Plays for Children

Since 2002 I have written plays for children and teenagers. These plays have now been performed by English-speaking and International schools in 42 countries. The plays are in downloadable format and can be viewed and purchased by schools or youth organisations on the following websites:

Playstage Junior – www.schoolplaysandpantos.com
Playstage YA – www.playstageya.com

For Younger Children

The Tale of Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny

The Tale Of Peter RabbitA charming reworking of two of Beatrix Potter’s stories which do, in fact, belong together. Mrs Rabbit sends her children off to play with the reminder that they must not go into Mr McGregor’s garden because their father was caught by Mr McGregor and made into a rabbit pie! But naughty Peter is bored and wants an adventure so he disobeys his mother. But he is chased by Mr McGregor, loses his coat and shoes and finally gets home feeling cold, wet and sick. The next day he asks his friend Benjamin to go back to the garden to help him retrieve his clothes. Buy Now

The Elves and the Shoemaker

The Elves And The ShoemakerA delightful version of the story where a poor shoemaker and his wife have their fortunes transformed by some elves who come in to the workshop late at night and make beautiful shoes, in return for warmth and food. A band of carol singers punctuate the action with traditional carols and wassails. Buy Now

Peter and the Wolf

Peter And The WolfA delightful Russian folk tale which Prokofiev used as a basis for his musical suite of Peter and the Wolf. Peter lives in the forest with his grandfather and he has been expressly forbidden to leave the walled garden and go out into the forest where there are fierce wolves. But naughty Peter sits on the wall and talks to his friend the bird and forgets that he has left the garden gate open. The family duck waddles out and gets eaten by the wolf, who then threatens to eat the family cat and Peter’s friend the bird. So Peter hatches a plan to catch the wolf … Buy Now

Town Mouse and Country Mouse

Town Mouse And Country MouseA reworking of the famous tale (or is it tail?). A fun play involving mice, rabbits, squirrels, a hedgehog, delinquent rats, spiders, cats and a dog. Town Mouse goes to visit his cousin in the country and finds rural life not at all to his taste! Not only does he not sleep very well because of the noise the nocturnal animals make but then he has to get up at the crack of dawn and go nut gathering. And there’s nothing to do. So he persuades his country cousin to come and stay with him in the town but Country Mouse finds it far too dangerous. They have to steal their food; they get terrorised by rats and, to cap it all, he gets chewing gum stuck in his tail when they go to the cinema. Both mice decide, in the end, that they prefer their own lives. Buy Now

The Pied Piper of Hamelin

The Pied Piper Of HamelinThis is a poetic but very effective version of the traditional story using large sections of Robert Browning’s original poem with song and dance. The town of Hamelin is overrun with rats and the townspeople complain to the Mayor. Suddenly, a mysterious stranger appears and says that he can get rid of the rats for them but demands a large sum of money to do so. The Mayor and the Council agree and are astonished when the stranger plays upon his pipe and all the hypnotised rats follow him to the river and drown. But then the Mayor tries to cheat the Piper out of his money and the stranger exacts a terrible price. He plays his pipe once more and all the children, except one, are led away in a trance, never to return. Buy Now

The Arabian Nights

The Arabian NightsThe Sultan of Bhagdad had a nasty habit of marrying young women and then chopping their heads off after a few days, when he found them boring! However, his last bride, Sheherazade, famously saved her own life by telling her husband a magical story every night for one thousand and one nights until he promised never to behead another wife. (The best bit is that he dropped dead himself a few years later – serve him right! However, we digress…) In this play, Queen Sheherazade visits the Bhagdad marketplace and tells two of her famous stories to the assembled people. Buy Now

The Princess Frog

The Princess FrogThe King has three sons and he decides it is time they all got married. So he devises a plan whereby they all shoot arrows from the palace and they must marry the girls who find the arrows. The two eldest sons cheat and the youngest, most honourable son, finds, to his dismay, that a frog lady has found his arrow. The King sets all the girls some tasks, to see if they will make suitable princesses, with some hilarious consequences. It looks as though they could be stuck with a frog princess until all is revealed about the spell she is under. The play is a glorious, witty romp through a lovely traditional tale (there are talking animals, skeletons and a witch) with lots of songs thrown in for good measure! Buy Now

Treasure Island

Treasure IslandA humorous and lively version of the famous classic by Robert Louis Stevenson. There are lots of pirates, lots of action and even some talking goats! Buy Now

