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Eastern Standard

Eastern Standard
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Richard Greenberg
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 72
Pub. Date: 1999
ISBN-10: 0822203472
ISBN-13: 9780822203476
Cast Size: 3 female, 3 male

About the Play:

Eastern Standard has long been a favourite of acting teachers for male monologues and male/male scenes.

Eastern Standard is a full-length romantic comedy by Richard Greenberg. Four rich, young, jaded New Yorkers strike up a friendship in a chic uptown restaurant after an altercation with a boisterous homeless woman that brings everyone together including their waitress. Six months later they are at an East Hamptons beach house, where they attempt to "fix" the two less fortunate women while they also deal with their own problems.

Eastern Standard is set in 1987 Manhattan and East Hampton at the beach houses of the idle rich. Stephen Wheeler, a just-turned-30 architect so miserable about working for sleazy urban developers, is lunching in a trendy restaurant on the Upper East Side of Manhattan with his best friend from college, rising avant-garde gay artist Drew Paley, who uses his caustic humour as a weapon and a defence. Next to them, are Phoebe Kidde, a Wall Street stockbroker caught up in a highly publicized insider-trading scandal, and her brother Peter, a TV programming executive who has problems that put all the others to shame. The four have repeatedly pursued a pattern of ill-fated love affairs. Stephen, pining for a girlfriend, has his eye on Phoebe, while Drew has fallen for Peter. When a schizophrenic homeless woman May Logan enters the restaurant and creates a scene, the four diners and their frazzled waitress Ellen find themselves thrown together, and they eventually strike up an unlikely alliance. Six months later, the foursome, having fallen instantly in love with one another, converge at Stephen's summer place. Feeling guilty about their shallow, career-driven lives, they invite Ellen, who is aspiring to be an actress, and the seemingly rehabbed May to join them as their guests. Each person yearns to resolve the emotional distance and futility they all share. Their dramatic dynamic creates a string of hilarious and charged episodes where assorted relationships, love, secret motives, and precarious alliances are exposed in the hope that "accidental happiness" may still come their way. Although Eastern Standard premiered in 1988, it serves as a good reflection of today's messed-up world.

Eastern Standard premiered in 1988 at the Seattle Repertory Theatre before moving to New York's famed Manhattan Theatre Club (MTC) where it was so well received it was moved to Broadway the following year at the John Golden Theatre and established the author's reputation. This celebrated play has become a favourite scene study vehicle in acting classes and workshops and is regularly performed in college theatre productions as a showcase of student talent.

Cast: 3 female, 3 male

What people say:

"For anyone who has been waiting for a play that tells what it is like to be more or less middle-class, more or less young and more or less well-intentioned in a frightening city at this moment in this time zone, Eastern Standard at long last is it." — New York Times

"With a truly original voice, a deft hand with character and a gift for juxtaposing unexpected elements with amusing and dramatically purposeful results, Greenberg's Eastern Standard is a romantic comedy for our times." — Drama-Logue

"…it speaks to us eloquently, and with humor, about today." — BackStage

About the Playwright:

Richard Greenberg is an American playwright and television writer, known for his subversively humorous depictions of middle-class American life. One of the most produced playwrights of his generation, he has had more than 25 plays premiere on and off-Broadway and has won the Oppenheimer Award for a debuting playwright, the first PEN/Laura Pels Award for a mid-career playwright and has twice been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

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