Tesla

TeslaMagic

Winner of the Tesla Science Foundation Award.

Tesla is a theatrical journey into Nikola Tesla’s unlimited imagination during the final years of his life. Living alone and in relative obscurity in a hotel bedroom, Tesla desperately develops his particle beam to save his beloved Yugoslavia from the Nazi Luftwaffe. He draws on the intellectual strength of his youth when he was the most celebrated and controversial inventor in America. Even back in the Roaring Nineties, when New York was aglow with electrical invention and his beloved Katherine was still alive, could he have had the power to fight man’s destructive power? Is the only difference between modern war and the nineteenth century robber barons that people suffer and die more obviously and more quickly?

CHARACTERS:
Tesla: in his final days
Young Nikola: at the height of his fame
Katherine/Mary Edison
Thomas Edison/Poor 1/Patent Officer
George Westinghouse/Poor 2
Marconi/Mark Twain/Journalist/Radio Voice/Shipping Manager/Audience Member
JP Morgan/Poor 3
Luca/Boy/Waiter/King Peter/Patent Officer 1/Radio Voice 2

SETTING:
Suggested settings. They flip between the New Yorker Hotel, and scenes from the young Tesla’s life.

RUNNING TIME:
2hours 10 minutes with an intermission

HISTORY:
Produced off-broadway for a sold-out, standing room only, three week run.
Winner of the Tesla Science Foundation Award.

SAMPLE DIALOGUE:
End of the day. Edison fights with his smock as he removes it.
EDISON:…Goddamn this..DAMN it!
He speaks into phone.
EDISON: Tell my wife I want a big breakfast waiting for me. Tell her I want runny eggs. Sausage. Bacon. The works. Hash browns. Fried bread. Beer. Yes, beer. Tell her this smock has driven me to beer for breakfast.
Hangs up. Nikola enters.
NIKOLA: Good morning, Sir!
EDISON: Look at that, our fancy Parisian running around at night. Having fun, in the Big city?
NIKOLA: Mr. Edison-
EDISON: (Continuous) You know, here in New York we do this thing called work, we don’t party like you Frenchies until after the work is done.
Now, then we party, hard. Then we have beer for breakfast.
NIKOLA: I don’t drink-
EDISON: (Continuous) Listen, to me, Tesla, I’ll say this once. I been working all night here-
NIKOLA: I-
EDISON: (Continuous)-If you work for me, that means you work for me, no slacking. I work damn hard, I expect my employees to work harder. I told you get yourself to the S.S. Oregon quick as you can and, yet, here you are.
NIKOLA: I’m done, Sir.
EDISON: Too much for you, already, huh?
NIKOLA: I solved the problem.
EDISON: Like I only have one?
NIKOLA: The ship, Sir.
EDISON: It’s been twelve hours. You found a temporary fix?
NIKOLA: I had the crew help me.
EDISON: Did you now.
NIKOLA: They were in a shocking state.
EDISON: Well, they’re sailors.
NIKOLA: The motors.
EDISON: Huh? Oh, oh.

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Tesla




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