Blithe Spirit

by  Noël Coward

Full Length Play, Comedy  /  2m, 5f

The smash comedy hit of the London and Broadway stages, this much-revived classic from the playwright of Private Lives offers up fussy, cantankerous novelist Charles Condomine, re-married but haunted (literally) by the ghost of his late first wife, the clever and insistent Elvira who is called up by a visiting “happy medium,” one Madame Arcati.

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Blithe Spirit

by  Noël Coward

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    2m, 5f
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Farce
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    From Broadway, From West End
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

    • Cutting Approved for Competition
    • Scene work
    • UIL Approved
    • Competition or audition material
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Pre-Teen (Age 11 - 13)
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

The smash comedy hit of the London and Broadway stages, this much-revived classic from the playwright of Private Lives offers up fussy, cantankerous novelist Charles Condomine, re-married but haunted (literally) by the ghost of his late first wife, the clever and insistent Elvira who is called up by a visiting “happy medium,” one Madame Arcati. As the (worldly and un-) personalities clash, Charles’ current wife, Ruth, is accidentally killed, “passes over,” joins Elvira, and the two “blithe spirits” haunt the hapless Charles into perpetuity.
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Accolades

  • Winner! 2009 Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Revival

Reviews


"Can still keep an audience in a state of tickled contentment" - Ben Brantley, The New York Times, 2009

"A world-class comedy" - TheaterMania.com, 2009

RELATED ARTICLES ON BREAKING CHARACTER 

A Fascination with Life After Death: 75 Years of  Blithe Spirit
by ALejandra Venancio
November 4, 2016

Keywords

Aging, Death, Love, Memory

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Senior Theatre
  • Reader's Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $100 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1940s / WWII
  • Setting: The living room of Charles Condomine's house in Kent, England.
  • Additional Features: Physical Comedy
  • Features / Contains: Elaborate / High Volume Costumes, Fantasy Costumes, Period Costumes

Music

  • Musical Style: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Vocal Demands: N/A (Not a musical)

Casting

2m, 5f
EDITH - a maid
RUTH - Charles' current wife
CHARLES - husband to Ruth and, before her passing, to Elvira
DR. BRADMAN
MRS. BRADMAN
MADAME ARCATI - a medium
ELVIRA - Charles' late wife
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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)
  • Parts for Senior Actors

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Authors

Noël Coward

Sir Noël Peirce Coward (1899-1973) was an English playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, known for his wit, flamboyance, and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic, pose and poise." Born in Teddington, a suburb of London, Mr. Coward attended a dance academy in L ...

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Blithe Spirit was first produced on Broadway at the Morosco Theatre in New York City on November 5, 1941. It was directed and produced by John C. Wilson.

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