About my plays

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IMG_6606, Sally at Writing Desk

Here’s an introduction to my plays.  Each includes a brief description with selected honours and quotes from critics, directors, and producers.

*And Bella Sang With Us

cropped-and-bella-sang.jpg

A drama with humour and song inspired by Canada’s first women police officers. It’s 1912. Constables Minnie Miller and Lurancy Harris arrive in the area now known as Vancouver’s Downtown East Side/Chinatown and run smack into societal and family pressures, political corruption, ‘The Lord of the Bawdy Houses’, and the volatile Bella. Will the two Constables be able to save a young woman from a life on the streets? Will they find their way in a police department and a city not used to female authority figures? Will running after criminals while wearing floor-length skirts ever get easier?

Running time: approximately 90 minutes. With doubling can be performed with a cast as small as 5: 4 Women and 1 Man.

Selected Honours

  • Recipient of National Enbridge playRites Award, Established playwright, 2011.
  • Published by Scirocco Drama, 2014.
  • Two Jessie Award nominations, 2017.  Outstanding Direction and Outstanding Supporting Actor/Female.

This script is nuanced, darkly funny and action packed ( Jacqueline Russell, Past Artistic Producer, Urban Curvz Theatre)

 An imaginative re-telling of an important piece of forgotten Vancouver history filled with humour and intrigue.  (Lynna Goldhar Smith, Co-Artistic Director of Wet Ink Collective)

Interested? Published script available. Click here.

*Centurions

IMG_2580, Caro as Carowin, Mark and Wright, interrogation rm, Centurions wkshop, c2c theatre, October 2015

Mark is held in a police station and interrogated about a violent crime. He holds his story close. Meanwhile, his secrets are unearthed and illuminated for the audience via Mark’s mind and his movies, and it becomes clear that the crime he’s accused of committing is inexorably intertwined with another violent act and his obsession with making films. Mark lives most comfortably behind the camera, watching, always watching, and recording.   A small handheld camera and digital video production, live feed and pre-recorded, are integral to the premise, conflict, and, finally, the climax and mystery at the heart of Centurions.  

Centurions has not yet received a full production.  Running time estimated 80 minutes. No intermission.  The play is written for five actors: 2 M and 3 W.  

Selected Honours

  • Canada Council Development & Production Grant 2015 for c2c Theatre workshop, St. John’s, Nfld. Directors: Nicole Rousseau (stage), Justin Simms (video).
  • Showcased Women Playwrights International Conference, Cape Town, SA, 2015.
  • National Play Reading Series, New Groundswell Festival, Nightwood Theatre, 2014. Director: Kelly Thornton.
  • Semi-finalist Eugene O’Neill Playwriting Conference 2011.
  • Extract published by Ryga: A Journal of Provocations, A publication of The Ryga Initiative at Okanagan College in association with the Okanagan Institute. Editor: Sean Johnston. Winter 2010.

Despite its sinister undertones, what’s compelling about Mark’s interrogation … is his endearing fragility – even his memories are mediated through cameras and commercial fantasies. In the end, solving the crime is less important to us than seeing Mark live fully in the material world around him (Sean Johnston, Editor, Ryga, A Journal of Provocations )

Centurions is a creeper. … It is a powerful and brave piece. (Rebecca Burton, Playwrights Guild of Canada)

Centurions offers a compelling story and riveting characters. Stubbs enlists her trademark gothic flare to bring a chilling tale to life. (Heidi Taylor, Artistic and Executive Director, Playwrights Theatre Centre)

*Herr Beckmann’s People

herrbeckmann

Anna, an established painter living in Canada, returns to Munich – the city she ran from decades earlier. As this poetic and powerful drama unfolds, Anna forces her family to answer tough questions about their past and the events of World War II. While her mother plays a private concert, history unravels, and Anna is confronted with a moral dilemma of her own. Inspired by factual events, Herr Beckmann’s People explores the question: How do we live with the choices we have made?

Running time approximately 90 minutes. Cast of 5: 3 Women and 2 Men.

  • Playwrights Theatre Centre Colony in Vancouver, 2007
  • Nightwood Theatre’s Groundswell Festival, Toronto, 2009
  • Winner of 3rd Canadian Peace Play Competition, U. of Calgary Centre for Peace Studies & Downstage Theatre, 2009
  • Showcased 8th International Women Playwrights Conference, Mumbai, India, 2009
  • 2009 Flying Start Play, Touchstone Theatre and Playwrights Theatre Centre, Premiered in 2010. Dramaturg: Martin Kinch, Director: Katrina Dunn.
  • Published by Scirocco Drama, 2011.

