Riley and Harper are two fledgling ghost hunters. Their first case reveals not one, but a whole family of ghosts living in Logan’s house. But these aren’t your typical frightening ghosts, and this short play teaches the value of acceptance and co-existence.
This script includes discussion questions and director’s notes on casting and set design.
Debra A. Cole is a celebrated humanities teacher, youth theatre director, and children’s playwright with degrees in journalism, art history, and elementary education. She understands the needs of young performers and their directors and creates pieces that encourage engaging discussion, creative thought, and quirky playfulness. Her goal is that young performers discover the power and delight that theatre brings to actors and audiences alike.
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Excerpt from the play:
LOGAN — (M/F) concerned kid worried about the strange noises and events in his/her house
RILEY — (M/F) co-owner of Riley and Harper Radical Haunts
HARPER — (M/F) co-owner of Riley and Harper Radical Haunts
KADEN MARSHALL— (M/F) ghost child of the Marshall family – playful and mischievous
MRS. MARSHALL— (F) ghost mothers of the Marshall family – the voice of reason
MR. MARSHALL — (M) ghost father of the Marshall family – loves to bake
(The action takes place in modern times in an average family room.)
(Lights come up in a family room that has art on the walls, assorted lamps, a couch, side table, rocking chair, and coffee table complete with decorations. On the couch sits Logan with Harper and Riley on each side. Mrs. Marshall, in full ghost whiteness, sits on a rocking chair reading. She not rocking yet. She does not acknowledge Logan, Harper and Riley. They do not see her. Harper has a backpack next to the couch.)
(nervously) So, you two hunt ghosts?
(clarifying) Hunt is strong word. Harper and I like to say we “facilitate” ghost interactions.
(agreeing) Exactly. Riley and I think that most ghosts are just misunderstood. If more people would take the time to talk and listen to ghosts, then our two worlds could live peacefully together.
(unsure) I’m not sure I want to live peacefully with ghosts…Maybe I just want them gone.
You made the right decision contacting (proudly) Riley & Harper Radical Haunts. We guarantee a happy result, or your money back.
(confused) But, your ad said your service is free?
(quickly jumping in) Oh, we are really just in our early days of setting up the business. Soon, clients will be knocking our door down to have us help them with their ghost issues. THEN, look out – we are going to be very expensive I can assure you.
(confidently) Right! So, Logan, tell us about your radical ghost; We are ready to help!
(pauses and nervously answers) I’m not sure it’s just one “radical” ghost. Too many things are happening in my house to be just one.
Well, be brought all of our ghost “facilitating” equipment! (pulls out the first apparatus out of the backpack)
What does THAT do?
THIS is a ghost voice recorder. If any ghost wants to communicate with us, all it has to do is speak into this machine, and we will hear the results when we play it back.
You said your business is new, but I’m not your FIRST client, am I?
(Riley and Harper look at each other nervously.)
I’ve always heard that being first is best!
Exactly! Being first means we can give you all of our energy and passion!
(Mrs. Marshall begins to rock back and forth in the rocking chair as she continues to read.)
(scared) Look! It’s happening! The chair is rocking with no one with it!!!
(Mrs. Marshall starts to pay attention to the three on the couch and immediately stops rocking in the chair.)
THIS IS NOT A DRILL, RILEY! Start the ghost voice recorder!
(fumbling) I’m trying… THIS IS SO EXCITING!
(yells off stage) Kaden Marshall! (back to normal volume) Come in here right now!