Sense & Sensibility

Written by:

Michelle Deines

Cast Size:
20

Roles For:

  • Men: 9
  • Women: 11

Genre:

Comedy
Period Piece
Romantic Comedy

Themes:

Classism
Empathy
Humility
Integrity
Sexism
Standing up to others

Length:

120 min.

Year Written:

2018

Synopsis:

Two very different sisters—Marianne, free-spirited and romantic, and Elinor, sensible and reserved—find themselves thrown into an unkind world when their father dies.

Suddenly made poor and homeless by the rules of inheritance, Marianne and Elinor must leave their family estate with their mother and younger sister. They are not in their new home long, however, before Marianne falls in love with a man who appears to be a kindred spirit, but may be harboring secrets of his own. Meanwhile, Elinor suffers her own heartbreak but conceals her true feelings, even from Marianne.

In a world where rigid social conventions clash with impulses of the heart, Marianne and Elinor must navigate gossip and heartbreak before they can reconcile with each other, and find happiness.

An adaptation that stays quite close to the original story and language, but emphasizes the central relationship–not the romances, but the relationship between the two sisters.

Characters:

MR. HENRY DASHWOOD – 50’s-60’s. Father of John, Elinor, Marianne and Margaret Dashwood.
MRS. DASHWOOD – 40’s-50’s. Step-mother to John, mother to Elinor, Marianne and Margaret. Loving but can be impulsive and imprudent.
ELINOR DASHWOOD. 21. Reserved but deeply caring. The rock of the family.
MARIANNE DASHWOOD. 19. Romantic, idealistic, impulsive. Caring but sometimes unable to see other people’s point of view.
MARGARET DASHWOOD. 13. Idolizes her older sisters. Wants to be grown up but isn’t quite there yet.
JOHN DASHWOOD. 28. (step-brother to Elinor, Marianne, and Margaret). Selfish. Easily influenced by others, especially his wife, Fanny.
MRS. FANNY DASHWOOD. 25. Selfish, materialistic, and duplicitous; vulnerable to flattery.
EDWARD FERRARS. 24. Reserved, a little awkward. Kind and considerate.
ROBERT FERRARS. 22. Edward’s younger brother. Conceited, pretentious, entitled.
MRS. JENNINGS. 50’s. Widow; mother to Lady Middleton and Charlotte Palmer. Means well but can be crass and clueless.
SIR JOHN MIDDLETON. (“Sir John”) 40. Cousin to Mrs. Dashwood; generous, inclined to like everybody.
LADY MARY MIDDLETON. 27. A taciturn snob. Easily scandalized.
COLONEL BRANDON. 35. Friend to Sir John; reserved but kind. Has experienced past tragedy.
SIR JOHN WILLOUGHBY. 25. Charming, gregarious, fun-loving. Enjoys living a rich lifestyle.
MISS LUCY STEELE. 22. Outwardly charming; shrewd and manipulative.
MISS ANNE STEELE. 24. A gossip. Her favourite topic is “beaux.” Oblivious and superficial.
CHARLOTTE PALMER. 22. Mrs. Jennings’ daughter. Silly, inclined to laugh at everything, even if it isn’t funny.
MR. PALMER. 25. Inclined to judge everybody, especially his wife.
LADY FERRARS. 50’s. Edward, Fanny, and Robert’s mother. Severe, materialistic, imperious.
MR. HARRIS. Doctor.

Others:
Sarah, Mr. Reid, Nancy (servants)
Hostess, Jeweller, Priest, Pallbearers

First Produced:

Capilano University Theatre, November 2018.

Resources:

The play can be accessed through the Canadian Play Outlet.

Sense & Sensibility by Michelle Deines

Notes:

Several parts can be doubled to make a cast between 15 and 17. Contact the author for suggestions. Several parts could also be cross-cast.