Puss in Boots

Puss In BootsJohn Groombridge and his brothers are called together for the reading of their late uncle’s will. Peter is left the house and estate, Matthew is left the flour mill and John is left the cat! But this cat is a marvel! Not only does he talk but he is very ,very clever and the reason that the late Joshua Groombridge was so rich. And he is full of plans to make his new master rich too. First, Puss sets about supplying meat to a King whose daughter is a militant vegetarian and has banned bacon sandwiches from the Palace! Then he contrives to get his master into the Palace masquerading as a Marquis. To cap it all, he then tricks an Ogre out of his house and estate, so that his master can be truly wealthy and marry the vegetarian Princess. What a cat! There are wild cats, disco dancing farmhands – even an OFSTED inspection! (Office For Safety in Trickery, Evil and Devliment). Buy Now

Noah and the Ark

Noah And The ArkThis is an imaginative and gently humorous version of the Bible story of Noah. It starts with Noah and his family visiting the big city to sell their wool and discovering that everyone in the city is wicked and deceitful. Then people start making strange statements about a coming flood – but they don’t realise that they are uttering these prophecies. Back at home Noah ponders on these strange events when one of his sheep appears with a letter! The letter turns out to be from God, instructing Noah to build an Ark and fill it with animals, so that they can all be saved from the coming apocalypse. Well, Noah and his sons set about building the Ark and then he has to go and speak to the animals, which proves a little difficult until God intervenes! Eventually the Ark is filled and the rains come – for forty days and forty nights – until it is all over. The sun comes out once again and the flood waters recede. Life begins once more. Buy Now

The Tempest

The TempestThe wizard, Prospero, who was once Duke of Milan, has been marooned on a strange island with his daughter ever since his wicked brother seized his throne. During this exile, Prospero has developed his magic powers and, with the help of a spirit named Ariel, whom Prospero rescued, he is able to perform many wonders. Through his magic powers, he learns that his wicked brother, the King of Naples and his son and other noblemen, will be travelling near the island on a sea voyage. Prospero conjures up a mighty storm and Ariel transports the shipwrecked men to various parts of the island. Prospero means to take revenge but he also hopes that his daughter will fall in love with the Prince of Naples. What follows is a magical fantasy with, ultimately, a happy ending. Buy Now

Greek Myths 1

Greek Myths 1Three delightful short plays in one package. Pandora’s Box; The Story of Persephone and King Midas’ Wish. First there is the tragic story of Pandora’s Box, where a curious woman opens a box left in her husband’s care by the gods and unleashes all the evils of the world. Second there is the rather spooky Story of Persephone, where the daughter of the goddess of the Earth is kidnapped by the Lord of the Underworld, Hades. This became the story by which the Ancient Greeks explained the light of summer and the dark of winter. Finally, there is the salutary tale of King Midas, who was granted a wish by the god, Dionysus, that everything he touched would turn to gold. Unfortunately, this meant he could neither eat nor drink – and there were other dire consequences too. Buy Now

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

A Midsummer Nights DreamA group of clueless tradesmen gather in a woodland copse to rehearse a play that they hope to perform for the Duke on the occasion of his marriage. But first they have to decide who plays what part … not as easy as you would imagine because Bottom, a weaver by trade, wants to play all of them! They are watched by the mischievous sprite, Puck, who serves Lord Oberon, the King of the Fairies. Oberon has recently had a quarrel with his Queen, Titania, and wants to play a trick on her. When Puck tells him about the stupid tradesmen rehearsing in the woods, Oberon has an idea. He decides to cast a spell so that Titania will fall in love with the first creature she sees – and that is going to be a rather bossy weaver called Bottom who, thanks to more of Oberon’s trickery, is now sporting an asses’ head instead of his own! What transpires is, of course, very silly, and this charming section of the play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is just perfect for youth performance. Buy Now

The Golden Goose

The Golden GooseAlmost like a pantomime, with a magic tree sprite, a hungry troll, a golden goose (who dances but does not lay golden eggs), and a princess who can’t smile. Be prepared for some awful jokes but lots of laughs. The King is desperate to get his daughter to laugh – even a smile would do. But, despite the efforts of various people, she remains resolutely glum. So the King promises her hand in marriage to anyone who can make the Princess laugh. Cue a young woodcutter who, as a reward for not cutting down a Tree Sprite’s home, is given a Golden Goose, who talks and dances. So, the woodcutter decides to take her to the Palace. His quest is not entirely successful, at first. Although he makes the Princess laugh, the King is not happy at the thought of his daughter marrying a woodcutter so he sets a challenge – that he must eat and drink all the food in the kingdom. The Tree Sprite comes to the rescue by producing a ravenously hungry Troll. The rest is chaos, with an ultimately happy ending. Buy Now

