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Second Best Bed

Second Best Bed
Your Price: $14.95 CDN
Author: Tim Kelly
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 16
Pub. Date: 1970
Edition: Acting
ISBN-10: 0822210053
ISBN-13: 9780822210054
Cast Size: 8 female

About the Play:

Second Best Bed is a romantic comedy in one-act by Tim Kelly. Especially recommended for school and contest use, Second Best Bed is a charming short play for an all-girl cast that combines comedy and suspense in delving into the circumstances of Shakespeare's will, and the odd bequests it contained.

Second Best Bed centers around Shakespeare's will and his strange and only bequest to his wife. One of the most fascinating mysteries dealing with William Shakespeare is the fact that he left his wife, Ann Hathaway, nothing but his "second best bed." This odd bequest has puzzled biographers for centuries. The play opens as several gossipy neighbours visit Anne's cottage. They already know of the bequest and are anxious to see Anne's reaction when she hears the news, which is about to be delivered by Shakespeare's two daughters, Judith and Susanna. The women are cheated out of their amusement by Anne's fierce faith in her husband, even though his wealth has been left to others. However, the bard was never one to leave things as they seem and by curtain time Anne has discovered just how greatly Will loved and needed her. It's a surprise ending that catches not only Anne unaware but the audience as well. Second Best Bed is a delightful romantic comedy, extremely simple to stage.

Second Best Bed is an ideal choice for high school drama contests and one-act festivals. Run time about twenty minutes.

Cast: 8 female

About the Playwright:

Tim Kelly (1931-1998) is often regarded as the most-published playwright in America, with over 300 titles to his credit under both his real name and at least four pseudonyms (Vera Morris, J. Moriarty, Robert Swift, Keith Jackson). Many of his plays, like Les Miserables, M*A*S*H and The Uninvited, are adaptations of novels, films. or television series, although he also wrote a host of parodies a well as original scripts and musical libretti. While his plays have been performed off-Broadway and by such companies as the Royal Court Rep, the Manhattan Theatre Club (MTC) and Seattle Rep, he is best known for writing for university, community and school theatre.

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