GETTING OUT by Marsha Norman

Male Monologue

Dramatic - (Carl - late-20's) - Carl, Arlene's former boyfriend and pimp, tries to convince Arlene to come back to work for him. Here he tells her how she can make the same money in two hours that she would in a whole week washing dishes. He paints a glamorous picture of the life she could lead.

About the play:
Full Length

7 men, 5 women

Flexible Set

A major Off-Broadway success, this eloquent, moving and exceptionally well-written first play probes into the past and present of a young woman attempting to find her way in life after release from prison.

Released from prison "Arlene" returns to a rundown apartment in Louisville, intent on starting her life over. Rebellious and disruptive as a young girl, she has found strength in religion and wants to put her youth (as "Arlie") behind her. But her struggle to find her way in the present (as "Arlene") is counterpointed by flashbacks of her past (as "Arlie"), her two personalities being represented by two performers, who sometimes appear on stage simultaneously. We meet the guards and prison officials with whom "Arlie" waged a running battle; and the unfeeling, slatternly mother, the lecherous former prison guard, the pimp ex-boyfriend, and the touchingly friendly neighbor with whom "Arlene" is confronted in the present. Ultimately the play, like life, offers no simple answers—but it conveys, with heartrending honesty and compassion, the struggle of someone fighting for her life against incredible odds.

"…a blaze of theatrical energy that lights up the Off-Broadway scene as nothing else has done this season." —NY Times.

"The writing is thrilling in its unadorned honesty, and the characters seethe with genuine life…one of the best plays of the year." —NY Post.

"This sensitive and beautifully written play totally commands attention, giving us a heroine we really care about…GETTING OUT speaks to the hearts as well as the mind. It moved me to joyous tears." —Show Business.

Getting Out Cover Image
ISBN: 9780822204398
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dramatists Play Service - December 1st, 1979

Four Plays Cover Image
ISBN: 9780930452841
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Theatre Communications Group - January 1st, 1993