In Part 1 and Part 2 and Part 3 and Part 4 and Part 5, our community theater costumer Margy, is writing a play. Seetha, the director, has been rehearsing another social justice play, Bronx Zoo, and the rehearsals haven’t been going that well.
“It’s a Local Production”
Seetha’s announcement caught everyone by surprise. Everyone except the darkly grim playwright of Bronx Zoo, who was unexpectedly back, standing at the edge of stage, after having been booted out by Stage Manager Molly a few weeks before. Mr. Brooding-Face.
“And so, Malvern’s play has been optioned by an experimental theater in Chicago,” Seeta continued. Malvern was the playwright’s name, Margy remembered. “It’s a great break for him.”
“What about us?” Giraffe asked. It was surprising, since he was usually self-conscious.
“Well . . .” Seetha hesitated. “It looks like our season is over.”
The entire cast groaned. Malvern looked even more pleased.
If they only had another play. A social justice play, like the one Margy was writing. But Margy couldn’t quite get up the nerve to say anything about her own play. Not in front of everyone.
Back in the costume shop, Giraffe came by to see Margy. “I love what you did with my head,” he said wistfully. “I would have been proud to wear the costume in front of an audience.”
“You would have been good,” Margy said. “You were hitting your stride in those last few rehearsals.”
“Maybe next season,” he said. “I’ll bring in the costume tomorrow.” He smiled at Margy ruefully. “I’ll get my girlfriend to take some photos tonight, so I’ll have something to remember.”
“Fine,” Margy said.
Why couldn’t she go talk to Seetha now? She’d go and find Seetha, let her know . . . but, what if it wasn’t good enough? She had never had a play produced, she’d never even finished a professional play before. How could she know whether it was good enough to be produced?
She sank back on her stool. It was hot in the room. She’d work on the play, then maybe next season . . .
“I’ll be needing the costumes shipped to this address,” came a voice. She looked up. Malvern stood in the doorway. He held a slip of paper in his hand.
“These costumes belong to the theater,” she said slowly. She had made the giraffe’s head herself. Crow’s costume was on loan from her professional friend. He couldn’t possibly . . .
“Well, I’ll need them for the production.” He smiled almost with glee.
“These are my costumes,” Margy said firmly. “You’ll have to find your own. In Chicago.”
“I can get Seetha in here,” he said, his tone of voice indicating a threat.
That would be perfect, Margy thought. “Go ahead,” she said. “I dare you.”
He paled a little. “The costumes are for the production,” he said. “You can’t use them. I might as well -”
“I’m the costumer,” Margy said. In fact, she thought, I’m the entire costume department, but she went on, “Don’t you think I’d know if the costumes were to go elsewhere?”
Molly appeared in the doorway. “Malvern,” she said. “Phone call.”
“Oh.” He turned.
Molly said, “In the office.”
“It’s probably Chicago,” he said. “I wonder what they want?”
Margy heard his boots clomp-clomping down the backstage hall.
Molly looked at Margy. “Everything okay?”
In that moment, Margy made up her mind. “Is Seetha still here?” she asked.
“Sure. She’s in the ticket office. Working out the finances, if we have to give everyone refunds.” Molly gave a wry smile. “You’ve got a few minutes before Malvern realizes there’s no one on the line.”
(to be continued!)
Have you ever felt like you couldn’t speak up? Do you ever question whether your writing is good or not? How do you know if it is or not?
Thanks for stopping by! More to come soon!