Exceptional People in Formal Attire
Agnes Sheehan, disabled from life-long cerebral palsy sits with her able-bodied cousin, Theresa at a fancy affair at the Hotel Dupont where she will be anointed as Delaware's 1968 Handicapped Person of Action and Purpose. Outside, the streets of Wilmington, Delaware threaten to erupt with violence after the assassination of Dr. King, but Agnes, a believer in muscling through, insists the party goes forward. Theresa goes along, daily. She is a part of the constellation of people who makes Agnes' life possible. Now with six children, Theresa can't help Agnes as much but she tries to be there when she can, despite a growing feeling of discontent about being the one that everyone seems to lean on. Agnes' retinue also includes the Reverend Mr. Biggs, Agnes’ African-American driver, Agnes’ longtime companion, Raymond, an elegant but cryptic deaf man and Eddie Sprecher, Agnes’ business partner, a man who lost a limb in the Korean War. Tensions build throughout the evening between the two women as the accolades begin to pour in for Agnes. Eventually, Theresa reveals to Agnes that she is pregnant with her 7th child and is considering abortion. Agnes’s disapproval leads to an explosion as Theresa releases a lifetime of pent-up resentment. Inevitably, these two women run up against their strong and often oppositional feelings regarding the Catholic Church, the roles of women, the sanctity of life at all costs and the questionable value of a stiff upper lip.
2012 The Premiere Stages Festival
WORKSHOPS & READINGS
2012 • Premiere Stages - Directed by John Wooten
2011 • The Actors Studio PD Unit
2009 • American Renaissance