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“Murder, She Rewrote”

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portrait of Mary Willard

Willard, Mary (American playwright, 1947-____), “Murder, She Rewrote,"

a 10-minute comedy in English, set in a small apartment, anywhere, U.S.A., 8:30 a.m., Saturday,


; • © 1999 by Mary Willard; • in Mary Willard’s Murder, She Rewrote (Encino, California, U.S.A.: The Author, 1998); • script/rights available from Mary Willard, 5056 Woodley Avenue, Encino, California 91436, U.S.A., telephone (home) 818.854.8284, (work) 818.854.8284, e-mail juanini@pacbell.net. • Cited by Mary Willard via ftp, October 13, 2003; Willard says,

§ Dramatis Personae Dan O'Brien (m), 45, detective, a “man's man”; The Narrator (f), 30-60, a nervous woman; Cindy Matthews (f), 25, a sexy woman.

§ Synopsis “Detective Dan O'Brien questions Cindy Matthews while standing over the dead body of her roomate. The questioning gets muddled, and soon a light shines on the Narrator. The Narrator is at a computer writing the story and the characters in her story do as she says. The characters of Dan O'Brien and Cindy Matthews are put through a succession of impossible acting chores. Finally, fed up, they shoot the Narrator and go off together making up their own story.

§ Comment “‘Murder, She Rewrote’ has simple production values. It does require a set that hides the character of the Narrator until she appears. Previously, this has been done by putting the Narrator in a high backed chair facing away from the audience until she first appears. • In 2000, Murder, She Rewrote won the Women in Theatre Leaky Pen competition. • Premiered in a A Show of Farce at the Burbage Theatre, in West Los Angeles. The script has been performed many times and fits perfectly in an evening of short plays or between two comedy one acts. • Mary Willard and her husband, Fred Willard, a busy television actor, live in Los Angeles where they run a weekly sketch comedy workshop. She is the author of the hit comedy Elvis and Juliet, which has been performed in twenty-two cities and four countries. She and her collaborator, Marty Stuart, were finalists in the ASCAP/ Disney competition for their musical comedy Moon Shine!, which was produced in Los Angeles at the Grove Theatre. Her short plays, 'Murder, She Rewrote,' 'At the Vanity Fair' and 'Chateaux Beaux Eaus' have been performed in dozens of theatres. Elvis and Juliet will open at the Abingdon Theatre, 312 West 36th Street, First Floor, New York, New York 10018-6494, U.S.A., February, 2006, and her comedy An Occasional Sin will open in Upland, California, U.S.A., April 2, 2005."

§ Themes author-character relationship, character creation, death, detective, murder, narration, writing.

See also Mary Willard's

  • "At the Vanity Fair," a35-minute comedy in English, set in a penthouse apartment in San Francisco, 8:00 p.m., Tuesday evening, 1998, 3f
  • "A Hunka Hunka Santa Claus," a 10-minute comedy in English, set in an employment agency hiring Santa Clauses, 3:00 p.m., Thursday, November 19, 2003, 2m1f

This Website continues under construction and welcomes new citations and comments.

Page mounted October 14, 2003, and updated November 14, 2004, by the Webmaster.

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Small-Cast One-Act Guide Online


the more-extensive print volumes

1/2/3/4 for the Show: A Guide to Small-Cast One-Act Plays

Vols. 1 and 2

  (Lanham, Maryland, U.S.A.; Folkestone, Kent, U.K.: Scarecrow Press, 1995, 1999)

vol. 1 [1995] ISBN 0810829851, vol. 2 [1999] ISBN 0810836009

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