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The Competent Heart

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Montley, Patricia (American playwright, writer, professor, administrator, 1942-____), “The Competent Heart,”

a 15-minute comedy in English, set in an intimate bookstore, day, October, 1995,

2m or 2f or 1m1f,

© 1995, script/rights available from Patricia Montley, telephone (home) (410) 252-6074, (work) 412-365-1169. Cited by Patricia Montley via ftp, November 7, 1997; Montley says,

Dramatis Personae Customer (m or f), Proprietor (m or f).

Synopsis “A customer enters a bookstore and—in the hope of pleasing her/his less-than-satisfied Significant Other—asks the proprietor for advice on becoming a competent person. The proprietor (clearly a Trivial Pursuits champion) offers advice and self-help books on medicine, home repairs, and plant care. The customer is awed, but with an Emily Dickinson poem questions the definition of competency. The proprietor’s response reveals that he/she is the Significant Other.”

Comment Can pair with Montley’s “Finding the Flame,” a 15-minute comedy-drama in English, set in a boarding school dormitory room, day and night, 1990, 2f; “Juice,” a 15-minute bare-stage interweaving of monologs in English, 1995, 2f; “Rachel Carson Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea,” a 15-minute bare-stage drama in English, set on a rocky coast at low tide, day, summer, 1958, 2m2f (1m is child).

Themes advice, book, bookstore, competency, customer, Dickinson (aka Emily Elizabeth Dickenson, U. S. poet, (1830-1886), gardening, home repairs, medicine, poetry, self-help, Significant Other.


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Small-Cast One-Act Guide Online


the more-extensive print volume

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

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