Ring a Ring a Roses

Ring A Ring A RosesA compilation of Victorian, or earlier, street games and rhymes. An excellent exhibition piece which could be done in costume, with traditional toys as props as part of a Victorian social history programme.The number of performers is totally flexible. Who remembers the old playground games such as “Here we go Looby Loo” and “Oranges and Lemons”? Well, here is the perfect opportunity to teach today’s children how to play these harmless but, sometimes, fiendishly clever games. An excellent way to get children moving and into the spirit of the Victorian era. Buy Now

The Jungle Story

The Jungle StoryNOT the cuddly Disney version of The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling but an adaptation of Kipling’s own play “The Jungle Story”. The Playstage version is a serious but not savage retelling of the boy Mowgli’s life in the jungle with the animals and his return to the world of men. Buy Now

Who Invented Christmas?

Who Invented ChristmasThe Sedgewick family are spending a typical 2012 family Christmas – Mum is reading her Kindle, Dad is watching television with his headphones on, Mark is playing on his X box with his headphones on, Gemma is listening to her IPod with headphones on and Holly is on her laptop. No-one is speaking to anyone else. Enter Mitchell Templeton – documentary presenter – who is about to make the family experience Christmases past, in an effort to revive that long-forgotten Christmas spirit! The family do a quick gallop through ancient winter festivals, Tudor, Victorian and WWII, meeting Mesopotamian and Persian kings, Greeks, Romans, Viking and Saxon gods, Henry VIII, Queen Victoria and various Victorian entrepreneurs, plus Mrs Mopp from the Ministry of Food. Excellent to reinforce the school history curriculum! Buy Now

The Princess and the Pea

A very funny version of this story. The Prince and his parents are searching for a bride but there are problems. One princess turns into a mouse at night and another princess is a shopaholic airhead! So what’s to be done? Well, the Palace Fairy has to sort things out, so she embarks on a tour of the country to find a suitable girl, which proves to be rather difficult. Eventually she finds one but the Queen insists that the girl undergoes a “princess” trial by placing a pea under several mattresses. Anyone who is truly a princess will find the pea uncomfortable and be unable to sleep. Buy Now

The Home Front

The Home FrontReadings of childhood reminiscences during WW2 plus several short – and sometimes humorous – sketches about children’s experiences during the War, written by Year 6 children. A very good curriculum aid. The readings are taken from books, letters and wartime radio announcements of the period. Number of performers is totally flexible. Buy Now

The Snow Queen

One of our most dramatic plays, with the potential to be visually stunning (lots of glittery Snow Spirits and, of course, The Queen herself). There is also a magical garden scene with talking flowers and, later, there is a reindeer who guides Gerda on her quest. The music is also wonderful. Gerda and her brother, Kay, live with their grandmother. Kay is very good at doing puzzles. The Snow Queen hears of Kay’s talents and she entices him away to her palace in the north where she makes him assemble all the pieces of a magic mirror that was smashed into hundreds of pieces. Gerda goes on a long journey to rescue her brother, encountering a witch, a magic garden, a band of robbers and a brave reindeer along the way. Buy Now

Dick Whittington and his Cat

Dick Whittington And His CatPoor lad Dick, from the countryside, goes to London to seek fame and fortune. But he is accompanied by his very clever talking cat. Dick is employed by Mr Fitzwarren, a rich merchant, and falls in love with his daughter, Alice. Dick goes to sea to make his fortune which, with the help of his clever cat, he certainly does and all ends happily ever after. Buy Now

Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping BeautyWe all know the story. The King doesn’t invite the Black Fairy to the christening of his daughter, the Princess Aurora, so the Black Fairy gets cross and makes a spell decreeing that the princess will prick her finger on a spinning wheel and die when she is sixteen. Then the plot deviates a bit from the original story … Princess Aurora is a bit of a swot who likes crafts, reading and hates parties. The Black Fairy sends her minions in (a pair of Goths called Crabby Patty and Sarky Sam) to pose as normal teenagers and trick her into pricking her finger. The Princess and all her family and friends sleep for a hundred years. Unfortunately, the Prince who is supposed to save her is a fairly typical teenager – never gets out of bed before midday, spends his time playing computer games and downloading music on to his Ipod. So it is left to his dog and a handsome Woodcutter’s son to sort things out. Sigh! Things never go to plan, do they? Buy Now

