Welfarewell

by  Cat Delaney

Full Length Play, Dramatic Comedy  /  1m, 7f

Esmerelda Quipp is 80, still of sound mind, but her body is beginning to "come unglued", as she puts it. Having spent her working life as an actress, age pushing her gradually out of the business, she now faces the fact that her meagre government pension is insufficient to support her, even with her minimal needs.

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Welfarewell

by  Cat Delaney

License Estimator

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    1m, 7f
  • Duration

    Duration

    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Not Applicable
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    Samuel French Canadian Playwrights Contest
  • Audience

    Target Audience

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

Additional Info

Esmerelda Quipp is 80, still of sound mind, but her body is beginning to "come unglued", as she puts it. Having spent her working life as an actress, age pushing her gradually out of the business, she now faces the fact that her meagre government pension is insufficient to support her, even with her minimal needs. When she is arrested for attempting to bury her dead cat in her landlord's yard, she finds that there is some sense of community, not to mention free room and board, within the prison system. She devises a plan to get herself sent back to jail; she robs a bank. But a well-meaning public defender gets the charges against her dropped. Esmerelda Quipp is undeterred! Using money she gets from returning stolen wine bottles to a recycling depot, she buys a toy gun at the local dollar store, and commits armed robbery. Knowing that she will be convicted because she will plead guilty, she assumes that she can spend the rest of her days living free, hanging out with other women, and being fed decently in a women's prison. But the system that has failed her also wants to forgive her because of her age and general health, and the public defender wants to use an insanity plea to get her off. How will Esmerelda convince the legal system she should be incarcerated, literally, for life?
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Accolades

  • Winner! 2009 Samuel French Canadian Playwrights Contest

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
  • Caution Smoking Smoking

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: Present Day
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting:

    Mostly a police station holding cell. Also, a courtroom, a shabby basement apartment, an alleyway, 2 banks (one clever troupe filmed these two scenes in real banks and projected then onto the stage!).

  • Additional Features: Physical Comedy
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes

Music

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

Casting

1m, 7f
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Cast Attributes

  • Expandable casting
  • Parts for Senior Actors

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Authors

Cat Delaney

Pamela (Cat) Delaney is a widely published journalist, humourist, and award-winning poet and playwright, who also writes fiction, non-fiction satire, screenplays, and web copy. An avid theatre-goer, classical guitarist, and badminton-player, she lives near the sea in Nova Scotia with three wicked, proo ...

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