Kris Bauske

International Playwright

Destroying Title IX

Jessie Price played baseball until his junior year of high school. Then faced with the prospect of no scholarships for college, he announced he was transgender and tried out for softball. When he insists on joining a college team led by legendary Coach Nan Sheridan, her thirty-two years of coaching tell her something’s off. But can she prove it? Can she protect the young women who depend on her? Can she save Title IX?

Simon Says

Things aren’t going so well for playwright, Connie Carmichael. She knows she’s meant to write for the stage, but the demands of a whiny husband and a lazy teenager are keeping her from realizing her goals. Exhausted, she nods off at her desk only to be awakened by the ghost of the great Neil Simon! Simon is on a mission to help a few select struggling playwrights which will earn him a spot in eternity next to his first wife, Joan, the love of his life. But nothing is that easy. Shortly after Simon’s ghost appears and Connie finds herself doubting her sanity, Neil is joined by none other than the ghost of Walter Matthau. Now Connie’s sure she’s lost her mind. Can Neil help Connie grow as a writer and find eternal peace and happiness? Can Connie find a balance between the work she adores and the family she loves? Can Walter stop ribbing Neil long enough for us all to catch a breath between laughs?

Styled along the lines of the great Simon comedies of the 1970s, Simon Says will make you laugh, make you cry, and give a fitting send-off to America’s greatest playwright.

Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas: The Musical!

What if the three wise men weren't really all that wise? What if they were just three ordinary guys, avoiding conflicts at home, who happened upon the greatest story ever told? Now add music, set the entire story in modern day America, sprinkle in a little redneck humor, and you have the smash A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas: The Musical!


Bill, Dave, and Jimmy have had it with their women! Even though it's Christmas Eve, and tradition dictates they should be home, drinking hot cocoa and singing carols, the boys decide to high-tail it into the mountains for a little hunting and a lot of beer. This protest does nothing to improve the mood of the women back in town. Lou runs Lou's Diner. She and Bill and have been trying (unsuccessfully) to have a baby. Barbie Jo, Lou's head waitress, is married to Dave, and they have kids, but Dave's not interested in family this year. Darlene, the most beautiful girl in three counties is dating Jimmy, but while she's ready to settle down, Jimmy can't stand the idea of commitment. It's gonna take a Christmas miracle to get these redneck families back together! Thank God one just came to town!

Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas

Lou’s Diner is the friendliest place in the south, but this Christmas Eve, Lou and the girls are steamed. Lou’s husband, Bill, and his pals Dave and Jimmy have taken off for a day of hunting in the mountains. Dave is married to one of Lou’s waitresses while Jimmy is trying to avoid marriage to the other. Seems they want to avoid family issues by getting out of town for the day. With the warm-hearted women hard at work in the diner on Christmas Eve and the men staunchly avoiding the traditional holiday setting back home, we get to witness each group’s perspective of the other through the eyes of a stranded truck driver named Bob. Whoever said, “Men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus” must have met this crew!


When Mary Sue, the pregnant and poignant stranger gets lost in the woods and ends up having her baby in a cow shed in the middle of a blizzard, the red-neck boys become the most unlikely Wise Men at the Nativity you ever saw! Bob is there to witness it all and give us the narrative of their adventure. The first miracle of Christmas blesses everyone in this tender comedy, and with simplicity and grace, gently reminds the audience of the real reason for the season!


Blending a healthy dollop of southern comedy with a pinch of O’Henry’s “Gift of the Magi”, A Good, Old Fashioned, Redneck Country Christmas is overflowing with infectious high spirits! Laughs abound!

Whispers to the Moon

Marcia Mayfield has returned to the same hotel on the Riviera every August for the last forty- two years. There, she meets up with the one true love of her life, Charles DÁnjou, and they spend two weeks together despite the fact that each is married to someone else. This summer, however, Marcia’s adult daughter shows up unannounced, and Marcia must juggle her efforts to help Carol choose her life’s path while trying to find a way to tell Charles she must finally end the affair. Can Marcia keep her secret from Carol, and is the affair the only secret Marcia’s hiding? What is the dark secret only Charles knows?


Winner of the 2014 Northeastern Indiana New Play Festival in Ft. Wayne, IN.

Published by Stagescripts LTD in London, UK.  For downloadable scripts and licensing info, please go to Whispers to the Moon on the Stagescripts website.

