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Savage in Limbo

Savage in Limbo
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Biz Staff Pick!
Author: John Patrick Shanley
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 43
Pub. Date: 1986
ISBN-10: 082220990X
ISBN-13: 9780822209904
Cast Size: 3 female, 2 male

About the Play:

Savage In Limbo has long been a favourite of acting teachers for Female Monologues, Male Monologues, and Female/Female Scenes.

Savage In Limbo is a full-length drama by John Patrick Shanley. This riveting psychodrama moves from comedy to near tragedy as it explores the hopes and dreams of five thirty-somethings who congregate in a New York neighborhood bar, hoping to find respite from the drabness of their lives. Savage In Limbo is a character-driven showcase piece that offers actors the opportunity to shine individually, as well as collectively.

Savage In Limbo is set in a low-rent bar in the Bronx, where a group of rootless young "losers" (who all happen to be the same age – thirty-two) seek relief from the disappointments and tedium of the outside world. The first to arrive is Denise Savage, a perennial loner who announces that she is still a virgin, but would like to remedy the situation. She is joined by an old school friend, Linda Rotunda, whose problem has been the opposite – too many lovers (and illegitimate children) but who is now fearful that her current boyfriend, Tony Aronica, is losing interest in her. And when the macho Tony comes bursting in shortly thereafter and announces that he is leaving her to pursue "ugly girls," girls who have read books and can teach him something, Linda is desolate. Denise, sensing an advantage, makes a play for Tony, and the action quickens, moving swiftly from zany comedy to tense confrontation which requires the muscle and mediating skills of the taciturn bartender, Murk, who, heretofore, had been content to keep the glasses filled, including that of his mixed-up girlfriend, April, a failed nun who is also a classmate of the others. In the end, tensions subside, Linda recaptures Tony, Murk proposes to April, and only Denise remains as she was – still in the limbo of loneliness from which she so desperately wants to escape.

Savage In Limbo premiered in 1985 by Double Image Repertory Company at the 47th Street Theater Off-Broadway in New York City. The play has become a favourite scene study vehicle in acting classes and workshops and has been performed in regional and college theatre productions.

Cast: 3 female, 2 male

What people say:

"John Patrick Shanley has written an often searing, existential and dramatically compelling work dealing with our search for roots and purpose in an often purposeless world." — BackStage

"Although filled with comic lines, Savage In Limbo has the serious intent of laying bare the unstated dreams and thwarted possibilities of its artfully drawn denizens." — Drama-Logue

"Conceived with sharp insight into the lives of losers, conveyed with a friskly and often hilarious wit…." — New York Daily News

About the Playwright:

John Patrick Shanley is an American playwright, screenwriter, and director. Shanley has written some two dozen off-Broadway plays since the 1970s, but he is best known for Doubt, which won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award. He has also written extensively for TV and film, and his credits include the teleplay for Live from Baghdad and screenplays for Five Corners and Moonstruck, for which he won an Academy Award for original screenplay.

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