by Mark Loewenstern
In rural Scotland in 1793, a small parish believes it is safe from the revolutions shaking the world. But when a well-intentioned man of reason arrives, bringing violent upheaval, the people of Parish Dunkeld must fight their way back from the brink. A true ensemble drama where the parish itself is the protagonist, and each character’s journey is bound up with all the others.
- Cast Size: 7M 5W
- Running Time: 90+ minutes
- Royalty Rate: $75 per performance
Order Script Copies (Oct 1)
Order Digital Download (Will NOT download to phones) (Oct 1)
About the Playwright
Mark Loewenstern is a winner of the Samuel French One-Act Festival and the Anna Zornio Award for Children’s Playwriting. He has been nominated 3 times for a Heideman Award and once for a New York Independent Theater Award. His plays have been produced on 4 continents and he has received commissions from the Lennie Pierro Memorial Arts Foundation, California Stage Company and Vital Theatre. Plays: Parish Dunkeld, Near Nellie Bly (O’Neill Semi-Finalist), Dorothea Puente Tells All! (sold out premiere at California Stage Company), One is the Road, Carnality, A Doctor’s Visit, The Nastiest Drink in the World, The Slightly Exaggerated True Story of “Civic Virtue.” Films: Holiday Rumble, 26 Months After Katrina, Sinister Zoe.
Some plays are entertaining, some are important and some make you think for weeks after you experience it. This play is all three. The view of a town slowly falling apart as the trappings of civilization fall away is chilling. Parish Dunkheld deftly asks the viewer to think about the delicate, fragile web that holds us all together. This is more important now then ever. The fact that it does all this in the context of a gripping, entertaining and exciting story with a compelling cast of characters is just truly impressive.
I’d seen several incarnations of this piece, including a small-scale (but costumed) production. There are many quite lovely threads in this tapestry: a charming hilltop drinking game, a reverend trying to keep his rural parish on the straight and narrow, an Enlightenment scholar, an inquisitive preteen, the town prostitute and her angry offspring… Quite a cornucopia of characters, and a killing — or two. What does this town need to do to stay intact?
A haunting story of a town teetering on and ultimately over a moral precipice. Every character has a complicated history and secrets to conceal, which is no easy feat in a tiny parish. Morality and law, ethics and religion, and the compromises a community must make to keep the peace are examined with provocative questions and no easy answer.