FAMINE PLAYS by Richard Caliban
A diverse group of characters struggle with survival as catastrophic climate change envelopes the US. and civilization unravels. Among them: A businessman setting out with Walt Whitman-like ideals; a wet nurse on her way to a job; and a young girl on the road with her desperate mother.
In Richard Caliban’s “Famine Plays,” the center of the country cannot hold. America’s heartland has become a disaster area. Facing unemployment and poverty, people move from street to highway, looking for a resting zone. Some grasp a livelihood in crime. No one has enough to eat, and there is no solace on the horizon. The once-sedentary become eternal nomads, as the Okies did in the 1930’s.
…a “Grapes of Wrath” for modern, depressed times.
— Mel Gussow, New York Times
Precise, poetic writing and startling theatrical images.
— Alisa Solomon, Village Voice
He speaks for an integrity that can’t be far from theatrical sainthood.
—Gordon Rogoff, Village Voice
- Cast Size: 5M 4W
- Running Time: 90+ minutes
- Royalty Rate: $75 per performance
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This funny, horrifying play is a dystopian nightmare tinged with absurdism, imaginatively conceived with characters that will haunt the memory. The scenic design would be stunning in its simplicity. Excellent work, highly recommended.
Beyond cynicism lies truth, and Richard Caliban isn’t afraid to go there. Deft and lyrical, haunting and prescient, this play is even more timely and scary today than when it was written. In a bare bone world, the chemistry set of humanity exposes its flawed and fundamental characteristics – and they’re just as sad and lethal and hopeless.