New Play Series 3, sharing new plays produced & published for schools, actors, teachers and audiences alike. Let’s examine short play, One-Way Conversation.
- New Plays (a growing collection of new plays for actors, directors, teachers and producers)
One-Way Conversation explores the themes of loneliness, love, family and ambition.
A mother is finding it more difficult to adjust to her daughter’s schooling and lack of communication. She confronts her daughter about the issue of never see her anymore but her daughter Bella is deliberately keeping more distance than necessary because of her mother’s constant criticisms.
The situation comes to a head in a car after grocery shopping.
Bella: Bella is deeply embedded into school for her drama studies. The school she attends is a private institution for the performing arts. All her time is invested into her work as a blossoming young actress.
Mom: Mom is finding it extremely difficult to adjust to the fact that she barely sees her daughter. Her loneliness intensifies during the day and by evening she seeks attention from her husband and daughter.
Mom never came from a wealthy family. She’s worked for everything she has in her life. her love for her husband and only daughter has always overpowered her own self interests.
Ever since Bella has gone to private drama school, Mom has been difficult and hard on her. This is partly because of her own fears of her daughter never fulfilling her full potential and also partly because she thinks her daughter is slacking off…
A major argument recently took place, the worst both women have ever experienced together and now things have changed between them. Their relationship has grown colder, more absent. This isn’t the sort of relationship this pair of mother/daughter want but it is what currently exists due to the circumstances that have risen.
The recent argument is the frame that hangs over the characters for them to play in. Their past intensifies their present.
A grocery store parking lot, inside a car.
Bella and her mother have always been close. The key element to remember is that their relationship has encountered a sudden shift. What was once a close, loving mother/daughter connection is now experiencing a wedge from Bella’s private school demands and dramatic training. To make matters worse, Mom has developed a strong tendency to berate and criticize her daughter, thinking she is wasting her talents and future potential career. The truth is that Bella is hard working and dedicated but she hides behind her work in order to deliberately distance herself from her mother’s nagging.
This is where we find both women at the start of the play.
It is also important to consider that Mom is a highly intelligent woman who never really felt that she reached her own potential. Her daughter is her pride and joy and does live through her daughters happiness and achievements. However, Mom is not happy within herself and although she is an excellent mother and wife, she is lost when it comes to feeling fulfilled within her own ambitions.
There may even be a bit of hidden jealousy Mom feels towards her daughter because Bella has everything she never had. Bella, on the other hand may sense it, even though she knows her mother wants the best for her.
Both women wish to remain close deep down, so long as they can respect one another’s needs and true desires.
Dialogue Exchange Snippet
MOM: I can’t get a word in edge wise with you, lately. Always on the go, always busy, we don’t ever get a chance to talk.
BELLA: Fine. What do you want to talk about?
MOM: How’s school?
BELLA: Are you serious?
MOM: I’m asking you, how is school?
BELLA: School sucks like always. Next question.
MOM: Why does it suck as you put it?
BELLA: Because I’m working too hard.
MOM: Excuse me but your education is costing your father and me a small fortune.
MOM: Why don’t you bring any of your friends around?
BELLA: Because they wouldn’t like you.
MOM: That’s a terrible things to say, Bella.
BELLA: So? I don’t like their parents, either. Doesn’t matter.
MOM: I want to start meeting some of your friends. Bring them around. We can have a barbecue this weekend—
BELLA: No! There’s no way I am having one of those crazy family barbeques and inviting my friends over because they will stop being my friend.
- To read the full one-act ePlay, find purchase link below:
In this one-act ePlay, Bella and her mother try to come to a new understanding in their relationship after Bella’s mother comes down on her and Bella’s defense has been to distance herself.
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