Mojo & String


Alice Childress

Published by Dramatists Play Service

3 Male 4 Female

Mojo ~ Paying a surprise visit to her former husband, Irene, aware that she is ill with cancer, reveals that she must shortly go back into the hospital but wanted to see Teddy just once more first

From their random conversation it is evident that a warm bond still exists between the two. They talk of the hard times they once had to endure, of how Irene set up Teddy in the numbers business, of the white girl he has become involved with and, finally, Irene confesses that she bore Teddy's child, a daughter, after their divorce - and gave the child up to another couple so that it might have a better chance in life

Sometimes brightly humorous, sometimes achingly sad, yet always unstintingly honest, the play illuminates the true character of two very real and vital people, and underscores their need to fathom and comprehend their Blackness, and to find in it a strength and dignity so long denied

Subtitled A Black Love Story, this affecting and revealing play captures the essence of the black experience in the outspoken confrontation between a man and a woman once married, and still deeply committed to each other

String ~ The scene is the annual picnic of the neighborhood block association; and some of the most fastidious ladies are incensed by the presence of "old Joe," a raggedy character who subsists on other's castoffs, and is an embarrassment to all

They are joined by L. V. Craig, a boastful cafe operator who delights in taunting Joe and in flashing his bankroll before the others. In the course of the action Joe furtively retrieves a piece of string dropped by one of the ladies - and at the same time L. V. Craig finds his wallet missing

Suspicion immediately falls on Joe, who is ashamed to tell what he has hidden in his pocket. But, when he finally does, no one will believe him. Ultimately the missing wallet is found, but the truth, once known, is still not easily accepted, nor does it overcome the hurt and anguish which unfounded suspicion can engender

Cast includes 1 girl

Produced by New York's renowned Negro Ensemble Company, this humorous and touching play is freely adapted, in the black idiom, from Guy de Maupassant's story A Piece of String the tale of a gentle man abused by vulgarians

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