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“Escape to the Good Life”

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Williams, Paula (Australian playwright, short story writer, screen writer, 1926-____), “Escape to the Good Life,”

a 10 minute play for young teengers, set in a shabby squat in an Australian city, 2000,

2m2f; © 2000 by Paula Williams; • in Paula Williams' Escape to the Good Life (Bangalow, Byron Shire, New South Wales, Australia: The Author, 2000), • script/rights available from Paula Williams via e-mail miathara@linknet.com.au. • Cited by Paula Williams, via e-mail July, 2003.

§ Dramatis Personae Pete (m), adolescent, brawny and brash; Gordy (m), adolescent, plump, slow, not too bright, a follower; Shauna (f), adolescent, tatty but sexy looks and figure; Jodi (f), adolescent, thin nervous, jealous.

§ Synopsis Four unemployed teenagers, 14- or 15-year-olds, burst into their squat after triumphantly pulling off a robbery planned by their cluey, but absent, leader Alia. While they wait for Alia, Pete and Shauna flirt, and all gloat at what they’ll do with the loot, once Alia gets there. They become anxious at her continued absence, until they notice Gordo is clutching his shabby backpack tightly. They cajole, him into confessing that Alia slipped the contents to him, and told him to hold on to it until she got there. He refuses to open it, but as she still hasn’t arrived, they bully him into opening it. With whoops of delight, they start counting the revealed loot, but the absent Alia has the last laugh, with a double twist.

§ Comment “This is suitable for drama teachers and students. • Paula Williams, 78-year old playwright, began her association with the stage with Sydney University Dramatic Society (SUDS) in1948-49, running around backstage with a string of safety pins, and delivering her one Shakespearean line with all the aplomb of a terrified mouse. She married in New Guinea highlands an engineer; they have two children. Subsequently they lived in Sydney many times, Hong Kong, and the Gove Peninsula, Northern Territory, Australia, until they 'dropped out' to become elderly self-sufficiency dudes on a run-down property on a mountainside near Nimbin, site of the Aquarius Festival. Has moved all her life, before during and after marriage. Likes change, hates cities, has been a questioner all her life. Began writing plays at he age of 61, after leaving her 37-year-old marriage. She and her husband are now good mates. Her plays sketches and monologues have been performed many times. In 2002, two one acts were published; another was shortlisted in an International One Act Play Competition in Malibu, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. She writes gentle plays about relationships, with insight and humour. Once a member of ANPC (Australian National Playwrights Centre), Sydney's Griffin Theatre, and Brisbane's Playlab (Playwrights Laboratory) and FAW (Fellowship of Australian Writers). Now confines her membership to Playworks (National body based in Sydney) and helping run Bangalow Writers' Group (mixed genres) and the script/workshop arm of Baywrite Theatre, Inc. (Byron Bay) Has always done volunteer work wherever she's lived. Does tai chi, aerobics and aqua-robics, and maintains a difficult, terraced vegetable garden.”

§ Themes adolescence, betrayal, desperation, trust.



See also Paula Williams'

  • "The Advertisement," a 15-minute comedy in English, set in a shared bed-sitter in an Australian city. 2f
  • "All Passion Un-Spent," a 15-minute comedy in English, set in a shared bed-sitter in an Australian city. 2m1f
  • "Close Encounters on a Beach," a 30-minute bare-stage comedy-drama in English, set on a stretch of deserted beach, Australia, 2002, 2m
  • "
  • "Dear George," a 10-minute monologue in English, set in farm kitchen, Australia, 2002, 1m
  • "Going Home," a 7-minute sentimental comedy in English, set in a hospital ward, Australia, 1f
  • "Merrily Down the Stream," a __-minute comedy-drama, set in ___, 1992, 2m2f
  • "Mind If I Sit Here?" a 7-minute comedy in English, set in ____, Australia, 1f
  • "Mothering," a 7-minute comedy in English, set before a large mirror in a home, Australia, 1f
  • "A Nice Weekend," a 30-minute comedy in English, set in a motel room in a just-becoming-popular seaside town and in a spotlit part of a restaurant, Australia, 1989, 2m2f
  • "The Night Before Christmas," a 10-minute comedy in English, set in the living room of an Australian house, 2001, 2f
  • "No Oysters, Please," a 30-minute comedy in English, set in a homely motel room in a just-becoming-popular seaside town and in a spotlit part of a restaurant, Australia, 1993, 2m2f
  • "Patterns," a __-minute comedy-drama, set in ___, 1992, 1m1f
  • "Spirit of the Cave," a 60-minute youth theatre comedy in English, set in a simulated cave, Australia, 2m2f (+ 2m bit parts)
  • "Wife Number Two," a 60-minute youth theatre comedy in English, set in a simulated cave, Australia, 2m2f (+ f bit)

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

Page mounted July 26, 2004 and updated December 6, 2004, by the Webmaster.

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

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