Shoestring Budget PLAY for Shoebox Theatres

A one-man play
by James Taris.


The humour and inspiration of the ancient Greeks.

James Taris
Actor / Playwright


Here’s some excerpts from the play...

DEMI: ‘Dear God, I’m in deep shit and sinking fast.’

PERICLES: ‘Who’s on strike?... The slaves?... Can they do that?’

ARCHIMEDES: ‘I am a genius. I am a genius. I am a genius. Doo-doo-dum, doo-doo-dum!’

SOCRATES: ‘By all means marry. If you get a good wife, you’ll be happy. If you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher.’

DEMOSTHENES: ‘If I can’t do my bit for The Glory Of Athens, then my skills aren’t worth any more than a cupful of fresh spit.’

‘So get up off thy big fat ars,
And get thy mind a-cracking.
There’s much to do and you have
But a lifetime to make it happen.’

ODYSSEUS: ‘The sirens are mermaids? Bloody hell, Homer. Can’t you find me a decent woman with a pair of legs?’



Have you seen (or read) my play?
Your comments are welcomed.

to read what others think of
The Glory Of Athens.

From Fantasy to Hollywood
How to perform your play internationally without funding

James Taris was only nine when he fantasised about becoming an actor, but life got in the way and nothing happened for nearly forty years. By chance he saw an amateur theatre play and was so inspired to turn his childhood fantasy into reality that within six weeks he had written The Glory of Athens, a play that he performed twenty-nine times over the next twelve months – in nine countries, on five continents – while on a 400-day world tour.

In this book, James goes into great detail explaining all the stages he went through to write, promote, produce and perform The Glory of Athens, his debut playwriting effort. It is an inspirational journey that will be enjoyed by budding writers and readers alike.


From Fantasy to Hollywood - How to perform your play internationally without funding
About the book

[Play] The Glory of Athens - The humour and inspiration of the ancient Greeks (one-man and 7-actor scripts)
About the book


This book (Glory of Athens) is a sure therapy for me. I've been reading it in section to either start my morning or before hitting the bed. The humour in it is just as inviting. I am about to replace John Grisham ( The Firm, A Time to Kill, The Pelican Brief, The Chamber, etc) and Dan Brown(DaVinci Code, Angels and Demons, etc) to James Taris as my preferred author/writer in this modern times. Dorie (Guam)

At the Lee Strasberg Theatre in Hollywood where I performed my play,
The Glory of Athens, on May 21, 2004.


The Glory Of Athens is about the humour in the struggle to overcome adversity that has six Ancient Greek geniuses come back to life and display the characteristics which made them so successful. The six characters include Pericles, Archimedes, Socrates, Demosthenes, Homer and Odysseus. The play has some hilarious monologues from these characters and Demi, a modern day accountant, who is burdened with a seemingly impossible task.

The year is 2005, and Athens Inc has chosen Demi to revitalise their ailing sales force by giving them an inspiring speech leading them into a new era of sales success. But sales is something Demi has absolutely no knowledge of and is overwhelmed by this new responsibility.

In a desperate bid for help, Demi prays to God, who sends the Ancient Greek goddess Athena to his aid. She gives Demi a bag of magical items which enable him to change into each character and go back into time, around 440 BC, when the Parthenon was being built, and see them in action, though not exactly how he'd imagined them to be. Pericles teaches him how to tackle problems by soliciting the help of the best minds available. So when the slaves threaten to strike unless they can get more time off to watch Greek theatre, he contacts Archimedes (by mobile phone) to invent the TeleVision for him and then he contacts Rupert Murdochakis to provide the programs for him. Unfortunately, Pericles' army suffers huge losses in a recent battle, so he's now confronted with a much bigger crisis than Demi's . saving the glory of Athens. So the focus then turns to finding someone to help Pericles solve his seemingly impossible task . restoring faith to his people by addressing them with a reassuring public speech.

