MERDE DE CANARD by Kenneth N Kurtz


Merde de Canard  is a farce-comedy, based on the unflappable yet unpredictable logic of automatons. Its hero is a character from history, Jacques de Vaucanson, whose wondrous mechanical creations, especially the famous duck, delighted Parisians of the mid-eighteenth century and also foreshadowed the workings of modern computers. As in all such comedies there are mistaken identities, lovelorn chases, sex desired but never quite delivered, and in this case, robots (one of them rather randy) running amuck.  The play is subtitled: A Comedy of Seven Doors and Eight Automatons.



Jacques de Vaucanson, 35, the famous maker of automatons.

Maurice, 18, a handsome new apprentice.

Marguerite du Mont, a greedy landlady. (Who would never tell anyone her age.)

Marie, 17, Madame du Mont’s very pretty daughter.

Grouchy (Grew-SHEE) and la Harpe (La-ARP), two workmen in the shop. (But in those roles we only see their hands. They also mime two of the automatons as well as work puppets for the others.)

La Comtesse Duchien, 60, who laments her late Alphonse.

Le Marquis de Chagrin, 55, who is most unlucky in matters of love.

La Baroness Aperçue (Ah-per-SUE), 30, who lives by foretelling futures.

l’Abbé d’Ailleurs (Ay-YEAR), 45, who is ungodly tired of  hearing confessions.



Merde de Canard won the second place award in the 2006 Arkansas Rep. Kaufman and Hart New Comedy Competition



Approx 1 hour 45 minutes – not including interval



Preview available here

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