IF THE BELLS WOULD RING
A Crisis Story
by Elson Bankoff
If the Bells Would Ring is a two-act political drama highlighting the passion, resilience, greed, devastation, and causes underlying the climate crisis. The play addresses influence, passivity, collective passion and political corruption. It follows the relentless modern-day climate movement and traces power from a handshake to a hurricane.
The story follows the expanding career of a fictional Midwestern Senator, Bill Corley, and his daughter Juliet, a passionate young climate activist. The audience sees firsthand how corporate greed and the desire to maintain control influence Senator Corley, eventually leading to his intense opposition to climate action.
This production of If The Bells Would Ring is an entirely youth-written, youth-organized, and youth-produced play. The youth climate groups sponsoring the play — including Ecosystemic Magazine, Fridays for Future USA, Fridays for Future NYC, and the New York Youth Climate Leaders — see words and art as a necessary tool to combat the ecological, economic, and social crisis we are facing.
Movements become strongest when we can reveal the underlying humanity behind the issues inflicting so much damage. Why do we chase power? What does this lead to? When do we become complacent and when do we start to care?
If the Bells Would Ring uses the theater as a space for the audience to experience a protest, the news, and the classroom. Our audiences will have the chance to sit back and connect with topics that usually only cross their minds as headlines or concepts.