THE BUSKER (c)2005,2008
A One Act Play - by Sue Seaman


Cast: A Man, Joe (a Busker), A Woman with her baby, A Preacher, An older Woman and the Narrator

Scene 1 – The Shopping Mall

NARRATOR:
Strumming away on an old, beaten up guitar, Joe plays a sad and lonely song and his voice trembles as he sings.

A woman passing by is pushing her baby in a pram. She stops and stands for a moment, listening. Dropping some money into Joe’s tin cup she goes on her way, but she looks back, a little sad - knowing she would always remember this day.

A man across the street is looking at the busker who is singing his heart out. His emotions are welling up inside as he empties his pocket, leaving a handful of coins in the tin cup. He walks on trying very hard not to cry.

An older woman stops and looks and is thinking how the busker is such a young man to be singing such a sorrowful tune. She stares for a moment and wonders. He reminds her a little of someone she used to know. But then in those days he had dirty hands and grazes on his knees. Could it be him?
Responding to the tremble in his voice as he sings, she also drops some coins into his tin cup thinking ‘poor guy…’

As she is about to move on, the Busker finishes his song and looks up at the woman through dark, sunken eyes.

BUSKER:
“Do I know you? You remind me of someone I once knew.”

WOMAN:
“I don’t think so. I’m not from around here – just here to do some shopping.”

BUSKER:
“Well, thanks for the coins ma’m. Have a nice day.”

WOMAN:
“Yes, thankyou, I will.” (and goes on her way)

NARRATOR:
A Preacher stands in the centre of the shopping mall and is preaching the Gospel – the good news of Jesus Christ. The Busker sings quietly so that he can hear what is being said.

PREACHER:
“Now is the time to repent. For the Kingdom of God is at hand. God is calling us to turn to Him and to find LIFE!”

NARRATOR:
The Busker stops playing and looks towards the preacher and realises the need he has in his life. He realises that he has no life at all. Deep in thought, he didn’t notice that the Preacher had stopped speaking and had walked over to where Joe sat.

PREACHER:
“I noticed you looking over as I was speaking. Can I help you at all, young man?”

BUSKER:
“Well, yes. I was moved by what you have been saying. You kept mentioning something about Good News. That’s what I need, right now. I need some good news.”

NARRATOR:
The Preacher looks closer at the young man

PREACHER:
“Do I know you?”

NARRATOR:
The Busker looks up at the preacher and replies

BUSKER:
“I’m not sure. You look familiar yourself. Perhaps we have we met in town before?”

PREACHER:
“Well I don’t usually come into town very often. Today is the first time for several months. How about you young man?”

BUSKER:
“Well, actually I’m not that young, hiding behind this scraggy beard. And I’m not from around these parts either.”

PREACHER:
“Maybe I have seen you around. Do you ever come into Kingston? That’s where I live”

BUSKER:
“I know Kingston well. I travel a lot. I enjoy travelling so much that I’m never in a town for more than a day. I’ll be moving on tomorrow. Well, I must be packing up, it’s getting late.”

PREACHER:
Can I buy you a coffee and a hot meal before you go on your way? There’s a café just across the street.”

BUSKER:
“That’s very nice of you. Yes, I’ll take you up on your offer. I am thirsty and I am hungry. Just let me put this guitar away and I’ll be with you.”

PREACHER:
Well, people need to hear about the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ. I’ll just be handing out some of these leaflets while you are putting your guitar in its case.

Scene 2 – The Café

NARRATOR:
By the time Joe has packed up his guitar the Preacher has returned and they enter the café. While the Preacher is getting the coffee Joe finds some seats and sits down.
As he stares out of the window, past experiences come flooding into his mind. Did the preacher remind him of someone? Something about the elderly bespectacled preacher seems to touch the busker’s heart.

The Preacher returns to the table and places a tray of hot coffee and food on the table. He hands the food to Joe.

PREACHER:
“Eat it before it gets cold.”

BUSKER:
“I appreciate your kindness. Kindness I haven’t known for many years.”

NARRATOR:
The Preacher watches the Busker eating and guesses that he hasn’t had a good dinner for a long time. And all the while that Joe is eating the Preacher is straining to think where he knew the young man from.

BUSKER: (Looking at the preacher)
“Thanks for the meal. It was good. But now I would like some of that good news you were speaking about earlier. I have come to realise since meeting you that there is a God. And He cares for me. I left home when I was young. My mother and father tried to stop me but I thought I knew best. So I ended up getting into trouble and landed up in prison. When I got out of prison I made some friends. They were travellers and I joined them on their travels. But it didn’t last. I used to sleep outside and when I woke one morning, they had packed up and left. So I gathered up my bags and my guitar and hitched a ride. Now I am here talking to you.”

PREACHER:
“Did you ever try to contact your mother and father - to let them know that you were OK?”

BUSKER:
No I didn’t. I didn’t want to cause them any more grief than I had already.”

PREACHER:
“I don’t think you have told me your name.”

BUSKER:
“It’s Joe.”

PREACHER:
“I knew someone called Joe. He was so close to me and yet so far from me. I have never forgotten him playing in his room on the guitar I bought him for Christmas.”

BUSKER: (Looking up at the preacher in surprise.)
“Dad? Is that you?”

PREACHER:
“Yes Son. It’s me.”

BUSKER:
“You knew it was me - your son, when you saw me this afternoon. How come?”

PREACHER:
“Because although I did not recognise your face I never ever forgot your voice. Come on Joe, let’s go home. Your mother is waiting, with your sister and her baby and her husband.”

BUSKER:
“How do they know I’m coming home with you?”

PREACHER:
“Because although they may have also forgotten your face, after all these years, they too recognised your voice. The woman with the baby was your sister, the other kind woman was your mother and the man you saw earlier was your brother-in-law.”
“Let’s go home, son.”


One who had become lost was found. Those that loved him never gave up on finding him. God's love for us is no different. He will continue to search for us until we are found. Every lost sheep is precious to the shepherd and the Lord is the Great Shepherd. We only have to make that cry for help from our heart and He will hear us – and will find us - and will take us home.


How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?
And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.

(Matthew 18:12,13)

What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.
I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

(Luke 15:4-7)