The Invention (Ierley)

by  Merritt Ierley

Full Length Play, Drama  /  10m, 1f

The inventor is Thomas A. Edison; the invention, a little known idea of his to build a device for communicating with the next life - a proposal he actually broached in Scientific American magazine. Bizarre but true. That is the story behind this drama, which traces important events in Edison's life with visits by such historical figures as Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, and Matthew Brady, whose lives intersected with Edison's.

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The Invention (Ierley)

by  Merritt Ierley

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    10m, 1f
  • Duration

    Duration

    90 minutes
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Biography
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult

Additional Info

The inventor is Thomas A. Edison; the invention, a little known idea of his to build a device for communicating with the next life, a proposal he actually broached in Scientific American magazine. Bizarre but true. That is the story behind this drama, which intersperses events in Edison's life with visits by such historical figures as Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, and Matthew Brady, whose lives intersected with Edison's. The human side of Edison comes to life.

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Keywords

Aging, Love, Marriage

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1920s
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: Edison's laboratory in West, Orange, N.J.
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Music

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

Casting

10m, 1f
THOMAS A. EDISON - The inventor, age 73
VISITOR
LAB WORKER
SPECTATORS - Men and women
YOUNG EDISON - Age 31
ASSISTANTS - In Edison's laboratory
MATTHEW BRADY - The photographer, age 55
LEVIN HARDY - Brady's assistant
PHOTOGRAPH - Recorded sound (voice, etc.)
COLLEAGUE
MINA EDISON - Edison's second wife, age 54
HENRY FORD - The auto maker, age 57
HARVEY FIRESTONE - The tire manufacturer, age 52
SATO - Japanese chef
JOHN BURROUGHS - The naturalist, age 83
ATTENDANTS - At campsite
NIGHT WATCHMAN
VOICE - Offstage
NARRATOR - Epilogue only
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Cast Attributes

  • Cross gender casting
  • Expandable casting

Casting Notes

Plus Ensemble

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Authors

Merritt Ierley

Merritt Ierley is the author of 14 books and plays. His three plays for Samuel French—Eleanor for President, The Invention, and

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