Our March picks for schools - NOT IN THE SCRIPT: PERFORMANCE MONOLOGUES FROM UNEXPECTED PLACES & GIRL SHUT YOUR MOUTH
Tom Healey - AustralianPlays.org Literary Manager
This month I am highlighting two texts that have come in to our collection recently. One by Perth writer Gita Bezard is a new play and the other, Not in the Script: Performance Monologues From Unexpected Places is a new release through Currency Press that I think will make an excellent addition to any drama teacher’s collection of monologues for performance.
Not in the Script is a book put together by John McCallum, theatre academic and critic (one of the country’s finest in my opinion) for The Australian with Jenny Nicholls, senior theatre academic at Macquarie University in Sydney. The idea here is to provide a series of monologues that are both stand-alone and from non-theatrical sources. The following description comes from the Currency website. I quote it in full because it says it all:
“The characters range from lovers in the King James Bible to a sci-fi Artificial Intelligence unit navigating gender identities between planets. Classic sources include Great Expectations, Jane Eyre, Ulysses and The Bell Jar and work from Beckett, Kafka and Mark Twain. Strong contemporary monologues come from work by Raymond Carver, Miranda July, Elena Ferrante, Jeffrey Eugenides, Alice Munro and David Sedaris. Australian voices speak in iconic moments from Jasper Jones and John Marsden’s Tomorrow series and from definitive work by David Malouf, Elizabeth Jolley, Geraldine Brooks, Morris Gleitzman, Jeanine Leane, Gayle Kennedy and Alice Pung.”
Girl Shut Your Mouth is by young Perth-based playwright and theatre maker Gita Bezard. Bezard is a member of The Last Great Hunt, a theatre collective in WA that makes and produces amazing and vivid works which they perform both locally and internationally. This play was one half of a double bill presented in 2016 at Black Swan State Theatre where it caused a sensation. The following text is from the Wheeler Centre webpage detailing all of the shortlisted entrants for the 2017 Victorian premier’s Literary Awards, of which Girl Shut Your Mouth is one:
"Katie, Grace, Mia and Darcy are your average 16-year-old girls. They love boys and dresses and the idea of a feminist future. Everything about them is normal. Except their friends die on a monthly basis. Except their lives are in danger if they go out after dark. Except they aren't really your average 16-year-old girls at all.
In an attack on their school, Katie was shot, and her bullet means that now she's going to leave this place. She's heading to a place where they welcome you with open arms, where no one tells you what to do, where you can live and believe and act how you want.
Darcy's been through her own ordeal, but Grace and Mia are wracked with jealousy about Katie's new future. It doesn't help that they have yet another funeral to attend – with fake orchids no less, but that's not even the worst one they've seen. So they resolve to get bullets of their own. But that's easier said than done. And what if it doesn't end the way they want it to? What if the place Katie's going isn't what they think it is?"
Tom Healey, Literary Manager