The Insanity of Mary Girard

by  Lanie Robertson

Short Play, Drama  /  3m, 4f

"An engrossing drama on the abuse of the mentally ill." - The Times-Picayune

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The Insanity of Mary Girard

by  Lanie Robertson

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    3m, 4f
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

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

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

In 1790, Mary Girard is committed to an asylum. After Mary became pregnant by another man, her husband had her declared legally insane. Now, Mary sits in a chair as the "furies" dance around and impersonate people from her past. By the end of this haunting and highly theatrical piece, she has grown rather convincingly into her diagnosis.
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"An engrossing drama on the abuse of the mentally ill." - The Times-Picayune

"Compelling." - DC Theater Scene

"[The Insanity of Mary Girard] is well-crafted." - Gambit Weekly


Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Professional Theatre
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


  • Caution Intense Adult Intense Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance



  • Time Period: 16th Century / Elizabethan
  • Setting: A lunatic cell in the basement of the Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia.
  • Features / Contains: Elaborate / High Volume Costumes, Period Costumes


3m, 4f
MARY GIRARD - a very attractive woman of 29 years.
THE FURIES - three women, two men of any age.
THE WARDER - a man of any age.
MRS. LUM - Mary's mother.
STEPHEN GIRARD - Mary's husband, ten years her senior.
MR. PHILLIPS - a steward of Pennsylvania Hospital and a man in his forties.
POLLY KEATON - a young woman.
MRS. HATCHER - a woman approximately Mary's own age.
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Lanie Robertson

Lanie Robertson writes about iconic artists and the societal issues they faced in Nasty Little Secrets, Alfred Stiegletz Loves O’Keeffe, and Woman Before a Glass. His plays have been produced internationally and at the Alley Theatre, Arena Stage, Delaware Theatre, Edinburgh Festival, Festival d’Avignon, George Street P ...

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First produced at The Painted Bride Art Center by Theatre Center Philadelphia on July 4, 1976.

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