The Story of the Nutcracker

The Story Of The NutcrackerThis is the story behind the ballet, put into words. This play can be a visual feast of costumes and scenery – especially when they visit the Land of Sweets! The Palace is overrun with mice and the King has called in Herr Drosselmeyer, a magician, to get rid of the vermin. When he casts a spell on the mice, the Mouse King, in revenge, turns Drosselmeyer’s nephew into a Nutcracker Doll. The only way the spell can be broken is if a girl loves the doll. Drosslemeyer takes the doll to Clara, his friend’s daughter, knowing that she has a kind heart. Together, Clara and the Nutcracker Doll have several adventures before the, ultimately, happy ending. Buy Now

‘Twas The Night Before Christmas

Twas The Night Before Christmas‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse…WRONG! Edwin Mouse and his family have been summoned by Mrs Santa’s ECPAT (Emergency Christmas Preparations Action Team). The Biggins family are in bed with flu and someone has to prepare Christmas for them. The dog and cat, some of the toys, ECPAT elves, and even the Narrator, have to busy themselves making a secret Christmas for the bedridden family. They decorate, cook and wrap presents and, along the way, they sing a few songs and learn about some Christmas traditions. A very sweet play that will have the audience smiling in no time! Buy Now

Babushka

BabushkaThree kings arrive in a Russian village on their way to Bethlehem. Babushka gives them food and shelter and they try and persuade her to go with them to see the Holy Child. Babushka says she is too busy. After the kings leave, Babushka has a dream about the Baby Jesus and realises that she must follow the kings. She sets off on her journey but she loses sight of the star. She is helped by fish in the river and animals in the forest, who show her the way. She meets some happy villagers who are celebrating the birth of some of their own babies. They try and persuade her to stay but she is determined to carry on. However, when she finally reaches Bethlehem, she is too late, and the Holy Family have gone. An angel explains that, from that moment on, Babushka will only find Jesus by loving all the children of the world. Buy Now

Magda The Straw Bearer

Magda The Straw BearerIt is an old Polish custom that the straw from the church nativity manger is given to the villagers to bring them God’s blessings in the next year. Magda is chosen to be straw bearer. It is a simple job but the night does not go as planned. This charming play about counting one’s blessings contains two translations of beautiful Polish carols. Magda is given a big bundle of straw to deliver around the village. On the way she meets many people in need or who have problems and she is over generous with the straw, hoping to give them extra blessings. She finds a stray dog, who helps many of the people in need. At the end of the evening, Magda finds that she has run out of straw and there is none for her own family. When their house burns down, accidentally, she feels that it is all her fault for giving all the straw away to others. But, as friends and neighbours rally round with food, clothing and support, the Pastor reminds Magda that she actually has plenty of blessings in the shape of the care that the villagers express towards her family. Buy Now

Jack and the Beanstalk

Jack And The BeanstalkThe Dame chats with the audience; there’s a comic cow; the Giant’s wife has had enough of her slob of a husband and it all turns out well in the end! We have made this story very easy to stage. There’s a beanstalk but no-one climbs it or chops it down! Songs are sung by a group of townspeople but they can be eliminated altogether if you don’t have enough children and it won’t affect the script at all. A thoroughly enjoyable and traditional panto. Buy Now

What Makes Christmas Merry

What Makes Christmas Merry?A play in rhyme especially designed for children aged 6 to 8. The play opens with some Narrators wondering what it is exactly that makes Christmas such a merry time. Is it the food; the sweets; the toys; the decorations; snow; Santa? All the different components of Christmas come on stage and deliver little four line poems. This is an opportunity for some wonderful home-made costumes. At the end of the presentations, Santa comes on and reminds everyone that what really makes Christmas merry are family and friends and the cast end with a little song. Guaranteed to make infant school mothers cry. Buy Now

