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King of Thieves

King of Thieves
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Sale Price: $14.36 CDN
You Save: $3.59 (20 %)
Author: George F. Walker
Publisher: Talonbooks
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 128
Pub. Date: 2012
ISBN-10: 0889227551
ISBN-13: 9780889227552
on sale

About the Play:

King of Thieves is a full-length drama by George F. Walker. Master thief Mac and his equally crooked father-in-law, Peachum, are coerced by the FBI into mounting a sting operation against a cadre of corrupt bankers. Instead, they soon hatch schemes of their own. A nightclub cabaret in 1928 New York is the setting for this musical tale of deception, double-cross and sudden demise. This trenchantly satirical play with songs exposes a world of corporate crime that's all too familiar today.

New York City, 1928. Master-thief Mac must join an FBI sting operation against a cadre of corrupt bankers. Music, murder, and mayhem ensue – at the speakeasy where criminals scheme and on Wall Street where financiers conspire. Inspired by John Gay's 18th-century classic The Beggar's Opera, which was later immortalized in the great Brecht-Weill composition The Threepenny Opera. Readers familiar with these works will delight in Walker's inspired pairing of Mac and Polly, Peachum and his missus, Jenny Diver, and a host of others within the corrupt world of Wall Street bankers immediately before the 1929 market crash. Readers meeting these characters for the first time will find much to enjoy in Walker's ready wit and keen sense of story.

When the FBI blackmails Peachum into helping bring down a group of corrupt bankers, he partners with Mac, his son-in-law, to discover that the bankers are using their wealth to inflate the market, plotting to pull their assets just before the bubble bursts. They scheme to make new for- tunes by providing loans after everyone else goes bankrupt. If all of this sounds distressingly familiar, it should.

At its heart, King of Thieves, like both its predecessors, is an examination of criminal behaviour at all levels of society, and of the disturbing truth that everyone can fall prey to dishonesty and corruption. But the element of fun in Walker's script makes us laugh and his sense of zaniness reflects the bafflement many of us feel when contemplating our own world: a place where men of dubious moral integrity still inhabit the corridors of power and are still not taken to task for their dishonourable – if not downright criminal – behaviour.

King of Thieves was first produced in 2009 at the Studio Theatre in Stratford, Ontario.

Cast: 4 woman, 11 men.

What people say:

"Everyone is double-crossing everyone else and the bodies are hitting the floor quicker than you can say ‘alienation effect." — The Star (Toronto)

"… slick … entertaining … I loved John Roby's razz-a-ma-tazzy Jazz Age score, peppy and tuneful." — Richard Ouzounian, The Star

"...a tangled web of treachery, deception, and cold-blooded murder, complete with a fair share of gunfire and stabbing. In other words, a little for the whole family." — TorontoStage.com

"A charming gangsta rhapsody...." — PressPlus1.com

About the Playwright:

George F. Walker is one of Canada's most prolific and widely produced playwrights. His work has been honoured with eight Chalmers Awards and five Dora Awards. His plays Criminals in Love and Nothing Sacred each won Governor General's Awards for Drama. Productions of Nothing Sacred and Love and Anger have met with great success in the United States in New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco and Chicago. Zastrozzi has had over 100 productions in the English-speaking world. Problem Child, included in his book, Suburban Motel, won a Chalmers Award for Best New Play.

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