In Death by Hanging: A Comedy, we follow four characters over one evening in an execution chamber. Prisoner J is set to hang for his crimes, but becomes a blank slate after the first attempt is botched. Warden is a sadistic oaf who is relishing in J’s demise. Prosecutor is making sure this is all done by the books. And Priest is struggling with his own faith and beliefs. They all bicker and bumble their way through the night, trying to make J remember who he is so that they can hang him again. Despite the dark themes, the play will keep you laughing as they grapple with identity, death, and PopTarts.*
Hey, you! Thanks for checking out the website. I started writing this play back in January of 2020, not realizing all of the free time I was about to have to devote myself to it. It’s based on a film I love dearly, “Death by Hanging”, directed by the great Nagisa Oshima back in 1968. The play is a dark comedy that explores themes of violence, religion, and identity. But it’s funny (I swear!) I produced a staged reading back in the summer of 2021, in a friend’s backyard on a 100 degree night (I bought a sprinkler, so it all worked out). Based on the reception and feedback I received, I decided to put on a full production. The amount of hugely talented folks that are working to make this an awesome show is truly humbling. I hope you’ll come out and enjoy yourself!
Rose Bonomo is a company member of Original Practice Shakespeare Festival, an ensemble member of Love, Shakespeare (an Improvised Elizabethan comedy) and an alumna of The Actor Training Center at Shakespeare & Co. in Lenox, MA. At least she is consistent.
She loves being Italian and playing on the trapeze.
Kristen Schier is an actor, improviser, teacher, and clown. She has a BFA in theater arts from the University of the Arts and teaches improv at Kickstand Comedy. She loves pancakes and being absent-minded.
Warden has the mouth of a sailor and the feet of a dancer. He eats a meatball sub for lunch most days.
Tyler Quinn is an improviser, singer, gardener and musical theater buff. He loves dried mango and a well tended garden.
Prosecutor graduated top 75% of his class from Law School. He started wearing bow ties in high school, so it became “his thing”, but now his heart isn’t really in it.
Janet Scanlon is an actor, writer, improviser and teacher. She loves a good walk and any dish made with salmon.
Priest 's Zodiac big three are Jesuit Sun, Franciscan Moon, and Buddhist Rising. BIG fan of The Great British Bake Off.
Craig McCarthy is an improviser, playwright, and film buff. He enjoys scotch and a comfortable pair of socks. He loves any body of water and could spend all day in there.
Prisoner J constantly smells a faint whiff of freshly cut grass. He has a tune stuck in his head but can’t think of the song.
Tyler Buswell is a proud drag queen (Donatella Nobody), actor, designer, educator and freelance visual artist based in Portland, Oregon. He currently teaches Technical Theatre, Costume and Makeup Design at Northwest Academy (grades 6-12) and serves as the school’s Scenic Designer/Technical Director.
This play includes depictions of physical, verbal, and child abuse. There is also graphic imagery of a character hanging by their neck. The Production recognizes how this imagery evokes traumatic instances of self-harm and suicide, and also abominable atrocities perpetrated around the world. We are in no way intending to make light of such violence, but attempting to satirize a brutal State that would sanction this act as justice.
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