Brave Smiles...Another Lesbian Tragedy

by  Maureen Angelos, Lisa Kron, Babs Davy, Dominique Dibbell, Peg Healey

Full Length Play, Dark Comedy  /  5f

"Smart, satirical farce that uses laughter and touches of raunchy humor to debunk the myth of the doomed lesbian." - The New York Times

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

  • Duration


    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

In Brave Smiles...Another Lesbian Tragedy, master satirists The Five Lesbian Brothers turn their merciless eyes on the history of lesbians in theater, film, and literature. From their dismal yet erotically charged beginnings at the orphanage under the grip of a sadistic headmistress, our five heroines cross continents and a century to face their absurdly tragic ends. Along the way, they experience alcoholism, suicide, loneliness, pill popping, blacklisting, and a malignant brain tumor. Students of the lesbian art of misery will recognize gleeful skewerings of The Well of Loneliness, The Group, Maedchen in Uniform, and The Children's Hour in this rollicking, hilarious, and smart multicharacter classic.
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"Smart, satirical farce that uses laughter and touches of raunchy humor to debunk the myth of the doomed lesbian." - The New York Times

"Parodies gay clichés about lesbian destiny with deadly accuracy." - LA Times


Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Professional Theatre
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes
  • Caution Smoking Smoking

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $90 per performance



  • Time Period: 1970s, 1960s, 1950s, 1940s / WWII, 1930s, 1920s
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Several locations. 1920 - 1971
  • Additional Features: Puppetry
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes


MARTHA – deaf-mute, though strangely perceptive.
MILLICENT – sensitive and poetic.
WILL – tomboy butch with bravado.
BABE – athletic with good genes.
DAMWELL MAXWELL – bossy big boots.
THALIA – new girl, Jewess, sad German refugee accent.
MISS GATEAU – French cook, possible alcohol problem.
FRAU LUDMILLA VON PUSSENHEIMER – scary, embittered headmistress, Teutonic accent, forties.
MISS GRETA PHILLIPS – beautiful and bewitching teacher, mid-twenties.
BARONESS – European lower-caste royalty, loaded.
REPORTERS #1 AND #2 – fast-talking newspapermen.
PIERRE – the Parisian maître d’.
AUDREY – Audrey Hepburn-like actress who plays the role of Sharon.
SHIRLEY – Shirley MacLaine-like actress who plays the role of Bertha.
WOUNDED SOLDIER – guy with bad hole in him, the original Vin Marconi.
BUM – man with the D.T.’s.
NIPPER – Babe’s canine companion, a hand puppet.
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Cast Attributes

  • All Female
  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)
  • Expandable casting



Maureen Angelos

Maureen Angelos

Lisa Kron

Lisa Kron is a writer and performer whose work has been widely produced in New York, regionally, and internationally. Her plays include Well, 2.5 Minute Ride, and The Ver**zon Play. She wrote the book and lyrics for the musical Fun Home (with music by composer Jeanine Tesori), winner of five 2015 Tony Awards including ...

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Babs Davy

Babs Davy

Dominique Dibbell

Dominique Dibbell

Peg Healey

Peg Healey

Brave Smiles...Another Lesbian Tragedy premiered at the WOW Cafe in New York City in January 1992 under the direction of Kate Stafford.

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