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“Sepia Tones”


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Huth, Mike (American playwright, writer, land developer, 19__-____), “Sepia Tones,”

a 17-minute drama in English, set in the living room of an older home, late afternoon, 2001,

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  •  © 2001 by Mike Huth;  •  in Mike Huth’s Sepia Tones (LaGrange Park, Illinois, U.S.A.: The Author, 2001);  •  script/rights available from Mike Huth, 822 North Spring Street, LaGrange Park, Illinois 60526, U.S.A., e-mail metrowest3@aol.com, telephone (home) 708-354-2124, fax 708-354-2125.  •  Cited by Mike Huth via ftp August 28, 2002; Huth says,

  §  Dramatis Personae Milton (m), 85, an alert, self-confident if ailing patriarch in his last days; Andy (m), 20, a young man with issues but lots of potential; Caretaker (f), 55, knowledgeable in her job.

  §  Synopsis “Milton dozes in his wheelchair. Young Andy, his long absent grandson, arrives. Andy cannot detect whether Milton is just sleeping. Milton’s response startles him. The two meet awkwardly, both award of the generation gap. Andy admits having responded to family encouragement to make this visit. Milton asks about Andy’s girlfriend; this somewhat eases the awkwardness. Milton follows by describing Andy’s late grandmother, Susanna, whom the young man never met. Andy seeks a photo of her in an old album and encounters many yellowed decades-old photos—scenes and people from the grandfather’s early years. The young man notices with surprise many common threads in his and his grandfather’s lives. He and his grandfather both played football. They both like to talk about cars, old and new. Finding Susanna’s photo returns their talk to the women they love. Such talk at first embarrasses Andy, but a bond between the two men develops. Twice, Milton’s caregiver interrupts to ‘suggest’ cutting the visit short for Milton to rest. Milton firmly dismisses the caregiver and her interruptions, determined to maintain command until the end. Clearly fond of Andy, Milton sagely advises his grandson about life. Andy leaves strengthened by the old man’s wisdom.

§  Comment “Single scene. The most important props are a wheelchair and photo album. One simple chair, a small table, and an assortment of medicine bottles will enhance the simple set.  •  The play premiered in the Directors Workshop (3 performances) at the Theatre of Western Springs, in suburban Chicago, June, 2001.

§  Themes connection, family, generation gap, grandfather-grandson relationship, life values, patriarchy, visit.
 
 

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