Martial Arts

by Yury Klavdiev

5 adult males, 2 adult females, 2 boys, 1 girl. One exterior, two interiors. One act.

Children did not make the world into which they are born. Nor are they always shielded by those whose responsibility it is to protect them. In this brief, violent play, a boy and girl of about 10 stand on the verge of having to answer for the sins of their elders, drug dealers whose visitors are addicts, thieves, thugs and a corrupt policeman. One day the boy comes home to find his parents murdered on the floor. He is joined by a neighbor girl, in whose company he seems to find the peace, equilibrium and understanding his parents never provided. But peace is not to be theirs. A policeman and his unsavory cohort break into the apartment looking for heroin left behind by the dead dealers. Instead, they find traces of the boy and girl who have taken up hiding in a closet. Since only the dead don’t bear witness, the boy’s and girl’s lives appear to be at an end. That is, until something like divine intervention steps in at the most unlikely of moments. But are the lives of these children charmed? And, if so, for how long?


Francis Cabatac (left) and Edmond Cofie in Martial Arts at Towson University. April 2010. Photo: Jay Herzog.


Jenette Isaacson as the Queen of Spades in Martial Arts. Photo: Jay Herzog