Lay That Trumpet in Our Hands

Lay That Trumpet in Our Hands is the explosive true story of the McMahons, a Yankee family living and working in the citrus industry in Central Florida, 1951.  When the son of their black foreman is abducted and brutally murdered by local members of the KKK, the family must decide whether to act and face persecution themselves or allow Marvin’s murder to go unpunished.  To Reesa, the McMahon’s fourteen year old daughter, Marvin was the older brother she never had.  His murder changes her world and her outlook on racism forever.


Reesa and her family work with Harry T. Moore, head of Florida’s NAACP before his murder on Christmas Day, 1951 and with Thurgood Marshall, head of the national organization as they struggle for justice in an unjust world.  For those who think Central Florida is all mouse ears and theme parks, this play will open their eyes to the shocking history of the happiest place on earth! 


The script is an adaptation of Susan Carol McCarthy's extraordinary novel, "Lay That Trumpet in Our Hands".  Ms. McCarthy has granted permission for this adaptation.

The Nearly Final Almost Posthumous Play of the Not-Quite-Dead Sutton McAllister

When world-renowned playwright Sutton McAllister suffers a major stroke and nearly dies, everyone springs into action to find the final script written in longhand by the old man just days before the almost end.  Sutton’s plastic surgery-addicted niece stands to inherit everything, but she and his devoted agent may have ulterior motives for finding the play.  What about the sexy young nurse who claims to want to help Sutton before it’s too late and his niece’s husband who’s following the nurse’s every move?  Hilarity abounds in this modern-day drawing room comedy that will leave you wondering who’s who, what’s what, and where’s the nearly final, almost posthumous play of the Not-Quite-Dead Sutton McAllister.


This play was part of the 2015 Hormel Festival of New Plays at the Phoenix Theatre in Phoenix, AZ and the Tampa Bay Theatre Festival.  This photo was taken as we prepared for the staged readings in Arizona.

A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Wedding

Fans of the hit, "A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas" know Jimmy popped the question on Christmas.  Fast-forward to Valentine's Day, just 6 weeks later, and the girls are back at the diner on the morning of Darlene & Jimmy's wedding.  As you might expect, things aren't going so well.  The dog ate the cake, Jimmy's got cold feet, and two strangers from out of town have brought an unexpected element of surprise to the day.  Of course, Lou has things well in hand, and the boys are tracking Jimmy down at their favorite hunting cabin.  Will Jimmy & Darlene make it to the altar? Who are these two strangers, and why have they come to town? Will Darlene’s cousins stay sober long enough to finally see her wed? The same redneck characters your audience knows and loves, and the story continues!

A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Happy Halloween

Third and final in the Redneck Country trilogy, A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Happy Halloween again finds us with our fabulously funny friends at Lou's Diner,

but this year things have gotten a lot scarier than usual. Maldovia, the old mountain healer who some say is a witch, says she sees Death when she reads Barbie Jo’s palm. Then two film students show up in town with a secret plan to create the ultimate zombie thriller. The redneck boys are busy in the mountains practicing for the next Punkin Chuckin’ competition, and when they accidentally cross paths with the college kids, Jimmy disappears, leaving only a bloody cap behind. Was Maldovia right? Is Jimmy dead? And if he was killed by zombies, will he come back as one himself?

There’s never a dull moment in this comedy thriller sequel to the outrageously successful A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas and A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Wedding, both published by Samuel French.

The Perfect Winter Holiday Play for the Politically Correct

Perry Weiss and his unusual friends may be the most unlikely group to teach a Christmas/Kwanza/Hanukkah lesson, but that’s just what they do in this non-stop comedy where political correctness is out of control. Perry is determined to save the unwashed masses from themselves by suing the city to have the annual Nativity display removed from City Hall. 


His black friend, Angelo, is a recovering alcoholic who’s had it up to here with Perry’s patronizing use of the phrase “person of color”, and his only woman friend, Mary Beth, is a radical feminist who believes Santa Claus may have been a woman. They hang out at Chez Café’ where delightful and flamboyant Jewish Douggie serves coffee and beauty advice in equal helpings. Perry broke up with the lovely and capable Melinda last Christmas when she discovered what a Scrooge he really was, but when Angelo calls Melinda to help change Perry’s mind about the lawsuit, she makes one last play to save Christmas while saving Perry from himself. 


Can this unconventional and unusual group help Perry appreciate the beauty of the major winter holiday?

A Playwright's Guide to Survival of the Fittest, Or How to Get Produced on Broadway

A Playwright's Guide to Survival of the Fittest, or How to Get Produced on Broadway is a comedic look at the idea that fairy tale dreams come true.  

