Dead Man's Cell Phone

by  Sarah Ruhl

Full Length Play, Dramatic Comedy  /  2m, 4f

"Satire is her oxygen [...] In her new oddball comedy, Dead Man's Cell Phone, Sarah Ruhl is forever vital in her lyrical and biting takes on how we behave." - The Washington Post

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Dead Man's Cell Phone

by  Sarah Ruhl

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    2m, 4f
  • Duration

    Duration

    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Romantic Comedy
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    From Off-Broadway
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

An incessantly ringing cell phone in a quiet café. A stranger at the next table who has had enough. And a dead man – with a lot of loose ends. So begins Dead Man’s Cell Phone, a wildly imaginative new comedy by MacArthur “Genius” Grant recipient and Pulitzer Prize finalist Sarah Ruhl. A work about how we memorialize the dead – and how that remembering changes us – it is the odyssey of a woman forced to confront her own assumptions about morality, redemption, and the need to connect in a technologically obsessed world.
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Accolades

  • Sarah Ruhl is the 2003 recipient of the Whiting Award for Drama

Reviews

REVIEWS

"Satire is her oxygen [...] In her new oddball comedy, Dead Man's Cell Phone, Sarah Ruhl is forever vital in her lyrical and biting takes on how we behave." - The Washington Post

"Ruhl's zany probe of the razor-thin line between life and death delivers a fresh and humorous look at the times we live in." - Variety

"[Ruhl] tackles big ideas with a voice that entertains" - NPR

"The beguiling new comedy [...] blends the mundane and the metaphysical, the blunt and the obscure, the patently bizarre and the bizarrely moving [...] [Ruhl] writes surrealist fantasies that happen to be populated by eccentrically real people, comedies in which the surface illogic of dreams is made meaningful – made truthful – by the deeper logic of human feeling." - The New York Times

Considerations

Performing Groups

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

Cautions

  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $125 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: Contemporary
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Various locations. The present.
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes

Music

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

Casting

2m, 4f
JEAN - a woman
GORDON - a dead man
MRS. GOTTLIEB - Gordon's mother
HERMIA - Gordon's Widow
DWIGHT - Gordon's brother
THE OTHER WOMAN/THE STRANGER - has an accent
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Cast Attributes

  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)

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Authors

Sarah Ruhl

Sarah Ruhl’s plays include How to Transcend a Happy Marriage, For Peter Pan on her 70th Birthday, The Oldest Boy, In the Next Room, or the vibrator play, The Clean House, Orlando, Late: a cowboy song, Dear Elizabeth and Stage Kiss. She is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award nominee. Her plays have been ...

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Dead Man's Cell Phone was first presented at Wooly Mammoth Theatre Company in Washington D.C. in 2007. It was directed by Rebecca Taichman.

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