Baby Taj

Front Cover
Samuel French, Inc., 2010 - Drama - 89 pages
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Comedy / Characters: 2m, 3f / "I've dreamed you for so long, I can hardly believe you're with me now. Yet here you are: a tiny human voyager, sleeping off the shock of migration..." The legendary Taj Mahal is the next assignment for Rachel, an American travel writer whose failed romances have led her to ask: Why not have the baby she craves - on her own? She finds unexpected answers - and larger questions - among the glittering legacies of India's past. Alive with the sounds and colors of a remarkable country, this bittersweet comedy of mischievous matchmaking raises provocative questions about love, friendship, family, and what it means to be ready to be a parent. Baby Taj had developmental readings at Jeffrey Bihr Studio in Berkeley, California; The Lark Theatre in New York City; and TheatreWorks in Mountain View, California. It premiered at TheatreWorks in October, 2005, in a production directed by Matt August, to great critical acclaim. It was selected as one of the Top Ten Shows of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle, the Oakland Tribune, and the San Jose Mercury News, and nominated for an American Theatre Critics' Association Steinberg Award and a Bay Area Theatre Critics' Award. "A captivating inquiry into love and freedom... Thrives on a witty, probing clash between freethinking modernity and tradition." -Robert Hurwitt, San Francisco Chronicle "A bundle of cross-cultural joy... Marries the breezy cynicism of the now with the eternal power of India... [Shaffer's] ear for mod-groovy lingo gives the play a to-die-for sparkle." -Karen D'Souza, San Jose Mercury News ..".Filled with a savvy traveler's enthusiasm for the cultural and historical rewards of her journey." -Chad Jones, Oakland Tribune ..".Depicts the characters in all their contradictions and with such clarity that the humorous result is full of delicate reflections on caring and family." -Marianne Messina, Silicon Valley Metro "It's refreshing to come across a playwright who is able to write so honestly about life...Witty, poignant and frequently funny... It's hard not to get swept away." -Julie O'Shea, Mountain View Voice "Provocative and true, laced with snappy dialogue..." -Jeanie Forte, Palo Alto Weekly "A beautiful play...[Shaffer] has brilliantly integrated theatricality through the story of...the building of this famous fairy tale palace." -Richard Connema, Talkin Broadway

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About the author (2010)

Tanya Shaffer has spent time helping human rights groups in Guatemala, picking coffee in Nicaragua, and even digging ditches in the Czech Republic. She lives in San Francisco. Tanya first wrote about her experiences in Africa in the "Wanderlust" section of where her articles were extremely well-received and popular. Many of those pieces have been reprinted in anthologies and some have been incorporated into Somebody's Heart Is Burning. The chapter in the book called "Sand Angels" served as the basis for a one-woman stage production entitled "Let My Enemy Live Long!" which she has performed to critical acclaim in over 40 cities during the last three years. The show won the San Francisco Bay Area Critics Circle Award for solo performance and ran in San Francisco for more than six months, before moving on to Seattle and other West Coast venues, including a month-long run in San Diego in February of this year. She is working now to bring the show to New York City.

"From the Trade Paperback edition.

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