Friday, March 21, 2014

March People's Choice Award

The people have spoken... The March People's Choice Award goes to Victoria Chong Der for her short play, Riding Dragons, presented as a staged reading at the Bard-inspired Monday Night PlayGround on March 17 at Berkeley Rep. Congratulations, Victoria!

Courtesy of Ms. Der, we're pleased to share the first two pages from the award-winning script. Enjoy!

RIDING DRAGONS
by Victoria Chong Der

CHARACTERS

MOTHER – Female – 35+ years old – Caucasian. Anxious and a slight perfectionist. Has been through a lot and it shows every now and then. Especially since she probably didn’t have it all together in the first place.

EMMY – Female – 14 years old – Caucasian. Just at the beginning of her teenage years but still holds the confidence of having been in her upper tweens. Mature for her age given her life experiences. Absolutely likeable.

MR. PAULSON – Male – 21+ years old – Caucasian.

Setting: Mr. Paulson’s office at the Holy Virgin Mary’s School for Girls.

MOTHER and EMMY are center stage in an interview. They speak to an interviewer but we don’t see him.

EMMY
With teenage nonchalance.
Ok…. So, I woke up. I picked the sleep out of my eye-

MOTHER
I’m sure you don’t have to be that detailed, Emmy.

EMMY
Ok. I didn’t pick the sleep out of my eye?

MOTHER smiles nervously.

EMMY
I brushed my teeth. I ate a pop tart-

MOTHER
That’s not an approved breakfast. I get those for – uhm – dessert. She pays for that out of her own allowance.

EMMY
Anyway-

MOTHER
She’s fourteen. I feel like I need to give her some autonomy. If I don’t give her any autonomy how will she be able to make decisions in life, right?

EMMY
Are we done?

MOTHER
You haven’t even finished answering Mr. Paulson’s question about what you did this morning-

EMMY
It was my question-

MOTHER
Only because Mr. Paulson wants to have an open interview and let you choose the subject. Since he was so nice to do that, don’t you think you should finish your own list of what you did this morning?

EMMY
Fine. I ate my pop tart, I brushed my teeth again, even though you’re supposed to wait for 30 minutes to brush your teeth after eating sugar, otherwise it like, weakens your teeth or something. But I do it because I feel like it really pisses off my dentist and he’s an asshole-

MOTHER
Emmy!

EMMY
What?

MOTHER
She doesn’t mean that.

EMMY
Yeah I do.

MOTHER
Mr. Dennis is perfectly kind.

EMMY
His name is Dennis the dentist.

MOTHER
He can’t change his name, sweetie.

EMMY
He could insist I call him by his last name, Koybayashi.

MOTHER
Oh, please. No one can pronounce that.

EMMY
Way to be racist, mother.

MOTHER
Quickly, to interviewer.
I’m not racist! No, no. I know what happens when racists get called racist. They immediately blurt out something ridiculous like, “I have a black friend” but I’m not racist. So I’m not going to say that. I don’t have any black friends.
Beat.
I mean, not because they’re black, but because, well Jesus, we live in New Hampshire. I mean, do you have black friends?

EMMY
Mother, stop.

----

Stay tuned for the announcement of this year’s Best of PlayGround lineup, featuring the top six short works from the 2013-14 season. Click here for more info on the Best of PlayGround.

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