Contemporary Monologues —
Gender Neutral (Last 10 years)

Scroll down for Light and Dra­mat­ic cat­egor­ies -click each box to view and down­load the speech then click box again to close speeches

 

Rendall Age — HEADBABY

Char­ac­ter: Rend­all

Age: Any

Play: HEADBABY

Author:  Joseph Arnone (pub­lished 2020)

Brief Syn­op­sis: Head­baby is a one-act play that takes place some time in the future, rais­ing ques­tions on robot­ics, cryo­tech­no­logy and computers. 

Speech:

I’ve repeatedly told you that soci­ety has changed. The world isn’t as you remem­ber it. Your kind is no longer in con­trol. Today, when humans are born, they are born inside a center and in this center they are designed accord­ing to the new laws of the realm. Basic­ally, you are a rare breed that has gone extinct and no one cares. They stopped caring a very long time ago. Human­ity had so much poten­tial, but you’ve all seemed to get in your own way all too often and when it came down to it, a series of poor decisions were made and it was too late to ever go back. You are the last batch that was left behind on a whim. You aren’t even good enough for spare parts…oh, don’t feel so bad. Really. Each of us has our own real­ity and this is simply your own real­ity. I needed to map you and sur­pris­ingly everything suc­cess­fully uploaded into my data­base. There is an entire copy of your brain in digit­al form, so you can live on.

Clock — GLASS. KILL. BLUEBEARD. IMP

Char­ac­ter: Clock

Age: Any

Play: GLASS. KILL. BLUEBEARD. IMP

Author: Caryl Chuchill (Premiered 2019)

Brief Syn­op­sis: New con­tem­por­ary drama. A girl made of glass. Gods and murders. A serial killer­’s friends. And a secret in a bottle. Four stor­ies by Caryl Churchill

Speech:

They look at me because I’m worth look­ing at. Time from me is richer because I’m old and X run through me since before their par­ents were born. And You See It Flow because my second-hand goes round and my minute hand goes round and my our hand goes slowly round and there’s none of this digit­al jump­ing. You gaze at me and think how long a minute last. paying for a whole minute would be tor­ture. Joy for a whole minute would be excep­tion­al. And even if I stopped I’d be kept as an object because my his­tory is intriguing and my shape is grace­ful and my value is unquestioned. 

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Unnamed — EXAMPLES (from BULLIES)

Char­ac­ter: (Char­ac­ters in this series of stand-alone mono­logues are unnamed)

Age: Teen­ager

Play: EXAMPLES (from BULLIES)

Author:  Jim Che­val­li­er (Pub­lished 2011)

Brief Syn­op­sis: A series of mono­logues for teens and adults. What a bully makes a curse may later turn to be a great gift. But too many young people give up before that can happen, turn­ing to sub­stance abuse or even sui­cide. This col­lec­tion of mono­logues looks at this nation­al prob­lem from many dif­fer­ent points of view: those of the vic­tims and the bul­lies, of teach­ers and par­ents, of bystand­ers who may or may not step in. 

Speech:

Here’s what I’ve figured out: every­one’s got a weak spot, some­thing they hope that no one will notice. Me, I notice. But I don’t always talk about it. Some­times just enough to let them know I could talk about it. But that’s for the dan­ger­ous ones, the ones who could hurt me. Some, I’m not afraid of. Them, I’ll talk about. They’re my examples. Here’s a for instance. Buster, who every­one’s afraid of? He sees a doctor. A spe­cial kind of doctor. Do I know what kind? No. I just know his office is by the cup­cake shop, the pricey one down­town. One day my mother went there and left me in the car. Who do I see but Buster, being dropped off at the build­ing next door. It’s only doc­tors. I checked. Mind doc­tors, mostly. So a few weeks later, out of the blue, he starts in on me. “What’s your prob­lem?” I say. “Those cup­cakes got you wired?” He stops cold. “Cup­cakes? What the — ?” “You know, like they sell at that place down­town.” You should have seen his face. Dead white.… 

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Tom — TRANSITION (from TEEN BOY’S COMIC MONOLOGUES THAT ARE ACTUALLY FUNNY)

Char­ac­ter: Tom (Iden­ti­fies as Teresa- Transsexual)

Age: 14

Play: TRANSITION (from TEEN BOY’S COMIC MONOLOGUES THAT ARE ACTUALLY FUNNY)

Author:  Aless­andra Riz­zo­tti (pub­lished 2015)

Brief Syn­op­sis: From a col­lec­tion of teen­age mono­logues by writers and comics who have written/performed for Sat­urday Night Live, The Tonight show, Last Comic Stand­ing, and E! Enter­tain­ment. Theresa is about to come out to his drama club friends as tran­sexu­al. Teresa is femme already, and her friends assume she’s a gay male, but Teresa has always been a girl, since she was little. This is a big moment for her.

