Playwright: John Gassner
Director: Marlene Mancini
Cast: Program #1 Mathilda DeDios, Ruomi Lee Hampel, Liz Newman, Matthew Tischler, Eva DePaola, Aurora Kaschner, Cirkl Piper, Monique Ellis, Rachel Kavish, Sara Rice, Heather Haggerty, Jamie Marsh, Jasmine Savio, Daniel B. Wooten JR Program #2 Alexa Angel, Vanessa Flores, Tara La Dore, Jethro Redstone, May Talman, Antonia Cucciara, Yvonnne Flores, Abby Lester, Ghana Smith, Matthew Tishcler, Mathilda Dedios, Sasha Graff, Shelly McCoy, Christopher Sturge, Dana Wright, Judy Zimbler, Monique Ellis, Sarah Krupnick, Makesha Oucre, Maude Sutherland and Jason Zimbler
Program #1 Director: Marlene Mancini Set & Costumes: Kathe Berl Lighting: Rick Butler Technical Director: Steven Cook Musical Director:Hope Albrecht Original Music:Carol Hall Stage Manager: Ann Day Production Electricians: Anton Graham, Kenji Larsen Program#2 Director: Marlene Mancini Set and Costumes: Kathe Berl Lighting: Rick Butler Musical Director: Michelle Grace Assistant Musical Director: Hope Albrecht Costume Assistant: Lydia Hamza Original Music: Carol Hall Production Manager: Brad Waller Technical Director: Steven Cook Stage Manager: Ann Day
The Second Shepherd’s Play was performed December 19th – 30th of the year 1968.
The play’s first speaker is Coll, who begins his soliloquy complaining of the cold weather. He is “ill happed” (badly covered) no matter the weather, since whether “in storms and tempest” he must still tend to his flock. He also complains about his poverty, which he blames on the rich landowners, “these gentlery-men,” who keep him “so hammed, / Fortaxed, and rammed” (hamstrung or confined, overtaxed, and beaten down) that he cannot escape poverty. Coll continues his list of complaints, which he then directs to the rich landowner’s overseer, who interferes with the work on the farm. Coll uses the word “husbands” at line 33, not to mean a spouse, but in the archaic use of the word, as one who takes care of the land. Coll does not own the land on which he shepherds the sheep, and he feels himself oppressed by the wealthy. He is brought near to “miscarry” or ruin and thus will never be in a position to work his own land. Coll continues to lament his lack of power and that he dare not complain to anyone about how he is treated, since the landowner’s servant has too much power. Coll concludes his soliloquy with the more cheerful expectation that he will soon meet with other shepherds who also share his lonely life.
Gib soon enters the stage. He does not initially see Coll and begins to grumble about the terrible weather. It is so cold and the wind so fierce that his eyes water from the misery. Between the snow and sleet, his shoes have frozen to his feet, and he laments that life “is not all easy.” Gib also whines that his wife nags him. According to Gib, “she cackles” and thus “Woe is him” since “he is in the shackles,” imprisoned in marriage. The rest of Gib’s soliloquy continues to articulate his argument that men would be better off forgoing marriage. Men have no will after marriage, says Gib, because their wives control them, whether “in bower nor in bed.” Gil has learned his lesson about marrying, but he does note that some men marry a second time, some even a third time. At this point, Gil offers a warning and tells young men that there is little point in later saying, “Had I wist” (wished), since that serves no purpose. It is best for young men to “be well ware of wedding.” Gil describes his wife as one who has brows like a pig’s bristle and a bitter look on her face. She also has a loud voice and is as “great as a whale.” Had he known that she has so much “gall” he would have run until “I lost her” before marrying. At this point in Gib’s complaining, Coll finally speaks up and asks that God watch over the audience, who have had to endure Gib’s increasingly vicious harangue about his wife and marriage, in general. When Gib realizes that he is not alone he asks if Coll has seen the third shepherd, Daw.
Daw enters and does not see Coll and Gib. Like the others, he begins his soliloquy with a complaint about the miserable weather. The rain and wind is so fierce that Daw compares it to Noah’s flood. Daw, though, has faith that God will “turn all to good!” The floods afflict everyone, those in town and those who watch over the sheep and cattle in the fields. The weather creates equality among all men. When Daw greets Coll and Gib they tell him that they have already eaten and since he is late, he has missed the evening meal. His reply is that he will work as little as he is paid. This section of the play ends with Coll, Gib, and Daw singing together to cheer themselves.