Comedy: One Act. Estimated Running Time 30 minutes.
Cast: 5 Male, 5 Female, 10 Total (see details). Setting: Single Exterior Setting.
5 Male, 5 Female*, 10 Total.
* One assumes that the Relative of Sganarelles Wife can be cross-cast, but in this instance we have counted her among the women.
GORGIBUS, a bourgeois
CELIE, his daughter
LELIE, in love with Celie
GROS-RENE, Lelies valet
SGANARELLE, a bourgeois, neighbor to Gorgibus
VILLEBREQUIN, father of Valere, Gorgibus new choice for Celies husband
A RELATIVE OF SGANARELLES WIFE
Single Exterior Setting: Outside the home of Sganarelle, in Paris.
I’m fully roused; I’m spoiling for the fight.
My anger gives my courage heads of steam
Which overflows and bristles so extreme,
That I will kill that dog before my thought
Might interrupt. I’ll slay him on the spot!
I’ll leave behind a carnage dark and bloody.
Then why this armor?
What? Oh, you mean this?
It’s going to rain. I think I felt a mist.
(Aside, as LELIE turns his back.) Oh do it now! Lay on! Do not demur!
Oh, nothing! (Punching and slapping himself.) Weasel! Stupid cur!
His presence here now most acutely stresses
The guilty feelings someone here possesses.
Indeed it does. It makes me want to know,
Just how a woman might quite stoop so low,
To leave the love who worshiped her and yearned --
Oh, courage, man!
Enough! You’ve fully burned
Your bridges here. You’re insolent and addled.
Just hear how she supports you in this battle!
It’s time to screw your courage til it’s stuck
And let the first and final blow be struck
By stabbing him most bravely from behind!
LELIE (Turning back to CELIE, which interrupts SGANARELLE’s attack.)
Since nothing that I say can change your mind,
There’s naught to do but to embrace my fate,
And compliment your brilliant choice of mate.
Oh, yes, my choice is backed by everyone.
Of course they’d back a deed already done!
She’s right to back me here in this affair.
The laws, Sir, clamor at such things you dare;
You wrong me with the wily way you got her,
Almost inspiring me to acts of slaughter.
I wrong you? I’m afraid that I don’t get it.
You can’t deny it. You already said it.
Are you so taken with your fond obsession,
That you don’t see my wife as my possession?
Fair Heaven frowns on such appropriation …
It’s not a Christian form of recreation!
What you suggest, Monsieur, is quite absurd.
Your wife is yours; of that I’m well assured,
And I’ll not vy to take the woman off.
You traitor! Liar! How you laugh and scoff!
What? Do you think I have some sort of plan,
To steal the wife of this pathetic man?
Can you imagine I’d be such a traitor?
Ask him! He’ll tell of what you’ve done, you satyr!
SGANARELLE (To CELIE.)
Oh Madam, you must tell it in your fashion;
I couldn’t match your ardor and your passion.
Madame, I don’t believe in making scenes,
In jealous rages or in venting spleens
But I will not pretend that I don’t know;
Your actions make for quite a sordid show.
And this is too, too much, you must agree,
To take a man whom Heaven gave to me.
Well that assertion leaves no room for doubt.
SGANARELLE (To his WIFE.)
You slut! What are you going on about?
She comes to my defense and you berate her
Are you afraid she’ll take your lover later?
CELIE (To SGANARELLE’S WIFE.)
I don’t find him attractive; Ma’am, in truth.
(To LELIE.) You must confess now, after all this proof.
Confess to what? What’s this?
How can you four
Have managed to confuse this even more?
I’ve stood by and attended to your show,
But find the more I hear, the less I know.
Perhaps you need a little intervention.
(Standing between LELIE and CELIE.)
I’ll ask some simple questions. Your attention.
(To LELIE.) What’s your complaint against this woman now?
That she has gone against her sacred vow.
I hastened home when word reached me that said
There was another man she was to wed.
I rode like wind; I never stopped or tarried,
And yet, arriving, found that she was married.
Married? To whom?
Who told you so?
Why he did.
MAID (To SGANARELLE.)
And I guess
All I said
Was to say that my wife and I were wed.
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