Tom Jacobson
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Pulled from the stomach of a whale, an American whaler is bleached blind and becomes a modern Tiresias in the court of Louis XVI. He seduces Marie Antoinette and sets the king on a path to destroy France and ultimately humankind. A tragicomedy in rhymed couplets.

Production Info

Cast: 10 total (3 female, 7 male)
Full Length Comedy (about 140 minutes)
Multiple Sets
Period Costumes
Category: Tags: ,

Press Quotes

“SPERM is Tom Jacobson’s adaptation of Jacques Miroir’s 18th-century play CACHALOT. Right — just try to find any play called CACHALOT or a French scribe named Miroir. Jacobson and his American Whaler central character both make a lot of stuff up in Jacobson’s new verse play, set against the backdrop of the French Revolution. Yet in their fictitious nonsense lie hidden truths, as applicable to our times as any.” —Steven Leigh Morris, L A Weekly

“In a refreshingly original and imaginative debut … Tom Jacobson’s SPERM combines the literary D N A of 18th-century French drama with postmodern irony to spawn a whale of a tale (literally — the title refers to the species of leviathans that have loomed large in symbolic portent since Jonah’s night sea journey). History, mythology, poetry and scatological puns collide with dazzling ingenuity in Jacobson’s quirky seriocomic gem, composed entirely in rhyming iambic pentameter. Clearly billed as an ‘adaptation’ of a supposed subversive historical text (CACHALOT by Jacques Miroir), SPERM explores the twilight of the French monarchy as it tries to stem the rising tide of republicanism among the populace. Amid the intrigues at pre-revolutionary Versailles arrives Richard, a fair-spoken American seaman who accepts a royal invitation to instruct the French in the ways of whaling.” —Philip Brandes, Los Angeles Times

About the Author


  • Tom Jacobson

    Tom Jacobson has had more than 80 productions of his plays, including SPERM at Circle X Theatre Company, THE ORANGE GROVE at Playwrights Arena, and the award-winning BUNBURY, TAINTED BLOOD, OUROBOROS and THE FRIENDLY HOUR at The Road Theatre Company. THE TWENTIETH-CENTURY WAY premiered at The Theatre @ Boston Court and the New York International Fringe Festival (five Ovation Award nominations, four Los Angeles Drama Critics' Circle nominations, one GLAAD Award nomination, Fringe Festival Award for Outstanding Production of a Play, PEN Center Award for Drama) and moved Off Broadway to Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre. MAKING PARADISE: THE WEST HOLLYWOOD MUSICAL was produced by Cornerstone Theater Company (Critic's Choice in Back Stage West). He has been a co-literary manager of The Theatre @ Boston Court, a founding member of Playwrights Ink, and a board member of Cornerstone Theater Company and The Theatre @ Boston Court. Most recent productions include the world premieres of THE CHINESE MASSACRE (ANNOTATED) at Circle X and HOUSE OF THE RISING SON at Ensemble Studio Theatre-LA (Critic's Choice in Back Stage West and Los Angeles Times, nominated for a GLAAD Award and winner of two Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards). Film: PRAIRIE SONATA (based on THE FRIENDLY HOUR). Opera: HOPSCOTCH, commissioned by The Industry.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 6/30/2014
Pages 112
ISBN 9780881455991

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:

First produced by Circle X Theatre Company, Los Angeles

The following must appear within all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play:
Sperm is produced
by special arrangement with Broadway Play Publishing Inc, NYC