A Christmas Carol

A Christmas CarolCharles Dickens’ famous story of the conversion, on Christmas Eve, of Ebenezer Scrooge, from a wicked, selfish man into a man who “knew how to keep Christmas”. Ebenezer Scrooge has grown miserly and mean throughout the years. One Christmas Eve, on the anniversary of his business partner, Jacob Marley’s, death, he is visited by Marley’s ghost and told that he must mend his ways or spend eternity in hell. Scrooge is visited that night by three Spirits who show him visions of his past, present and future, in an effort to get him to change. Buy Now

A Strange Toy

A Strange ToyThis delightful play shows the true meaning of Christmas through the eyes of Barbie, some action figures, Postman Pat and many other well known toys. Great fun for the children and the audience. An adult puts an old nativity set in the toy cupboard. Only the figures of Mary and Joseph and the Baby Jesus make up the set. When the Nativity set characters explain the story of the nativity to the assembled toys, they decide to act it out. Batman, Superman and Action Man decide to be the Three Wise Men bearing gifts (with the help of some accessories borrowed from Barbie), Eeyore, of course, becomes the donkey that carries Mary to Bethlehem, and the Christmas tree angel narrates the story. The other toys become shepherds, innkeepers and other characters. At the end of the play, the toys realise that Christmas is all about peace and love and they should stop squabbling with each other. Buy Now

The Mayor Who Banned Christmas

The Mayor Who Banned ChristmasMr. Robinson is fed up with the current Mayor of his town – a lazy man who keeps creating unnecessary public holidays like “Take Your Child to the Seaside Day”.  Mr Robinson points out to the townspeople that all the holidays are making local businesses unproductive and they will all soon be out of jobs if they don’t see reason. So the town votes him in as Mayor and it is all a great success – until he gets carried away and decides to ban the Christmas holiday. Mrs Robinson, however, comes to the rescue with a secret plan which, eventually, makes her husband realize the error of his ways! Buy Now

Papa Panov

Papa PanovIn this play, adapted from a story by Leo Tolstoy, the central character is Papa Panov is a lonely but kindly old man who wants some company for Christmas, so he is overwhelmed and excited when he gets a visit from an angel to tell him that Jesus will visit him on Christmas Day. He sets about preparing food – but he keeps getting interrupted by various sad people who need shelter, warmth and a meal, which he, of course, provides. At the end of Christmas Day he falls asleep, feeling sad that Jesus didn’t come, but the angel tells him in a dream that Jesus did come and that he was in all the people that Papa Panov helped throughout the day. Buy Now

The Journey of the Magi

The Journey Of The MagiThis is a powerful play about the journey of the Three Wise Men and their encounter with King Herod and the Holy Family. Based upon the poem of the same name by T.S.Eliot it contains some wonderfully descriptive lines. A very traditional telling of the nativity story but it brings in some characters that do not usually have a voice, such as Herod’s servants, a soothsayer and customers in the inn. The Magi, or Wise Men, see a new star in the sky and believe that it heralds a new age of a god who will be greater than all the gods they have worshipped in the past. Their journey is hard, expressed by the Eliot poem, until at last they come to a tavern, where they enquire about a baby being born. One of Herod’s servants takes them to her master. Herod hears what the Magi have to say and then, after they have left, he calls in his soothsayer and priest. They reveal the prophecy about the Messiah and from that point on, Jesus’ life is in danger … Buy Now

The Fourth Wise Man

The people of a small village In China have prayed for rain for many years. The wisest man in the village, Li Chan, says that the stars have told him that a great lord will be born in a far off country, so he sends his three daughters to find his friends Caspar, Balthazar and Melchior, so that they might all travel together to find this baby and ask for precious rain. Each daughter will carry with her a precious lotus flower as a gift for the mother of the baby. But they must keep the flowers alive over some very long and hazardous journeys. Daughter No.1. is to travel to Russia, daughter No.2 is to travel to India and daughter No.3. must travel to Arabia. In the end, only one daughter is able to keep her flower alive, which she gives to Mary and, in return, Mary prays for the rain to fall once more in China. Buy Now

The Miracle of the Poinsettia

The Miracle Of The PoinsettiaThis is a heart-warming Mexican tale of how kindness and unselfishness causes little miracle plants to grow outside the house of the poorest family in the village of Poco Fe. The play is set during the Christmas celebrations known as Posadas (nine days leading up to Christmas Eve). The Gonzales family are the poorest in the village of Poco Fe and they have been chosen to host the village party on Christmas Eve. Maria Gonzales prays for a miracle and one appears, an Angel, disguised as a carpenter, who takes up residence outside the Gonzales’ house for the duration of the Posadas. Miracles begin to happen. Every time the Gonzales family perform a good deed, a beautiful red plant appears outside their house. Soon other villagers want to buy the plants and this enables the family to host the most wonderful Christmas Eve party Poco Fe has ever seen! Buy Now

