Not Taking Taking Yourself Seriously Seriously

A screamingly funny comedy, in which a little girl steers her mother to the right husband by mastering the black arts:
Kiki (a part for a short adult who does sarcasm) is only nine but she’s much much smarter than her mother Liz.
Liz is lovely, likeable and luxurious—but she’s also spoiled and strong-willed, and approves of everything she does.
One thing she does is love Burf, her rich and vaguely criminal husband—who is not Kiki’s father.  In fact he’s in possession of her dead father’s money.   Burf’s brutality excites Liz, but to Kiki he’s an abrasive belligerent bully.
It’s her teacher Kiki wants for a father—Larry Yorgensen, a tender and wistful idealist.
But he is not the kind of man Liz could even like, nor could Larry have any time for a vapid worldling like Liz, and when Kiki arranges for them to meet they insult each other disastrously.
So Kiki summons up a Devil—ugly and evil but no match for Kiki—and has him prepare a love potion in exchange for sacrificing a cat.
When Kiki arranges the simultaneous drinking of the potion, Liz and Larry do fall in love—but they continue not to like each other one bit.
This is double-bad, because as a chairman of the board Burf is Larry’s boss.  And Larry’s fiancée Pepper has their boring little lives all planned out!
But preparing to electrocute the cat, Kiki inadvertently kills Burf instead.
Liz and Larry decide to murder each other; then try to commit suicide together; then, overcome by love, accidentally hang themselves and swing around till Pepper rescues them.
Larry lets Pepper down easy, the Devil accepts Burf’s corpse as payment  and Liz and Larry marry.
When Kiki finds their non-stop in-loveness a little dull she re-invokes the Devil and does new experiments.
The play had a staged reading in at FirstStage in Hollywood with set pieces, lights, sound and music, directed by Josh Costello of The Magic Theatre in San Francisco:

Hi Bob—

We had our first rehearsal last night and it was a blast.  The cast is great, and they love the play.  We laughed a lot.  I think the audience will do the same.

Another thing that struck me in hearing it out loud is just how right Kiki is about Liz and Larry from the beginning.  I think she's really doing each of them a favor by breaking them out of their personas and getting them to expand their horizons.  She may be evil, but she's also very sweet somehow.

Anyway, I'll keep you posted.  Our next rehearsal is Saturday, and we'll finish the staging and run it through.

Best,

Josh


Hi Bob—
  
Well, the reading happened tonight and it was a tremendous success. I was so proud of all of it—your script, the actors, and my own work. The audience laughed a whole lot, and stayed afterwards to tell us how much they enjoyed themselves.  Congratulations!

I wish you could have been there, Bob.  Everyone had a great time.  Sadie, my fiancée, was completely impressed.

Dennis has a copy for you of the video of the reading and of the discussion after.  The response was overwhelmingly positive, with people saying they were caught up in the play and wouldn't change a thing.

The audience was genuinely delighted.  Congratulations again—I hope this script goes far and I've got to tell you that I hope that I get the chance to direct a full production of it someday.  This was my first directing gig in Los Angeles, and it was a total blast.  Thanks so much for everything.

Best,

Josh

(Dennis Safren is the manager and dramaturge at FirstStage, whose Board includes Ed Asner, Julie Harris, Syd Field, Paul Newman and Lily Tomlin.)
Pretentious Pictures presents a screamingly funny comedy.

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