Police

by  Slawomir Mrozek, Nicholas Bethell

Short Play, Satire/Political Satire  /  5m, 1f

Written in 1958 by the Polish playwright Slawomir Mrozek as a satire on the totalitarian state, The Police tells the story of the last political prisoner in an Eastern European state, asking, can you even have such a thing as loyalty if there is no disloyalty?

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    5m, 1f
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

"It is a very bad day for the chief of police. After 10 years languishing in prison, the state's last remaining political prisoner is insisting on taking an oath of loyalty to the country and its leader, and must therefore be released. Attempts by an enthusiastic police sergeant to act as an agent provocateur and stir up dissension among the population have failed as the people persistently refuse to break the law. The consequences of all this are gradually dawning on the chief of police even as he tries to bribe the political prisoner to remain a dissident. For the police and the criminal, the secret service and the revolutionary are entirely dependent on each other. You can't have one without the other. Can you even have such a thing as loyalty if there is no disloyalty?

Written in 1958 by the Polish playwright Slawomir Mrozek as a satire on the totalitarian state, The Police [reminds us that] you need an enemy if you are going to wage a war on terror" - Lyn Gardner, Guardian UK

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Keywords

Politics, War

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Reader's Theatre
  • Shoestring Budget
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $45 per performance

Production

Details

  • Setting: The Chief of Police's office. The house of the Sergeant-Provocateur.

Casting

5m, 1f
CHIEF OF POLICE
PRISONER - A former revolutionary, later the General's Aide-de-Camp
SERGEANT - an agent-provocateur
WIFE - of the Sergeant-Provocateur
GENERAL
POLICEMAN
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Resources

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Authors

Slawomir Mrozek

Slawomir Mrozek

Nicholas Bethell

Nicholas Bethell

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