Creation Stories of the Ancient World

Creation Stories Of The Ancient WorldThree delightful short plays featuring gentle creation stories from the ancient Australian Aborigine, Chinese and Inca cultures. These plays are perfect either performed together, as possibly an open day presentation, or performed separately as curriculum support assemblies or classroom exercises. The plays can be used to support the study of Ancient Cultures and also Earth Sciences. The first play, Dreamtime – is an Australian Aborigine story about the transition to the Waking Time, when the Ancestors – representatives of all living things – awoke and began to populate the Earth. The second play, The Suns of Di Jun, is an ancient Chinese story which attempts to explain why the Earth has different time zones. The third play, Father Sun and his Children, is a story from the Inca civilization which explains how human beings were given knowledge to elevate them above other living things. Buy Now

For Teenagers

Puss in Boots

Imagine some rich uncle had left you a cat in his will – while your brothers have been left a house and estate and a business. You’d think you’d been hard done by, wouldn’t you? BUT…this particular cat is amaaazing! He is super smart, talks, sings, dances – you name it. He promises his new master that he will make him into a wealthy man and he sets about making that promise come true. There are feral cats, disco dancing, vegetarian protests (? Our plays are nothing if not bizarre!) and even an OFSTED inspection (Office For Safety in Trickery, Evil and Devilment). Laugh? We promise you will. Buy Now

The Princess Frog

This is a fun story. This King decides that his three sons should get married, so he orders them to shoot arrows from the palace and marry the girls who find their arrows. (A bit of a hazardous way of choosing a bride, in many respects. Good job they didn’t have Health and Safety breathing down their necks in medieval times!) Anyway, the two older sons cheat and tell their girlfriends where their arrows are going to land but the youngest, honourable son (there’s always one, isn’t there? A sweet lad who is the youngest?) shoots his arrow randomly and it is found by woman who has been turned into a frog by an evil magician. Now there’s a dilemma! So, youngest son takes the frog-woman home, she reveals the spell she is under, and he goes off to try and break the spell. Meanwhile, the King sets the would-be princesses some tasks, to prove their worthiness. It’s a bit like I’m a Celebrity, only with lots of cheating! Buy Now

Who Invented Christmas?

Welcome to a 21st Century Christmas! The Sedgewick family are spending Christmas Day in silence – each one on their own piece of technology, not engaging with each other at all. Enter a television documentary company (on Christmas Day?! You have to suspend belief please…) who introduce the family to experiences of Christmas long ago, in an attempt to revive some Christmas spirit. The family race through winter festivals from ancient Mesopotamia (Festival of Zagmuk anybody? We celebrate it all the time in London!) up to WW2 at breakneck speed, pausing only to sort out an argument with Odin, a Yule Goat and Winterman and, later, have a quick dance with Henry VIII. It’s bonkers but you certainly learn a lot about the origins of Christmas festivities! Buy Now

The Princess and the Pea

The King and Queen decide it’s time their son was married, so they start interviewing princesses. That proves to be a problem! One princess had a curse put on her as a baby and she turns into a mouse at night (it was a mistake to offer her cheese sandwiches at the interview…), and Princess Eglantine of Beverley Hills is just obsessed with shopping (well, what else would you do when your palace is sandwiched in between Chanel and Louis Vuitton?). It’s impossible. Princesses are in short supply, so the Palace Fairy says they’ll have to go slumming and search amongst the commoners. So they embark on a national tour to find the right girl. Cue a right collection of nutcases whose special talents range from nettle-eating to bird-scaring. (Miss World this ain’t!) Eventually a suitable candidate is found but then she has to pass the Queen’s ‘Royal test’. Will she be able to feel the dried pea placed underneath the pile of mattresses on her bed? Buy Now

