Post-Democracy

By Hannah Moscovitch

Post-Democracy
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Welcome to the world of the one per cent, the corporate elite, the C-suite, the kingmakers. A world managed by payoffs, press releases, NDAs, and company policies. What happens to morality in this world when its people have limitless power?

When a CEO and his highest executives ... Read more


Overview

Welcome to the world of the one per cent, the corporate elite, the C-suite, the kingmakers. A world managed by payoffs, press releases, NDAs, and company policies. What happens to morality in this world when its people have limitless power?

When a CEO and his highest executives are on an international business trip to secure a major deal, a sex scandal between employees is unearthed on the news. As the pressure to complete the deal mounts, more damaging secrets come to the surface, endangering the CEO’s company, family, and legacy.

In this searing look at upper-class privilege, Post-Democracy asks, what does it take to confront corruption?

Hannah Moscovitch

Hannah Moscovitch is an acclaimed Canadian playwright, TV writer, and librettist whose work has been widely produced in Canada and around the world. Recent stage work includes Sexual Misconduct of the Middle Classes and Old Stock: A Refugee Love Story (co-created with Christian Barry and Ben Caplan). Hannah has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Trillium Book Award, the Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award, the Scotsman Fringe First and the Herald Angel Awards at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and the prestigious Windham-Campbell Prize administered by Yale University. She has been nominated for the international Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, the Drama Desk Award, Canada’s Siminovitch Prize in Theatre, and the Governor General’s Literary Award. She is a playwright-in-residence at Tarragon Theatre in Toronto. She lives in Halifax.

Excerpt

BILL and LEE, and JUSTINE all sit and stand in the LOUNGE. JUSTINE is expensively dressed: high heels, power suits, and lipstick. All three of them hold drinks: martinis, scotches. All three scroll on their phones. Finally, LEE looks up at BILL and JUSTINE expectantly.

LEE: So: Systemas?

Pause.

LEE: So, guys, Systemas?

Pause.

LEE: Guys, Systemas: is the company that you were here to tour, we toured it, what did you think?

JUSTINE: (to LEE) Sorry I’m reading about our company, in the news. (to BILL) Are you looking at this? Dad?

BILL: Yeah.
JUSTINE: This is crazy.

BILL: Yeah.

JUSTINE: (reading) “. ..a senior executive frequently sent his executive assistant emails telling her he needed her to be the “T and A at table” when he was meeting buyers: “T and A “stood for Tits and Ass. One time he followed her into the women’s washroom and looked over the top of her stall while she was urinating as a quote unquote joke. ” “He sometimes cornered her on business trips and made advances telling her to make up for her lack of skill on the job by—” Okay, this is that brand manager?

BILL: Yeah.

JUSTINE: Gary…?

BILL: Yeah.

JUSTINE: And the assistant, who’s she?

BILL: …(shrugs)

JUSTINE: Did she go to HR?

BILL: (nods) We’ve fired a couple of HR people: the ones who said her complaint didn’t strike them as…

BILL gestures.

BILL: Significant.

JUSTINE: Shit.

BILL: Yeah.

JUSTINE: But what…? Shouldn’t we be on flights home?

LEE looks up, worried.

BILL: (to JUSTINE, shrugging) We’re not answering media requests, that’s Shannon’s department. She’s set up a PR camp back home, all interviews go through her. That’s the only one so far. And Connor’s there—

LEE: Connor’s there?

BILL: To handle any legal.

LEE: Are the contracts here?

JUSTINE: (to BILL) Shannon said there was a story out—I didn’t realize how bad.

LEE: Where are the contracts?

JUSTINE: I have them, I have them! (to BILL:) Dad, what’s…? Why aren’t we on flights home?

LEE: (makes a jerky, frustrated motion with his body and walks away)

BILL and JUSTINE look at LEE.
JUSTINE: What? This seems like it might be about to…be big?
LEE: (to JUSTINE, rhetorical:) Is it affecting stock prices?

JUSTINE looks over at BILL.

Beat.

BILL: A small dip, but, that could be… (BILL gestures, vague)…

Beat.

LEE stares at SHANNON.

JUSTINE: Okay! Okay.

LEE: (to JUSTINE) What?

JUSTINE: There are always guys like you who say “24 hour news cycle” and “it won’t affect stock prices…”

LEE: …I didn’t say that…

JUSTINE: …and sometime that’s true…

LEE: …except I didn’t say it…

JUSTINE: …and sometimes they come into your office and take away the furniture.

LEE: So: Systemas. Let’s buy Systemas, okay? I’d like to finalize the deal. We have the contracts—thank you Justine—let’s get them signed, then we can fly back home and “me too” our way around the business world, we can be all rah rah women are the new men.

BILL: Lee.

LEE: (to BILL) Well she’s…!

JUSTINE: (to LEE) I’m what?

Beat.

JUSTINE: I’m what?

Beat.
LEE shrugs.

Beat.

JUSTINE: Take a look at Silicone Valley…

LEE: …cool cool I’ll “take a look at it”…

JUSTINE: …and what’s happened to the stocks of companies with reputations for sexual harassment…

LEE: …they bounce back.

JUSTINE: Not when it’s the CEO…

LEE: …well, it’s not.

JUSTINE: …or a pivotal exec: okay fine fine, that’s your… fine.

Beat.

JUSTINE: I mean…!

Beat.

JUSTINE: (to BILL:) Some executive assistant’s trying to do her job, and that’s the shit that’s. ..?

BILL: Yeah.

JUSTINE: That’s what we want to…! We want to be one of those companies with women crying in the bathroom, because some fucking… brand manager…?

BILL’S phone buzzes. He looks down at it.

BILL: I’m sorry, it’s Connor.

BILL walks to the back of the lounge, take the call.

Reviews

“Subject matter that could feel forced in less-deft hands is rescued from an HR manual and brought to painful, vivid life. ”

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