The Trials And Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife

by  Del Shores, Joe Patrick Ward

Full Length Play, Dramatic Comedy  /  1m, 4f

"CRITIC'S CHOICE! A feat of breathtaking audacity." - Los Angeles Times

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The Trials And Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife

by  Del Shores Joe Patrick Ward

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The Trials And Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife

  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    1m, 4f
  • Duration


    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Accolades


    The Ted Schmitt Award
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

Willi is the trailer trash housewife of the title, not necessarily of her own volition. Her abusive husband won’t let her get a job, one of her children is dead, and the other is verboten by her husband because he’s gay. Her best and only friend, a large black woman who lives next door, worries about her constantly, always concerned that Willi’s husband will end up killing her. A new woman comes to live in the trailer park and ends up having an affair with Willi’s husband. When she finds out, Willi decides to get a job at the local Wal-Mart (a first step on the way to liberating herself from him). Her husband will have none of it, and quoting the bible about how a wife is supposed to obey her husband, threatens all three women with a gun, and then beats Willi to within an inch of her life. She recovers enough to finally shoot him, releasing her from the torment that she’d been living in for years. A blues singer weaves songs into the action, commenting upon Willi’s predicament and urging her toward decisive action.
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  • WINNER! 2004 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Ted Schmitt Award
    WINNER! More than 14 Los Angeles Theatre Awards including the Ovation Awards for Best Production and Best Playwright



"CRITIC'S CHOICE! A feat of breathtaking audacity." - Los Angeles Times, Read More

"Shores manages to fully explore Willadean's horrific plight while infusing the work with such hilarity the audience is often reduced to tears and laughter within the same breath." - Variety, Read More 


Performing Groups

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


  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Artboard 3 Gun Shots
  • Caution Intense Adult Intense Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $90 per performance



  • Time Period: New Millennium/21st Century
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: A small trailer house; a bar called The Spotlight; the entrance to a Super Wal-Mart (accomplished through lighting).


1m, 4f
BLUES SINGER – 30s, African-American. Sexy and beautiful with a powerful voice. 
J.D. WINKLER – around 50. Once the handsome quarterback, now the failed, angry, abusive, adulterous, alcoholic husband. 
WILLADEAN WINKLER – mid- to late 40s. The trapped, weathered and abused housewife who has a beautiful heart and soul. 
RAYLEEN HOBBS – late 30s. The much-married waitress with the great body, the hard, lived-in face who desperately needs acceptance. 
LA SONIA ROBINSON – late 30s, African-American. Willadean’s fleshy neighbor and best friend who speaks her mind and has little fear. 

A pianist also appears onstage who accompanies the Blue Singer.

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Cast Attributes

  • Role(s) for Black Actor(s)


Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package

Piano/Vocal Score

Available Services



Del Shores

DEL SHORES (Writer, Director, Producer) STAGE: Cheatin’ (1984), Daddy’s Dyin’ (Who’s Got The Will?) (1987), Daughters of the Lone Star State (1993), Sordid Lives (1996), Southern Baptist Sissies (2000), The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife (2003) and Yellow (2010). Theatre awards and nominations ...

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Joe Patrick Ward

Joe Patrick Ward

The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife was originally produced by Sharyn Lane for The Zephyr Theatre in Hollywood, California, March 8, 2003.

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