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Return Engagements

Return Engagements
Your Price: $16.95 CDN
Author: Bernard Slade
Publisher: Samuel French, Inc.
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 104
Pub. Date: 1989
ISBN-10: 057369088X
ISBN-13: 9780573690884
Cast Size: 2 women, 2 men

About the Play:

Return Engagements is a full-length comedy by Bernard Slade. An all-Canadian bedroom farce about the romantic challenges of four couples, over the span of 30 years in a single hotel room: an actress and a bellboy who have a one-night stand; a woman who has survived World War II and the carpenter she chooses to father her baby; and an intellectual couple spending a weekend together before their divorce becomes final. Audiences see what happened to the couples 20, 25 and 30 years later, the path their lives followed and how their stories intersect.

Return Engagements follows four couples through 30 years of their lives. It's 1954... we meet a tipsy actress Daisy Lawrence as she wakes up three hours before her wedding. In bed with her is the bellboy – although Daisy has no immediate memory of how or why that occurred. It's 1956... we meet a gutsy Polish woman who has survived World War II, Miranda Jablonski, and a carpenter, Joe Bristol. She wants his "good genes" and compassionate heart to father a child. She wins his love too, but Miranda informs him that she is returning to Poland to bear his child. And finally, it's 1963... we meet Oliver and Fern Edwards an acid-tongued columnist and his cool psychotherapist wife spending a weekend together before their divorce becomes final, leaving them both free to marry their new prospective mates. Fast-forward 20, 25, and 30 years later as we revisit the couples and learn, much to our merriment, how they ended up. And, we learn how, ultimately, their stories are all linked together.

Return Engagements premiered in 1988 at the Westport Country Playhouse and Ogunquit Playhouse, in Connecticut and Maine, respectively and had a successful run in the West End in London and elsewhere. Since then it has been consistently delighting audiences and has become a staple of community theatres because unlike most plays, comedy or otherwise, which have lead characters and supporting actors, Return Engagements has a number of equally weighted parts.

Cast: 4 women, 4 men (alternate casting 2 women, 2 men with doubling)

What people say:

"A packed house roared with laughter ... the play is laced with great one liners and farcical situations ... a ton of laughs." — Door County Advocate

"Amusing and witty." — Cape Cod Times

"This play is funny and entertaining. The audience barely recovers from the titters when guffaws break out." — Cape Codder

About the Author:

Bernard Slade Newbound (1930-2019), known professionally as Bernard Slade, was a Canadian playwright and long-time Hollywood TV-sitcom writer. He began his career as an actor performing in over 200 plays on stage, radio and television in regional theatres around Toronto and on camera for the CBC. He moved to Hollywood in the mid-1960s, and was soon writing episodes of such classics-to-be as Bewitched. Credited as creator, writer, story editor and producer of eight series, including The Flying Nun and The Partridge Family, he was considered one of the true heavyweights in Hollywood. By the mid-1970s, he turned his comedic genius to the stage writing more than a dozen plays, including three Broadway hit shows like his phenomenally successful Same Time Next Year, Tribute and Romantic Comedy, which were all turned into Hollywood features.

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