Al saw a buddy blown up in front of his eyes by a booby-trap bomb; the image still haunts him more than 40 years later. Tom talked his way out of a lynching by college students who called him a “commie faggot’ for organizing to stop the war. Jay went into self-imposed exile in Canada. Randy went to jail for refusing to cooperate with the draft system. Frank got a medical exemption – with the help of a fake X-ray from a sympathetic family doctor – and became a draft counselor to other working-class kids who had seen friends go “over there” and come home in a box or a wheelchair. Penny saw the suffering and the carnage first-hand as a nurse in a field hospital in Vietnam.

The Draft is an interweaving of the real-life experiences of 10 young Americans – eight men and two women – whose lives were shaped and forever changed by the military draft during the Vietnam War (or “The American War”, as the Vietnamese call it.) The play examines the choices they made when confronted with the draft and the personal impact of those choices then and since. Together, their stories give voice to the passion, the anguish, the fear, the joy, the inspiration, and the intense personal and collective struggles of a generation. With the U.S. embroiled in ongoing military campaigns overseas, The Draft asks provocative and relevant questions about moral choice, the meaning of patriotism, and the impacts of war and militarism.

Hibernian Hall, Boston, MA, 2015
Westfield State University, Westfield, MA 2015
Trinity College, Hartford, CT, 2015
Academy of Music, Northampton, MA, 2015

Reading, Smith College, Northampton, MA, 2013

Winner, Best Ensemble in a Play, ArtsImpulse, 2015
Nominee, Best New Work, ArtsImpulse, 2015
Nominee, Best New Work (Small Stage), Independent Reviewers of New England (IRNE), 2015


Cast: 12–30 or more
Roles by gender: 9 men, 3 women
Roles by race: 2 African American, 1 Asian American, 5 white, 4 race-neutral
Note: All the actors must appear to be of Vietnam War era draft age (19-26)

Read the first act:


Read the most recent version:

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  • “Many striking, powerful moments…..For two hours, the room is a field a battle, but only superficially; underneath, a national conversation is still taking place, and healing is happening too.”

    Kilian Melloy, EDGE Media Network
  • “Provocative, sad, enraging, beautiful. I was moved to tears and riveted throughout.”

    Hillary Goodridge, Roslindale, MA
  • “Beautifully written and performed…. The Draft is one of the best tools for understanding the broad human context of the Vietnam War era and the racism and militarism at the root of U.S. foreign policy then and now.”

    Maggie Martin, Co-Director, About Face: Veterans Against the War, Iraq War Veteran, (2003, 2005)