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“Jersey”

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Fitzgerald, Hugh (aka Hugh G. Fitzgerald, American playwright, actor, 1969-____), “Jersey,” a 40-minute drama in English in four scenes, set in the home of Sean Murphy, New Jersey, U.S.A., Sunday, May 16, 17, 2000,

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; • © 2003 by Hugh G. Fitzgerald; • in Hugh G. Fitzgerald’s Jersey (Santa Monica, California, U.S.A.: The Author, 2003) ; • script/rights available from Hugh G. Fitzgerald, 938 Third street #303, Santa Monica, California 90403, U.S.A., e-mail hughgregory2@aol, telephone (home) 310-497-5416. • Cited by Hugh G. Fitzgerald via postal mail, November 24, 2003; Fitzgerald says,

§ Dramatis Personae Paulie (m), 33, brother; Sean (m), 30, brother; Connie (f), 45, aunt; Lee (f), 30, sister.

§ Synopsis “Together for the funeral of their mother, Paulie, after twenty years away, and his younger brother, Sean, confront their emotional heritage. Their mother once just shoved them onto a passing green bus and sent them they cannot recall where. Her drinking explained some of her actions, but not all. Their kinfolk did not have an idea about her treatment of her boys. Sean a couple of days ago got a card from their absent father, “Heard your having trouble.” Paulie has never heard from him. Their father, who started to panic and want out even while getting married, now considers himself “save” by baptism and a new girlfriend. Their Aunt Connie has told Paulie that the father is coming to the funeral. Sean recalls that sixteen years ago the father had voiced an agnostic attitude. He feels wistful about his father until Paulie mentions that Aunt Connie once drunkenly ranted about the father wanting his children aborted. This news upsets Sean. It explains why the father abandoned them. The boys bitterly ridicule their absent father. Later that evening, Sean asks Paulie for some money, a twenty. Paulie says no, that Sean has already been into Paulie’s wallet and taken a twenty. Sean says that he didn’t take the money but that he’ll pay it back. Sean calls the whole family hypocrites and, to illustrate, brings up Paulie’s having illegally gotten ten grand from a wreck. Sean calls Paulie arrogant and goes out. Paulie recalls Aunt Connie’s urging him to lie and cry over the telephone to his grandmother to get to stay longer at the beach. Next morning, Aunt Connie rants about the irresponsibility of Paulie, Sean, and Lee’s father. She blames the hold that Babs, his new girlfriend, has on him. He’s even been trying for four years to get title to the house, to cut the Paulie, Sean, and Lee out of an inheritance. Paulie offers the house to Aunt Connie. She rants on until Paulie dismisses it all, “this is you and him.” Later, Paulie tries to explain to his sister, Lee, that Sean took money from his wallet. Lee discloses that Sean had taken things from her house, too. Lee informs Paulie that their father has become a minister and wants bring Babs to the funeral. Paulie wishes he could have been more protective of Sean and Lee. She claims to be happy with her own tribe and gently nags him for his wandering. On the day of the funeral, Sean has returned. The three, Paulie, Sean, and Lee, try to find an attitude to take toward their father’s reappearance. Somebody has to speak at the funeral. Paulie has written something. Lee recalls, “I read this thing . . . this thing about families that lose a parent early . . . it actually helps to cleanse . . . that’s when the children can finally move on . . . move on . . . grow up . . . uh . . . some psych doctor . . . made sense.” They note with regret the fast passage of time: they haven’t been together in four years, but they cannot commit to staying in contact.

§ Comment “Very simple sets. Simple lighting. No sound effects. • Premiered in Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.” • The Jersey in the title is New Jersey. • “Hugh began his professional studies in San Francisco at the American Conservatory Theatre and then in New York at Circle in the Square with John Stix and the Michael Howard Studio with Patsy Rodenburg. He performed regionally in Chicago and New York at Shakespeare Project Chicago and Theatre Ten Ten respectively. In Los Angeles, Hugh studied the Meisner technique at Playhouse West with Jeff Goldblum, at the William Alderson Studio, and completed the two-year program at The Ruskin School of Acting. At the Ruskin School Hugh was invited into the Master Class where he studied with Anthony Hopkins for a year. He was a founding member of the Off-Hour Theater Project and also apprenticed as a student teacher during his last year at the Ruskin Studio.”—The New School of Acting - Faculty, http://www.newschoolofacting.com/Faculty.html, accessed December 7, 2003.

§ Themes “family, miscommunication, redemption.”



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