Plays and Scripts

SCREENPLAY

FOUND

Certain events in life are so rare that they can be freely dismissed as impossibilities. Getting struck by lightning, surviving a plane crash, or winning the lottery. When something shocking happens and doesn’t end in tragedy, we say it must be fate, destiny, a miracle, or simply God’s will.

On the night of August 28, 2000, Danny, my partner, discovered a newborn baby left at a New York City subway station. He didn’t uncover a tragedy. He uncovered a miracle. And although we didn’t know it yet, he had changed the course of all of our lives forever. Sometimes in life everything happens for a reason. But sometimes everything happens in spite of it.

FOUND is my family’s journey—from my husband finding an abandoned newborn at a New York City subway to the three of us finding ourselves in a forever family—and all the challenges and surprises along the way.

To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

FULL-LENGTH PLAYS

HATCH

After their daughter died in a tragic accident, Florence and Edward found themselves raising young kids again, their grandchildren. For eighteen years they coped with the loss by stuffing the grief. But now, as Florence faces her own mortality, she is haunted by Edward’s reaction to their daughter’s death. Years of bottled-up pain and lingering resentment rise to the surface as Florence looks for a way to protect herself from her husband. Meanwhile, their grandchildren face their own mortal dilemma. And as the past and present converge, the family is ripped apart.

HATCH is a fresh, yet stark slice, of Americana that follows one family’s struggle with loss, mistrust, and what it means to die with dignity.

GENRE: Family Drama/Tragedy
LENGTH: 90 minutes – 2 hours
CAST SIZE:
5
CHARACTERS:
3 Male (1 mid 60s, 1 late 30s/early 40s, 1 early 20s); 2 Female (1 mid 60s, 1 19-years-old)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

DEVELOPMENT & RECOGNITION
TWO SPOONS

All Steve and Larry had hoped for during their weekend getaway to Philadelphia was a break from the daily routine and responsibilities of being parents of an active tantrum-throwing toddler. But when they meet some “other guy” at the hotel, temptation strikes and threatens to fracture their relationship. What had begun as an innocent, quiet, relaxing trip somehow turns into a quest for redefining the rules of their relationship. Can they ever return to “normal” again in order to keep their family intact?

TWO SPOONS explores the line between–and the boundaries of–independence vs commitment, freedom vs responsibility, and fantasy vs reality.

GENRE: Heartfelt comedy
LENGTH: 90 minutes – 2 hours
CAST SIZE:
5
CHARACTERS:
4 Male (3 mid 30s, 1 early 20s); 1 Female (Late 50s, early 60s)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

PRODUCTIONS & REVIEWS

Bank Street Theatre
Opened September 5, 2008

“Peter Mercurio’s splendid new comedy about a soon-to-be-wed gay couple shows us that with a little ingenuity, even the aphorisms of the old American sage Ben Franklin can avail us!”

“Two Spoons puts gay love into perspective as it poses poignant questions while delivering non-stop laughs and penetrating social commentary; besides a skillful examination into the psychology of same-sex relationships, the play is replete with throwbacks to Benjamin Franklin, his maxims and his rather unique way of living.”

“I give Two Spoons two thumbs way up!”

— HX Magazine (full review)

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Suncoast Theatre
Opened April 27, 2007

“The script is wonderfully literate; the acting is superb; the design is attractive.”

“Mercurio’s dialogue is so polished that you can’t help but enjoy it for its efficiency and intelligence. You also have to like his many story-telling devices…”

“Trevor Keller’s direction is kinetic, as fluid as Mercurio’s script…”

CREATIVE LOAFING, (full reveiw)

Hoover-Leppen Theatre
Opened July 19, 2009

“With more gay couples taking on the challenges of parenthood, it’s nice — and rare — to see a play that looks honestly at the role kids can play in putting a damper on romance.”

— Chicago Tribune

“Two Spoons is a timely comedy that looks at the relationship between gay parents [and] does offer a thoughtful look at the pitfalls that gay marriage may present.”

— centerstagechicago.com

“Mercurio’s new comedy has real insights into gay marriage…”

— TimeOut Chicago

August 2013
Staged reading

May 2007
Finalist for the 5th annual Saints and Sinners Literary Festival

ANDREW REACHES THE OTHER SIDE

Northern New Jersey. Autumn 1993. The New York Giants are on Monday Night Football and Andrew and John are in a comfortable routine, doing what they always do: Talking back to the TV, second-guessing play calls, and drinking beer. Through his love of sports, along with the dissection of Bruce Springsteen song lyrics, Andrew is about to embark on a personal journey of self-discovery and acceptance that will take him to a places he’s never been before.

ANDREW REACHES THE OTHER SIDE is a different kind of coming out story.

GENRE: Heartfelt and comedic coming out story
LENGTH: 90 minutes – 2 hours
CAST SIZE:
6
CHARACTERS:
4 Male (3 early 20s, 1 mid 40s); 2 Female (1 early 20s, 1 mid 40s)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

PRODUCTIONS & REVIEWS

Bank Street Theatre
Opened March 2000

“‘Andrew Reaches The Other Side’ is a very enjoyable post-liberation gay play.”

“Perfectly delightful with a strong cast, interesting characters, and a well-written script.”

“Peter Mercurio is a talented new playwright who has succeeded in writing a ‘different kind of coming-out story.’ He will make a substantial contribution to American culture in the 21st century. I look forward to following his progress over the next few years.”

— APPLAUSE! APPLAUSE!

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RED & TAN LINE (OR BOXER BRIEFS)

Gay brothers, one hoping to find “Mr. Right” and the other looking for only “Mr. Right Now,” compete in a year-long sibling rivalry that takes them through an unpredictable string of freaky dates, fix-ups, and flings.