… puts a movingly human face on personal entanglement in an evil regime. (Georgia Straight)

 … moves past the judgment of the victors to a place of compassion and … create(s) empathy in those that will hopefully never have to make this choice, and that, is a very powerful tool. (Plank Magazine)

… a compelling and complex drama. (Review Vancouver)

Interested? Published script available.  Click here.

*Our Golden Years

Cosmo has retired and he has plans. His wife, Dommi, has plans, too. Just different plans. Oh oh… This new short and not-so-sweet dark comedy takes a peek at love in the ‘golden years’.

Running time: 10 minutes. Cast: 1 W and 1 M.

  • Our Golden Years makes its debut in the Shorts Series at FemFest 2016 produced by Sarasvati Productions, Winnipeg.

*Spinning You Home

Spinning You Home

Photograph by Mits Naga.  Spinning You Home on stage at the Havana Cafe Theatre

Sarah runs away to her Grandfather’s cottage on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia. A storm rages on the Island. Trapped, Sarah and the old man, a loner with a passion for spinning tales and a thirst for over-proof rum, learn one another as they bring to life the bizarre and haunting story of legendary gold prospector, John (Cariboo) Cameron and his beautiful young bride, Sophia. Spinning You Home introduces a remarkable chapter in Canada’s gold rush history with humour and ‘spirits’ while exploring the nature and power of love and promises that bind and transcend even death.

Running time 60 minutes. Cast of two: 1 Woman and 1 Man.

  • Developed at Saskatchewan’s Sagehill Writing Experience, 2007.
  • Honourable Mention, Canadian National Playwriting Competition, 2007.
  • Premiered in Sarasvati Productions’ Femfest 2007, Winnipeg. Dir: Hope McIntyre
  • Produced by Tightrope Productions, Havana Theatre, Vancouver. Dir: Sally Stubbs
  • Selected for Lunchbox Theatre’s Stage One Festival, Calgary, 2014.
  • Spinning You Home is listed for publication with Scirocco Drama.

 With poetic prose, Stubbs’ play is pure Canadiana. Based on her own family’s history and involvement in the days of Canada’s Gold Rush, we are whisked away to an era that should be remembered and celebrated as part of our country’s identity and past. Spinning You Home is the perfect love letter to a time gone by… excellent addition to Canada’s literary canon of memory.   Ambitious and noteworthy.  (Fun! Fun! Vancouver!)

*Wreckage

Wreckage

It’s 1924. Rose disappears from a train wreck without a trace. Twenty-five years later her red suitcase arrives, anonymously and mysteriously, triggering her daughter’s search for the truth and unlocking a bizarre chain of events. A haunted railway detective, gourmet gangster-chefs, a Puccini-singing ghost, and a host of Dickensian characters populate Vancouver’s underbelly. Wreckage is a stylish ‘gangster’ play with a dark and wicked sense of humour and the theatrical punch of a speeding train.

Running time: 90 minutes. Must be played by a cast of no fewer than 6: 3 W and 3 M.

Selected Honours

  • Residency, Canadian Plays in Development Program, U. of Lethbridge, 2004.
  • National Arts Centre English Theatre ‘On the Verge’ New Play Reading, Magnetic North Festival, Edmonton, 2004.
  • Honourable Mention, Jurors’ ‘Top 5’, Herman Voaden Playwriting Competition, Queen’s University, 2005.
  • Published by Scirocco Drama, 2009.

. . .This isn’t your grandmother’s theatre. .. this is a play that is rewriting the rules … and inviting a younger audience to experience the thrill of the stage.  (Martlet, Victoria)

…a twisting, twisted train of intrigue. … All is not what it appears to be in Wreckage. That makes for compelling drama, especially for mystery lovers, but it also reminds audiences of how tragedy unfolds.  ( Daily News, Kamloops)

… A tragic train ride, yes, but once you’re on board you’ll want to hang on until the bitter end. (Daily News, Kamloops)

It’s a lustily stylish, hard-boiled genre picture projected on stage. … a thrilling read.  (Colin Taylor, juror, 2005 Herman Voaden National Playwriting Competition.)

The film noir adventure story is filled with atmosphere, the characters burble with eccentric passions and colourful demeanours. There is so much rich and stylish merit to Wreckage… (Roy Surette, 2005 Herman Voaden National Playwriting Competition.)

Interested?  Published script available.

 

 

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