Speech:

No Sarah, I’m not gay. I just think this play is prob­ably the easi­est way to express myself to drama club this year. Because, I dunno. There’s no other way to talk about this. Sarah, I want to tell you some­thing. Can you listen? Why are you so excited? What I’m about to tell you might weird you out and I’m nervous. Stop smil­ing. Okay. Here goes. I always knew I liked dress­ing up in women’s clothes since I was two years old, but I’m start­ing to real­ise that that’s not gay… that’s some­thing else. I’ve been look­ing it up on Google and I’m real­ising that I really identi­fy as a woman. O‑M-G. Can you listen? Because I want you to be the first person I told. You really helped me that one time when you and I were put­ting on makeup for fun, and I just real­ised in that moment how nat­ur­al and good that felt. It felt like myself. Because when I put on skater shorts and baggy shirts, I feel like I’m out­side my skin. 

Sarah, no, you can’t tell anyone. I sorta need to do this on my own. I was think­ing that I could do it at the end of the play. My mum and dad don’t know. Hon­estly, they would prob­ably be fine with it. I once found heels in my dad’s car once, so either he is having an affair or he dresses up like a woman too. And as for my mum, she knows I wear her lip­stick in my room and dance to Diana Ross. I mean, she some­times wants to join. So it’s no big deal on my family end. I just sorta want to be able to come out to all the kids at school in a really dig­ni­fied sorta away. 

Why? Because it would be free­ing. I don’t want to start my life as a whole new person in col­lege; I want to be the person I’ve always wanted to be, start­ing now. Why can’t you under­stand that? We’re best friends, Sarah. I don’t like you that way. Shut up. You didn’t think I liked you, did you? We’re soul mates. That’s a dif­fer­ent kind of love. O‑M-G. Are you ser­i­ous? My sexu­al­ity is fluid. I like boys and girls, just not you. I swear I didn’t mean to hurt you this way. Sarah, I thought we were so close because we were just best friends. No! I thought you wanted to wait till mar­riage to kiss and have sex, not for ME. Ah! This is so con­fus­ing. I didn’t mean to con­fuse you. 

I love you, but not in a sexual way. How did this become about us and not me? You always do that. Can’t you listen for once? Can’t you hear me out? Are we not going to be friends any­more? O‑M-G. I thought you were a Chris­ti­an lib­er­al. One day when the world isn’t so big­oted, I’ll be able to be myself. 

What? I thought you were mad. Well I’m not in love back. I’m sorry. This con­ver­sa­tion just made me asexual.

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Fiona/Adrian- Transgender male — ROTTERDAM

Char­ac­ter: Fion­a/Ad­ri­an- Trans­gender male (in this scene they are still female)

Age: late 20s

Play:  ROTTERDAM

Author: Jon Brit­tan (pub­lished 2016)

Brief Syn­op­sis: It’s New Year in Rot­ter­dam, and Alice has finally plucked up the cour­age to email her par­ents and tell them she’s gay. But before she can hit send, her girl­friend reveals that he has always iden­ti­fied as a man and now wants to start living as one. Now Alice must face a ques­tion she never thought she’d ask … does this mean she’s straight? A bit­ter­sweet comedy about gender, sexu­al­ity and being a long way from home.

 

Speech:

You Googled it and you took notes? Are you plan­ning on writ­ing an essay?

And you thought Wiki­pe­dia would tell you?

I tried to tell you last night. I don’t really know… Look, I haven’t really thought about this either, I just… I mean, I know there are pro­ced­ures that some people have… But some people don’t have them, some people don’t have them at all, and I haven’t ser­i­ously con­sidered… I mean, even if I did… trans­ition, which is what it’s called, I’d need to live as a man for at least, like, two years before I could actu­ally con­sider any­thing like… And in the mean­time, if I did decide… I mean, it wouldn’t be a huge change, would it? It wouldn’t mean new clothes or much of a hair­cut. There’d just be… hor­mones.
Beat.
Sorry. Look, it won’t – It wouldn’t… I think there might be some side-effects but mostly it’ll just be, y’know, lower voice, facial hair… man stuff. And my peri­ods would stop, so our bad moods wouldn’t be in sync any more.

