Moments of Madness

by Jack J. Berry
  • 10 - 60 minutes
  • 2-9 VARIABLE

Auditions, Classroom Use, Farce, Mental Health Issues, Seniors, Bare Stage, Collection, Colleges, Comedy, Community, Competitions, Doubling Roles


A short play collection by Jack J. Berry consists mainly of short comedies. Berry loves to stand the world on its head. A comedy about attempted assassin John J. Hinkley? Travel from Old Testament to WWII in a matter of minutes? These short plays can be produced as an evening of theater or individually as introductions to meetings and events. 


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  • Review Script 11.27 Watermarked PDF Download
  • Hardcopy 16.97 Delivery 1- 3 Weeks
  • Multi-Copy PDF 49.97 Printable PDF for Cast/Crew
  • Class/Group Study 65.29 Printable PDF for Multiple Copies

Performance Fee $40.00 A Production License Fee Per Performance (mandatory for all performances)

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Play Details


Let Jack J. Barry take you on a spin through time and space in Moments of Madness.

The Straight Dope: Jeff, a college student who, in his words, “has honorable intentions, a good future, and works out 3 times a week” asks his friend Bob for advice on women after he learns that Veronica can’t stomach him.    He wonders if he’s asked the right person when he discovers that Bob doesn’t even know how Marvin Gaye died.     Alicia puts it all into perspective.

A Dark Day For Hinkley, J:  John Hinkley Jr. (attempted assassin of Ronald Reagan) must use his newly-acquired coping skills to deal with the news that the “love of his life”, Jodie Foster, is not “playing on the same team” that he’d always assumed she was.

RTFM:  A lighter & comedic version of “Space Oddity” by David Bowie, where Major Tom is not as prepared as he should be because he doesn’t Read The Freakin’ Manual (RTFM), as Ground Control nags him to do.

Employee of The Month:   Randy works at a large department store but is very creative in generating sales. Just when he thinks that he’ll win “Employee of the Month” for the 2nd time in a row (and impress Mary in the process), he learns that his winning would not fit with the company goals.

The Art of The Duel:   A comedic look at what DUELING would be like if it were legal in the 21st century. The arbiter continues to have a thankless task.

Not Your Fairy Godmother:   A comedy that actually defends insurance companies because everyone just assumes that insurance companies have an unlimited amount of money to hand out.

Anecdotal Evidence:   A comedic look at how, as a society, we have become so dependent on double-blind studies that we can no longer make simple decisions. A quick journey thru history!

The Cat in the Hat Takes Flak:  A tribute to Dr. Seuss and a parody of “The Cat in the Hat Comes Back”, where Nick & Sally are savvy enough to call Social Services to deal with both The Cat and the pink snow that he created.

Available in hardcopy or downloadable PDF.

From the Play

A Dark Day for Hinkley, J.



SUPERVISOR: Male/Female in charge of a mental hospital 40-60 years

SPECIALIST:  Female psychologist 20-30 years old.

JOHN:  John Hinkley Jr., attempted assassin of Ronald Reagan

Setting:   A small office or conference room within a mental hospital   At rise, SUPERVISOR and SPECIALIST are talking and JOHN is offstage.

SUPERVISOR:  I know you’re new to this facility and haven’t met all our patients but we have a crisis with one and you’re a specialist so here’s a chance to earn your money.

SPECIALIST:   Who’s the patient?

SUPERVISOR (looking down at clipboard) NJ1981 — Hinkley, J.    Goes by the name “John” these days.

SPECIALIST:   What’s the crisis with him?

SUPERVISOR:  You’re young so this was before your time but he tried to kill President Ronald Reagan back in 1981.    He also shot two or three others, paralyzing one, James Brady, for the rest of his life.

SPECIALIST:  Yes, I’m familiar with his case, though I don’t know all the details.

SUPERVISOR:   He was declared innocent via insanity and he’s been in this place for a long time – before I even got here.    I’ve done some homework on him.    He hasn’t raised any flags over the last few years and even has a girlfriend, Leslie, from what I can understand.

SPECIALIST:  So you need me to step in because…

SUPERVISOR:  We haven’t had to adjust his meds and he has even made it to the #2 spot on the pool challenge ladder.    But today…

SPECIALIST:  He’s obsessed with reaching the #1 spot?    Well, having a goal can be a good…

SUPERVISOR:  NO!    That’s not it at all.    Did you read any of the entertainment news yesterday?

SPECIALIST:   I thought we kept those magazines just for the patients.   I’ve got better things to do.

SUPERVISOR:  Maybe you should start.    Anyway, Jodie declared she is a lesbian.

SPECIALIST:   Jodie who?    I thought you said his girlfriend is named “Leslie.”     Oh, there’s some sort of love triangle you need me to resolve.

SUPERVISOR:   Wow, you really are young.    John did the whole shooting thing to impress Jodie Foster.    He fell in love with her, watching “Taxi Driver”.



SPECIALIST:  He did the theme song – very pretty – it’s where Tony Danza and Danny Divito got their starts, right?

SUPERVISOR:  NO!    That was the TV series “Taxi”.    “Taxi DRIVER” was a movie.    Jodie was 12 years old.  John fell in love with her, stalked her, and attempted to kill the President to try to impress her.   That’s why he’s here.    Now after all these years, Jodie has come out as a lesbian and someone has to break the news to John.    We have NO idea how he’ll react – that’s why we need YOU, you’re the specialist at dealing with disappointment resolution.

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