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Summary: An alternative take on the Parable of the Tenants – in the style of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” Keywords: parable, vineyard, tenants
Style: Lighthearted.  Duration: 6min
Actors: 1M, 2M/F
Scripture reference: Matt 21:33-46

Characters
Announcer
Cristos Tarrantus (game show host)
Jamie (contestant)
Andy (Jamie’s friend)

Script
(Setting: a TV studio. This sketch will work best if visuals can be put up for each question.)
Announcer: Good evening, Ladies and Gentlemen. It’s time for your favourite first century game show with your host, Cristos Tarrantus… It’s “Who Wants To Be A Vineyard Owner?”
Cristos: Thank you. Thank you very much. Our contestant this evening is Jamie. Jamie is a peasant farmer from Galilee – but we won’t hold that against him! Are you all set now, Jamie?
Jamie: Yes, Cristos.
Cristos: Good. Then let’s play. Your first question for 100 shekels:
What is produced in a vineyard?
A. Sweetcorn
B. Wine
C. Alfalfa
D. Worship songs
Jamie: B. Wine.
Cristos: Correct. For 200 shekels:
What fruit is wine traditionally made from?
A. Melons
B. Pomegranates
C. Grapefruit
D. Grapes
Jamie: D. Grapes.
Cristos: You now have 200 shekels. The next question for 500 shekels:
What is a tenant?
A. A triangular shaped flag
B. A person who rents from a landlord
C. A cord of tissue that attaches muscle to a bone
D. A portable shelter often made of canvas
Jamie: I’m not too sure about this one, Cristos.
Cristos: Well, you have all 3 lifelines intact.
Jamie: Can I ask the audience?
Cristos: Of course. Audience, are you ready? What is a tenant?
A. A triangular shaped flag
B. A person who rents from a landlord
C. A cord of tissue that attaches muscle to a bone
D. A portable shelter often made of canvas
If you think the answer is A, vote now by putting your hand up… If you think the answer is B, vote now… If you think the answer is C, vote now… And if you think the answer is D, vote now…
Jamie: I think I’ll go with the audience. I’ll go for B.
Cristos: Jamie… you had 200 shekels… You now have 500 shekels! Let’s move on to the next question – for 1000 shekels:
A vineyard owner offers you the chance to farm his vineyard. What do you do?
A. Take up the offer straightaway
B. Turn him down in the hope of a better offer from someone else
C. Put off the decision until later
D. Tell him to get lost
Jamie: I’ll go for A.
Cristos: Are you sure?
Jamie: Yes, I’m sure.
Cristos: Well, you are right. Now, for 5000 shekels:
At harvest time, the vineyard owner sends a servant to collect his portion of the fruit. What do you do?
A. Ignore him and hope he will go away
B. Beat him up and throw him out
C. Treat him badly and send him away
D. Give the servant what rightfully belongs to the owner
Jamie: I’m a bit undecided on this one. Can I go 50:50?
Cristos: Of course.
(block out A and B)
Jamie: I think I’ll go for C.
Cristos: Oh, Jamie, Jamie. You chose the wrong answer. By rights you should go home with nothing… But we don’t want to give you that! Instead we’ll give you an extra lifeline. Have a go at the next question. This is for 10,000 shekels:
At harvest time, the vineyard owner sends another servant to collect his portion of the fruit. What do you do?
A. Ignore him and hope he will go away
B. Beat him up and throw him out
C. Treat him badly and send him away
D. Give the servant what rightfully belongs to the owner
Jamie: I really don’t know this one. I’ll have to phone a friend.
Cristos: Who do you want to phone?
Jamie: Psycho Andy.
(phone rings)
Andy: Hello?
Cristos: Hello, Psycho Andy? This is Cristos Tarrantus from “Who Wants To Be A Vineyard Owner?” I have Jamie here. He’s doing very well. He’s only one question away from the “vineyard” question, but he’s stuck at the moment. I’ll pass you over to him. You have 30 seconds which will start as soon as Jamie begins to read out the question.
Jamie: At harvest time, the vineyard owner sends another servant to collect his portion of the fruit. What do you do?
A. Ignore him and hope he will go away
B. Beat him up and throw him out
C. Treat him badly and send him away
D. Give the servant what rightfully belongs to the owner
Andy: That’s easy. The answer is B.
Jamie: OK. I’ll have to go with that one, Cristos.
Cristos: Jamie, you had 5000 shekels… You have just lost the lot. Are we going to send you away empty-handed? We don’t want to do that! Instead, we’re going to give you one final lifeline. Let’s move onto the final question. This is for the vineyard:
The vineyard owner then sends his son. What do you do?
A. Kill him
B. Listen to him
C. Do as he asks
D. Ignore him
Jamie: I’m confident about this one. There’s only one it could be. I’m going for A.
Cristos: Is that your final answer?
Jamie: That’s my final answer.
Cristos: Oh, I’m sorry. We’ve reached the end of the show. Has Jamie made the right decision? Has he won the vineyard? You’ll have to wait until the end of the world to find out!
....................................................................................
© Copyright Daniel Carlson, all rights reserved. The script may not be reproduced, translated or copied in any medium, including books, CDs and on the Internet, without written permission of the author.
This play may be performed free of charge, on the condition that copies are not sold for profit in any medium, nor any entrance fee charged. In exchange for free performance, the author would appreciate being notified of when and for what purpose the play is performed. He may be contacted at:
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