The Beaux' Stratagem

by  Ken Ludwig, Thornton Wilder

Full Length Play, Comedy  /  8m, 5f

"A delightful romp ... A sparklingly funny evening that... plays very well indeed." - Potomac Stages

"A sparkling production ... The dialogue crackles, the characters engage the audience's interest and sympathy, and the whole thing seems almost…

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The Beaux' Stratagem
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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    8m, 5f
  • Duration

    Duration

    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Adaptations (Stage & Screen), Period

Additional Info

Adapted by Thornton Wilder and Ken Ludwig from the play by George Farquhar. The play tells the story of two young bucks who, having spent all their money by living too well, leave London and roam from town to town in search of love and fortune. In order to find a wealthy heiress for at least one of them, they pose as master and servant – exchanging roles from one town to the next. In Lichfield, Aimwell is the master and Archer the servant, and there they meet the lovely, wealthy Dorinda and her equally desirable sister-in-law, Mrs. Kate Sullen. They set their caps for these women, but problems abound. Kate is married to a drunken sot who despises her; the innkeeper's saucy daughter, Cherry, has set her cap for Archer; Dorinda's mother, Lady Bountiful, mistakenly believes herself to be a great healer of the sick, and she guards her daughter like a dragoness; and a band of brigands plans to rob the house of Lady Bountiful that very night, putting all schemes in jeopardy. This is a play in the great tradition of Goldsmith's She Stoops to Conquer and Sheridan's The Rivals and The School for Scandal. It is classic, formal, robust and hilarious.
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Reviews

REVIEWS:

"A delightful romp ... A sparklingly funny evening that... plays very well indeed." - Potomac Stages

"A sparkling production ... The dialogue crackles, the characters engage the audience's interest and sympathy, and the whole thing seems almost effortless."—Talkinbroadway.com

RELATED ARTICLES ON BREAKING CHARACTER:

Beaux’ and Belles
by Ken Ludwig
January 31, 2013

Videos

  • Meet The Playwright: Ken Ludwig
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Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $125 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 18th Century
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Lichfield, England, 1707

Music

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

Casting

8m, 5f
BONIFACE - landlord of an inn
CHERRY - the landlord’s daughter
DANIEL - the landlord’s servant
A LADY - set upon by robbers and disconcerted by it
JACK ARCHER - a gentleman of broken fortune, acting as a servant
TOM AIMWELL - a gentleman of broken fortune, acting as his master
GLOSS - a man of two professions, highwayman and clergyman
MRS. KATE SULLEN - Lady Bountiful’s daughter-in-law
DORINDA - Lady Bountiful’s daughter
LADY BOUNTIFUL - a country gentlewoman, foolishly fond of her son
SCRUB - servant to Sullen
A COUNTRY WOMAN - seeking medical advice
SULLEN - Lady Bountiful’s son, brutal to his wife
SERVANTS - serving in the Sullen Household
HOUNSLOW - a highwayman
BAGSHOT - a highwayman
SIR CHARLES FREEMAN - Mrs. Sullen’s brother
FOIGARD - a French parson anxious to perform a wedding
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Authors

Ken Ludwig

Ken Ludwig is a two-time Olivier Award-winning playwright who has written over 26 plays and musicals, including 6 shows on Broadway and 7 in London's West End. His first Broadway play, Lend Me A Tenor, won two Tony Awards and was called "one of the classic comedies of the 20th century” by The Washington Post. His othe ...

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Thornton Wilder

Thornton Wilder (1897-1975), born in Madison, Wisconsin, and educated at Yale and Princeton, was an accomplished novelist and playwright whose works explore the connection between the commonplace and the cosmic dimensions of human experience.

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