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Characters: Three storytellers, three ants, grasshopper, owls, squirrels and bears.
(Stage Directions: the owls, squirrels and bears are in a large semicircle stage right; storytellers are stage left and the ants are in the centre of the stage.)
Storyteller 1: One hot summer’s day …
Storyteller 2: … there were some ants working hard.
Storyteller 3: They were collecting food for the winter. (All the ants are miming digging, pulling and pushing.)
Ant 1: I am so hot.
Ant 2: Me too!
Ant 3: This is very hard work.
Storyteller 1: They saw a grasshopper listening to some music on his iPod. (Grasshopper passes by, singing and dancing; the ants stop work and look at him.)
Storyteller 2: He was dancing …
Storyteller 3: … and laughing and enjoying the lovely weather.
Grasshopper: Ants, you are so silly. You need to enjoy the sunshine.
(Ants start working again.)
Ant 1: We are working hard.
Ant 2: We want to have food for the winter. (Grasshopper keeps dancing.)
Storyteller 1: The grasshopper continued enjoying himself. (The Ants keep working and move stage right.)
Storyteller 2: Winter started to come and the weather got colder and colder.
Storyteller 3: The snow began to fall.
Storyteller 1: The grasshopper was cold and hungry. (Grasshopper rubs his stomach and shivers. He looks at the owls that start to fly around the stage.)
Grasshopper: I am cold and hungry; perhaps my friends the owls will feed me. Owls! Owls! Will you please feed me?
Owls: (Owls fly around the grasshopper and stop centre stage. They stand around the grasshopper.) Twit Tuhooo! Oh no, we will not feed you. (They fly back to their place in the semicircle.)
Grasshopper: Oh dear! I know, I will ask my friends the bears to feed me. (Grasshopper walks towards the bears.) Bears! Bears! Please feed me. (Bears are asleep so he wakes them up and they walk to the centre stage.)
Bears: (The bears are very angry that they have been woken up.) Growl! Growl! Oh no, we will not feed you. (The bears go back to their place in the semicircle.)
Storyteller 1: Then the grasshopper saw some squirrels. (The squirrels mime eating nuts stage right.)
Grasshopper: Squirrels! Squirrels! Please feed me! (They squirrels walk towards him.)
Squirrels: Oh no, we will not feed you. (They hop back to stage right.)
Storyteller 2: The grasshopper was very cold and hungry. He didn’t know what to do. (Grasshopper is shivering and rubbing his stomach.)
Storyteller 3: Then he thought of the ants. (The ants move to the centre of the stage.)
Grasshopper: Ants! Ants! Please feed me. (The ants go into a huddle away from the grasshopper.)
Storyteller 1: The ants thought about it and decided to give him some food. (All the ants face the grasshopper.)
Ant 1: You must promise that next year you will work hard in the summer. (Grasshopper gets down on his hands and knees.)
Grasshopper: Oh thank you Ants, I promise.
Storyteller 1: That summer the grasshopper kept his promise and worked hard to collect food for the next winter. (Grasshopper mimes pushing, pulling, carrying and digging with all the ants.)
Storyteller 2: The lesson of the story is: fail to prepare …
Storyteller 3: …prepare to fail.
For more children’s plays and drama workshops based on Aesops Fables, click on the links below: