Shreds and Patches by Robert Wing - Theatrefolk

Shreds and Patches

Recommended for High Schools

Shreds and Patches

by Robert Wing

A re-imagining of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.

 About 35 minutes

Times given are approximate and do not include intermissions/scene changes/breaks


 8
4 M | 2 W | 2 Any Gender


Simple set


 26 pages

Drama Character Study Issue-Based Shakespeare

Shreds and Patches is a re-imagining of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. The location is a “wellness facility” for disturbed teens. Dane, our anti-hero, confronts his bullying step-father and self-centered mother with the help of his fellow patients and Dr. Osric. Will Dane be able to get through to his mother about “the king of shreds and patches” or will he be left in the dark?

The play fuses Shakespearean speech with modern dialogue, reinforcing the notion that the teens and adults speak different languages. An excellent easy-to-stage competition piece!

8 Characters
4 M, 2 W, 2 Any Gender

Characters in this play are currently identified as male or female. Directors are welcome to assign any gender (binary or non-binary) to any character and modify pronouns accordingly.

MR. KING [M]
aka Claude. A bully, through and through. He takes what he wants.
DR. OSRIC [A]
Possesses a special relationship with her/his patients; still young, she/he has complete faith in her/his patients—and pride in how well they have worked together to arrive at the truth. She/He believes Hamlet completely.
MRS. KING [W]
aka Gertrude. A self-centered and hedonistic woman who has made her son’s depression all about her.
HAMLET/DANE [M]
The son of Gertrude King; the nephew/stepson of Claude King. Spurred on and supported by Dr. Osric and his fellow patients at the Elsinore Youth Wellness Facility, he confronts his indulgent mother and murderous uncle/ stepfather.
OPHELIA [W]
Though she frequently acts as the “peacekeeper,” she is not opposed to provoking Mr. King. Ophelia is one of a couple; she is always on the lap of, draped on, or within reaching distance of Marcellus.
MARCELLUS [M]
Marcellus is sweet to his girl, Ophelia, and faithful to his friend, Hamlet. Yorick drives him crazy, but his “slugs” don’t really hurt. In fact, he bristles when Mr. King goes after Yorick. The way Marcellus sees it, Yorick is family— and he has his Yorick’s back.
HORATIO [A]
Hamlet’s closest friend at Elsinore. He/She has been there for Hamlet over the past few weeks, knows what Mr. King has done, and wants to make him squirm.
YORICK [M]
Yorick uses humor as a defense mechanism—and it doesn’t always work. He is exasperating, but loved.

Prop List

Phone, coat, pen, checkbook

Related Titles

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Royalty fees apply to all performances whether or not admission is charged. Any performance in front of an audience (e.g. an invited dress rehearsal) is considered a performance for royalty purposes.

Exemption details for scenes and monologues for competition.


We accept orders worldwide using the following payment methods:
Purchase Orders accepted from US and Canadian Schools.
Info for your purchasing department.

A vignette play is a collection of short scenes on a theme. You'll love working with the variety and flexibility of the scenes. Your actors will love the fast pace and fun characters.

There's more. Every Theatrefolk vignette play holds the unexpected. A showcase monologue. A dramatic moment. A change in form. A left turn.

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