Wednesday, March 15, 2017

March People's Choice Award

The people have spoken... The March People's Choice Award goes to Nicki Spencer for her short play, Interesting Question, Collette, presented as a staged reading at Monday Night PlayGround on March 13 at the Zephyr Theatre. Congratulations, Nicki!

Courtesy of Ms. Spencer, we're pleased to share the first two pages from the award-winning script. Enjoy!

Interesting Question, Colette
by Nicki Spencer

Cast Breakdown
ALEXA – Female – Any Age – Any Race – A robot with a monotone voice but expressive feelings that only the audience can see.
KEITH – Male – 20s-30s – Any Race – Too charming, always looking.
COLETTE – Female – 20s-30s – Any Race – Smarter than she thinks she is.
CINDY – Female – Any Age – Any Race – Giggles and wears a lotta pink.

*Note – Keith and Colette can never see Alexa. Whenever she speaks, they act as if they’ve
heard her voice from the cylindrical machine (Echo) at center. Alexa is free to touch Keith and
Colette, but they cannot react to her touch.

(LIGHTS UP. There is a table DR. Two chairs where Keith fiddles with a
cylindrical shaped machine (the Echo) at C. He is reading from and
Instructor’s Manual. Colette ENTERS holding groceries.)

Look what I got us!
(She kisses him before unloading the groceries on the table. Keith points
to the Echo.)

What’s that?

It’s that Amazon Echo. The boys at the office love it. Ya know, one of those machines where
you call her name and she does stuff for you.

Her? She?

Alexa. She’s the robot who lives inside there. I’ll show ya. I was just about to finally turn her on.

How about you turn me on instead.
(Colette gets nice and close to Keith. Seductive.)

Yeah, in a minute babe. This is important.

Excuse you?

I mean… can we wait just one second please? While I get Alexa online?

I’m not sure I want one of these things in our house. My friend Stephanie said the minute
you turn it on, someone is always listening.

Your friend Stephanie… isn’t she the one who has a relationship with a tree?

It’s a sequoia… but I still think she has a point. I dunno if I feel comfortable with Big Brother
listening in on us. Creeps me out.

You’re being paranoid.

Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean that people aren’t out to get you. Didn’t you ever
read 1984?

Oh please. She won’t be listening to us all the time. She does, however, play music, dim the
lights, tell us the news and weather, and perform many other convenient tasks all through voice
command. I’m getting turned on as I’m turning it on.
(Keith pushes the button on the machine. It turns on with a
“WOOOOOPDING!” – ALEXA ENTERS UR. When she speaks, her voice
is automated and robotic. She studies her surroundings. Explores the
room, Keith, and Colette. They cannot see her, but she can see them.)

(robotic) Hello. You have now successfully connected to your Amazon Echo. My name is Alexa.

Alexa, how many cups are in one quart?


There are four US customary cups inside one US quart.

Tell us something we don’t know.

You’re so smart. You ask her something.

Okay, Alexa, (thinking…) how many democrats are needed to win the house so we can impeach
the president?

I’m sorry, I don’t understand what you’re saying.

You see, even your new gadget doesn’t know what to do with Trump.


Come see the best short plays from the entire season at the Best of PlayGround Gala, on Monday, May 8, 2017, at the Zephyr Theatre. Click here for more info.

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