Outrageous Fortune: A Tragicomedy Fiasco

Outrageous Fortune: A Tragicomedy Fiasco

Written by Megan Pedersen
With inspiration by Scott Underwood

“The play’s the thing wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king” – Hamlet, Act 2, Scene ii

Your mom married your uncle. Your girlfriend couldn’t wait to kill herself over you. And you just found out you’ve been walking around with a donkey’s head all afternoon. Life is tough in ol’ Bill Shakespeare’s world. The best you can usually hope for is a nice quickie marriage at the end of a long tortuous journey.

Or maybe you’ve been trotting the boards at the Globe making those stories come to life. You’d better watch out for the rotten fruit the unwashed rabble will throw at you if they don’t like the show. But I wouldn’t worry too much – Billy Boy put lots of fart jokes in this one.

Movie Night: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Shakespeare in Love, Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet


1. Aunt-Mother/Uncle-Father and Child
2. Siblings
3. Cousins
4. Parent and child
5. Distant relatives
6. Betrothed couple

1. Gravediggers
2. Men-at-arms
3. Tutor and student
4. Merchant and servant
5. Actors
6. Professional rivals

1. Best friends
2. Fair-weather friends
3. Mentor and protégé
4. Manipulator and victim
5. Bad family blood
6. Mutual keepers of an ominous secret

1. Star-crossed lovers
2. On again, off again lovers
3. Can’t stand you now, but we’re actually soulmates
4. Unrequited lust
5. Spouses
6. Poet/Artist and muse

1. Ghost in need of avenging/Avenger of said ghost
2. Royal assassins
3. Members of rival houses
4. Impudent strumpets
5. Thieves
6. Obsessed/object of obsession

1. Knight and squire
2. Prince/Princess and commoner
3. King/Queen and Fool
4. Unwashed rabble
5. Witches
6. Travelling minstrels


1. …by your sweetheart, to prove you’ve still got it going on.
2. …by an innocent, to sully their good name.
3. …to hurt someone you desperately love.
4. …by a certain someone, to win a bet.
5. …by your old lover, to rekindle the romance.
6. …by anyone, for the first time.

1. “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.”
2. …by teaching them a lesson they won’t forget.
3. …for not getting that promotion you were promised.
4. …for making you fall in love with an ass.
5. …on your meddling family for messing up your life.
6. …on everyone for the indignities you’ve suffered.

1. …from an overly ambitious spouse.
2. …by delivering a rousing speech to an unruly mob.
3. …by murdering a dictator.
4. …by imparting advice on the young people of the realm.
5. …from your emotionally distant father.
6. …from your friend, for delivering them in their hour of need.

1. …of an arranged marriage to a horrible person.
2. …of town before they catch you for what you’ve done.
3. …of this too t

oo solid flesh and kill yourself already.
4. …that damn’d spot. Out I say!
5. …of an obligation by pretending to be insane.
6. …of a crushing debt that’s come due.

1. …by killing the king and taking his place.
2. …by stealing everything that’s not nailed down.
3. …by tricking someone who trusts you.
4. …by going to war with France.
5. …by being the last one standing when the dust settles.
6. …by marrying into a wealthy family.

1. …about someone’s infidelity.
2. …about your father’s murder.
3. …about the mistake that haunts you.
4. …about the identity of the bewitching minx you met.
5. …about who your real friends are.
6. …about whether or not they’re really dead.


1. An executioner’s blade
2. A poisoned pearl
3. A hangman’s noose
4. “Is this a dagger I see before me, the handle toward my hand?”
5. A white hot poker
6. An asp’s sting

1. A flock of sheep
2. One third of your father’s kingdom
3. A rich jewel in an Ethiope’s ear
4. Three caskets made of gold, silver and lead
5. “With this excellent disguise they’ll never suspect I’m really a woman/man.”
6. A turquoise ring

1. A human skull
2. A pound of flesh
3. A torture device
4. A barrel of wine
5. An Indian changeling
6. A blood stained toga

