The Playwright Kitty Chen, 2006
BLESSINGS OF CHAIRMAN M
by Kitty Chen
Bare stage. Night. The lighting suggests a hilly forest landscape. A woman enters, carrying a heavy burden on her back. She makes her way slowly uphill. Blackout.
Scene 1. At center, a body lies on a table in a body bag. Lighting is bright, artificial. A barely audible drone of an air conditioner. Shivers sits at a table knitting, suddenly looks at watch, goes to body, bows deeply 3 times.
Attention, attention: It is now time to show your love and respect.
(to the loudspeaker, with a lewd gesture) Hah! Beat you to it!
She hears someone approach. Babelov enters.
Oh me oh my. I thought I was on the sub-sub-sub-ground level, when the whole time I was only on the sub-sub-ground level.
What was the vote?
I can't breathe. I’d better bring down some fans and more ice.
BABELOV! WHAT WAS THE VOTE?!
They told me to rush right down and they'd beep me the instant they had the count.
WHAT'S TO COUNT?--THERE'S ONLY 20 MINISTERS. And what's with the friggin' air-conditioning?
The generators are old. Russian leftovers. Why don't you just go ahead with the prep.
IDIOT! WHAT DO YOU TAKE ME FOR? A good prep is like BREATHING to a good embalmer--it's the first thing you do!
Okay, okay. I thought maybe you'd have to do something special, or different, if he was a god.
He's a god? Oh my god--he's a god!
Babelov (cutting in)
I didn't say that! Calm--down. I said "IF he was a god." IF!
When are they going to know?
After they count the votes!