As the brothers embark on a series of unforgettable hook-ups and dates, they tangle with guys who are closeted to boldly obsessed activists. Guys with eccentric fetishes, uncompromising genital issues, and bizarre fixations. Periodically, Tom and Rick meet up to spar, provoke, and offer advice, all the while comparing notes on their encounters.

GENRE: Lighthearted dating comedy
LENGTH: ~90 minutes
CAST SIZE:
4 (with role doubling)/5-10 (without doubling)
CHARACTERS:
4 Male (Twentysomethings)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

PRODUCTIONS & REVIEWS

Bank Street Theatre
(produced as Red & Tan Line)
Opened March 2003

“[Peter] Mercurio has an obvious affection for his characters, and he keeps the proceedings nicely non-judgmental”

—Off-Off Broadway Review

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Yesterday's News (Anchors, Talk Shows, Love and Poetry Without Motion)

ANCHORS, TALK SHOWS, LOVE AND POETRY WITHOUT MOTION is a seriocom about two long-distance pen pals who grow up together communicating through handwritten letters, and how the repetitive exposure to sensationalized news programs and talk shows infiltrates their lives and turns their innocent relationship into a ratings-war casualty.

Written in 1990—before the the proliferation of 24-hour news, and before the advent of the internet, email, and social media—ANCHORS takes a trip back to a simpler time, but also serves a prescient warning of what’s to come in the future.

GENRE: Heartfelt comedy
LENGTH: 60-90 minutes
CAST SIZE:
6
CHARACTERS:
1 Male,  1 Female (both early 20s); 4 roles can be any age, sex, or gender

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

PRODUCTIONS & REVIEWS

Bank Street Theatre
Opened October 2000 (produced under the title, Yesterday’s News)

“Peter Mercurio has done a fine job writing.”

—Off-Off Broadway Review

MORE INFO

Additional workshops, showcases, and productions:

NEW YORK CITY — April 1996
NEW YORK CITY — April 1993
NEW YORK CITY — October 1991

One-Acts and Short PLays

Refreshments

Champagne and tempers bubble up when two men on a first date share their New Year’s resolutions.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: 10 minutes
CAST SIZE:
2
CHARACTERS:
2 Male

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

PRODUCTIONS & REVIEWS

Bank Street Theatre
UnityFest

“There are at least two good reasons to attend Unity Fest 2001. One is Tony Hamilton, talking to a man he has just met at a party — a man he thought he liked — and insisting loudly, ”I am not refreshing!”

“Mr. Hamilton, who manages an unusual number of emotions behind a single, play-length smile, is in Peter Mercurio’s two-man work ”Refreshments.”

New York Times

Ladies and Gentlemen, Madeline Bello and...

September 1972. Madeline visits her childhood home in Kansas City to honor Wally, the last of her now deceased five brothers–and senses his presence through Lucas, a current resident of the house.

GENRE: Drama
LENGTH: ~25 minutes
CAST SIZE:
3
CHARACTERS:
2 Female (60-70s, early 20s), 1 Male (18 to 21)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

Productions

Semi-Finalist
Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Original Short Play Festival

Before the Last Call

Mom and son are having a typical, routine morning preparing for their day when a telephone call changes their lives forever.

GENRE: Drama
LENGTH: 10 minutes
CAST SIZE:
2
CHARACTERS:
1 Female (Mid 40s), 1 Male (18 to 20)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

RECOGNITION

Semi-Finalist
Source Festival

BLOOD OR ROSES

Mark and Ricky argue about donating blood and getting married.

GENRE: Drama/comedy
LENGTH: 10 minutes
CAST SIZE:
2
CHARACTERS:
2 Male (Mid 20s/early 30s)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

CHATTER

Greg and Justin navigate their way through a “terrorizing” coffee “date”.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: 10 minutes
CAST SIZE:
2
CHARACTERS:
2 Male (Mid 20s/early 30s)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

Monologues

The MFA BS Cartel (Becoming Petra)

On his/her way to “emerging” as Petra, the playwright formerly known as Pat Smith takes aim at the aggrandized value of MFA degrees, the insular world of academia, and the pimping-ways of Paula Vogel.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: ~10 minutes
CHARACTER:
Gender non-specific

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

ProductionS

Left Out Festival

Cattle Hymn of the Republic

Alex, a teenager and “mean girl” who “can’t even,” shares what she did this past summer, including a family vacation to Walt Disney World, taking aim at all the overweight patrons riding motorized scooters.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: ~15 minutes
CHARACTER:
Gender non-specific

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

ProductionS

Left Out Festival

Grits With Brown Sugar

Jamie, a weekly regular at the usually quiet Blue Saucer Cafe, daydreams lustfully about the waiter. When a boisterous “possé” enters, Jamie gets jealous, revealing some uncomfortable prejudices.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: ~12 minutes
CHARACTER:
1 Male

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

ProductionS

Left Out Festival

THE LATE BUS

Andrew reveals his feelings of being invisible and helpless.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: 1-2 minutes
CHARACTER:
1 Male (Teenager)

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

BANKRUPT

He/she/they reveals the dark side of being at a creative dead end.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: 1-2 minutes
CHARACTER:
Gender non-specific

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.

ON THE DOCKET

A judge’s distracting thoughts come to light while hearing a case.

GENRE: Comedy
LENGTH: 1-2 minutes
CHARACTER:
Gender non-specific

Script is free to read. Permission is required for any and all public performances or readings. To inquire about about obtaining rights, please use the contact form.