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The Scholar (or he sleeps tonight!)

A one-act play by Kevin Korpela (© 2004 observatorydrive.com)

Opening Scene: Fade from black to high above the dark-green forest of the Northwoods. We move from the massive darkness to an historic/imposing building in a forest clearing. This is Old Main, a non-government laboratory, also know as The Civic Institute. Entering through a window in Old Main, weíre in an impressive room with a scurry of activity, people moving and talking with heated, yet friendly, debate and intense concentration. In the center of the activity is a tall, thin figure wearing dark clothes with dark leather shoes and dark-brown rimmed glasses. He has a serene, yet warm, confidence. His intensity is sure but honest and humane.

The Narrator speaks in conjunction with the opening scene above, "His name: the Scholar. Heís the leader of a discreet yet important non-government facility, called Old Main or often The Civic Institute..."

"...Old Main includes a diverse group of citizens such as writers, photographers, artists, musicians, teachers, translators, printers, professors, historians, engineers, herbalists, lawyers, dancers, economists, biologists, tea shop owners, organic farmers, aviators, logistical specialists, managers enforcing minority equity in government contracts, developers, conservationists, real estate agents, psychologists, psychiatrists, nutritionists, barristas, actors, directors of historic societies, curators of education, astronomers, doctors, and architects..."

"...These activists design progressive parity for all global citizens through a series of projects involving justice, fairness, and leadership via environmental, economic, social, political, and cultural concepts."

The Narrator continues, "The aroma in the room is earthy yet meditative...aroma from a Chinese black tea, perhaps an aged tea such as a 1987 Pu-erh. Sounds of tap-tap-tappity-tap fills the space and your ears. The Scholar is among those preparing documents on old-school typewriters and his current research is pouring onto the paper."

Next Scene: Close-up view of the white paper in the typewriter with the most recent paragraph composed and it's words fill the view with black Courier font:

In France, in the mid-19th Century, Honorť Daumier was an artist and humanitarian. This painter, illustrator, sculptor and draftsman exposed the egotism, the greed and the sordid ambition of the age, its vulgar cunning and its blindness to spiritual, moral and artistic values. He left nothing untouched and transformed the trivial into the epic. He had a sureness and strength as a draftsman, a marvelous memory, an imaginative power to transform and order things seen, and his success in interpreting an age to itself in terms it could understand.

The Scholar then says, thinking to himself, "If only Daumier was a member of our team at Old Main. Anyway, itís two-in-the-morning, the Celtic music is still ringing in my head from earlier this evening, and the 16 Ounce Winter Ale is working its magic because Iím fallingggg. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .asleeeeep. . . . ."

Final Scene: View pulls away from the Scholar and sounds of snoring/sighing/dreaming overcome the tap-tap-tappity-tap, view retreats through the window, moves high in the sky, Old Main disappears into the dark-forest of the Northwoods, and fade to black.

Director says, "Cut! Weíre done! Letís go home! Great work people! Good performance Korpela."
A few minutes pass, "Mr. Korpela, we can go home now. Mr. Korpela, letís go. Korpela? KORPELA!!!!!"
Mr. Korpela awakens, "Oh, hi, I apologize, I, I, I fell asleep..."

© Kevin Korpela, www.observatorydrive.comô