Jan Henson Dow
From a comic yet telling refiguring of August Strindberg’s Miss Julie to a man discovering the daughter he never knew, these eleven Plays that Pop! explore the importance of human connections as we struggle to make the most of life.
Along the way, you’ll meet poet William Butler Yeats being confronted by his lost past, a woman on edge hiding a terrible secret, an army patrol facing the ultimate confusion of war, a man in airport limbo, and characters poking fun at the very notion of plays. And don’t forget the missing Putty Sing!
Whether you’re interested in a good read or are looking for wonderful characters to people your stage, there’s something here for every taste and every theater budget.
Jan Henson Dow
& Shannon Michal Dow
The Bronte sisters—Charlotte, Emily, and Anne—are famous for their romantic novels and poetry, but their lives were anything but enchanting. Sequestered in a lonely hamlet far from London, they and their brother play freely with the imagination until reality and the outside world intrude on their idyllic solitude, wreaking havoc with their lives.
In their award-winning drama, The Moorlark, Jan Henson Dow and Shannon Michal Dow bring the Brontes to vibrant life, exposing the restrictive home life and dark environment that forbid them happiness and claimed their lives at early ages.
It is the dawn of the 20th century, and infamous magus of black magic Aleister Crowley and poet William Butler Yeats contend for control of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Their confrontation, based on real-life events, draws in Bram Stoker, author of Dracula, famous Irish revolutionary Maud Gonne, celebrated Victorian actress Florence Farr Emery, and mysteriously veiled author Fiona MacLeod, who is much more than she seems. Magic, seduction, and ambition collide as each strives to achieve his or her desires and dreams, until Fiona, in a prescient trance, confronts each of the others with their inner motivations and passions, sealing their fates.
Shannon Michal Dow
Jan Henson Dow
Where passions lead to obsessions,
and secrets lead to murder....
A two-act mystery thriller.
Grad student and artist Bret Conway has moved into an upstate New York apartment to take time off from her relationship with Mark. But this apartment hides many secrets. Sandy, the previous resident, has gone missing; the reclusive landlord likes to spy on his female tenants; and Mark may have known Sandy a little too well. While Mark tries desperately to win her back, Bret is enticed by her mysterious neighbor, Eric, who creates art out of things he finds in other people's garbage. Enter Detective Craig, a homicide detective whose haunted past now makes him obsessed with Sandy—and with Bret. One of them is a killer who will strike again in order to satisfy an uncontrollable desire.
Winner of the Theatre Americana National Competition and The Players Club Playwrights First Playwriting Award for Outstanding Merit.
What they’re saying about Dark Passages:
“A taut, deftly written thriller.”
Waterbury Republican-American, CT
“First rate! A brilliant work that casts a spell over its audience, and doesn’t let up until a riveting and very revealing climax! Some of the best characters and plot development we have seen in a long, long time!”
Director, Clockwork Repertory Theatre, CT
“A very suspenseful, erotic, psychological thriller with a very tight script.”
Director, Sheboygan Theatre Company, WI
“Terrific new murder mystery thriller.... A shattering web of suspicions and deceit.”
—New England Entertainment Digest
Jan Henson Dow
& Robert Schroeder
As the last day of WWII unfolds inside the Sulphur Spring Inn, confused mayhem whirls around proprietor Sarah Robinson. Sarah drives her family crazy, but her ditzyness disguises a kindness big enough to cement her family together despite the heavy-handed approach of her temperamental husband, Evan, who is running for congress. To make matters worse, Evan can’t stand the idea of his older daughter being courted by a soldier, but she is, and the young couple plans to wed that very day. Mixed up in the confusion is a younger daughter infatuated with a cosmopolitan older sergeant, a mischievous boy, and a wisecracking custodian. And when Sarah throws in a few bottles of Dr. Snaketoe’s Lightnin’ Elixir, watch out!
Jan Henson Dow
& Robert Schroeder
Life's starkness and beauty are revealed in this provocative drama about a modern woman's search for self-understanding through memories and dreams of her past. At a time of crisis in her own life, Jennifer learns of the death of her high-school best friend, Christine. As Jennifer reminisces, her reflections relate to later events in her own life and aspects of her teenage relationship with Christine. Reliving the tragedies of Christine's parents and Christine's reaction to them forces Jennifer to confront her own lack of understanding and compassion toward those she loves. But Jennifer discovers that despite the pain of the past, her dreams and reflections have helped prepare her for the future through the discovery that joy is inseparable from a sharing of sorrow and human compassion.
What they're saying about Dreamers, Shadows, Dreams:
"The dreamlike quality of the play is fascinating.... The play derives great strength from its haunting American Gothic atmosphere and the play's compelling intensity. The way death-imagery and the images of violence suffuse the play is very effective....The relationship between the girls is clear, believable, and touching. The characters are well-drawn, and I particularly like Dorine, the black mainstay of this Southern family's dry-cleaning shop and household."
—Dallas Theater Center
During the early decades of the nineteenth century, Shaka Zulu was one of the few African tribal leaders to unite the Zulu tribes and inflict defeat upon the British Army. In their majestic play, Shaka, Jan Henson Dow and Robert Schroeder bring Shaka and those surrounding him to life as he rises from obscurity to become one of the most influential monarchs of the Zulu Kingdom. Thwarted love, constant war, witchcraft, and court intrigue fomented by his own power-hungry brothers eventually drive Shaka to the brink of madness, until he finally turns the scorched-earth policy he uses against his enemies upon those he loves most.
About the Playwrights
Jan Henson Dow has won more than 150 national playwriting competitions, awards, and honors, including an NBC New Voices Award. Her plays have received numerous productions, workshops, and staged readings around the country and have been published by Samuel French, Popular Play Service, and Phosphene Publishing Company.
Shannon Michal Dow is a national award-winning playwright whose works have been produced and received readings around the country. She has been literary manager of The Playwrights Collective of the Country Players of Brookfield, Connecticut, as well as a play analyst and acquisitions editor for a play publishing company. She gives play- writing workshops for adults and teenagers. Her full-length plays have been published by Samuel French and Popular Play Service.
She has been a feature writer and editor and a film and theatre reviewer for various Connecticut newspapers and has served as a judge for several playwriting competitions. Her articles have appeared in Connecticut magazine and other periodicals. She also has worked professionally as a theatre director as well as a graphic and scenic artist and designer for the theatre. She is a member of the Dramatist Guild (The School House Theatre Playwrights Workshop, Croton Falls, New York).
Robert Schroeder has won a number of playwriting competitions, including an NBC New Voices Award. His plays have been staged nationally. He served on the staff of The Dramatist Guild Quarterly and the Dodd-Mead Best Plays reference annuals. His reviews and theatre commentaries also appeared in The Nation, Commonweal, New York, and other periodicals. His anthology, The New Underground Theatre, was published by Bantam Books, and he was among the contributors to Playwrights, Lyricists, and Composers on Theatre, a Dodd-Mead hardcover. He has been retained professionally as a play/musical “doctor” for a number of Off Broadway productions.