Drama. By Linda Daugherty and Mary Rohde Scudday.
Cast: 3m., 5w. Imagine that every time you open a book, letters play tricks on you. They flip, they reverse, they jump upside down. Every sentence you read takes so much effort—so much energy—because the letters don't behave. By the time you reach the end of the sentence, you've lost its meaning. You're embarrassed and feel stupid. This is what two young people with learning differences face in hard 2 spel dad. Still grieving and angry over the heroic death of her fireman father, 13-year-old Pamela hopes to make a "fresh start" when she and her mother move to a new town to help care for her grandfather. Pamela has a learning difference, dyslexia, and so, she thinks, does her new skateboarding friend Zak, 15 years old and still stuck in middle school. The two young people struggle to read their class assignment, Romeo and Juliet, but when, after watching the modern DVD version, Zak passionately retells the entire story, Pamela concocts a scheme she is convinced will show how smart Zak is. When this backfires, Zak, humiliated and angry, seeks solace in prescription drugs and alcohol with near tragic results. But hope triumphs as, finally, Pamela accepts her father's death, Zak's learning difference is diagnosed and addressed and they both look forward to starting high school. hard 2 spel dad dramatizes the loss of self-esteem, isolation, and risky behaviors that all too often accompany learning differences. The play will give audiences an understanding of what it feels like to learn differently, the school's critical role in accommodating learning differences, and the strength, courage and perseverance of those who turn these differences into distinctions. Premier production at the Dallas Children's Theater. Area staging. Approximate running time: 40 minutes.
Also Available: 60-minute playbook