Auld Lang Syne
Jack Neary

AULD LANG SYNE has been described as a comedy, a thriller, a mystery.  It is all of these.  As the title would suggest, the play takes place on New Year's Eve, when Mary, a retired school teacher, sits alone in her South Boston living room, waiting for the doorbell to ring.  When it does, the man on the other side of the door appears to be a stranger to her, as she appears to be a stranger to him.  In the next fifteen minutes, we will understand why Mary has orchestrated this encounter, and what she expects of her guest, whose name is Joe, and who is known as a gangster in Mary's neighborhood.

AULD LANG SYNE was originally produced by the Peterborough Players, and featured Emmy winner (NYPD BLUE) Gordon Clapp as Joe, and Kathy Manfre as Mary.  The play garnered five New Hampshire Theatre Awards, including Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Playwright, and Best Professional Production.  It has subsequently been produced by New Century Theatre and Gloucester Stage.  Photo: Kathy Manfre and Gordon Clapp in the Peterborough Players production, directed and designed by Gus Kaikkonen.


"It is a story of two vulnerable people brought together under very strange circumstances who form an unlikely bond based on shared experience who, in the process, teach each other how to live. More cannot be revealed, because the story’s strength lies in its surprises.  But what can be revealed is although Joe and Mary’s interactions are entertaining, the play deals with many serious themes — life and death, heaven and hell — but in such a way that you can’t help but sit back and enjoy the ride — until the ball drops in Times Square." THE KEENE SENTINEL

With "Auld Lang Syne,” New Century Theatre co-founder Jack Neary has written a witty, engaging, thoughtful play that provides for a delightful evening of theatre. This is only the second staging "Auld Lang Syne" but given the strength of the writing, it should be a play that finds itself produced regularly in the future.” Dave Chivers, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, SPRINGFIELD, MA

“Neary’s play makes hairpin turns from a “Who’s on First?’’-style comedy of misunderstanding to wrenching personal revelations to quasi-thriller action…(the dialogue is) mordantly witty…” Don Aucoin, THE BOSTON GLOBE

“Playwright Jack Neary’s "Auld Lang Syne," a strikingly original humorous thriller, is recommended for everyone who loves a good mystery and a good laugh. This July run marks the Boston area premiere of Neary’s award winning play. The Gloucester Stage audience was engaged and laughing throughout the mesmerizing performance.”  Sally Applegate, HAMILTON-WENHAM CHRONICLE