 

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Kay (hey/them, nonbinary, AFAB) — DEAL ME OUT

Char­ac­ter: Kay (hey/them, non­bin­ary, AFAB)

Age: Early 20s

Play: DEAL ME OUT

Author: MJ Hal­ber­staft (per­formed 2019)

Brief Syn­op­sis: Novem­ber, 2016. A close-knit board game group meets for its weekly game night in Ober­on’s father­’s garage with an uncom­fort­able “game” on the menu: kick Dez out. But echoes of the polar­ized world out­side invade their sacred space, and no one is pre­pared to face the real prob­lem, which threatens to flip the board on them all. Deal Me Out is a comic drama set inside the world of gamers.

Speech:

It’s really all Eliza­beth, she’s always set the sched­ule: we can go to Lewis­ton Mall on week­days, but we can’t be seen there on week­ends. Week­ends we go to the Auburn Mall. And we can buy things on sale but not from a sale rack. Now that Josephine has her license back, we have to all go togeth­er in her car, or at the very least use the buddy system: two at a time. Now and then Eliza­beth will go with one other person if Martin drops her off, but the whole point is that no one can ever arrive at the mall by them­selves because if we have a hard time syncing up and find­ing one anoth­er we look retarded—her words, not mine. There was a whole epis­ode when Josephine, Eliza­beth, and I were at the mall and then Olivia got dropped off and it was a total dis­aster. So, buddy system: never one, and never three unless one of us is out of town and it’s, like, a known indis­put­able fact that the fourth isn’t coming to the mall.

Elizabeth’s new thing is con­trolling our social media pres­ence. She makes us send pic­tures to her before we post them, and we have to post at least one pic­ture of all four of us togeth­er every week, and we can’t repeat out­fits in those; she’s work­ing on a col­lage or some­thing. And I like star­ted run­ning out of things I wear and she was finally like “This is why we go to the mall. You have every oppor­tun­ity to buy more tops.”

She lost her shit last month when I cut my hair, because usu­ally she wants approv­al first and I didn’t ask. And then I told her what it’s really about and her eyes got really big and she was like “You know what, this is totally okay. We’re living in dif­fer­ent times, and a little diversity isn’t a bad thing.” She actu­ally wanted Marina in the group instead of Olivia so that we’d have racial diversity but not too-much because Marina’s half-whatever.

And so I was sur­prised that she was cool about it. But then she star­ted chan­ging some of the sched­ule and stuff, and talk­ing about branch­ing out. She star­ted hanging out with Klara one-on-one which felt like an inter­view, espe­cially because her name starts with K too and she’s custom-ordered so much J‑O-K‑E stuff for her room.

She told me we could still hang out at the mall and stuff, but that she didn’t want to keep me in the weekly group pic­ture but we could still hang out at the Lewis­ton Mall and at her house, but I should hang back on week­ends when they went to the Auburn Mall, and she asked me to stop vis­it­ing her at the salon because people kept asking ques­tions and, well she said, it was “for my own good.” She “didn’t want me to feel uncomfortable.”

I said, “Eliza­beth, that’s all really sweet of you to look out for me like that, but I have anoth­er new rule I was think­ing of ini­ti­at­ing,” and she was like “What’s that?” and I said, “How about I hang out with you zero days of the week, and we can talk to each other never and nowhere, for pic­tures, I’ll wear whatever I want and you can say noth­ing about it because you are not my friend. I like that sched­ule better.”

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Unnamed — THE CHILD WHO DIDN’T KNOW FEAR (From Love and Information)

Char­ac­ter: (char­ac­ters in Love and Inform­a­tion appear in quick suc­ces­sion but have no name or set age)

Age: Any

Play: THE CHILD WHO DIDN’T KNOW FEAR (From Love and Information)

Author: Caryl Churchill (first per­formed 2012)

Brief Syn­op­sis: In this fast moving kal­eido­scope more than a hun­dred char­ac­ters try to make sense of what they know.

Speech:

Once upon a time there was a child who didn’t know what fear was and he wanted to find out. So his friends said, Cold shiver down your back, legs go funny, some­times your hands no not your hands yes your hands tingle, it’s more in your head, it’s in your stom­ach, your belly you shit your­self, you can’t breathe, your skin your skin creeps, it’s a shiver a shud­der do you really not know what it is? 

