Marisa Wegrzyn
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Winner of the 2009 Wasserstein Prize


HICKORYDICKORY explores what would happen if we all had an internal clock telling us the time of our death. Someone has tinkered with Cari Lee’s mortal clock, so she’s stuck at 17 for eternity. Now she’s the same age as her daughter, Dale. But Dale’s worried about her own mortal clock — the one that tells her the day and time she’ll die. Dad’s an expert clock-smith, but some timepieces are not meant to be tampered with.

Production Info

Cast: 5 total (3 female, 2 male)
Full Length Dark Comedy (about 150 minutes)
Single Set
Contemporary Costumes
Category: Tag:

Press Quotes

“There’s an arresting metaphor at the heart of HICKORYDICKORY, one that Wegrzyn makes literal in her foray into magical realism: Each of us is outfitted with a ‘mortal clock’ that counts down the seconds until we’re fated to die … In most of us they’re situated in our chests, the chain wrapped tightly around our beating hearts. For an unfortunate few, however, the mortal clock is lodged in the head; these poor souls know exactly how long they have left and can hear every second tick away … Wegrzyn raises powerful themes here of mortality, responsibility and parental sacrifice. ‘When you know’ how long you have left, says the fiery Cari Lee, ‘you don’t tell the people you love’ … HICKORYDICKORY’s heartrending climax ought to stop your own clock for at least a few seconds.” —Kris Vire, Time Out Chicago

“[Wegrzyn] is a quirky, gently anarchic and refreshingly populist writer unafraid of seemingly outlandish conceits, dark humor and broad theatricality … Most conceptual plays like this … tend to collapse in on themselves, eventually overrun by the logical implications of being able to know and shift time. But remarkably, Wegrzyn has created an internal logic that is difficult to defeat, however much a critic might try … Better yet, HICKORYDICKORY does not get trapped in some kind of trippy sci-fi gestalt … but remains human, sweet, compassionate and honest.” —Chris Jones, The Chicago Tribune

“This quick-paced and totally intriguing … dark comedy features empathetic characters put into situations rich in fantasy using elements of magical realism … [A] marvelously quirky and highly imaginative new work … This show will grab you.” —Tom Williams, Chicago Critic

“Normally I wouldn’t suggest that a production featuring bouts of (discreet) onstage surgery is a ripping and quicksilvery good time … [But] some smartly calibrated plot revelations and plenty of good laughs make this show a remarkably lull-free zone … [A] witty and bittersweet meditation on mortality from the singular mind of Marisa Wegrzyn.” —James Hebert, The San Diego Union-Tribune

About the Author


  • Marisa Wegrzyn

    Marisa Wegrzyn has had plays produced in Chicago at Steppenwolf Theatre, A Red Orchid Theatre, Theatre Seven of Chicago, Rivendell, and Chicago Dramatists; in New York Off-Broadway at Second Stage and Kef Theatre; regionally at CenterStage Baltimore, Moxie Theatre San Diego, Victory Theatre Center Los Angeles, and Hot City Theatre St Louis. She has been commissioned by Steppenwolf (twice), Yale Repertory Theatre, and Theatre Seven. She is a founding member of Theatre Seven in Chicago and is currently writing for TV (Goliath, Amazon) while continuing her work in theater around the country.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 5/16/2018
Pages 114
ISBN 9780881457735

Special Notes

Special Notes

Licensees are required to include the original stage producers credits in the following form on the title page in all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play and in all advertising in which the full cast appears in size of type not less than ten percent (10%) of the size of the title of the Play:
The following must appear within all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play:
Hickorydickory is produced
by special arrangement with Broadway Play Publishing Inc, NYC

Production Stills

Production Stills

Hickorydickory 1

Thomas Gebbia, Gail Rastorfer, and Joanne Dubach in the Chicago Dramatists’ production of HICKORYDICKORY. Photo by Jeff Pines.

Hickorydickory 2

Thomas Gebbia, Gail Rastorfer, Tyler Ross, and Joanne Dubach. Photo by Jeff Pines.

Hickorydickory 3

Thomas Gebbia and Gail Rastorfer. Photo by Jeff Pines.

Upcoming and Recent Productions


9/6/2019 – 9/29/2019
Dragon Production Theatre Company
Redwood City, CA