David Mamet

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Plays by David Mamet

American Buffalo

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

Donny runs a junkshop with the help of his young, enthusiastic new employee, Bobby. When a customer comes in on the hunt for an antique coin, Donny sees a business opportunity. Between them, Donny and Bobby plot to rob their wealthy neighbour of his valuable coin collection. Donny’s friend, Walter, however, suspects that all is not as it seems. American Buffalo asks its audience: how do you know who you can trust?

First performed at the Goodman Theatre, Chicago, in 1975, American Buffalo transferred to Broadway in 1977, before playing the Cottesloe auditorium at the National Theatre, London, in 1978. It was revived at the Duke of York Theatre, London, in 1984, with Al Pacino as Teach.

audio American Buffalo

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

David Mamet’s gift for storytelling and forging poetry from both the plain-spoken and profane turns an ill-conceived scheme to steal a rare coin into a triumph of dramatic art. In a junk shop, three men of different generations plan their heist. But their fates, like the nickel’s worn image of the beleaguered buffalo, may have been sealed long ago. An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast production starring Rich Hutchman as Donny DuBrow, Josh Stamberg as Walter Cole (Teacher), and Maurice Williams as Bobby. Directed by Brian Kite and recorded before an audience by L.A. Theatre Works. Featuring: Rich Hutchman, Josh Stamberg, Maurice Williams

The Cryptogram

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

One night in 1959, a boy, John, is preparing to go on a camping trip with his father. Getting his things ready, he listens to the conversations of his mother, Donny, and a family friend, Del. What unfolds is a mysterious drama of half-spoken sentences and semi-remembered moments all circling around an opaque instance of childhood grief.

Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Charles Spenser wrote that 'The Cryptogram powerfully pins down that moment when childish innocence gives way to adult knowledge, the moment when we recognise that the world can be a terryfying place. And as the meaning of Mamet's crypttogram sinks in, with its heart-rending depiction of our fall from grace, you find yourself assailtd by grief – both the author's and your own.'

The Cryptogram received its world premiere at the Ambassadors Theatre, London, on 29 June 1994. Its US premiere followed at the American Repertory Theatre, Massachusetts, on 2 February 1995.

Dark Pony

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

Dark Pony is a short, beautiful play in which a father shares a bedtime story with his daughter as they drive home late at night. The story he tells centres around a Native American named Rain Boy, and his horse, Dark Pony. The Star Tribune described the play as 'A subtle, lyrical, dreamlike vignette . . . It's a lovely little tale about childhood memories and emotions.'

Dark Pony was first performed on 14 October 1977, in a Yale Repertory production, New Haven, Connecticut, directed by Walt Jones.

audio David Mamet Shorts: Bobby Gould in Hell

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

Three one-act plays from David Mamet, one of the master stage writers of our time:

The Shawl - A clairvoyant is in the process of swindling an unsuspecting woman on the basis of clever guess work and speculation. But it appears the clairvoyant has special powers that even he may not be aware of.

Reunion - After years of separation, Reunion follows the painful and deliberate efforts of a divorced and recovering alcoholic father, Bernie, and his daughter Carol to work their way back to early bonds of affection.

Bobby Gould in Hell - In this comic mediation on the nature of good and evil, Bobby Gould (from Mamet’s celebrated Speed the Plow) is interrogated by a pair of devils to decide his faith.

L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performances featuring Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

Featuring: Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

audio David Mamet Shorts: Reunion

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

Three one-act plays from David Mamet, one of the master stage writers of our time:

The Shawl - A clairvoyant is in the process of swindling an unsuspecting woman on the basis of clever guess work and speculation. But it appears the clairvoyant has special powers that even he may not be aware of.

Reunion - After years of separation, Reunion follows the painful and deliberate efforts of a divorced and recovering alcoholic father, Bernie, and his daughter Carol to work their way back to early bonds of affection.

Bobby Gould in Hell - In this comic mediation on the nature of good and evil, Bobby Gould (from Mamet’s celebrated Speed the Plow) is interrogated by a pair of devils to decide his faith.