And the child said, I don’t know what you mean. 

So they took him to a big dark empty house every­one said was haunted. They said, No one’s ever been able to stay here till morn­ing, you won’t stay till mid­night, you won’t last an hour, and the child said, Why, what’s going to happen? And they said, You’ll know what we mean about being frightened. And the child said, Good, that’s what I want to know. 

So in the morn­ing his friends came back and there was the child sit­ting in the dusty room. And they said, You’re still here? What happened? And the child said, There were things walk­ing about, dead things, some of them didn’t have heads and a mon­ster with glow­ing — and his friends said, Didn’t you run away? and the child said, There were weird noises like screams and like music but not music, and his friends said, What did you feel? and the child said, It came right up to me and put out its hand, and his friends said, Didn’t your hair your stom­ach the back of your neck your legs wer­en’t you frightened? And the child said, No, it’s no good, I didn’t feel any­thing, I still don’t know what fear is. And on the way home he met a lion and the lion ate him.

Unnamed — THE CHILD WHO DIDN’T KNOW PAIN (From Love and Information) (2)

Char­ac­ter: (char­ac­ters in Love and Inform­a­tion appear in quick suc­ces­sion but have no name or set age)

Age: Any

Play: THE CHILD WHO DIDN’T KNOW PAIN (From Love and Information)

Author: Caryl Churchill (first per­formed 2012)

Brief Syn­op­sis: In this fast moving kal­eido­scope more than a hun­dred char­ac­ters try to make sense of what they know.

Speech:

But what is it?
Pain is pain, it’s just
if I pinch
aah, get off. But if I pinch you
noth­ing
noth­ing at all
but stop because I get bruises.
How come you don’t
I never did when I was a baby
you were born like
yes and I used to chew my fin­gers
you mean chew?
and they got band­ages put over or I’d chew them to the bone
because you know how babies
put everything in their mouth
I’d put myself in my mouth because I wasn’t any dif­fer­ent.
And if you fell down
I threw myself down
because it didn’t hurt
jumped down a whole flight of stairs because that was a quick
way
and you were all right
broke both legs and once when I went swim­ming there were
rocks under the water and when I came out my legs were
pour­ing blood because I hadn’t felt
so you can’t feel any­thing
emo­tions I feel feel­ings
but phys­ic­al
not pain, no.
And why not?
because there’s no signal going up to my brain
from your legs
from any­where to my brain to say there’s damage, it’s hurt­ing
so you never know what hurt­ing is
so tell me what it’s like.
Hurt­ing is well it’s pain, it’s like uncom­fort­able but more,
it’s some­thing you’d want to move away from but you can’t, it’s an
intense sen­sa­tion, it’s hard to ignore it, it’s very

but why would you mind that?

because it hurts. But no, some­times pain’s all right if it’s not bad
like if your gum’s sore and you keep poking it with your tongue
or you might cut your finger and you hardly notice, yes if you’re
doing some­thing excit­ing, sol­diers can lose a leg and not even
know it.
that’s like me yes but why, what is it?
if someone’s tor­tured if they give them elec­tric shocks it’s
unbear­able or if they’ve got cancer some­times they want to die
because my uncle

yes but I still don’t know what it is about pain
it’s just pain
but what is it?
You’ve been unhappy?
Yes
if someone you love doesn’t love you, you thought they loved
you and they don’t
yes
or you’ve done some­thing you wish you hadn’t done it’s too late
now and you’ve hurt someone and there’s noth­ing you can do to
put it right
yes
does that help?
So it’s like being unhappy but in your leg?
But it’s also just what it is, like red is red and blue is blue.
But red isn’t red, it’s waves and it’s red to us.
So there you are, that’s what it’s like.
Can I pinch you again?

A ( a police officer) — [BLANK]

Char­ac­ter: A ( a police officer)

Age: Any

Play: [BLANK]

Author:  Alice Birch (premiered 2018)

Brief Syn­op­sis: A huge, sprawl­ing drama about the impact of the justice system on parent-child rela­tion­ships, in a choose-your-own-adven­ture style. In this mono­logue, a police-officer is trying to explain to their teen­age child what happened and why it’s import­ant they keep trying to help. 

