTY AND THE DONUT GIRL
Paul Rudnick, MY HUSBAND
Jacob Juntunen, SADDAM’S LIONS
Naveen Bahar Choudhury, SKIN
Doug Wright, WILDWOOD PARK
Edwin Sánchez, BEA AND MAY
Nina Shengold, DEEP JERSEY
Kelly Rhodes, HEADS AND TAILS
José Rivera, LESSON FOR UNACCUSTOMED BRIDE
Daria Polatin, THAT FIRST FALL
Cori Thomas, WAKING UP
Marco Ramirez, 3:59 am: a drag race for two actors
Jacqueline E. Lawton, FINALS, TOUCHDOWNS, AND BARREL KICKS
Halley Feiffer, FRANK AMENDS
Neil LaBute, STRANGE FRUIT
David Auburn, AN UPSET
Billy Aronson, NEGOTIATION
About the Editors
Permissions and Acknowledgements
About the Author
Plays for Two
is a unique anthology of twenty-eight terrific plays for two actors, by a mix of celebrated playwrights and cutting-edge new voices.
It takes two to tango—or to perform a duet, fight a duel, or play ping-pong. The two-character play is dramatic confrontation stripped to its essence. These four full-length and twenty-four short plays feature pairs of every sort—strangers, rivals, parents and children, siblings, co-workers, friends, and lovers—swooning or sparring, meeting cute or parting ways. In a dizzying range of moods and styles, these two-handers offer the kind of meaty, challenging roles actors love, while providing readers and audiences with the pleasures of watching the complex give-and-take dynamics of two keenly matched characters.
Plays by: Billy Aronson, David Auburn, Pete Barry, Naveen Bahar Choudhury, Anthony Clarvoe, Steven Dietz, Halley Feiffer, Simon Fill, Frank Higgins, David Ives, Jacob Juntunen, Ean Miles Kessler, Neil LaBute, Eric Lane, Kitt Lavoie, Jacqueline E. Lawton, Mark Harvey Levine, Elizabeth Meriwether, Michael Mitnick, Daria Polatin, Marco Ramirez, Kelly Rhodes, Jose Rivera, Paul Rudnick, Edwin Sanchez, Nina Shengold, Cori Thomas, Doug Wright