Each week the expert staff of the renowned Drama Book Shop in Manhattan, just seconds away from Broadway, recommends one play that's new, interesting, or just flat-out fantastic. Picking the best of published work, they help keep us up to date and aware of the little known, broadening our horizons and encouraging dialogue. Order a play from The Drama Book Shop, read it, and e-mail them with your thoughts–they'd love to hear from you: email@example.com.
THIS WEEK’S DRAMA BOOK SHOP PICK:
Truth and Reconciliation
by Etan Frankel
Ben Montgomery, 28, is a passionate young doctor in a volatile Central American country, using his medical training to help the sick and the poor. Beatriz is the beautiful young woman with whom he falls in love.
Etan Frankel's suspenseful, deeply disturbing play unfolds largely in flashback as we follow Ben and Beatriz from their initial meeting in Ben's makeshift office (it's located in the back of a church) to the moment Ben–who, unbeknownst to him, has made a number of shadowy enemies–mysteriously disappears.
As Frankel takes us back in time, we see how Ben–youthful, naive, and altogether unsuspecting–falls into the trap that ultimately claims his life…even as, in a gripping parallel storyline, his grieving parents testify angrily before a Truth and Reconciliation Commission that has been convened to investigate the crime.
Cast: 4 M, 2 W
Scenes/Monologues: The anguished testimony of Ben's mother and father make for a pair of extraordinarily powerful speeches, and the scenes between Ben and Beatriz–rife with the promise of things to come, particularly toward the end of the play–are well worth looking at, too.
Recommended by: Stu
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4m, 2f / Drama / Unit Set Winner of the 2006 L. Arnold Weissberger Award. It is three years since Lynne and Benjamin Montgomery's son, Ben, traveled to the Central American country of Cartuga in order to use his medical training to help the poor peasants. Soon after his arrival, Ben disappeared. In a country of civil strife, guerillas and mass executions by the army, that can mean only one thing — he was killed. So when Bishop Melinda calls to invite the Montgomerys to take part in the historic Cartuga Truth and Reconciliation Commission, they fly down to Central America to find out what happened to their son.