Not So Dumb: Four Plays for Young People

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9780889104532: Not So Dumb: Four Plays for Young People
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Four plays dramatize the pressures and stresses children face in school

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About the Author:

John Lazarus is a playwright, screenwriter, dramaturge, actor, critic, and teacher. He graduated from the National Theatre School in 1969. Besides writing numerous plays for stage, John Lazarus has also written for film, television, and radio, including the adaptation of material from Village of Idiots for a CBC Radio mini-series and an award-winning National Film Board cartoon. He has worked frequently as a dramaturge and adjudicator, and has written theatre reviews for several newspapers, including The Vancouver Province and The Georgia Strait. He has taught playwriting and solo show technique at Studio 58 (Langara College) in Vancouver, the Vancouver Film School, and the National Theatre School. In 2000 he joined the Queen’s University Drama Department as an Assistant Professor, where he taught playwriting, dramaturgy, and young people’s theatre, and wrote the play Meltdown, produced by the students of the Drama Department in 2005. He now lives in B.C.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 8 Up-These four brief, interconnected plays were created for the Green Thumb Theatre of Vancouver, Canada. Clearly didactic, they deal with such common but important themes as friendship, self-esteem, honesty, fear, and peer pressure. The first three were designed to be performed by teen actors for a much younger audience, since the characters range in age from 7 through l0. In the fourth, similar themes remain, but they are addressed within the context of the blossoming sexuality of students in their mid-teens. Three pivotal characters appear repeatedly in various combinations, binding this cycle of free standing dramas into an orchestrated whole. Binnie and Rocky, both 10, are LD students who share a devotion to their special education teacher in Not So Dumb. Victor is a socially inept "brain" whose house party sets the scene for the final play in which Rocky and Binnie, now in their teens and sexually involved, sort out a bumpy relationship. Fast paced, with lively (sometimes crude, but realistic) dialogue, these plays offer young thespians distinctively drawn personalities from which to fashion well-rounded characters. Most would be simple to stage, with the exception of the first, which requires playground equipment and the performance of several calisthenic stunts. It is doubtful that many young adults will pick this volume up on their own, but it would be useful in collections that are heavily used by teachers or drama coaches.
Margaret Cole, Oceanside Library, NY
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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9780887545788: Not So Dumb: Four Plays for Young People

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ISBN 10:  0887545785 ISBN 13:  9780887545788
Publisher: Playwrights Canada Press, 2000
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John Lazarus
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