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The Juice of Wild Strawberries - Short Play, Dramatic Comedy

The Juice of Wild Strawberries

Jean Lenox Toddie

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Short Play, Dramatic Comedy

1m, 1f

ISBN: 9780573628818

"This gem celebrates life, love and the wisdom that comes with age." - Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke, VA.

More Information Below:

Description | Characters | Author | Now Playing | Reviews
: Acting Edition
: Large Print
: Stage Manager

Minimum Fee: $45 per performance

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Short Play

Dramatic Comedy

30 minutes

Time Period - Contemporary, 1970s, 1960s, 1950s

Settings Of Play -

Time past, a trail.


No intermission

Exterior Set, Bare Stage/Simple Set

Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes


No Special Cautions


Appropriate for all audiences, Adult, Senior


High School/Secondary, College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Dinner Theatre, Senior Theatre, Shoestring Budget, Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

A woman seeks renewal after loss in this touching 35-minute play. Ellie, who has lived on land "flat as an old man's feet" for forty years, packs a satchel, covers the sofa with a sheet and sets out to see what's on the other side of the mountain. She is followed. Is it Calvin there behind her, or is it her husband?

"This gem celebrates life, love and the wisdom that comes with age." - Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke, VA.



1m, 1f

ELLIE -  In her early sixties, Ellie is a country woman married more than forty years to her husband, Calvin.
CALVIN - Also in his early sixties, Calvin is a farmer who has plowed the same plot of land as did his father and grandfather before him.

Now Playing
Georgann Lanich 12/2/2013 2:02 PM
We did this at our high school for a competition piece.  The students learned a great deal about themselves and their characters through the process of working with this script.  It is an excellent play to expand the talents of young actors.  They added a great deal of their own flair to the characters as we progressed. Fun to do and funny to watch, it has some tissue alert moments as well.  Highly recommended!
Ellen Joffred 4/21/2013 11:04 PM
  There are strains of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth in The Juice of Wild Strawberries. Ellie, who is alive, can’t see her dead husband, Calvin, who is following her.  But the two can talk to one another.  These characters were married for over forty years.  A fascinating premise is set up, and sadly it only skims the surface.
    The plot is simple: Ellie wants to climb a mountain.  She wants an adventure. She wants to move forward.  She literally wants to overcome her grief.  Calvin wants her to stay at home, where he feels she belongs.  The past and present mingle as Ellie eventually receives Calvin’s blessing to go.
  An interesting thought that unfortunately isn’t truly mined in the short span of the play is Ellie’s sanity.  Is she talking to herself? Alas, there appears to be little cost in Ellie’s conversations with her dead husband.  The tempo of the play feels a bit too fast for the subject matter.  In my opinion, there are far too few silences scored for sorrow.
    The most exciting moments in the play are when the two almost touch. The physical space between the two allows the audience to see the ache of Ellie, and witness her loneliness.  Grief is visualized in those powerful moments.  The play cracks open when Calvin finally is able to kiss Ellie; it’s an incredibly satisfying and earned moment.
  Unfortunately, these beautiful moments regarding touch are only moments.  With Calvin so present and so against Ellie’s adventure, you have to wonder at times why Ellie even misses her controlling and conservative husband.  The play’s ending is overly extended when suddenly the couple directly address the audience about applause.  The Juice of Wild Strawberries, which sounds so exceptional, ends as a saccharine short play.

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