L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performances featuring Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

Featuring: Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

audio David Mamet Shorts: The Shawl

LA Theatre Works
Type: Audio

Three one-act plays from David Mamet, one of the master stage writers of our time:

The Shawl - A clairvoyant is in the process of swindling an unsuspecting woman on the basis of clever guess work and speculation. But it appears the clairvoyant has special powers that even he may not be aware of.

Reunion - After years of separation, Reunion follows the painful and deliberate efforts of a divorced and recovering alcoholic father, Bernie, and his daughter Carol to work their way back to early bonds of affection.

Bobby Gould in Hell - In this comic mediation on the nature of good and evil, Bobby Gould (from Mamet’s celebrated Speed the Plow) is interrogated by a pair of devils to decide his faith.

L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performances featuring Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

Featuring: Gus Buktenica, Dale Calandia, Marilou Henner, John Mahoney, Neil Pepe, Rebecca Pidgeon, Marc Vann and Dan LaMorte.

Duck Variations

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

Emil and George, two gentlemen in their sixties, are sitting on a park bench by a lake in a big city. Wherever their conversation goes, it always comes back to ducks: their mating habits, their mortal enemies, their inevitable demise.

A wry, pseudo-existentialist discussion of what we do and why we do it, in fourteen ‘variations’, Mamet’s short duologue was first presented in the U.S.A. by the St. Nicholas Theatre Company at Goddard College, Vermont, in 1972, and had its British premiere at the Regent Theatre, London, in 1977.

Edmond

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

A fortune-teller’s teasing rumination sends Edmond lurching into New York City’s hellish underworld, his whole life abandoned in a searing quest for self-discovery and redemption. From brothels to jail cells, card-sharps to chaplains, Edmond depicts a man on a mission which is doomed to cycle through hope and disappointment.

Writing about the play, the Financial Times wrote: ‘A stunning amorality play, glittering and disturbing, suspended in the dark void of contemporary New York. It is also a technically adventurous piece pared brilliantly to the bone, highly theatrical in its scenic elisions.’

Edmond was first performed at the Goodman Theater, Chicago, in June 1982, in a production directed by Gregory Mosher.

Glengarry Glen Ross

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

Glengarry Glen Ross is a spikey, powerful, and nerve-wracking story of four real estate salesmen, colleagues in the same firm, who are engaged in a sales competition to try and sell off as many units of real estate as possible. But when some of the character feel that the leads are weighted in favour of those already doing well, alternative tactics are deployed to try and gain ground.

The play has been critically acclaimed since its first release, garnering major awards including the 1983 Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play, the 1984 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the 1984 New York Drama Critics' Circle for Best American Play, the 2005 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Play and the 2005 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play.

Glengarry Glen Ross was first presented in the Cottesloe auditorium of the National Theatre, London, on 21 September 1983. The US premiere took place the following year at the Goodman Theatre of the Arts Institute of Chicago on 6 February 1984, before transferring to the John Golden Theater on Broadway on 25 March 1984. It was subsequently adapted for the screen by the author, the film being released in 1992 and starring Alan Arkin, Alec Baldwin, Ed Harris, Jack Lemmon, Al Pacino, Jonathan Pryce and Kevin Spacey.

Picture of David Mamet

David Mamet (b. 1947) is an award-winning American playwright and screenwriter. His first and many subsequent plays were first performed by the St Nicholas Theatre company, Chicago, of which he was a founding member and Artistic Director. In 1978 he became Associate Artistic Director of the Goodman Theatre, Chicago, where American Buffalo had been first staged in 1975, subsequently winning an Obie Award and opening on Broadway in 1977 and at the National Theatre, London, in 1978. His greatest hits, Glengarry Glen Ross and Oleanna, followed in 1983 and 1993 respectively. Other works by Mamet published by Methuen Drama include David Mamet Collected Plays 1-4; American Buffalo; Sexual Perversity in Chicago; Duck Variations; A Life in the Theatre; Edmond; The Cryptogram; Reunion; The Woods; The Water Engine; Lakeboat; The Disappearance of the Jews; Speed-the-Plow; Three Uses of the Knife, and Dr. Faustus.