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Heaven's Den

Edward II

Fool For Love

White Biting Dog

Beltway Roulette

A Midsummer Night's Dream

Romeo and Juliet





Eddie - Tim Abell

May -

The Old Man -

Martin -

Written by Sam Shepherd

A tragic tale of star-crossed lovers, set in the El Royale Motel in Nowhere, New Mexico. Our two main protagonists are Eddie, a movie cowboy and stuntman; he drives the archetypal pick up truck, with the obligatory rifle rack behind his head and the archetypal horse trailer being hauled by the truck; a seedy cowboy drifter. May is a dimwit, a dumb blonde whose natural beauty has been reshaped into a sad parody of the classic movie baby doll.

Our two estranged lovers are reunited on one night when May is working behind the counter of the restaurant of a crumbling, run down motel. She sees Eddie's pick up truck coming down the road to the hotel. She hides from Eddie. May has her own boyfriend now, Martin, and Eddie, he has his own rich starlet, about which May is angry. Notwithstanding the other woman, Eddie has come to renew his relationship with May. But these two have been there before and Eddie left May behind. This time though he promises not to leave her. One of his first lines is,

"May, look. May? I'm not going anywhere."

The hurt is so deep for these two and the anger so real that it is almost impossible for them to communicate. They can hardly express their feelings, but they talk all night. At times their conversation escalates into brief bursts of action, even violence. Eddie explains that he wants to take May to Wyoming. As the realisation dawns that this is not going to happen and their relationship, their "dumb little fantasy", will never be the same, Eddie loses interest in May and as suddenly as he appears, he leaves. Even then though, he cannot be honest with her. Is it too painful for him to admit the loss or is he too much of a coward? His last words to May are,

"I'm only gonna be a second. I'll just take a look at it and I'll come right back. Okay?"

He doesn't come back and by page 56 he is gone.

The proceedings are constantly watched over by an older man. He looks on from the shadows, waiting, always waiting and watching. His presence is never fully explained and by the end of the play we are still not sure that what we think we have learnt about him is true.

Is he really Eddie and May's father? Did he really share his time between two women who fathered our lovers? In this surreal atmosphere the old man intervenes; to interact with our two characters, to prod them into doing something, to offer them advice, but he is never actually present in the narrative.

This play is told from essentially a male point of view. A sense of claustrophobic menace exudes throughout what is a touchingly bleak portrayal of the lives of two possibly incestuous and definately pathetic lovers. A deliberately trashy tale, beneath which are hidden depths of feeling which show us by the end that what we have witnessed is a classic modern tragedy.

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