Talia has been writing plays since 1990. Many of them have been produced and/or published in Canada, the US and elsewhere. Most are suitable for professional production, while others, like Dracula and King Pen, have large casts and are perfect for high school or community drama groups. Hillary is a radio play commissioned by CBC radio. Several of her plays are one-hour solo dramas for one female actor. There are short one acts and monologues that are suitable for student scene studies as well as performance. Talia has also written murder mystery dinner theatre pieces for corporate clients and special events.
Emily is based on 'Unslut: A Memoir and a Diary', by Emily Lindin, who commissioned this play. It is the story of Emily between the ages of 11 and 13, when she was sexually bullied, and kept a diary to cope. There are four versions of this play, allowing for presentation by various cast sizes, from a school or community group, to a professional version, with several actors playing multiple characters. In each version, Emily is the central character, with an equal number of male and female supporting cast members.
60 minutes. 10 female. 9 male
60 minutes. 5 female. 4 male
60 minutes. 3 female. 2 male
45 minutes. 2 female. 1 male - professional school tour cast
Lovers of the Enlightenment: Emilie & Voltaire
Emilie du Châtelet, an accomplished scientist, was the lover of Voltaire for the last fifteen years of her life. Complications of a court dalliance led to a pregnancy in her 42nd year. Fear that it would end her life encouraged her to double her efforts to finish her life’s work.
Lovers of the Enlightenment, follows the intrigues of court life, scientific and religious thoughts of the day, and interwoven sexual affairs and machinations of the noble class. But, in the end, it is truly a love story between two of the greatest minds of the Enlightenment, Voltaire and the Marquise; Emilie du Châtelet.
90 minutes plus intermission
3 females, 4 males. Can use doubling to equal 2 females and 3 males
Perfect Love looks at love, and how difficult it is to truly find perfect love. The play consists of a collection of stand-alone playlets and monologues, written for four actors: a young man and woman, and a middle-aged man and woman. Each actor has a scene with each of the others. This creates six scenes, three of which are two-handers, and three three-handers. They also each have one monologue. Interspersed with these scenes is a repeating ‘gender-less’ scene, reappearing with each combination of genders.
The theme of each scene is the end of a relationship, except for the genderless scene, which is the potential beginning of a relationship. Introducing each of the acts is a scene for all four actors, in the roles of the genderless scene. While the characters in these scenes are the ones from the genderless scene, they are interchangeable.
90 minutes plus intermission
2 females, 2 males
Cry After Midnight is the story of three women, and their war in Afghanistan. It is a series of intersecting monologues exploring the Military’s role in Afghanistan and its effects on soldiers, their families, and the people that they are there to help. Each woman has a distinct voice and perspective on the war.
Set on a bare stage, these women share their stories and their lives; their monologues intersecting and colliding as they try to make sense of their worlds, and their places in it.
Lalzari is a witness to the effects of the war on her country. She knows that the arrival of foreign troops has improved her life in small ways, not yet fully realized. This tiny measure of improvement in her circumstances, however, comes at a very high price. Life for her under the Taliban closely resembled what she was already accustomed to under tribal law. She wonders if what the soldiers have to offer will really make life better, or simple add to her woes.
Shannon came to Afghanistan because she had no choice. Having her medical degree paid for by the military seemed like such a good idea in the year 1999, before the effects of 9/11. Everything changed with this war, and now, as a fully trained surgeon, she struggles with playing her part in it.
Krista waits at home, living in her own kind of war zone. Every ring of the telephone is a welcome relief; another possibility of contact with a husband in a dangerous job. Every ring of the doorbell is a jolt to her heart, bringing the potential of a new reality; a life without her husband. News of that sort is only delivered in person. She understands his love and dedication to his job, but wants him home, safely by her side.
There are several versions of this play. All contain the same storyline, but vary in length from 25 minutes, to 60 minutes, to 90 minutes, without intermission.
