Dreary and Izzy - Tara Beagan - E-Book

Dreary and Izzy E-Book

Tara Beagan

8,99 €


1975, Lethbridge Alberta. When the Monoghan sisters lose their parents in a car accident, Deirdre remains as the sole caregiver to her older sister, Isabelle. Just as Deirdre is poised to enter university and begin exploring, for the first time, her own future and independence, she must choose how much of her own life she will sacrifice for the love of Isabelle. Deirdre is barely staying afloat under the strain of this reality when hope arrives in the form of gorgeous vacuum cleaner salesman Freddie Seven Horses. Both sisters find in Freddie a new world of unexplored emotions and ideas, where Freddie is a port in a storm.

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Playwrights Canada Press Toronto • Canada

Dreary and Izzy © Copyright 2006 Tara Beagan


202-269 Richmond St. W., Toronto, ON M5V 1X1

416.703.0013 • [email protected] • www.playwrightscanada.com

No part of this book may be reproduced, downloaded, or used in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the publisher, except for excerpts in a review or by a licence from Access Copyright, www.accesscopyright.ca.

For professional or amateur production rights, please contact the publisher.

We acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council (OAC), the Ontario Media Development Corporation, and the Government of Canada for our publishing activities.

Cover photograph of Tara and Rebecca Beagan by Pauline Beagan. Cover concept by Patrick Beagan. Cover design: JLArt

Production Editor: MZK

Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication

Beagan, Tara

Dreary and Izzy / Tara Beagan.

A play.

ISBN 978-0-88754-612-9

I. Title.

PS8603.E34D74 2007      C812’.6        C2007-904203-1

First edition: July 2007. Fourth printing: October 2017. Printed and bound in Canada by Imprimerie Gauvin, Gatineau.

Love and thanks to my sister bears repeating… Becky, you were my first friend, you are my dearest friend. You taught me how to give and receive love at the same time. So much of my heart is you, and I am a better person because of it. This play is from my heart and so it is as much your creation as it is mine.


There are many contentious issues within the story that is Dreary and Izzy – the neglect of our varying health care systems that led to the denial of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders for centuries, the infantilization of our First Nations people by the Canadian government, the legacy of dispossession between First Nations and “non” that continues to effect all of Canada’s peoples, and the myriad identity questions that spring from adoption. None of these are at the core of this play.

When I first brought Dreary and Izzy to Yvette Nolan at Native Earth Performing Arts, she spoke so eloquently about many of these issues, and how most importantly, the play is actually “about the things we’ll do for love.” I came to realize, through the development of the play and the ensuing production, just how true this is.

The story came to me at the point in time where the play ends. In that strange and wonderful place between sleeping and waking, I dreamt a scene between two sisters. I was moved to write several pages about these sisters and eventually came to know Deirdre and Isabelle as well as I do old friends of mine. People who have seen the play have shared with me stories of their own: the slow and painful loss of a mother to the deterioration of Alzheimer’s, the recognition from a teacher of all too many students in the underdeveloped woman-child Isabelle, the embarrassed and vulnerable admissions from a sixteen-year-old who sees in the smitten Deirdre her own high school experiences with love. It is my hope that this play will continue to move people beyond the specifics and speak to some experience they have had, while leaving the residue of these sisters as newer memories.


First and foremost, I thank my sister Becky who introduced me to the term “FAS.” Beyond mere science, you take this epidemic very personally and you spoke of it with such passion that I was driven to research FAS. You’ve always been my favourite teacher.

To the late Michael Dorris whose book, The Broken Cord, taught me more than I could ever have gleaned from medical journals.

To Bonnie Buxton, author of the definitive Canadian book on FASD, Damaged Angels. Your insight into this subject and all of its related heartbreak brought my understanding of this preventable malady to a very restless place. It drove me through the difficult writing times, knowing how bloody challenging it’s been for you. Bonnie, you accepted me into this from the beginning and you continue to inspire with your generosity and courage. Thanks also to your Colette who stood up at that meeting on that fateful day and cursed out the people she saw as being unsupportive of this play – so much like her mother!

Thanks to Ruth Madoc-Jones who let me discover my playwright and for keeping me afloat through the stormy waters.

Gookschem to Cowboy Nolan, reluctant leader and apprehensive mentor – it was through your encouragement that I brought this seed of an idea to the place where it could be staged. Your faith in the collaborative process of theatre is a lesson that I continue to learn. Thank you for pairing me with Ruth Madoc-Jones from the beginning and for pulling together such enormously talented people for the premiere. Thanks most of all for letting me make mistakes as I go. Bear with me, Yvette! I will earn what you’ve already given me.

Dreary and Izzy premiered at Native Earth Performing Arts, Inc. in November and December of 2005. The production was in association with Factory Theatre and played in the Factory Studio space. The company was as follows:

Isabelle Monoghan Michaela Washburn

Deirdre Monoghan Lesley Faulkner

Mrs. Harper Sharon Bakker

Freddie Seven Horse Ryan Cunningham

Director/Dramaturg Ruth Madoc-Jones

Assistant Director Clare Preuss

Set and Props Design Camellia Koo

Costume Design Joanne Dente

Sound Design and Composer Lyon Smith

Fight Co-ordinator Richard Lee

Stage Manager Tamerrah Volkovskis

Assistant Stage Manager Jennifer Lau

Production Manager Stephen Lalande


Dreary and Izzy received its original workshop in the Weesageechak Begins to Dance XVII Festival for Native Earth Performing Arts at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre in Toronto, Ontario in October of 2004 with the following cast:

Isabelle Monoghan Lura Merritt

Deirdre Monoghan Michelle Latimer

Mrs. Harper Colleen Williams

Freddie Seven Horses Ryan Cunningham

Director/Dramaturg Ruth Madoc-Jones

Stage Manager Isaac Thomas

Thanks to Lorne Cardinal, Darrell Dennis, Diana Donnelly, Patricia Hamilton, Chapelle Jaffe, Craig Lauzon, Tamara Podemski, Sara Sinclair and Michelle St. John for reading roles at various stages of development. Thanks also to every person who auditioned for their contributions through playing with the script as actors.




Sound must come from localized area, not through the theatre’s sound system. Real sounds must be used whenever possible. All pre-show and post-show music must be Canadian and suited to the 1970s, even if it is only heard in the lobby space. Careful attention must be paid to the props and set to evoke the correct time period.

I. Prologue – Isabelle Inside

Lights up on ISABELLE, First Nations woman in her late twenties, simple hair style, black clothing.