7 characters; Flexible cast. 3 pages in length. Approximately 1-5 minutes running time (depending on casting). An Irish folk-tale adapted by Janea Dahl.

The Unlucky Man is an Irish folktale about a man who travels to a wise woman to ask about his luck. Along the way, he meets others who also have questions for the wise lady. He agrees to ask her for them. After seeking her counsel, he heads home and soon reveals that he is not so much an “unlucky” man as he is a foolish man! This short play is a wonderful way to teach students about legends from around the world. Add it to our many other folktales for a show featuring legends from different lands!

Excerpt from the play:

CAST OF CHARACTERS

Narrator One
Narrator Two
Unlucky Man
Wolf
Tree
Maiden
Wisest Woman

SETTING
Irish countryside.

Narrator
There was once a man who thought himself unlucky.

Unlucky Man
My house is too small. I don’t have enough friends. I never have enough money. I don’t even have a wife.

Narrator
He decided to go to the Wisest Woman in the village who lived on the top of a hill. As he walked, he sang.

Unlucky Man
(singing)
I’m so unlucky, as unlucky as can be…
I’m so unlucky, nothing works for me…

Narrator
Soon, he came to a Wolf. The Wolf was old and covered with maggots.

Wolf
Where are you going?

Unlucky Man
I’m going to ask the Wisest Woman how I can get more luck.

Wolf
Then ask her why I’m so sick and tired.

Narrator
The Unlucky man agreed and continued up the path, singing his song. Soon, he came to a tree by a river. The tree was short and thin and had no leaves.

Tree
Where are you going?

Unlucky Man
I’m going to ask the Wisest Woman how I can get more luck.

Tree
Then ask her why I can’t get water.

Narrator
The Unlucky man agreed and continued up the path, singing his song. Soon, he came to a cottage. A beautiful maiden stood in the doorway.

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