from Know Your Role by Brandi Owensby

Genre: Dramedy
Cast Breakdown: 2 females

Request this scene

Teenager Alex recounts how she feels about her mother making her compete in beauty pageants.

(Warning: Using this scene without permission is illegal, as is reproducing it on a website or in print in any way.)

ALEX: Mom signed me up for a beauty pageant right at the height of my eighth grade awkward phase. She said that it would help me...

(ALEX'S MOM enters. She carries the pink box, it contains assorted beauty products.)

MOM: (Handing Alex the box:) Discover your feminine side.

ALEX: And...

MOM: Feel more confident about yourself.

ALEX: I didn't know I had a problem with confidence until she told me that I did. I tried to argue, but she insisted.

MOM: Think of it like a game. You'll practice, compete, and win.

ALEX: How do you win at looking beautiful?

MOM: Pageants aren't all about looks, they're also about your personality and leadership skills.

ALEX: Then why are they called "Beauty Pageants"? Why not "Personality Pageants"?

MOM: Try it just this once and if you don't like it, you'll never have to do it again. I realize I'm asking you to step outside of your comfort zone, but I know this will be good for you.

ALEX: I don't want to.

MOM: Please? For me? It would make me so proud.

ALEX: (Sighs heavily.) For the next few months, Mom was in nonstop pageant prep mode; she loved it. The best part was how much time she wanted to spend with me. We did everything together. Practicing my walk:

(Alex attempts a runway walk.)

MOM: You know, I think we can go with even higher heels.

ALEX: Playing with makeup:

MOM: (Applying blush:) This might seem like a lot, but stage lights are brutal.

ALEX: New hairstyles:

MOM: (Piling Alex's hair on her head) This does wonders for your jawline!

ALEX: Picking out outfits:

MOM: (Holding several sequined choices up to Alex:) Hmmmm, I'm trying to decide which of these Wild West looks will best compliment your skin tone.

ALEX: Practicing my interview skills:

MOM: (Reading a notecard:) If you were given the chance to change something from the past, what would it be?

ALEX: (Thinks.) I guess I wouldn't have given my baby cousin her first haircut. Aunt Cary cried...a lot.

MOM: (Impatient:) No, no, no!

ALEX: But that's what I would change.

MOM: That's not what the judges will want to hear. Try this "If I were given the chance to change something from the past, I would change the time World War II happened because Anne Frank is my hero and—"

(Doorbell rings.)

Oh, your choreographer is here to work on the talent portion.

(Mom exits.)

ALEX: It was in no way my idea to perform a modern jazz routine to "Popular," but mom has never been able to cope with the fact that she birthed an Elphaba, not a Glinda...Galinda...whatever. It's been years since the pageant and I still have nightmares that I'm stomping across a stage in six-inch heels, trying desperately to see through my glued-on eyelashes with that song on repeat. (Sung:) "Popular, you're gonna be popular." (Laughs.) It was a nice try, mom.

(Alex exits.)