Cry After Midnight
This adaptation of Bram Stoker's classic goes back to the original story, bringing back the characters that most stage versions ignore. The action begins with Jonathan's meeting of the count in his castle in Transylvania, before moving to London and the havoc his presence causes there. The dramatic conclusion finds our heroes chasing the vampire back to his lair in his home castle, where they make an end to his horrible deeds. There is plenty of opportunity for a large chorus of peasants, trees, ghosts and wolves, dancing or not, and moments when magic tricks can be employed. It also works as a straight up drama.
90 minutes, plus intermission
extras: gypsies, peasants, Londoners, ghosts, trees, wolves, maids/servants, insane asylum patients
Samantha and Ashley work in their college magazine office. When a story breaks that a Peeping Tom was arrested three months ago, but the administration kept it quiet, the girls want to know why. Their publisher and the Students' Association have other ideas. The directive is to turn this media attention into an opportunity to broadcast positive student stories. The girls decide that the publisher’s email has become part of the story, and leak it to a radio station, thereby putting their jobs on the line.
There are two versions of this one-act play. One is 25 minutes, the other is 55 minutes.
Demons of the Mind
A complex psychological drama, exploring the tortured realms of a mind caught in postpartum psychosis. Entangled by the demands of her fundamentalist religious upbringing and love for her children. Maria is in jail, speaking with her lawyer after being charge with killing her children. An option element of this drama is aerial dance segments on silks, hoop and bars, metaphorically representing Maria's state of mind.
1 female, 1 male
King Pen is the coming-of-age story of a Crèche of King Penguins. Left on their own for most of their first winter, they come to terms with their surroundings, their changing bodies, and each other. Their concerns and desires are not so very different from young people the world over, regardless of species. Each penguin has a unique personality and perspective, distinguishing him or her from the rest of the group. However, living in the harsh climatic conditions of South Georgia Island, Antarctica, they must also learn to get along in order to survive.
6 females, 5 males (doubling or expanding possible)
The play is set in an auction house that gathers and distributes bits and pieces of people’s lives, either discarded or left unvalued after their owner’s death. Because it sells goods previously owned, there is a story behind every piece of merchandise. Nothing is new, everything has a history. People who are attracted to owning these goods are interesting and sometimes eccentric, with their own tales to tell. In this story, two actors play the proprietors of this shop, as well as all of the costumes who frequent it.
1 female, 1 male
Mother of Mine
Mother of Mine is the of story a woman who reaches the brink of insanity as a result of events and relationships in her life. She invites her mother back into her life in an effort to experience the parental support and love that she didn’t receive from her as a child. The only problem with that is her mother died three years ago. Is she being haunted, or is it her own mind that conjures up her mother's image and critical voice?
120 minutes, plus intermission
Set in the lobby bar of a small resort in Amazonas, the play is based on the legend of the ghost of the island of Fernando de Noronha, off the coast of Brazil. This ghost is a beautiful blonde siren who lures evil men to their deaths. A loud, brash businessman with no regard for the environment may be her next victim.
2 females, 2 males
Metamorphosis follows the life cycle of the butterfly. Each character represents one of the life stages.
The Egg is a little girl in her self-made bomb shelter during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
The Caterpillar is always hungry: a Dominatrix, always hungry for another submissive.
The Chrysalis contains an aging movie star, deciding whether to withdraw from the world.
The Butterfly, of course, can fly, represented by aerial dance; climbing, twisting, posing, falling and dancing, on silks hung above the stage floor. The character has left behind all former selves, enjoying the freedom of her new state of being.
Confessions of an Art School Model
Normally, the meditation between the artist and the model occurs in private. The meditation between the finished work and the audience occurs in public. However, in this multi media piece, all three parties will be engaged simultaneously. Both the model and the artist interact with the audience and with each other. The audience views both the model and the artist as the work progresses. As various aspects of erotic art are discussed, projections of examples are displayed on a screen above the stage.
Harriet Bosse was the third wife of playwright August Strindberg. He wrote some of his best plays with her in the lead role. However, by the time he married her, he was already a rather unhinged person. She stayed with him just a short while, finding life with him extremely claustrophobic. This solo drama is set after their divorce, when Harriet finds his journal, which is decidedly at odds with the content of the letters she received from him, begging for a reconciliation. Excerpts from the roles she played are woven into the stage action.