Aspiring playwright Ann Mallory arrives in Brooklyn on a rainy night only to discover the key for her summer sublet is nowhere to be found.  One of the crotchety neighbors down the hall, Violet, reluctantly agrees to let Ann stay until the key can be found.  When Vi and her friends Madge and Pinky get to know Ann, they decide to help her get her play in the hands of every theatre in NYC. 

Her first day out, Ann stumbles into a mugging in Times Square.  She intervenes and talks the mugger out of harming his victim and hands him a copy of her play before he runs off.  When the victim explains he’s a big time Broadway producer, it seems Ann’s dream will come true.  Then the mugger reappears at Violet’s apartment to explain the whole mugging was a hoax ~ carefully crafted to get him an opportunity to audition for the producer.  Ann is distraught.  The producer agreed to read her play because he felt indebted to her.  Is it her responsibility to tell him the whole thing was a setup?  Is she really an innocent victim in the whole charade, or is there more to Ann Mallory than meets the eye?

This is a new look at the old Cinderella story and the false perception that women are not tough enough to make in in show business.  For anyone who hopes to improve gender parity in theatre, this is a great play to share!

Letting Go

Cassidy, Lacey, and Jane are the best of friends; typical high school girls worried about boys, grades, and fashion. On a seemingly ordinary day, Jane makes a startling discovery ~ the kind of thing that irrevocably changes everything, now and forever. Can Jane bring herself to believe what she’s been told? Can she bring herself to tell the people she loves most in the world the harshest possible truth? And what if the truth Jane believes is only part of the bigger picture? Is it possible her own mother would lie to her completely ~ doing everything in her power to conceal the one thing she fears the most? It may be more possible than Jane thinks, because the hardest thing a parent can do is letting go.

The Growers

Nearly half million German troops were brought to the U.S. as prisoners during WWII. Of those who came, all were treated well, and many were given jobs in American businesses. The experience of an American boy who befriended some of these prisoners changed him and his life forever.

In 1944, Martin Bosch was the son of a wealthy grower of roses and a typical American teenager. However, the War Department had required the roses be replaced with tomato plants to support the war effort, and Martin's father believed their family legacy had been lost forever. Their foreman, a Jewish man named Isaac Feinstein had a secret, but he agreed to work with the Nazi prisoners when they were brought to work with the tomatoes. Seeing the difficulty the Germans had communicating, Isaac suggested to Martin's father that the teenager come daily to tutor the prisoners and give them a chance for a better life in America. Martin's experience and ultimate friendship with the captives changed his life forever. The question was and still is today, can trained Nazi killers really assimilate into the innocence of 1940s America?


This story is based on actual events.

Grandma's Little Helper

Once in a blue moon Beth visits Grandma Betty from out of state.  Betty is still delightfully spry well into her eighties, but along the way, she’s picked up a live-in health aid to help around the house!  Lolly is young, intelligent, and beautiful, but is she hiding a dark secret beneath the yoga poses and fresh fruit she’s brought into Grandma’s life?  What will Charles, Beth’s pompous and powerful minister cousin, do if he discovers the secret Lolly’s hiding?  Who’s right and who’s wrong in this tale of morality and hypocrisy turned upside down?  Beth has only her brief visit to figure out what’s going on, who’s doing what to who, and what the right choice is for her beloved Gran!


Winner of the 2010 Chameleon Theatre Circle's New Play festival.

The Christian Way

For millennia, men have used verses from the Bible to keep women in line. The only problem is, most of the Bible was written by men! When Jamie Kellogg reveals to her church’s women’s group that she’s considering a divorce, she’s shocked by the response. She’s even more shocked to find out the hypocrisy and bias still in play in a modern-day American church! Will Jamie do what’s best for her, or will she be corralled into doing things “The Christian Way”?

Invited to the 2013 Tucson Alliance for the Arts' New Play Festival.

Chloe Nelson and the Remarkable, Unusual, Foolproof Retirement Plan

Chloe Nelson is not happy with retirement!  Her husband, Stu, has lost his hearing and spends most of his day in the john.  Their only child, Heather, lives too far away to pay attention to her aging parents, and retirement just isn't what Chloe expected, so, true to form, Chloe concocts a remarkable plan!


On Easter weekend, Chloe brings together family and friends for an innocent supper party.  The only trouble is, the party’s not so innocent, and everyone there may not make it out alive!


When Heather starts to suspect something's up, Chloe’s unusual scheme may be unraveled by her well-meaning daughter.  Spend a weekend of pure chaos with one of the Midwest’s most outrageous families to solve the many mysteries of “Chloe Nelson and the Remarkable, Unusual, Foolproof, Retirement Plan”!  


Play Lab participant at the 2010 Great Plains Theatre Conference.