By Michele Pitman
A mimed version of the story of Jesus and the woman at the well, with references
to Moses bringing water from a rock.
Exodus 17:1-7 “Water from the Rock”; John 4:5-42 “Jesus talks with
a Samaritan Woman”
Crowd of 3 or more people
Various clear glass cups and glasses and some cheap plastic disposable
cups. Clear glass jugs. A large (preferably stoneware water
purifier, with tap, and filled with at least two jugs or more of clean,
clear water. A stoneware carafe [the stoneware items represent the ‘rock’].
A bucket with dirty water in it. A walking stick. Some seats
or a low bench-seat. Sun glasses. Crepe bandage. Plastic sheeting
Modern clothing. In the first crowd scene, participants can look
somewhat ‘mussed-up’. They can be tidier for the 2nd crowd scene
if desired! The 1st man carries a walking stick. The woman wears
clothing that is plain - almost mousy. A bulky or drab cardigan will
often serve this purpose. She is to have a little theatrical make-up
of blue, black and purple to indicate a black eye and bruising on a cheek.
Her right wrist is bandaged. She is not to wear any rings on her
This is a mime, which can also be performed as a dance. The few spoken
words are said firmly but not too loudly, and with strong emotion.
There is a bucket of muddy water beside a low bench, a tray or bench holding
jugs, cups, glasses, a stoneware carafe and a stoneware water purifier
Enter crowd [including 1st Man] A grumpy, disheveled crowd murmuring
“thirsty thirsty” [This is repeated over and over]
One of the people in the crowd takes a clear glass jug and dips it
into the bucket. He/she then pours the dirty water into glasses and
passes them about. Those in the crowd who take a cup appear to drink
disdainfully. A man stands out from the crowd and throws his hands
up in frustration. [The crowd stops saying “thirsty”]. He has a walking
stick and he [gently!] taps the water purifier with it. The people don’t
understand, They begin to walk back and forth in a rough semi-circle around
him accusing him with pointed fingers saying [Begin again, this time
it is said angrily and murderously] “thirsty thirsty”. [Keep repeating]
The 1st man takes a clean glass and goes to the purifier. He pours
purified water into it and passes the glass around the people. [The crowd
stops saying “thirsty”]. Those that receive the glass gulp a sip of water
down greedily. The man takes back the glass and refills it from the
purifier. He and the crowd move off silently. [Exit stage right]
[Silence for about 30 Seconds]
[Enter stage left] 2nd man. He sits down on the bench.
He appears to be tired.
[Enter centre aisle] A woman enters. She is hunched over.
She is carrying a large glass jug with about a cup’s worth of muddy, dirty
water in it. She has sunglasses on. She seems oppressed and
sullen. One of her wrists is bandaged and there are purplish marks
on her face.
She appears fearful, for a moment, about approaching the man but then
plucks up her courage and approaches the bucket. She dips her jug
into the bucket and lifts it out almost full of dirty water.
She is about to leave. The 2nd man stops her. He indicates
her jug. She is fearful and submissive. She goes to get a glass.
He stops her again. He lifts her chin to look up at Him. He
gently takes her sunglasses off and we can see the very black eye she has
underneath [The woman can take the sunglasses from him and put them into
a pocket of her cardigan if she is wearing one. It is important that
the ‘black eye’ is obvious to the ‘audience/congregation] He touches her
cheek very gently. She shrugs. He takes her jug of muddy water
and empties it into the bucket. Then he takes her left hand - it has no
wedding ring on it. He leads her to the seat. They sit. He takes
the carafe and then proceeds to fill it from the Water purifier.
He fills a glass and gives it to the woman. She is astonished. She
sips carefully and is amazed. She is rapt and excited. [The woman
may remove her cardigan here if she has one on. This is to indicate
she is now on ‘a mission’ - she has a job to do - tell others about her
experience. The 2nd Man puts down the carafe] She then goes to a
few people in the congregation with plastic cups and the carafe of water.
They are invited to drink. As/If they do she indicates the Man seated
by the Water Purifier. He is now seated in an attitude of praise.
[Enter unobtrusively} The 1st Man with the walking stick appears to
the side [stage left] and looks at him. He smiles. In His other
hand he holds the glass of purified water. He slowly moves through
the scene and carefully places the glass of purified water on the altar.
He bows briefly and turns to leave. He meets with the man by the water
purifier. The seated man stands and they clasp hands.
[Enter down centre aisle] The woman returns with a crowd. The
2nd Man takes the carafe from her and refills it from the purifier.
[The woman can collect up her cardigan at this point] The people gather
around the two men and all leave together saying [This is now said eagerly
and enthusiastically.] “Thirsty, thirsty”. [Continue saying this
until all have left the stage.]
© Michele Pitman 1999, all rights reserved
This play may be performed free of charge, on the condition that copies
are not sold for profit in any medium, nor any
entrance fee charged. In exchange for free performance, the author
would appreciate being notified of when and for what
purpose the play is performed. She may be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org