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“Thirty Stories Down”

 
 

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Saini, Kiran Kaur (American playwright, writer, 1965-____), “Thirty Stories Down,”

a 35-minute comedy in English in seven scenes set in an apartment in New York City (or any city with a tall building), day and night, 1997,

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 •  © 1997 by Kiran Kaur Saini;  •  script/rights available from Kiran Kaur Saini, 409 Calvin Road, Raleigh, North Carolina 27605, U.S.A., e-mail pfstrikes@sprintmail.com, telephone (home) 919-836-8036.  •  Cited by Kiran Kaur Saini, via ftp June 29, 2000; Saini says,

  §  Dramatis Personae Jenny (f), 18, daughter; Sheila (f), 45, mother; Arthur (m), 45, father.

  §  Synopsis “Jenny and her parents live in a high rise apartment with no door. There is no way to leave the apartment. There used to be a door, but there isn’t any longer. Jenny’s mother Sheila remembers everything that happened before the door was gone but not the door itself. Her father Arthur remembers the door itself but nothing that happened before it was gone. Jenny remembers neither the door nor anything that happened before. Jenny is starting to wonder about the disappearance of the door (which her mother denies) and the missing sister she once had. And what goes on outside the building thirty stories down on the street below? For the first time, she sees something that interests her down there. Jenny starts to prepare herself for Something, she’s not sure what, while her father searches for the lost door he remembers so clearly. Shiela tells stories about the past but wants to keep Jenny close to her. Yet when the time comes for Jenny to leave the apartment, Shiela has to find the strength to let her go (out the window on a 30-story-long rope!).

  §  Comment “This is a very economical play to produce. There are seven scenes with no set change. Set requires indication of a window and a door to another room, and a chair. Scenes occur during the day and at night, so variable lighting is desirable, but nothing complicated is required. Props are limited largely to the chair, a chest or footlocker, a few tools, a rope, and a jumprope or some small dumbbells or other exercise equipment. In her ‘preparation’ for the unknown, Jenny jumpropes a lot, but other exercises can be substituted as necessary, depending on requirements, limitations, or desires of the actress and director. Costuming is non-specific and flexible, although one scene is in the middle of night and a pair of pyjamas or nightclothes for Jenny would be best.  •  ‘Thirty Stories Down’ was produced by Theatre Group Inc., in New York City, 1997, and by DreamWeaver Productions, in New York City, 1998.”

  §  Themes apartment living, coming-of-age, denial, departure, disappearance, door, exercise, family, growing up, mother-daughter, search, separation, sister-sister relationship, tale.
 
 
 

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Small-Cast One-Act Guide Online

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the more-extensive print volumes

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

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