Play Scripts

Michael Armstrong, the factory boy
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SynopsisBased on a novel by Frances Trollope first published in 1840; Michael Armstrong, a child working in the cotton mills of Lancashire 'rescues' a noble lady from a cow standing in her path. As a reward she persuades her wealthy mill-owner friend to take the boy in.  Michael soon displeases his benefactor who arranges for him to be apprenticed to the remote Deep Valley Mill where the regime is brutal. On learning of the appalling conditions that children have to endure in factories, heiress Mary Brotherton sets out to find Michael and bring him home.  On visiting Deep Valley she is told that Michael has died and so adopts a factory girl in his place. Ten years later we learn that Michael had in fact, escaped from Deep Valley. Upon learning that Mary has also adopted his own brother, they are all united just as a new Act is passed improving the conditions for children in factories. This is a large cast full length play suitable to be performed to an audience of all ages.  Although the play requires a company of 26 actors, it can be performed by a cast of 16 actors with doubling.
InformationSuitable for Under-16s to seeSuitable for under 16s to performAdaptation of book/film
Cast13M, 13F (minimum 16)
Mary Brotherton – An heiress (F) Lady Clarissa Shrimpton – Daughter of an earl (F) Dr Crockley – Friend to Sir Matthew Dowling (M) Sir Matthew Dowling – Wealthy owner of Brookford Mill (M) Lady Dowling – Sir Matthew’s wife (F) Mr Parsons – Superintendent at Brookford Mill (M) Peggy – A maid (F) Osmond Norval – A poet (M) Mrs Gabberly – A gossip (F) Jenkins – A manservant (M) Mrs Tremlett – Mary Brotherton’s old nurse (F) Mr Woodcomb – Superintendent at Deep Valley Mill (M) George Bell – Parson at Fairly (M) Mrs Bell – His wife (F) Richard Oastler – Campaigner for Factory Reform (M) Richard Smithson – Once coachman to Mary Brotherton (M) Betty – A housekeeper (F) Mrs Armstrong – Michael’s mother (F) Martha Dowling – Sir Matthew’s youngest daughter aged thirteen (F) Martha Dowling – Aged twenty three (F) Michael Armstrong – A factory boy aged nine (M) Michael Armstrong – Aged nineteen (M) Edward Armstrong – Michael’s lame brother aged eleven (M) Edward Armstrong – Aged twenty-one (M) Fanny Fletcher – A factory girl aged eleven (F) Fanny Fletcher – Aged twenty-one (F) Guests at Dowling Lodge (M/F) Pantomime Cow (M/F) Factory Children (M/F)
StatusAvailable for performance
Contact Details: (for other licences please contact the Author)
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