The Trolleys by Sara West


CAST SIZE:  6F, 5M (as named but not gender specific)

A PLAY TO: Read, read aloud, study, perform, use as stimulus for making and responding their own drama work.

GENRE: Comedy, drama, aspects of fantasy, puppetry

THEMES: Friendship, loyalty, resilience, sustainability

CURRICULUM LINKS: The Arts-Drama, Science, General Capabilities – Literacy, Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Learning

SYNOPSIS: “We can learn from them Baby May – these are our mistakes…the one’s we left behind…”

The cover of a manhole starts to move, and a beautiful glowing jar is pushed over the edge. A small hand follows, then an arm – a girl pulls herself to the surface. She picks up the jar, holds it to her chest and looks to us. Looks right at us.  The Trolleys are a gang of six living on the outskirts of the city. They need their light jars to survive the dangerous place they live in but their lights are fading fast and no one knows why. It’s up to Savage Kim and her fiery, soulful, smart, skittish (and sometimes silly) gang to embark on a dangerous journey to figure it out. All they know is that they don’t have much time and if they fail they too will disappear. They will be Dusters.
The Trolleys contains a wonderful mix of quirky, feisty and earnest characters that will suit a range of young performers. It is multi-locational but can be staged simply and imaginatively. The play has a big heart and asks big questions. What happens if you inherit a world where you aren’t safe? What do we need to survive in the dark? Who will save us if we can’t save ourselves? No one wants to be a Duster!

STAGING: While each character within the text is referred to as either male or female this is only a guideline. The names of characters however should stay the same regardless. Anyone producing and casting this work is encouraged to adopt an inclusive approach to casting, where a character’s ethnic or cultural background, age, gender, sexuality or disability need not be specified.  The cast should reflect diversity.

The Light Jars are measured in brightness — though they do flicker and wane it’s important they are never allowed to go out completely unless specified. Without even a tiny light in your jar — you’re a Duster.

We acknowledge that we live and create on unceded lands. We pay our respects to the First Peoples of Australia, and to their elders past, present and future.

© Australian Plays Transform 2024