One of the reasons I enjoy Senior Theatre is because I get to work
with incredible older women. I had not spent much time with elders
until I directed my first Senior Theatre, an all-woman company
called The One Nighters. These actors were full of life and
enthusiasm--it was a joy to be in their presence. Throughout my
career, I have watched dynamic women overcome challenges and I have
gained strength just from being around them!
Even now, I am pleased to say that many of the playwrights in our
collection are women, a large majority of the directors are women,
and most of the performers are women. To meet their needs, we
feature many shows with a large percentage of female roles in
challenging, yet fun theatre. These strong, up-to-date, feisty
female characters prove the strength of the 'weaker sex!'
Senior Theatre is wonderful vehicle to feature older women, to give
them a voice as they share their skills and talents on stage. I
say, "Celebrate older women!"
Yours in Theatre,
Bonnie Vorenberg, ArtAge President
need to hear from older women. There's a wealth of wisdom and real
resilience there. Hannah
Arches, Balance and Light in performance
Mary Spletter's lovely show about the dynamic
architecture of Julia Morgan will be presented in
the Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland, California on September 29
and 30. Julia Morgan faced criticism and rejection yet was able to
design more than 700 buildings during her long and prolific career.
Best known for Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California, she became
a celebrated world-class architect.
Spletter writes: In the Broadway hit A Chorus Line,
the young actress looks out over the audience and squawks,
"What I couldn’t do was sing." My biography would add,
“What I couldn’t do was act, dance, paint, play an instrument, or
join an athletic team!" The list continues. From first grade
on, my strength was writing. I could close my eyes and travel the
world, explore my emotions, or find pen pals.
I grew up in Wisconsin, earned a degree in journalism and worked as
a reporter in Milwaukee. Next I honed my writing through the
wonderful University of California system. I loved theatre, so when
I retired it was natural to try playwriting.
People tell me they are amazed at my successes, but they always
add, "Especially at your age!" I smile and explain that
it is my age that has provided a richness of experience and courage
to try new things. Like many other seniors, I'm not afraid to fail.
What I learned from writing
Arches, Balance and Light is that cemeteries are as
much for the living as for the dead. You can:
- Attend events: Tulip exhibits, jazz
concerts, walking tours, lectures on historical figures.
- Exercise you and your dog. Avoid gym fees
while helping both you and your best friend.
- Practice your musical instrument.
- Lead a tour or become a docent. You’ll
always be appreciated.
- Learn about the community leaders,
builders, and pioneers who shaped your part of the world.
One of my friends goes to the cemetery to read
favorite books. How about, write a play? The cemetery helped me to
appreciate Julia Morgan even more!
Mary at another
fabulous Julia Morgan building.
Click here to read more about the play and
Shows with strong women characters
Photo from a performance of Mother's Day
These shows all feature strong women. Staged
together, you can create a production of any length. Click on the
play title for more information, to read the FreeView, and to order
The Comeuppance of Flame LaQuench
3 men, 4 women (can be double cast; 1 man can play 3 roles)
10 minute comedy
After three husbands and in spite of the dire warnings of
her cousin and the Swamp Lady, headstrong Flame seems to be headed
for her own death or (worse) comeuppance!
10 minute comedy
At the KOA campground, Crusty Wilma makes Rose and Dottie aware of
their dreams and life becomes better for everyone. Funny, charming,
and thought provoking.
10 minute comedy
Two ‘women of a certain age' are waiting on a bench for their ride.
Mary innocently begins to question Ethel about her private life and
finds Ethel’s marital history to be nothing short of astonishing.
How far will feisty senior, Goldalee Schneider, go to make her
daughter listen to her? She’ll stage a sit-in strike at the local
Holiday Inn! Handcuffed to a chair.
There’s bingo. There’s prizes. And there’s fighting over at the
Perfect Petunias Garden Club’s annual luncheon and bingo game.
Hijinks and shenanigans as these ladies pull out all the stops.
Digging Up Hoffa
20 minute comedy-drama
1 man, 1 woman, 1 either
Years later, Jimmy Hoffa is still missing. Meanwhile, Phyllis
worries about her finances and a broken septic system. She decides
that desperate times require bold action!
History of Mah Jongg
40 minute comedy
Three feisty women return to their beloved Mah Jongg game from
years before. Award-winning comedy about the power of women’s
Save $5 on
e-scripts of the shows in this article and in the feature story.
Act now, the sale ends on September 25!
There for You:
Our new program, the FreeRead, brings you almost all
of a featured show. This month take a look at There for You: The Musical.
The show has strong characters, touching music, and a powerful plot
in a great vehicle for older performers! The FreeRead ends
Click here for the music, testimonials, and
Need help choosing a play?
There are so many plays, books, and materials in our
collection, that it's sometimes difficult to make choices. If this
is your situation, we have several tools to help you. On the
website, look at the:
Of course, we're here to help you. Feel free to call
or email us.