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A One-Act Play


Junkyard Richard

By Maggie Smith

Junkyard Richard

1400 years after the fall of civilization as we know it, history repeats itself. The world has turned to ruin, a junkyard of all that remains. Richard is the first woman to lead this new world, albeit poorly. In attempting to maintain peace and status quo in her court, she inadvertently creates a civil war, becoming an enemy of the people and the antithesis of what she once wanted to become. 

Junkyard Richard is the result of a semester-long capstone project involving directing a scene from a play of the student's choosing. I chose to present on Richard II in order to combine her work with her Shakespeare Seminar capstone, and spent the semester focusing on gender dynamics in Shakespeare's history plays. This resulted in a ten-minute excerpt from

Richard II presented at Loyola University Chicago, which placed the play in a junkyard, noting England's fallen state at the time of the play. 

The primary focus of these projects was to explore gender-conscious casting in Shakespeare's play, which is highlighted further in the document available below. As I continued to work on this project, I began to see a full image of the piece in my head, and wanted to explore it further. Rather than wait to work on a production of Richard II, I decided to create a new play where the idea of gender-conscious casting wasn't open to interpretation. This led to the creation of Junkyard Richard, featuring a woman in the role of king, and exploring the way a woman in power is treated by her court and those closest to her. 

Shakespeare Seminar Capstone Paper (2022)

Richard II  Capstone Rehearsal (2022)


Richard II  Capstone Rehearsal (2022)

Richard II  Capstone Rehearsal (2022)

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