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Cost of Living

Cost of Living
Your Price: $19.95 CDN
Author: Martyna Majok
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 92
Pub. Date: 2018
ISBN-10: 0822243962
ISBN-13: 9780822243960
Cast Size: 2 female, 2 male

About the Play:

Winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize

Cost of Living is a full-length drama by Martyna Majok. This Pulitzer Prize-winning play traces two relationships: one between a wealthy graduate student with cerebral palsy and his female caregiver, the other between a woman recovering from a terrible accident being tended to by her ex-husband. Heartfelt, funny, and deeply moving, Cost of Living is an exquisitely written play that examines the fiscal and emotional cost of human connection.

Cost of Living is about the forces that bring people together, the realities of facing the world with physical disabilities and how deeply we all need each other. What is the road that brought us here? Unemployed truck driver Eddie sits at a bar alone, recalling his final moments with wife, Ani, when a car accident turned the focus of their relationship from divorcing to caregiving. Overworked, under-qualified, and nearly homeless, Jess takes on another job to make ends meet – this time, as a personal caregiver for a wealthy, brilliant, and witty doctoral student named John, who has cerebral palsy. As their lives intersect, Martyna Majok's play delves into the chasm between abundance and need and explores the space where bodies – abled and disabled – meet each other.

Cost of Living premiered in 2016 at Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts. Winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize, Martyna Majok's powerhouse play received its Broadway premiere in 2022 after a celebrated off-Broadway run at Manhattan Theatre Club's Stage I in 2017. The play has enjoyed widespread acceptance among leading regional theatres, and has become a popular choice for college theatre productions.

Cast: 2 female, 2 male

What people say:

"[Cost of Living] slams the door on uplifting stereotypes… Tremendous emotion flows around the impediments Majok has placed in the characters' paths… In both of [the play's] stories…the biggest handicaps are the universal ones: fear and disconnection… immensely haunting… [Majok] is exquisitely attuned to the many varieties of alienation hiding in plain sight in America." — New York Times

"…[Cost of Living] provides a piercing look at the obstacles faced by disabled people and, more importantly, the human condition in general… the characters, dialogue and situations resonate with emotional truth about loneliness, financial desperation and the vulnerability of disabled people forced to rely on others to assist them with basic human needs." — Hollywood Reporter

"…a deeply human depiction of life with disability…[The play] doesn't condescend to any of the characters. Ani and John may be in wheelchairs, but that's the least interesting thing about them in Majok's script… Majok mines their senses of humor, diverse personality traits, and opportunities to be both likable and hateful… As much as Cost of Living is a play about disability, it also very much focuses on what it takes to survive in a world where you are the forgotten… Life isn't easy, no matter what you look like, and Majok doesn't sugarcoat it." —

About the Playwright:

Martyna Majok is a Polish-American playwright who won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her play Cost of Living. She was born in Bytom, Poland, immigrated to the US at a young age, and grew up in in New Jersey and Chicago. She earned her BA from University of Chicago and MFA from the Yale School of Drama and Juilliard. Her plays have been performed and developed Off-Broadway in New York and at leading regional theatres across the US.