The Golden Goose

The Princess is so miserable, her father offers her hand in marriage to any man who can make her laugh. So a clutch of gormless nobleman line up to tell awful jokes but her lips do not so much as quiver. However, there is a young and handsome woodcutter (isn’t there always?) who was given a singing and dancing Golden Goose by a Tree Sprite, as a reward for not cutting down the Sprite’s home. The Woodcutter decides to take the Golden Goose to perform in front of the Princess. However, only the Woodcutter can touch the Goose. If anyone else attempts it, they get stuck. Cue a farcical journey to the Palace where every busybody in the world gets stuck in a long chain to the Goose. The sight of this silly ‘people-chain’ makes the Princess eventually laugh. The King is not happy that he has to hand his daughter over to a Woodcutter, so he sets some fiendish tasks to try and put the would-be bridegroom off. One of the tasks is to eat all the food in the kingdom! Luckily, the Tree Sprite is able to produce one very, very hungry Troll to help the Woodcutter out. This is a charming and funny play, with a touch of chaos thrown in! Buy Now

Sleeping Beauty

Not your usual take on this old fairy story! It starts off traditionally – Princess is born, fairies are invited to the christening to bestow lovely gifts, Black Fairy is left off the guest list and she really throws her teddy out of the pram. So, cue a vengeful appearance of the magical Goth and her minions, Crabby Patty and Sarky Sam, to put a curse on the baby Princess. It is decreed that she will prick her finger on a spinning wheel when she is sixteen and die. The good fairies transmute the death bit into a hundred year sleep (big deal) and then this particular fairy tale goes off at a tangent. For a start, Princess Aurora grows up to be a bit of a swot, who would rather read a book than go to a party (and that includes her own sweet sixteen bash). Crabby Patty and Sarky Sam have to smuggle a spinning wheel into the Palace and persuade the Princess that she really needs to learn the craft in order to get into a prestigious college. So, she pricks her finger and the whole Palace falls asleep. Sadly, the Prince, who is supposed to save her, would rather play computer games and lay on the sofa than seek some real action. Luckily there is a dog and a handsome local peasant lad on hand to organise a rescue. A play that will make all parents of teenagers laugh and groan in equal measure! Buy Now

Jack and the Beanstalk

A traditional pantomime (almost) and we would like to state at the outset that no Beanstalk is harmed in the staging of this show (not climbed up or chopped down – it’s quite clever). Jack’s mother (the Dame, of course) has run out of money again and the cow (two people in a costume, of course) has to be sold. Jack (a little on the dim side) takes five magic beans for the cow, his mother throws them out of the window in a temper and hey presto – one beanstalk going up to the kingdom of the Giant – which the neighbours say is flouting the planning laws. Jack climbs up, of course, to find that the Giant’s wife has had enough. “Don’t marry a giant” my mother said, “You’ll regret it! You’ll always be cooking, sewing, mending and ironing.” She was right. It takes me three days, a ladder and a grappling hook just to change the bedsheets!” This is an extremely silly panto which will have the audience in stitches. Buy Now

The Tempest (Modified Shakespeare)

You will find that these modified versions of the text make the plotline clearer for those students new to the works of William Shakespeare and in no way diminish Shakespeare’s intentions. These plays are intended for production. Classroom study of Shakespeare plays will require the full text. This version of the play cuts out difficult scenes to stage, like the ‘banquet’ scene, which makes no difference to the plot. It works very well as a stand-alone performance piece. Buy Now

Midsummer Night’s Dream (Modified Shakespeare)

You will find that these modified versions of the text make the plot line clearer for those students new to the works of William Shakespeare and in no way diminish Shakespeare’s intentions. These plays are intended for production. Classroom study of Shakespeare plays will require the full text. This version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream concentrates purely on the scenes involving the quarrel between the Fairy King and Queen and the subsequent involvement with the workmen actors. It works very well as a stand-alone performance piece. Buy Now

A Christmas Carol

The evergreen story of Ebenezer Scrooge, a miser, who is visited by the ghost of his dead partner, Jacob Marley and then three more Spirits on Christmas Eve. He is told to mend his ways and cultivate a love for mankind or he will be doomed to walk the Earth forever more as a restless phantom. Guess how it turns out? This a serious treatment of the story – don’t expect too many laughs! But it does have the advantage of only running for one hour, which is considerably shorter than many other adaptations of this Charles Dickens story. Buy Now

Magnificent Magna Carta

King John has been running England like his own personal petty cash pot, levying unreasonable taxes on the people and generally making them disgruntled. A fly-on-the wall documentary programme shows how the people took their revenge and stopped the miserly monarch from bleeding them dry. A bit like Brexit but with some genuine results! Buy Now

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