The Wright Play

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Plays for One Person: Monologues, 1 Actor

The plays in the first section have only have one part that is played by a single performer.

The plays in the second section either have multiple monologues or only one character who speaks.

Before Breakfast by Eugene O’Neill (1 Act)

The Rowlands live in a small apartment in New York. Mrs. Rowland comes out of the bedroom. She puts on an apron and starts the coffee. Making as little noise as possible, she gets a bottle of gin and has a drink. She goes through her husband’s vest and finds a letter. After reading it, she starts calling her husband to get up and berates him.

Krapp’s Last Tape by Samuel Beckett (1 Act)

Every year since he was twenty-four, Krapp has made a tape about his life. Now, at sixty-nine, he prepares to make another. First, he listens to a recording from thirty years ago in which he had just listened to one from about ten years prior. We learn of the decisions that have led him to his current state of isolation. He starts a new tape, assessing his younger self.

Every Brilliant Thing by Duncan MacMillan

When the narrator was seven, his mom was taken to the hospital after a suicide attempt. He started making a list for her of everything that makes life worthwhile. He relates some of the events of this trying time.

In The Pipeline by Gary Owen (1 Act)

The residents of a village get a letter saying a gas plant is being built nearby. The pipeline linking it to the main grid is going to run through their area. We get some perspective on the situation from three villagers—Andrew, Dai and Joan.

This play was originally written as a radio play. The characters’ parts are all monologues. The whole play can be read in the preview of Gary Owen: Collected Plays. (9% in)

The Stronger by August Strindberg

Two women, both actresses, meet in a coffeehouse. Mrs. X comments on Miss Y being alone on Christmas Eve, and on her failed marriage. Mrs. X’s monologue continues, revealing their history and rivalry.

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