In Order of Appearance

by  Gardner McKay

Full Length Play, Drama  /  7m, 2f

Tom Vickery has a secret. Or did. Twenty years ago he wrote a play that his agent, Morris Bonecream, told him was too personally embarrassing to produce. Tom set fire to him. Bonecream sued Tom for arson. Tom disappeared. He is presumed dead, but in reality is living a completely new life in Maine, free from the previous turmoil and responsibility - until tonight.

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In Order of Appearance

by  Gardner McKay

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    7m, 2f
  • Duration

    Duration

    90 minutes
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Farce, Parody / Spoof
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    Not Applicable
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

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

    Target Audience

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

Additional Info

Tom Vickery has a secret. Or did. Twenty years ago he wrote a play that his agent, Morris Bonecream, told him was too personally embarrassing to produce. Tom set fire to him. Bonecream sued Tom for arson. Tom disappeared. He is presumed dead, but in reality is living in the Maine woods bottling cranberry brandy and married to Gemma Jones, a woman who knows nothing of his past. Suddenly, Bonecream appears; Tom's play is a huge hit in London under an Englishman's name, Dunlop Sablehand. Bonecream needs Tom's script as evidence to get his commission from the plagiarist. Gemma reads the play and leaves Tom. A character from the play, Shelley Vickery, turns up. She straightens Tom out. The hired man falls in love with her. Gemma comes back to Tom. Bonecream finds God, or someone like him.

In Order of Appearance is a sequel to Gardner McKay’s play Untold Damage.

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Reviews

"Very, very funny. A play with a long future." - Sylvie Drake

Considerations

Performing Groups

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

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: Contemporary, Present Day
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: Maine: The FAIRBROTHERS' two-storey cottage, Thistledome ("This'll do me"), despite its stringent decor, exudes warmth. It stands at the end of Moon Lane, a dirt road, a ways from Wadawanuck, population since 1838 still shy of a thousand. Halen and Gemma keep hens and goats (eggs, milk, butter). The rooster acts as watchdog, crows at intruders and when Halen smokes a cigar by the chicken coop, the rooster sees the flare of Halen's match, thinks dawn has come, and crows. But when he smells the cigar smoke, he clucks contentedly. Maybe the roof leaks, maybe their pickup truck fails them in the winter, and maybe it's sometimes cold in the house, but Halen, Gemma and Eli don't ever seem to mind. They live in a sensible, enlightened poverty, a woodsy honeymoon. Until tonight.
  • Additional Features: Not Applicable
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes

Music

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

Casting

7m, 2f

HALEN FAIRBROTHER - (born TOM VICKERY), forty-five-ish, Bearish, balding, possibly bearded. A fugitive, burdened.
MAURICE BONECREAM - older than Tom, President of Bonecream Artists Agency, hyperactive, tyrannical, joyous, manic.
EMMA JONES FAIRBROTHER - nearly thirty, Tom's wife of nine years, artistic, local girl down countless generations.
ELI MORGENSTERN - mid-twenties. Hired man, lives behind Fairbrothers, local, slightly abstracted by a nasty fall, but subject to moments of great clarity.
DUNLOP DUNY SABLEHAND - late thirties, Foppish British theater agent, first time playwright and plagiarist.
SHELLEY VICKERY - fifty-ish, Tom's older sister, tall, handsome, strong willed, incapacitated; in a wheelchair.
RANDALL MOSS - a private investigator.
BILLY - a limousine driver.
YO BRAVO - an ex-Desert storm helicopter pilot.

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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)
  • Expandable casting
  • Flexible casting

Casting Notes

SHELLEY also appears in ACT I at age 25 without dialogue. Three thankless roles that can be played by one actor: RANDALL MOSS, BILLY, and YO BRAVO.

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Authors

Gardner McKay

George Cadogan Gardner McKay (1932-2001) was born in Manhattan, New York City. His early years were spent in France, Connecticut, and Kentucky. At age fifteen, he published his first story. He attended Cornell University where he edited the humor magazine, wrote a film review column for the paper, and was briefly presi ...

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In Order of Appearance was first presented as a staged reading the Pasadena Playhouse in California. It was directed by Mark Haining.

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