3 characters. 3M; 5 pages in length. Approximately 3-5 minutes running time. A Renaissance comedy for teens or adults by playwright, Elizabeth Rapoza.

Battle of What Bridge? is a play about three actors set during the Renaissance. When a random street scene between the characters causes confusion, the three actors come to blows over the fording of a stream, the crossing of a bridge and unexpected stage directions. Will Man #1 ever realize that they are just “acting”? Will they ever finish the scene? This short comedy is a great opportunity for actors to work on the dialect of the period and stage combat!

Elizabeth Rapoza first began writing plays for and with children over 30 years ago. All of Liz Rapoza’s plays are kid and audience tested, some many times over. Her youth play, “Perstephanie Goes Underground” won the Boston Public Schools Short Play Development Award. Her adult radio comedy “The Amazing Adventures of Pajamazon” was a winner in Mae West Fest of Seattle’s search for the Ultimate Female Protagonist. Her plays have also been performed at such venues as SlamBoston and the Factory Theater Boston. In addition, Liz is also a professional actor, dancer, musician, vocalist, puppeteer/puppet constructor and costumer. She has taught college theater courses since 2003. Liz currently teaches at Cape Cod Community College and the Zeiterion Theater, New Bedford, Ma.

Excerpt from the play:

CAST OF CHARACTERS

MAN 1
MAN 2
MAN 3

COSTUMES AND SETS:
Costumes are peasant or working class Renaissance garb. These are now widely available at affordable prices online. All major clothing pattern manufacturers also stock Renaissance patterns. No sets are needed, as the scene takes place on the street.

(MAN #1 enters and bends to look at himself in an imaginary stream. He fixes his hair, wets a finger and smoothes his eyebrows, and then proceeds to make hideous faces. MAN #2 enters and watches him in amazement) 

MAN #2
Good day there!

MAN #1
(Jumps guiltily) What? Ho!?

MAN #2
What’re you doin’? You’ll scare the little fishies.

MAN #1
I’m practicing for the “Gurning Through a Braffin’”.

MAN #2
The what?!

MAN #1
The “Gurning Through a Braffin’”, you know…(He makes more hideous faces)

MAN #2
Stand back knave! Infect me not with this foul disease! It looks ‘orrible.

MAN #1
Don’t be daft! The “Gurning Through the Braffin’” is the “Ugliest Face Contest” being held here today at the festival.

MAN #2
Ah! Well then, you’ll not be needing to practice for that.

MAN #1
Hold to varlet! Thou hast thy nerve!

MAN #2
Oh come on, I was only joking….

(MAN #3 enters and pushes aside MAN #2)

MAN #3
Stand aside from that bridge there, ye wee little tadpoles! Yer in me way, so clear out!

MAN #1
(Standing up to MAN #3) We are not in your way, and we are not tadpoles!

MAN #2
Yeah! That which he sayeth!

MAN #3
Yes you are.

MAN #1
We are nowhere near the bridge!

MAN #3
(Looking puzzled) Well…um…you are supposed to be.

MAN #1
What!!

MAN #3
It’s in the script.

MAN #1
No it’s not!

MAN #2
Yes it is.

MAN #1
No it is not.

MAN #2
Yes it is! It’s right before the staff fight.

MAN #1
Staff fight?!

MAN #3
Um…yeah. Me an’ you, we fights wif our staves and I knocks you into the water…

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