Robert Anthony Playwright
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The Healing Room

A Full-Length Play Consisting of 3 Acts with a Cast of 16

Full Synopsis

Two housewives from a small southern town, Jenny and Rose, both with health issues, have decided to visit New York City to consult with a so-called healer they have read about. Jenny suffers from mysterious bouts of pain that keep her home-bound much of the time. Rose is bothered with seizures. The husbands readily agree to let their wives make the trip, thinking it might be beneficial, as they joke about the lives of leisure they'll have with the wives away. Before the wives depart for the big city we are introduced to Pockets and Smiley, two local childlike characters. They are often seen together and are well known by the townspeople. These two figure prominently in the final scene of the play.

Upon their arrival in New York City, Jenny and Rose are welcomed by the healer, Master Rami, and are asked to participate in a group session he is just beginning to conduct with his assistant. The members of this particular group have been introduced in the second act. The healer, dressed in very flamboyant healing garb, and his very efficient assistant, put on quite a show for this very willing audience. During the session Rose has one of her seizures but Master Rami takes credit for reviving her and explains in his own terminology the cause of the seizure. He tells them that this one session is all they will need. All in all Jenny and Rose are duly impressed with Master Rami and return to the south excited and hopeful. They have purchased a great many materials from his Serenity Shop and have been given a program they must follow. What they do not realized is that Master Rami is a complete phony who preys on those who choose to believe in his powers. After some weeks of following the program instructions there is no significant improvement in their health problems. They are disappointed and in time stop following the program. In the meantime, Pockets may have a cure-all remedy for what ails them. He offers his remedy to anyone who is willing to try it. Jenny and Rose are reluctant to try the concoction but with encouragement from the husbands they finally relent and find themselves feeling much better. Rose has had no more seizures and Jenny has been up every morning, feeling well enough to spend time with her friends at the diner. When Pockets stops by to ask Jenny how his medicine is working, she is effusive in her praise of what a difference he has made in her life. His late father had a reputation for making homemade remedies and had passed the knowledge on to Pockets. Although very protective of the recipe Pockets recently recruited Smiley to help him make wine and may have told him the secret recipe for the medicine. But as fate would have it Pockets and Smiley are both killed in a fatal accident, taking the recipe for the miracle medicine with them.

Cast of Characters

JOHN Retired factory worker, in his sixties; friendly, generous; easy going; concerned about his wife's health.
JENNY John's wife, in her sixties; nervous; worrisome; has mysterious bouts of pain; depends greatly on John.
ROY John's neighbor, in his sixties; truck farmer; recovering from heart surgery; jokes about his troubles.
ROSE Roy's wife, 55-65; Jenny's friend; has history of seizures; looking for answers.
POCKETS Local oddball, about 50; talkative; secretive; harmless; annoying at times; collects junk; known for winemaking.
SMILEY Close friend of Pockets; childlike; fun-loving; collects comic books.
MASTER RAMI A charlatan, 40-50; fake healer; slimy; greedy; very convincing personality.
ASSISTANT Master Rami's accomplice, about 35; attractive; no morals.
ANN Beautiful woman, 20-30; neurotic; self-absorbed.
ALBERT Lonely, depressed, 25-35; restless; unkempt appearance.
BETH Plain looking, 35-45; impatient; very animated; chatterbox.
BRUCE Frightened, fidgety, in his thirties; believes the end is near; dressed in drab colors.
COLLEEN Attractive young woman, 20-25; tearful; withdrawn.
CLIVE Businessman, 40-50; stiff; well dressed; wealthy; unhappy.
FAYLEEN Short, frail woman, 60-70; frizzy hair; Jenny's good friend.
FRANK Jolly, white-haired man, in his seventies; stoop-shouldered; fragile health; uses cane; lives with Fayleen.