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Approaching Zanzibar and Other Plays

Approaching Zanzibar and Other Plays
Your Price: $18.95 CDN
Limited Quantities
Author: Tina Howe
Publisher: Theatre Communications Group
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 300
Pub. Date: 1995
ISBN-10: 1559361042
ISBN-13: 9781559361040
Cast Size: 4 women, 2 men, 1 girl, 2 boys

About the Play:

HARD TO FIND BOOK, only a very limited number of copies are still available.

Approaching Zanzibar has long been a favourite of acting teachers because it contains an excellent Female Monologue for an older actress.

The collection Approaching Zanzibar and Other Plays contains three full-length comedies by acclaimed American playwright Tina Howe.With her signature absurdism and lyrical language, Tina Howe contemplates love, marriage, family, death, art and, ultimately, the very wonder of life. Including one of her first plays, Birth and After Birth, her absurdist comedy, One Shoe Off, and the surrealistic masterpiece Approaching Zanzibar, this collection encompasses a career of innovation and irreverence that spans three decades.

Approaching Zanzibar is especially recommended for school and contest use. The play follows the Blossom family as they travel cross country to see Aunt Olivia, who has cancer. She is a renowned environmental artist who creates enormous sculptures out of kites. The family camps along the way, having various adventures and meeting relatives and strangers. When they arrive in Taos, New Mexico, Olivia is fading in and out of reality, or is she? (Cast: 4 female, 2 male, 1 girl, 2 boys) "A comedy with serious undertones ... that takes the audience by surprise time after time.... What pervades the show is Miss Howe's originality and purity of dramatic imagination." — The New Yorker

Birth and After Birth is a witty and sophisticated satire that takes place during a child's fourth birthday party. The boy's parents have invited another couple, anthropologists renowned for their international studies of childhood behaviour. The adults become so involved in debating various theories of child rearing and telling each other stories that they forget to actually be parents. (Cast: 2 female, 3 male) "A stunning theatrical experience that explores the magic and madness in family dynamics." — Main Line Times

One Shoe Off is an absurdist comedy about marriage, fidelity, adulterous longings, existential panic and the theatre, which takes place in Leonard and Dinah's up state New York Greek revival farmhouse where slow moving disintegration is at work. Rooms are drifting into each other and trees and saplings have taken root indoors. Leonard is an actor who hasn't worked in eleven years; Dinah is an overworked costume designer who can't dress herself. They have invited their new neighbours, an overworked editor who delights in reciting nursery rhymes and his beautiful movie starlet wife, for dinner. Things explode when a friend who is a successful movie director, drops in. Old memories stir and new passions kindle as vegetables and Dinah's costumes fly. (Cast: 2 female, 3 male) "Rich, gorgeous and compelling. It is about such good things as love, art, acting and survival, magic and marriage, nursery tales and ghost stories.... This is an exquisite, funny play." — New York Post

About the Playwright:

Tina Howe (1937-2023) was an American playwright. In a career that spanned more than four decades, the celebrated playwright wrote 14 full-length plays, including the Tony nominated Coastal Disturbances and Pulitzer finalists Pride's Crossing and Painting Churches. She was a Guggenheim Fellow; a recipient of the Obie Award for Distinguished Playwriting, the Rockefeller Grant for Distinguished Playwriting, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and the PEN/Laura Pels Theater Award for Master American Dramatist, amongst other titles.

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