Longer One-Act Plays

Death Comes to Us All, Mary Agnes

(approximately 45 minutes)
 

Production History

The cast in this version was:

Denise A. Gordon as Margaret, a maid, Joyce Fideor as Coral Tyne, Ben Halley, Jr. as Martin, a butler, Jeremy Smith as Herbert Pomme, Christine Estabrook as Margot Pomme, his daughter,

Marcell Rosenblatt as Mrs. Jansen-Hubbell, her grandmother, Martha Gaylord as Vivien Jansen-Hubbell Pomme, Alan Mokler as Tod Pomme, her son, Brian McEleney as Tim Pomme, her son, John L. Weil as A & P Delivery Boy, Bever-Leigh Banfield as Mary Agnes Simpson, Martin’s niece, Mark Boyer as Grand Union Delivery Boy

Death Comes to Us All, Mary Agnes had its professional premiere at the Experimental Theatre at the Yale School of Drama in New Haven, Conn. on April 22, 1975, directed by Robert Lewis.

The play had its New York City premiere on May 13, 1988, off-off Broadway at the Wordplay Ensemble Theatre at 339 East 28th Street, directed by Anthony Koplin.

The cast in this version was:

Abigail Gampel as Margaret, a maid, Sherry Anderson as Coral Tyne, Frank Dowd as Martin, a butler

Ron Leir as Herbert Pomme, Deborah LaCoy as Margot Pomme, his daughter, Dion Murphy as Mrs. Jansen-Hubbell, her grandmother, Lorraine Lanigan as Vivien Jansen-Hubbell Pomme, John Augustine as Tod Pomme, her son, John Jenis as Tim Pomme, her son, Anthony Koplin as A & P Delivery Boy, Jennifer Wollerman as Mary Agnes Simpson, Martin’s niece, Robert Bender as Grand Union Delivery Boy

Some reviews included:

...brilliant, alternately funny, sick, and ultimately very sad.
     – Yale Graduate Professional

...a blend of grotesque visions and originality that both shocks and entertains.
     – Yale Daily News

The Story

The scene is a decaying mansion occupied by a family beset by all manner of problems: conceit, hatred, selfishness, incest and cruelty--all dealt with in an ironic, highly theatrical manner which offers rare acting opportunities for the performers involved.  Throughout, and despite the horrors encountered, all exude a kind of bland innocence which, oddly enough, seems to excuse their otherwise inexcusable behavior--and underscores the biting irony of what takes place.

Vivien has returned to her childhood home because her father, the wealthy Mr. Jansen-Hubbell, is dying.  She is accompanied by her handsome twin sons, Tod and Tim, who seem to be involved with one another.  Tod and Tim tell Vivien how beautiful she is; she tells them how handsome they are.  They’re preposterously self-involved and narcissistic.  Also at the house are Vivien’s ex-husband Herbert, whom she barely speaks to her; and her rejected daughter, Margot, who she initially doesn’t even recognize.  Margot is in a fury at her treatment in this nutty family, and keeps trying to confront them all, without much success.  Other characters include the various servants, all of whom are rather messed up too.

Cast: 6 male, 6 female, 12 total.
Rights:  Dramatists Play Service