Will and Whimsy: Sixteen Dramatically Illustrated Son... - Theatrefolk

Will and Whimsy: Sixteen Dramatically Illustrated Sonnets of Shakespeare

Recommended for High Schools and Middle Schools

Will and Whimsy: Sixteen Dramatically Illustrated Sonnets of Shakespeare

by Alan Haehnel

Shakespeare's Sonnets come alive in this play where modern scenes play hand in hand with the original text. Very flexible casting.

 About 50 minutes

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


 8
8 Any Gender, Expandable to 35


Simple Set


 43 pages

Comedy Classical Adaptation Shakespeare Student Directors Vignettes

Average Producer Rating:

Reviews from Past Producers

Shakespeare stands before you. A book of sonnets in his hands. His sonnets. 154 of them. Will you take the book? Will you read the sonnets?

NO WAY!!!!!!

Shakespeare isn't meant to be read. He's meant to be performed, shouted, loved, wept with, cursed over, died for, fought for, bled for!

You might think that's a bit much. Somewhat over-emotional. You can't understand a word Shakespeare says, and now you're supposed to get choked up? And bleed? Over Sonnets?

Fair enough. Start with Will and Whimsy. Modern scenes play hand in hand with the original text.

The sonnets come alive. No bleeding. We promise.

This is a vignette play! What is a Vignette Play?

8 Characters
8 Any Gender, Expandable to 35

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.

BARD 67 lines
Several monologues

SONNET 116
BARD 5 lines
JOSH [A] 14 lines
A man in the midst of proposal.
LAURA [A] 11 lines
A lovebird whose faith is true.
BILL [A] 18 lines
A specialist in pre-nuptual agreements. Not exactly a romantic.

SONNET 89
BARD 4 lines
JAKE [A] 23 lines
A jilted lover trying to win his ex’s heart back. Will change in whatever way it takes.
JESSICA [A] 21 lines
Jake’s ex-girlfriend. Wise in the ways of self-worth.

SONNET 130
BARD 4 lines
STEVE [A] 9 lines
Not much of a poet, but his heart is in the right place.
MARYANNE [A] 9 lines
Self-conscious about her appearance. Wants to measure up to the other girls.

SONNET 29
BARD 6 lines
KAREN [A] 6 lines
A self-conscious girl who worries about having friends.
BILBO 0 lines
Karen’s loyal dog. No lines. Some barking and yipping.

SONNET 90
BARD 3 lines
BOB [A] 22 lines
A depressed guy with a foot fungus, waiting for the other shoe to drop.
CAROL [A] 7 lines
Bob’s girlfriend. Sorely tested when Bob reminds her of all his faults.

SONNET 73
BARD 4 lines
RICK [A] 13 lines
A young man, bidding farewell to some childhood objects.
MOM [A] 1 line
Rick’s mother. One line offstage.
VOICE [A] 15 lines
Rick’s old, once-cherished blanket. Knows how to tug at the old heartstrings.

SONNET 138
BARD 4 lines
MARNEETA [A] 14 lines
Old woman with bad eyesight and good sense of humour.
EARL [A] 11 lines
Old man. A romantic at heart.

SONNET 129
BARD 4 lines
KALEE [A] 7 lines
One friend obsessed with eating the last candy. Meets a bitter end by a sweet treat.
ASHLEY [A] 7 lines
A second friend obsessed with eating the last candy.
JONICA [A] 5 lines
A third friend obsessed with eating the last candy.

SONNET 120
BARD 4 lines
CARMEN [A] 16 lines
A mathematically-minded ex-friend. Wants to be left alone.
RACHEL [A] 14 lines
A mathematically-minded ex-friend. Wants a second chance.

SONNET 146
BARD: 4 lines
MINDY [A] 15 lines
A girl who has lost much, but gained an inner-peace.
CORY [A] 10 lines
A materialistic friend who wants to help Mindy with a trip to the mall.
DARLENE [A] 5 lines
A second friend who wants to help Mindy the only way she knows how.

SONNET 2
BARD 4 lines
SCOTT [A] 28 lines
A man confronted by the threat of old age. He doesn’t like what he sees.
MARTHA [A] 28 lines
A woman with a vision of the future and a secret in her pocket.

SONNET 76
BARD 3 lines
SAL [A] 23 lines
A lovestruck agent, desperate to hear his beloved artist croak a new tune.
MARLA [A] 22 lines
A lizard-loving songstress with a case of writer’s block.

SONNET 44
BARD 4 lines
MAX [A] 20 lines
A love-struck science-fiction fan. Has long-distance love down to a science.
BARB [A] 20 lines
Max’s long-suffering love. Knows their long-distance love is a fiction.

SONNET 64
BARD 4 lines
JON [A] 20 lines
A young boy, making castles in the sand.
SALLY [A] 20 lines
A young girl, making castles in the sand.

SONNET 57
BARD 4 lines
FIONA [A] 24 lines
A smitten girl, waiting on a very-important call from a bad boy boyfriend.
JUNE [A] 24 lines
A savvy girl who thinks June’s boyfriend is just bad, full-stop.

SONNET 23
BARD 4 lines
BILLY [A] 17 lines
A nervous man who takes three long seconds to say three little words.
JANINE [A] 13 lines
Billy’s patient friend, who knows the hardest things in this world might be written rather than said.

Prop List

Sonnet 130
fashion magazine, mirror
Sonnet 29
fishbowl, fish food
Sonnet 90
book or magazine
Sonnet 73
trash bag filled with clothes, blanket
Sonnet 138
newspaper, two coffee mugs, toast, (may be mimed) plate (may be mimed)
Sonnet 129
a chocolate (possibly mimed)
Sonnet 120
homework, calculator, scientific scale with weights
Sonnet 2
mirror, pregnancy test
Sonnet 76
guitar, sheets with lyrics
Sonnet 44:
phones (possibly mimed)
Sonnet 57
cell phone
Sonnet 23
journal

Production Photos

Multimedia

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Customer Comments

I have thoroughly enjoyed directing my last three shows - The Canterbury Tales, Will and Whimsy, and Circus Olympus. They are excellent adaptations, creatively conceived and written and classically based, all characteristics I look for in a high school show.

I am retiring this year after directing 63 high school shows over 38 years, but I will encourage my successor to check out your cataglogue of plays.

Nicholas DeLucia, Hancock Central School

We recently performed Will and Whimsy at Rockdale County High School and also took it to the local Georgia One-Act Competition, too!

Not only did the audience eat up every scene, but the students walked away with the MOST awards (5) out of Nine Schools! The judges remarked that this play was a true breath of fresh air! I thank you for offering this awesome play, and we look forward to working with your fine company in the near future!

Dave DiPietro

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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.

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