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The Author's Voice

The Author's Voice
Your Price: $14.95 CDN
Author: Richard Greenberg
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 27
Pub. Date: 1987
ISBN-10: 0822200791
ISBN-13: 9780822200796
Cast Size: 1 female, 2 male

About the Play:

The Author's Voice has long been a favourite of acting teachers for male monologues and female/male scenes.

The Author's Voice is a one-act dark comedy by Richard Greenberg. We meet a supposedly brilliant young writer and the editor determined to turn his first novel into a best-seller. But he can't seem to string two words together in real life. Attracted and mystified, she talks him into taking her back to his apartment to discover his inspiration. The Author's Voice is a scathingly funny send-up of the world of "big-time" publishing.

The Author's Voice is a world in which personal desires outweigh concern for others, and the cost of this selfishness can be devastating. Portia, a pretty editor, is smitten with her latest protege Todd, a handsome young writer with a "special voice," and accompanies him back to his apartment – the better to see from whence his inspiration springs, and also to toast their new creative partnership. But while she is captivated by the writer's good looks and laid-back, low-key manner, she begins, increasingly, to wonder at the emptiness – even banality – of his curiously stumbling conversation. She notes he is barely articulate when not quoting poetic passages from his novel in progress. The reason is soon apparent: Todd has a ghost writer – a poor misshapen, Quasimodo-like street person whose physical ugliness has forced him to remain closeted, while his literary brilliance is credited to another (whose main contribution is, in fact, posing for press photographs). The revelation of this "Beauty and the Beast" phenomenon is, as might be expected in the cynical publishing business, received with more diffidence than dismay but, thanks to some clever and very funny twists and turns of plot, everyone does, in the end, get exactly what he or she deserves.

The Author's Voice was first produced in 1987 to critical and popular acclaim as part of New York's Ensemble Studio Theater's 10th annual marathon of one-act plays. Having only one-act (with nine scenes) and three characters, the play has become a favourite scene study vehicle in acting classes and workshops and is a perfect small-scale show for fringe festival and college theatre productions.

Cast: 1 female, 2 male

What people say:

"…a delicious satire of contemporary book publishing." — New York Daily News

"…a funny and suspenseful drama about a would-be author and the slave who actually does his writing for him very convincing and very, very funny." — New York Post

"…he scores an ace: game, set and match to Mr. Greenberg." — New York Times

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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