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Power Plays

Power Plays: Three Plays by Mike Moran     

© 2002 by Mike Moran


 The Story of the Little Man  

“There’s a little man living in my head,” Aaron says, starting the story. 

A would-be writer, Aaron, and his actor-friend, Clark, work together to develop a story of a demon-like little creature that has taken root in Aaron’s head.  Or perhaps the little man is a concoction of Clark’s cooked up to brutalize his friend.  Or perhaps Clark isn’t even there at all, and the whole thing is a way for Aaron to brutalize himself.

Although originally developed and written prior to the publication of the Chuck Palahnuik novel and its later film version, The Story of the Little Man is in the same vein as Fight Club.  The playwright is firmly of the opinion that Carl Jung would be thrilled.

This play is performed by two men who are in their late twenties/early thirties.  It runs roughly ten-to-twelve minutes.  Set is a kitchen table and chairs, and a refrigerator (or suggestion of).

Originally produced in July 2002 by City Theater, Wilmington DE.



The story of Lyle is told/enacted by two actors: a man and a woman of any age. 

Lyle was a chicken-farmer who lived back in the hills a ways.  He bred and raised the prettiest, proudest, award-winning-est Golden Pencilled Hamburgh Chickens you ever saw.  But Lyle’s sense of dedication and responsibility when it seems that a giant might be coming down from the hills to eat him up—well, shouldn’t it be directed more towards his wife and baby then to his chickens?  And besides, is there even really a giant?  What is it that Lyle might really be afraid is going to eat him up?

Cartoonish while riding the edge of a nightmare, Lyle runs approximately ten to fifteen minutes.  Set could be an empty stage.  A rumble of thunder and lights up-and-down are the only technical requirements for this work.



Contol starts with a man hitting a woman across the face.  This is Thom.  Thom is going to attempt to explain to you as the audience how he will never ever do anything of that sort again. 

In a vicious world, learning how not to strike—even to strike back—is a difficult lesson.  

As each of the four characters speak, it becomes evident that what actually happens depends on the control one has over one’s self, control one has over others, and perhaps most importantly, the control one has over the interpretation of a past experience.

David Gothard, international theatre and film director/producer, former director of Leicester Haymarket Theatre and Riverside Studios, London, says about the playwright’s story, “Control”: “Nothing beats the intimacy that is strangely [this author’s] when, for example, the two men, one better than the other, confront each other over the peeing.  But the intimacy of the empathy is astonishing.  [This writer’s] instincts for intimacy permeate [his] creative writing and make it very seductive.  The frontiers of intimacy are the shock.  Perhaps they are tragic but they can be made to be comic.     [The writer, through this story, has] the ability to celebrate lack of control and can dare to defend it as essential to life which it helps define.  The story is close to being fantastic.”

Control is a cast of four: THOM, who is in his mid-thirties; ANNE, who is also in her mid-thirties; CHAD, who would be in his early-to-mid twenties; and KID, who should look about fifteen or sixteen.  The set constraints are entirely up to the designer—it’s written to be inexpensively staged.  It runs about twenty-five minutes.