1. The wagon of a travelling troupe of actors
2. “A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!”
3. A pirate ship
4. A resplendent chariot
5. On a raft, set adrift in the ocean
6. A half-dead donkey

1. A broken locket
2. A handkerchief
3. Battle scars received on St. Crispin’s Day
4. A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing
5. A love poem
6. A family ring

1. A bubbling cauldron
2. A fairy’s curse
3. A wizard’s spell books
4. A staff that controls the weather
5. A ghostly visage
6. A witch’s prophesy


1. The Tower of London
2. On the banks of the River Thames
3. Under London Bridge
4. Fleet Street
5. Westminster Abbey
6. Whitehall Palace

1. A whorehouse
2. A country manor
3. A townhouse
4. A guild house
5. The poorhouse
6. Ye Olde Town Inn

1. In the pit with the rabble
2. In the balcony with the nobles
3. Just under the trap door
4. In the tiring house (backstage)
5. On stage
6. In the heavens (ceiling), waiting to make a dramatic entrance

1. A deserted island
2. A mountaintop
3. A graveyard
4. A battlefield
5. A forest (magical or otherwise)
6. A farm

1. A nunnery
2. The family mausoleum
3. A courtroom
4. The docks
5. The gutter
6. The stables

1. A balcony outside your bedchamber
2. The ramparts overlooking the sea
3. The throne room
4. The family chapel
5. In the rank sweat of an enseamed bed
6. In the banquet hall


Break A Leg! A Very Theatrical Fiasco – Fiasco Playset

Hi there Jank Cast listeners, JOHNKELLY here!

Tonight after playing the Boomtown Fiasco playset Megan and I sat down and did something we should have done a long time ago. File a restraining order against Timo? Nope. We made a fiasco playset to reflect the world of the THEATRE! We call it Break A Leg! A Very Theatrical Fisaco. To add a little spice we added some classic characters from shows to the relationships. We’d love any feedback on it in the comments section. So, read it. play it. Send in critiques. Enjoy our Preview Week Version:

Break A Leg – Preview Week Version

A Very Theatrical Fiasco Playset

Written by: John Kelly and Megan Pedersen

with help by Mike the Pro-Champion

Movie Night: Waiting for Guffman, Slings and Arrows, Extras, Noise is Off

Special Thanks: All the theatres we have worked at over they years that have given us inspiration for everything in here from the box of swords with no lock on it to “You’ll remember me when I’m famous!”
Also thanks to a particular production of Uncle Vayna and from JOHNKELLY to Columbia College Chicago


  1. Romance
    1. Showmance
    2. Director and Cast (Member or entire)
    3. Thespian and Outsider
    4. Crush
    5. Secret Lovers
    6. One night stand
  2. Family
    1. Supportive Parents and Child
    2. Unsupportive Parents and Child
    3. Following in the family footsteps
    4. Jealous Siblings – Austin and Lee
    5. Spouses (Current or Separate)
    6. Dysfunctional Family – The Lowmans
  3. Work
    1. Stage Crew
    2. Actors
    3. Designers
    4. Director and Other (Local Playwright, Cast, Crew, Designers)
    5. Co-Directors
    6. Volunteer” Ushers
  4. Community
    1. Actor and Techie
    2. Cast-mates
    3. Diva Ingenue
    4. Bitter Rivals
    5. Community Theatre/Summer Stock Players
    6. Mentor and Protege
  5. Friendship
    1. Just for the show
    2. Drinking buddies
    3. Best Friends – Herratio and Hamlet
    4. Till the Bitter end – Vladimir and Estragon
    5. User and the used – Gloud and Fox
    6. Fair-weather Friends – Caesar and Brutus
  6. The Past
    1. Went to Theatre school together
    2. Bad Blood
    3. Used to own a Theatre Company
    4. Former Child Actors
    5. I’ve never met them. But I’ve heard stories.”
    6. You’ll remember me when I’m famous!”


