By: Donald Tuel
(Lights up on MR. TUEL at his Desk, hands gently tapping at the keys, eyes staring off in another direction, the yellow glow of the Playbill website is reflected in his eyes, he is distracted by the pink feminism poster that is reflected in the glass, quietly listening to the sounds and pulse of the outside world that is known as the hallway. It is afternoon. It is loud. He winces knowing that the day has just begun. His mind is racing in regards to the article he just read. Spotlight up in a warm glow, as the remainder of the stage goes dark. There is a long pause. He stands. MS. COOK rolls on in a reclining office chair. Her hair is perfectly quaffed in a neat, strong triangle that projects the strength and beauty of a Muppet. She opens an organic bag of fortified rice cakes – kale flavor – her favorite. Today she has decided that the usual hummus is passé, taste is a drag. Tuel looks longingly at her food. He sits. The mood and quality of the stage is slightly askew. This is an opinion piece after all.)
TUEL: In my opinion… today’s musical theater is dead. No one can come up with an original idea. (Beat) In terms of artistic quality and the expression of one’s self we are getting lazy and forgetting that live theater is supposed to make you think and challenge and inspire. Everything is formulaic and trite and boring. No one can come up with something unique or original anymore. I think that things are probably going to get worse before they get better. (Beat) And now the NEA is being defunded. (Beat) Donald Trump. (Beat) That’s my opinion.
COOK: Nobody asked.
(Blackout. End of play.)