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Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

  • 1.  Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 21 days ago
    Good morning!  My auditorium is being renovated this year, which is GREAT for shows in fall of 2020, but kind of a disaster for shows in the upcoming school year.  As such, I am looking for plays that involve a large-ish cast (20-25) that have minimal to zero set pieces, so that we can perform wherever is available, no matter the renovation schedule progess (black box, commons, outdoors, etc.)

    I'd like something along the lines of The Laramie Project, but maybe a little less controversial.  For reference, I am doing this with advanced 10th grade actors in a somewhat conservative district in Texas that's starting to broaden its horizons a bit (we were allowed to do All Shook Up last year which was a BIG step for the community).  I am looking heavily at 26 Pebbles and like this style...any other suggestions or thoughts?  

    Your insight is welcome!
     
    Karen Ruth
    Director of Theatre
    Coppell High School
    185 West Parkway Blvd
    CoppellTexas
    75019
     214‑496‑6398
     kruth@coppellisd.com
     coppellisd.com/chs

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  • 2.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    Hi, Karen.

    You should look at Robert Fulghum's All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. Though ideally written for a 5-person cast, the author gives permission to expand the cast. I directed it this way years ago; but recently, I used scenes from this show for our Thespian competition show & used 24 students in the cast.

    This show can be presented as a full musical (w/7 songs), as a reduced musical, or even a non-musical, depending on the scenes used (all with the playwright's permission). In short, it's a very flexible show with no required set pieces....mostly costume pieces & hand props.

    ------------------------------
    Susan Nieten
    Theatre Teacher & Thespian Troupe Director
    Noblesville High School
    Noblesville, IN
    @NHSTheatre @mrsnieten
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    I know this isn't exactly like what you describe but you might look at Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon. It is a fast paced comedy mash-up of fairy tales. The cast is very flexible as you can do it with as few as 5 and like up to 40. Actors can play one character or they can play multiple roles so it allows for lots of people to have smaller parts. You can do it with very little set pieces and costumes are also supposed to be kept simple (wigs, hats, etc). The play is based on fairy tales and is fairly clean. The Little Red story line has an alternate version that is more family friendly and there are a few references throughout the show but very mild.

    ------------------------------
    Amy Williams
    District Librarian/Theater Teacher
    Thespian Troupe #8881
    Auburn High School
    Auburn, IL
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    Our Town would fit the bill.

    What about Camelot with medieval banners on tall dowels in flag stands as the backdrop and set pieces to indicate scene setting (throne, tree stump, of additional banners to set scene). When I ran the Washington Shakespeare Festival, we did this for a production of A Comedy of Errors.

    You can use backdrop-banner stands (8'h x 10'w) to create a painted background for any of your plays. You can find them in the $40 range. Or luan on 2x2 frames. Or traditional constructed flats. All these can be set up in any location.

    Best of leg breaking.


    ------------------------------
    James Van Leishout
    Olympia WA
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  • 5.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    Macbeth: a Kid's Cautionary Tale is a great minimal set play that makes Shakespeare easy for both the kids and the audience.

    ------------------------------
    Christopher Engler
    Theater director
    Loves Park IL
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  • 6.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    For one acts:

    Booby Trap by Ed Monk
    11 Variations of Friar John's Failure by Yuri Baranovski
    Dark Road by Laura Lundgren Smith
    Grimm's Brother Spectaculathon (seconding this option)

    For Full lengths:
    The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Noah Smith (I did this about a decade ago with very minimal sets and simply used pantomime for all the major set pieces (doors, windows, etc. It was really effective)
    Any Shakespeare or classical piece

    I'm SUPER jealous of your new renovations. How awesome for you!

    ------------------------------
    Shira Schwartz
    Chandler Unified School District
    Chandler AZ
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: Looking for large-is cast, minimal-to-no set plays

    Posted 20 days ago
    Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon comes in both a one-act or a full length so it is very flexible. I am doing the full length this fall since it is the first play our school has done in many years and we don't have a lot of money for sets and costumes. You can basically do it with chairs, benches, something to make a "tower" for Rapunzel, maybe a few fake trees. Very flexible play.

    ------------------------------
    Amy Williams
    District Librarian/Theater Teacher
    Thespian Troupe #8881
    Auburn High School
    Auburn, IL
    ------------------------------