  1. To Get Laid…
    1. Once a show. Every show.
    2. To show whose boss.
    3. To get that part you’ve always dreamed of.
    4. To maintain your reputation.
    5. For the first time.
    6. To come out of the closet.
  2. To Get Revenge…
    1. For not getting that role.
    2. By ruining the show.
    3. For the humiliation you endure every day.
    4. On the one who broke your heart.
    5. For spelling your name wrong in the program.
    6. On the guy who makes everyone look bad.
  3. To Get Out…
    1. Of this damn business!
    2. Of this horrible show.
    3. Of this crappy town.
    4. Of my contract
    5. Of a relationship that’s turned weird.
    6. And to Broad-WAY!
  4. To Get Even…
    1. For that actor who can’t find their light.
    2. With a rival.
    3. With “The Establishment”.
    4. With the reviewer that panned your show.
    5. With those bastards for not giving you your check.
    6. With the people who just don’t understand good theatre when they see it.
  5. To Get Famous…
    1. Because I deserve it.”
    2. To Prove you wrong.”
    3. So I can make real art.”
    4. So my parents will accept me.”
    5. So everyone knows my name.”
    6. Just like __________.”
  6. To Get Respect…
    1. By doing this role justice!
    2. From yourself, by finally doing it once and for all.
    3. From everyone for atoning for your mistake.
    4. By getting a good review.
    5. I don’t need respect. This is art.”
    6. Because you have nothing left to life for.


  1. Props
    1. A real antique wheel chair.
    2. A porcelain Buddha that smashes each night.
    3. Alcohol – Lots and lots of alcohol.
    4. A live animal.
    5. A human skull.
    6. Two Hundred Christmas Trees.
  2. Weapons
    1. A Gun loaded with blanks.
    2. A big box of swords with no lock on it.
    3. A grenade. (It’s totally safe.)
    4. Gloves with claws on them.
    5. Nun-chucks.
    6. A Anti-Aircraft gun from when you did Mister Robert.
  3. On Stage
    1. A lamp that is wired poorly.
    2. A sandbag.
    3. Glow tape – lots of glow tape.
    4. A giant red velvet, flame retardant curtain.
    5. A trap door.
    6. A rain machine.
  4. Unsavory
    1. A giant bag of communal pot.
    2. A sex tape staring someone in the cast.
    3. Food stamps.
    4. Eviction notice.
    5. Pregnancy test.
    6. A secret shrine to Julie Tamor.
  5. Valuables
    1. The next show’s unreleased cast list.
    2. Keys to the theatre.
    3. Cell phone number of the director.
    4. The stage manager’s prompt book.
    5. The existence of a bad review.
    6. The real reason the last actor quit.
  6. Sentimental
    1. Stephen Sondheim’s autograph
    2. Tear stained love letter
    3. Security Blanket
    4. A director’s good note.
    5. Flowers from opening night.
    6. A Tony Award that belonged to someone else.


  1. Front of House
    1. Box Office
    2. Cash Bar
    3. Lobby
    4. Coming Soon” Marque
    5. Bathroom
    6. Audience seating
  2. Backstage
    1. The Grid
    2. The Dressing Rooms
    3. The Booth
    4. The Prop Room
    5. The Green Room
    6. The Director Office
  3. Outside the Theatre
    1. Parking Lot/Valet Stand
    2. The 7-11 across the street
    3. The back alley
    4. The smokey stairwell
    5. The Salvation Army
    6. Hookah Bar
  4. Residences
    1. A tiny studio apartment
    2. A van parked behind the theatre
    3. Your parents house
    4. A 5 bedroom house with 7 people living there.
    5. On someone else’s couch.
    6. How do you afford this place?”
  5. Actor Bar
    1. Out front for smoking
    2. Passed out under a table
    3. The bathroom – maybe or maybe not having sex
    4. Behind the Golden T machine
    5. Holy shit, it’s tequila.”
    6. The techie table
  6. Cast Party
    1. The Director’s loft apartment
    2. Denny’s
    3. A restaurant that is far too nice.
    4. In a field in the middle of no where
    5. The local high school
    6. A Bowling Alley