Duo Pieces and Where to Find Them

Easy they say.  Go find a Duo piece.  Oh, and have it found (and cut) within the week.  They never mention loving the piece, or finding work with merit, but it's implied.  You are a Forensicator and putting together a performance of quality within a week is somewhat commonplace.  It is easy to find any piece.  It's hard when you need to find one with the previous mentioned qualities.  Knowing where to locate resources can be one of the greatest deterrents in finding the right material for you.  Don't let it!  Between you and your Duo partner, you two should be able to find a script quickly.  There are two of you!  As you search, keep these locations of interest logged into your brain when you think you've depleted all script sources; you might be surprised of where you haven't looked!

  • Team Archives. Duo is popular.  So popular that a majority of scripts your team has stored away might be intended for Duo.  The first place your partner and you should look would be team archives.  Most team resources are well-organized and have selections that were kept because they were intended to be used for competition.  Try to look for something that was not used the year or so before (to be "original" and somewhat fresh).
  • Library. Hit the stacks!  Most Duos are found in scripts and many libraries have a HUGE selection of scripts to sift through.  The best incentives to take a trip to the library include: everything you want is well labeled, items are placed together, comfy chairs, helpful librarians, and it's free (aside from minimal copy costs)!  Even if you choose to not look at scripts, Duos can be any published source, and a library will offer you thousands of PUBLISHED titles.  As long as you can operate the search feature on the library's computers you will be able to find content to read.
  • Bookstores (Physical or Internet). If you prefer to sip coffee and browse through selective stacks then a bookstore is perfect for you.  Your selection might be limited, but there is the perk of weeding out "lesser" publications (stocked items sell, thus popular, and might be worth a read).  You are also in a more relaxed atmosphere.  If you search on-line your perusing options increase vastly.  Better still, not only can you narrow your search results by selecting a genre and subsequent sub-categories, you also have the benefit of seeing what similar books match your search.  This is great to learn new authors and titles you may never have encountered otherwise.  Grab some prospective titles/names and go out to a physical store (or library!) and give those texts a gander.
  • League Results. Some leagues post the titles of pieces with the names of those who ranked highly.  Duo winners of the past prove that the piece can work, with skilled interpretation, and gives you options to material that might not be used anymore.  Illinois High School Association is one of the few leagues that lists titles. 
  • Ask Theatre People and Teachers. Go to the theatre director at you school and strike-up a conversation about plays.  Mention "Duo" or "Duet" in your conversation, and if that theatre director is worth being employed they should be able to give you a list of titles and authors to investigate.  Also, it wouldn't hurt to speak with a well-informed English professor or the school's resident acting class teacher (if applicable).  The acting teacher is obvious; the English one less.  Yeah, you might read a play in English but that does not make an English teacher master of Drama.  However, some English teachers have a love of theatre so you might gain a few leads.  Finally, those involved in theatre or Drama Club are also worth talking with.
  • Go On-Line. Typing "Duo pieces" or "best plays" into any search engine will guide you to websites with indexes and descriptions of plays.  Search around, using descriptive keywords, and take note of anything you want to locate at a library for reading.  You could also try looking up an actor's or writer's history to see work they have done in the past.  A new play (new to you) might catch your attention.
  • You Can Use ANY Published Material. As stated by the NFL Duos are "cuttings from published-printed novels, short stories, plays, poetry, or any other printed-published materials."  Ergo, you do not need to restrict yourself to plays.  If you felt inclined you could perform one of Plato's dialogues.  You could use an interview for your text.  As long as it is printed, if you can use it as dialogue you've found a piece.
  • Think About Movies. Most movies were inspired by a play, novel, or short story.  If there is a movie you adore why not look to see if it is based off of printed material?  Avoid anything too well known and realize you must use the published version, not the film adaptation.  

With this list a Duo piece is something you will not be searching for, for much longer.  You will have to read and do detective work, but at least the strain of being overwhelmed on not knowing where to begin has been removed.  Work your Duo partnership and divide research, find possibilities you think both will like, and share the material to discuss and vote upon.  A Duo script ready for cutting will be yours momentarily!