Excerpt: Commedia del Smartass

Photos by: CAROL ROSEGG (left to right): JESSI CAMPBELL and DEBARGO SANYAL

An eccentric comedy featuring an overachieving Girl Scout who wants to get into a good college, a Fencer who reads Machiavelli, a Clown of ambiguos gender, and a guy named Henry, Commedia is a stylized reminder that the treacherous environment of high school was only the opening salvo for the rest of one’s life. A New Georges production, it opens September 9th at the the Ohio Theater in SoHo .

 

(Back at the school cafeteria, Henry and Fencer.)

 

HENRY

Lurve. I think it’s lurve.

 

FENCER

Romeo and Juliet?

 

HENRY

No. My mom’s fine with it. She’s glad I’m happy.

 

FENCER

She’s been conscious?

 

HENRY

She’s always conscious intermittently. Damn.

 

FENCER

Sorry man. That was out of line.

 

HENRY

No shit. I mean, yes it was.

 

FENCER

Still watching your language?

 

HENRY

I want to get to the point where I don’t have to watch it. I want it to be clean without my thinking about it.

 

FENCER

Clean without thinking about it.

 

HENRY

What?

 

FENCER

No. It’s just an interesting concept.

 

HENRY

It’s lurve.

 

FENCER

Not love?

 

HENRY

I don’t want to presume.

 

FENCER

About what she feels?

 

HENRY

Yeah.

 

FENCER

What do you feel?

 

HENRY

I feel obsessed. I feel like a stalker. I rode my bike past her house last night. It was one a.m. I know where all her classes are. I know where she is at any time during the day, and I think about her, sitting in class, crossing her legs. I leave notes in her locker.

 

FENCER

You have her combination?

 

HENRY

I slip them through the, the air slot.

 

FENCER

Ah. Do you write poetry?

 

HENRY

No! (He does.)

 

FENCER

What do you write?

 

HENRY

None of your business. It’s really fun, being with her. It’s totally not tortured.

 

FENCER

Except that you called yourself a stalker.

 

HENRY

But she knows, and she’s not upset.

 

FENCER

But she hasn’t given you her combination.

 

HENRY

I like slipping them through the slot.

 

FENCER

You like slipping them through the slot.

 

HENRY

(good-natured) Shut up.

 

FENCER

So have you, you know.

 

HENRY

No. And that’s all I’m going to say.

 

FENCER

No, not yet .

 

HENRY

(warning) Shut up.

 

FENCER

So it’s nice. It’s not tortured.

 

HENRY

No.

 

FENCER

Like how? Besides the love notes.

 

HENRY

No way. You’d make fun.

 

FENCER

Do you share the same Coke?

 

HENRY

Maybe.

 

FENCER

Do you sit at the counter with like two bendy straws?

 

HENRY

See?

 

FENCER

You’re right, I’m bad. Backrubs? Watching sunsets?

 

HENRY

Maybe a sunset or two.

 

FENCER

Cheeseball. Totally cheeseball.

 

HENRY

Works for me.

 

FENCER

Maybe you’re missing out.

 

HENRY

On what?

 

FENCER

On the full range of feeling. Good and bad.

 

HENRY

Like I’m missing out if I don’t drive while I’m high?

 

FENCER

That was kids’ stuff.

 

HENRY

Yeah.

 

FENCER

Maybe to be an adult you have to be tortured.

 

HENRY

Then I don’t want to be an adult.

 

FENCER

I kind of think I do. Just, to be on my own.

 

HENRY

Driving alone through the streets?

 

FENCER

That’s your fantasy. I want girls hanging on every arm.

 

HENRY

Can’t you have that now?

 

FENCER

I want women hanging on every arm. A woman who’d hang on my arm now might be kinda messed up in the head. I want a sane woman.

 

HENRY

I don’t see that being exciting enough for you.

 

FENCER

She could be a sane spy .

 

HENRY

Spies are exciting.

 

FENCER

Shit, yeah. (He mimes shooting people). Pow pow. She would know like five languages.

 

HENRY

Maybe more.

 

FENCER

But mainly, she would practice the language of love.

 

HENRY

Of lurve.

 

FENCER

Of tortured lurve.

 

HENRY

Whatever. Freak.

 

FENCER

Hey. Watch it.

 

HENRY

You know, when you said you wanted women hanging on every arm. That sounds like you have more than two arms.

 

FENCER

I’m Doc Ock.

 

HENRY

You wish.

 

FENCER

I do. (pause) Think of what a great fencer I’d be. (pause) Think of what a great fencer I’d be. (pause) Think of what a great fencer I’d be.

 

(Fencer puts on his mask and starts making loud deep breaths like Darth Vader. Henry mimes taking out his light saber. This is a game they’ve played before.

 

Fencer takes out his own imaginary light saber. Both boys do the sound effects of the light sabers with gusto. They spar, then Darth kills Obi Wan. Henry collapses to the floor convincingly. Then he bounces up.)

 

HENRY

Now I get to kill you.

 

FENCER

I gotta get to class.

 

(Fencer exits. Henry, a little pissed, exits the other way.)

 

 

COMMEDIA DELL SMARTASS

by Sonya Sobieski, directed by Jean Randich

September 9- October 1, 7:30pm

at the Ohio Theater, 66 Wooster St. (between Spring/Broome),

additional performances: 9/10 and 10/1 at 4pm.

Tickets: $19.00, at 212-868-4444 or

www.smarttix.com

Mondays: pay-what-you-will (at the door only)

Contributor

Sonya Sobieski

SONYA SOBIESKI's latest play, Speak No Evil, a romantic comedy dystopian satire, will be produced by Alleyway Theatre in 2016. You can find out more about her at www,playwhisperer.com.

ADVERTISEMENTS