Speech:

He had pinned his girl­friend up against the wall. When we got there, she had purple finger marks all across her neck. She was like, no no no, it’s fine, they — the neigh­bour who called — made a mis­take.
Again.
I’ve been there 3 times before.
Every time I see this woman she’s beaten up in some New way.
Body cam never picks any­thing up.
She’s always Indig­nant.
He’s always quiet. Polite. Lets her talk.
I don’t want to press charges, there’s noth­ing to say, yadda yadda.
I went there once and he’d pushed her face into her own vomit.
She had vomit on her face.
He’s kicked a baby out of her.
An actual f***ing baby.
Out of her.
You should­n’t be able to Kick a baby out of a woman, that should­n’t be a phys­ic­al possibility.

This time. She’s hes­it­at­ing. She’s think­ing about it. He’s not com­pletely thick, he’s kicked her below the neck so we can’t see it, but she’s find­ing it hard to walk. She’s on the edge of finally saying, yes please, yes please can you help me.
And he snaps.

Body cam.
Catches him kick­ing a door down, lift­ing me off the f***ing ground and and stamp­ing on my head.
He’ll go to prison now.

Mark (Transgender- Male to Female) — THINGS I KNOW TO BE TRUE

Char­ac­ter: Mark (Trans­gender- Male to Female)

Age: 30s-40s (second eldest child of the Price family)

Play: THINGS I KNOW TO BE TRUE

Author: Andrew Bovell (first per­formed 2016)

Brief Syn­op­sis: Things I Know To Be True is a phys­ic­al-theatre show about family, loss, broken dreams, and love in many of its forms. It is a funny and honest account of family life in the Aus­trali­an sub­urbs. Over the course of one year, the four adult Price chil­dren struggle to estab­lish their iden­tit­ies and deal with per­son­al crises.

Speech:
I want them to drop me at the air­port and keep going. I want this good­bye to be over. I beg Rosie with my eyes. She gets it but air­port farewells are still a big deal for Dad and he insists on coming inside and walk­ing me to the gate. There is mayhem at secur­ity as he sets off the alarms. How a man can have so many pieces of metal on him is a mys­tery to me but given that my time as a man is finite it’s not a mys­tery I need to give much fur­ther thought to. At the gate I tell Dad that I will come home soon to visit. And he tells me that he’ll come to see me as soon as I have settled in. Both of us know that neither of these things will happen but pre­tend­ing they will some­how seems to make the part­ing easier. He holds onto me as we hug. We know that this will be the last time he will be hold me as his son. It almost does me in. And I look back from the gate and he is broken. He is weep­ing. Rosie is hold­ing him. She has him. I have to look away. I have to look ahead. I have to keep walk­ing. My father’s grief is a price I am pre­pared to pay. The plane turns down the runway, increases its speed, lifts off the ground and makes its ascent. I look down on the city where I grew up. By the time I land, Mark Price will just be someone I used to know.

 

Unnamed — THE HARD KNOCK OF OPPORTUNITY (from BULLIES)

Char­ac­ter: (Char­ac­ters in this series of stand-alone mono­logues are unnamed)

Age: 30+

Play: THE HARD KNOCK OF OPPORTUNITY (from BULLIES)

Author:  Jim Che­val­li­er (Pub­lished 2011)

Brief Syn­op­sis: A series of mono­logues for teens and adults. What a bully makes a curse may later turn to be a great gift. But too many young people give up before that can happen, turn­ing to sub­stance abuse or even sui­cide. This col­lec­tion of mono­logues looks at this nation­al prob­lem from many dif­fer­ent points of view: those of the vic­tims and the bul­lies, of teach­ers and par­ents, of bystand­ers who may or may not step in. 

Speech:

Didn’t I trust you? Didn’t I give you a chance? I could have man­aged those pro­gram­mers myself; you know I could. You think I got to be the boss by acci­dent? But I gave you an oppor­tun­ity. That’s what you have to under­stand. I gave you a chance to show what you can do. Which, it turns out, isn’t much. Would­n’t you agree? Am I wrong? If I’m wrong, just tell me. Go ahead and tell me. And don’t go telling me it’s because I was always step­ping in. I had to get involved, didn’t I? Because you just wer­en’t cut­ting it. But it’s still your respons­ib­il­ity. Don’t go trying to shift this mess. What am I sup­posed to tell the client? Don’t you think he’s going to blame me? Of course he will. Only, don’t kid your­self. He knows I put you in charge; he knows I try to give my people a chance. Because that’s what a good man­ager does. And I’m a good man­ager. You’d agree with that, right? You would­n’t say any dif­fer­ent, would you?.…