The trial of LJ, a play in one scene.

The Scene:

A courtroom. Centre upstage is a raised pedestal on which sits the judge, stage left is a wooden box, wherein sits LJ Davies, the accused. Stage right is two benches on which sit the jury.

The Cast:

The Judge: played by Ira Topalli

LJ Davies: played by Himself.

The prosecutor: played by Elona Ocka

The Jury: played by Lukasz Markiewicz, Lauren Robson-Knox, Christopher Smith, Sander Maurano, Simon Pearse, Gabriel G. Rocha Belloni, Jon Solomons, Joe Clarke, Elen Nida, Olti Topalli, Holta After Dark, Adeline EVS, Matteo Marras, Agata Jajszczyk, Goran Kalister.

Scene opens.

(enter: The prosecutor). “So sorry I’m late my lord.”

Judge: “Never mind. We are about to proceed with the reading of the charges. Mr LJ, you are hereby charged that on or about the month of August you did go into a place known as the Luigj Gurakuqi special school, Tirana, hereafter referred to as the school, and there you did invent an exceedingly silly language characterised by squeaks and high-pitched noises. How do you plead?”

LJ: “Guilty.”

Judge: “Well we’re going to have a trial anyway. I’ve got nothing to do until lunch and it might be fun. Right, case for the prosecution, get on with it.”

Prosecutor: “LJ, can you please explain, in your own words, exactly why you invented such a language?”

LJ: “Of course. But only because you said please. You see, basically, I was having real problems remembering any Albanian with which to communicate with the kids. I tried speaking a little English but they couldn’t understand and they would get confused. When I thought about it I noticed that they were trying to understand the words, and of course they couldn’t, so they got frustrated. A huge amount of communication however is not to do with the words themselves, its about the tone of voice and facial expressions. So instead of using words, I used noises that mirrored them but that the kids didn’t try to understand. By removing the words they concentrated on the tones and emotions. For example a “ta-da!” noise indicates excitement and happiness, a “owww…” extended and decreasing in tone shows sadness. By removing the words I could communicate the emotions and ideas better.”

Prosecutor: “And why do you keep going ‘peep’ and tapping your nose?”

LJ: “I always smile when I do it, and I do it fairly continuously, so the two kids who I spend most of my time with, both of whom have Downs Syndrome, copy me. When they get frustrated or upset I can tap my nose and say ‘peep’ and they copy me, and because its associated with smiling and happiness it calms them down.”

Judge: “Well thats good enough for me. Case dismissed. Bugger off the lot of you.”


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