It's a Wonderful Life is the story of George Bailey, the unsung, beloved hero of Bedford Falls. As a child, George risked his own life to save his brother from drowning. As he grew older, his countless small deeds mattered very much in the lives of the Bedford Falls townspeople. George prepares to leave town and go to college to fulfill his dream of building skyscrapers. However, when his father, the president of the small Bailey Building and Loan Company, dies, George postpones his dreams, manages the family company, and finds happiness in his marriage to Mary Hatch. When Uncle Billy accidentally misplaces company funds, George faces financial ruin and almost certain imprisonment. Seeing no way out, he runs to the bridge over the river, prepared to plunge to his death. Enter Clarence, George's lovable, bumbling guardian angel, who has come to Bedford Falls to prove to George that his life is worth living and to earn wings for himself. He grants George one wish: to see what the world would be like if he had never been born. Suddenly Bedford Falls is a very unpleasant place: the bustling small town main street is lined with pool halls and saloons; none of his friends or family recognize him, not even his beloved wife, Mary, who, in this world without him, is a prim spinster. Pursued by police, George returns to the bridge and begs to have his life back. Clarence grants it and George runs home to find his children, his wife, and a town that rallies to support him. Finally, George comes to realize…it truly is a wonderful life.
NotesSome of the advantages to producing radio plays:
One Simple Set—A radio station—made up mostly of drapes, a control booth (if desired), mikes, and sound effects equipment.
Less Wardrobe—no changes of wardrobe are necessary.
Less Staging—actors simply stand at mikes most of the time.
Less Rehearsal—actors don't memorize lines—they just read them.
Fewer Cast Members—one actor plays many parts.
No Props—only scripts.
This title is in manuscript format. Upon licensing, a permission to photocopy form will be issued.
- Type of Show Full-length Play
- Product Code I89000
- Cast Size 14
- Min. Royalty Rate $100/perf
- Cost $39.95
- Approx. Run Time 105 min
- Target Audience Young Audiences | Middle School | High School | College and Adult | Family (all ages) | Senior Adults
- Performing Group Middle School | High School | College Theatre | Community Theatre | Professional Theatre | TYA
- Genre Drama
- ISBN(13) 9781583423288
- "Everyone is familiar with, and most love, the movie version of It's a Wonderful Life so it's a good actor draw as well as drawing in an audience. This is a challenging show acting-wise as actors play multiple characters, and even more challenging on the production side because of the Foley sound effects and live music but all are totally worth it in the end. A great show that is enjoyed by all involved in it and all who see it. "
- Review by Teresa Connair, Undercroft Players, Dayton, Ohio
- "For a small producing company, this is an ideal show during the holiday season. There are plenty of good roles for performers. The story is so beautiful, and this adaptation is just perfect."
- Review by Robert Hypes, Playhouse Merced, Merced, Calif.
- "Lots of advantages: great story that you can't screw up; no memorization; extremely simple set! The students (11 playing 63 roles!) could really focus on characterization through voice and facial expression."
- Review by Donna Chalmers, North Georgia Christian School, Gainesville, Ga.
- "We loved performing this show! And the audience agreed. It was one of the highest rated shows in our 20-year history."
- Review by Cass Cochrane, ACT IV Productions, Colonia, N.J.
Hints, Tips, and Tricks
- "The Foley (sound effects) table was half the fun but should probably be manned by non-speaking actors."
- Tip by Donna Chalmers, North Georgia Christian School, Gainesville, Ga.