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    by Alice M Underwood

Winner - Geoffrey Whitworth Award for New Writing, 2012
Highly Commended - George Taylor Memorial Award for New Writing, 2011/12
National Drama Festivals Association


Drama Play Script: 'Conkers' by Alice M UnderwoodParadoxically, the setting is a spa, the purpose of which is to create an air of serenity and relaxation, but in this instance, proves the location for angst, anger and recrimination!

In early middle-age Mel deserted her marriage to a clergyman,  abandoning their teenage daughter Rachel and her religion in a desperate bid to overcome loneliness, frustration and an increasing alcohol dependency.

Ruth, happily married and step-sister to Rachel, understood and forgave her mother's desertion and now hopes to arrange a spontaneous but surprise meeting between Mel and Rachel within the confines of a spa hoping that being closeted together and stripped of worldly attire, defences may be down and truth and mutual understanding may better be realised.

Now in her twenties and an aspiring actress, Rachel's astonishment and resentment at unavoidably meeting her incredulous mother in this contrived way dramatically unleashes years of pent-up grief and fury.

Addy, a Polish immigrant, works as masseuse and beautician in the spa earning money to send home for her small daughter whom she has left in the care of her mother in Poland.

In the intimacy of the spa the three women reflect upon their lives, and share long-held secrets and confidences. Motherhood, guilt, angst and fear; a potent mix for a relaxing day at the spa!

However, we have three intelligent women of varying ages and experience in this drama... surely something can be salvaged from the fall-out... or can it?

'The apple never falls far from the tree' so why does Rachel believe she is a conker?


45-50 mins approx


Principals (3f)
  •   Rachel - mid 20's, brittle, assertive
  •   Mel - mid 40's, emancipated, cerebral, self-sufficient
  •   Addy - 20's, Polish, a spa technician, intelligent, feisty, vulnerable

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