Archimedes is self-centred and obsessed with his own genius, getting excited about even his smallest achievements. And so determined to succeed that he avoids bathing, and eating, so he'll have more time for solving his mathematical and scientific problems. But he can't help Pericles. Socrates has just been practising his arguing skills with a sock used as a hand-puppet, toning up his repertoire of clever arguments to confuse his opponents. He uses much philosophy and wisdom in his monologue but is arrested by soldiers before he can give Pericles the advice he needs. Demosthenes is a smooth talker who has overcome a speech impediment by practising with a mouth full of marbles. But even though he promises to help, he suddenly loses his voice when choking on one of his marbles. In desperation, Demi looks in his magic bag for a replacement, and finds Homer. Homer is very inspiring and he shares, in verse, how, even though blind, he was able to use persistence and perseverance to realise his dreams. But he fails to make contact with Pericles. Odysseus is Pericles' last hope. And when Odysseus finds that Homer is rewriting his story, changing it from a one year absence to 10 years, he spends most of his time trying to add encounters with women to these new changes, finally, in a flash of enlightenment, coming to conclude that we can have eternal glory by becoming the best we can be.

But although each character is placed in ridiculously funny situations, they are all presented as strong role models for Demi, who gleans a little from each one on his journey to tackling the problem his company has burdened him with. And the play builds to a very powerful conclusion, as we find out if Pericles can save The Glory Of Athens, and if Demi can solve his own problem too.



James ? Ghia sou! I told you I’d write. My name is Quentin, we met after your presentation (great presentation if I may) at the Cegep of Granby [College near Montreal, Canada]. Just wanted to say, what you did and what you are doing is marvelous. The way you brought your ideas with humour, «good» humour as I call it, intelligent humour, is simply amazing. I’ve been trying to write plays of my own, and I must say, I never even came close to what you did! I hope everything is going well for you, mustn’t be that easy to travel the way you do. But keep it up, I think you shouldn't stop until everyone has witnessed The Glory Of Athens! ... Quentin, student at Cegep of Granby (Canada)

For more Testimonials, go to The Glory Of Athens - Testimonials



The Globe-Trotting Odysseus

There�s a powerful message delivered in The Glory Of Athens, and it�s picked up without reservation by audiences all over the world.

"When you are determined to become the best you can be, then everything is possible."

And the most inspiring aspect of this play is the one-man performance by James Taris, a living example of his own passion and beliefs, and his determination to become the best he can be.

When James walks onto the stage, he walks out as the whole kit and kaboodle. As the writer, performer and director of The Glory Of Athens. But it's even more than that. It's a one-man show in which James Taris is sharing his life with his audience, through the characters in his play.

He IS Demi � the play�s hero, who tackles a major crisis in his life.
He IS Pericles � who�s foremost interest is the welfare of his people.
He IS Archimedes � who is motivated by his own genius.
He IS Socrates � who takes on all-comers with supreme self-confidence.
He IS Demosthenes � who practices his skills vigilantly in order to excel.
He IS Homer � who succeeds through unconditional belief in himself.
He IS Odysseus � who is inspired to do the best he can in his lifetime.

So it�s not so surprising that James has been able to learn the 10,000 words in his play, and deliver it confidently in an 80 minute non-stop solo performance. After all, he's written it in his own words, and he lives it daily.

So what drives James Taris to perform his play to audiences all over the world?

James has seen his life improve dramatically recently, realising childhood dreams that he always thought would be impossible. And he wants to share the secret to his success with the rest of the world, so they can also realise their own dreams.

Up until 2 years ago, James was an unknown figure in the international arena of �Who�s Who�. But since then he�s travelled to 19 countries around the world, and is now a popular and sought after personality by the media.

Why? Because he�s doing the impossible!

James is featured as a modern day Odysseus because he�s on a 400 day world tour.

James is also featured as a pioneer of low-budget travelling, because he�s travelling around the world without money.

And finally, James is featured as a determined artist and public speaker, performing his play and giving public speeches all over the world.

So why bother going to see The Glory Of Athens?

Because it�s funny, so you�ll split your sides laughing. Because it�s inspiring, so you�ll dare to dream again, and in the process, rebuild your confidence and self-esteem.

AND ...

Because you�ll get to meet James Taris ... the Globe-Trotting Odysseus.

This site is designed and maintained by JAMES TARIS

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