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A Town Like Dead Wood

    by Tony Layton



Comedy Play Script: 'A Town Like Deadwood' by Tony LaytonThis one hour play is a comedy set in a small Welsh town during a recession. The format is a deliberate pastiche of 'UNDER MILK WOOD' in which we see the life of the town reflected through cameos of various characters. The brief glimpses we have of their lives is enough to leave us with the clear impression that recession is having its effect on the community. However, as long as you have a group of people holding on to the remnants of their society you will always have intrigue, complex personal relationships, sex… in fact everything you find in life’s comedy.

The intention is that the play should be free-flowing and fast moving with many opportunities for multi-role playing. it is set is a basic black box with narrators situated on stage right and stage left with the central area given over as the main acting area for the rest of the characters. No stage directions are provided as it is felt that these should be left to the imaginations of individual directors.

Author’s Note: “I know I am leaving myself open to vitriolic attack by the guardians of Dylan’s inspired masterpiece by even attempting a pastiche of his great play. My intention was purely to heighten the humour for those who can reflect on the style of the original.As I say in the opening dialogue it is not my intention to emulate Dylan but purely to show a warm appreciation of his style of writing.

I thought it would add to the humour if I placed an 'apology' in the opening dialogue. If directors feel that this only gets in the way then they should feel at liberty to edit it out and start the play at its more natural starting point.”


60 mins approx


(14m, 16f, 7m/f) but plenty of scope for doubling

  • Persons 1 and 2 - two on-stage narrators
  • Brendan and Bethany - Husband and Wife
  • Shane - a love-struck teenager
  • Persephone - a teenager
  • Photographers 1 and 2
  • Rhiannon - a young alcoholic woman
  • Young Man
  • Maxwell - a nervous young Policeman
  • Clem - a Police Driver
  • Ivor Prosser - late 60s, a farmer
  • Mervyn The Milk - a young teenager and then as an older man
  • Angharad - a young teenager and then as a mature woman
  • Clint Sharp - a disenchanted teacher at a Secondary School
  • Britney and Sandra - two young shop workers
  • Young Girl and Boy - 8 (approx)
  • Miss Reece - a mature teacher at a Primary School
  • Office Clerk
  • Mature Women Shoppers 1, 2 & 3
  • Ali - a Pakistani shopkeeper
  • Pub Barman
  • Teenage Boy - in school
  • Blonde Girl - in school
  • Jeff Morgan - a Councillor
  • Mature Male TV Producer
  • Young Female TV Director
  • May, June and April - three retired ladies
  • Maxwell's Wife
  • Bryn - a young man
  • Police Inspector


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