Posted in Drama for children, Hans Christian Andersen, Oscar Wilde, Oscar Wilde's Stories, Plays, Plays for Children, Role playing stories, Storytelling in the Early years, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid – A Children’s Play.

 

 

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Characters: Three storytellers, Little Mermaid, 5 mermaids, King, Granny, Sea Witch, Prince, Prince’s fiancée, 4 people.


Storyteller 1: Once upon a time, deep down in the ocean…
Storyteller 2: …there lived a king who was a widower. He lived with his old mother and six beautiful daughters.
Storyteller 1: The six princesses were mermaids. The littlest mermaid was the prettiest of them all.
Mermaid 1: Come everyone, let’s play.
(The six mermaids are all on stage. Two of them are playing with a ball, one is skipping, one is reading a book and two of them are playing a game of tag.)
Mermaid 2: I have an idea. Let’s swim up to the surface of the water so we can see the outside world.
Mermaid 3: That would be so exciting and fun.
Mermaid 4: We are not allowed.
Mermaid 5: We must be in our fifteenth year before we can venture up to the surface.
Little Mermaid: I know, we can ask Granny to tell us stories from the outside world.
(Granny enters.)
Little Mermaid: Granny, please tell us about the outside world. What’s it like?
Granny: It is amazing. There is air to breathe and big ships that glide on the ocean full of humans.
Little Mermaid: What’s a human?
Granny: They are like us, but they have two legs instead of tail.
Mermaid 2: They walk instead of swim. Isn’t that right, Granny?
Granny: Yes, my dear.
Mermaid 3: Do they live for 300 years like mermaids?
Granny: Oh no, dear. They might live for 70 years if they are lucky.
Mermaid 4: What happens to them when they die?
Mermaid 5: Do they turn into foam on the waves like us?
Granny: No, when they die, their body dies but their soul lives on forever.
Little Mermaid: Oh, I wish I was fifteen so I could swim to the surface and see the wonderful outside world.
Storyteller 1: One by one, the mermaids turned fifteen.
Storyteller 2: One by one, they swam to the surface and saw the wonderful world.
Storyteller 3: And one by one, they came back and told their sisters about their adventures.
(Each mermaid takes it in turn to swim to the surface and return and mime telling their sisters about their adventures. This could be a movement sequence or a dance. Music can be played in the background. Everyone leaves the stage except the Little Mermaid.)
Little Mermaid: My sisters are so lucky they have all gone to the surface except me. I can’t wait to be fifteen.
Storyteller 1: Eventually, the Little Mermaid turned fifteen. (King, Granny, and her five sisters enter the stage carrying a birthday cake and some presents.)
Everyone: Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday, Little Mermaid.
Happy Birthday to you.
Little Mermaid: Thank you, everyone, and thank you for all the presents.
King: The best present is yet to come. I give you permission to swim to the surface of the ocean.
Little Mermaid: I’m so excited.
King: Off you go, but remember to be back before dark.
Storyteller 1: The little mermaid swam to the surface.
Storyteller 2: She burst through the surface and gasped for air.
Storyteller 3: She couldn’t believe her eyes.
Little Mermaid: Oh my goodness, the world is more beautiful than I imagined.
(A ship floats by with people laughing and dancing inside it. They are eating and drinking.)
Little Mermaid: This must be a boat. My sisters told me about them. (She swims over and peers in the window.)
Person 1: (Raises his glass.) Happy birthday to the prince.
Person 2: Have some more birthday cake. (He cuts some cake and gives it to the prince.)
Little Mermaid: That must be the prince. He is so handsome. He has the same birthday as me.
Storyteller 1: The mermaid watched the party continue into the night.
Little Mermaid: It is dark. I should leave, but I don’t want to leave the handsome prince.
(Thunder and lightning noise.)
Little Mermaid: What’s that noise?
Prince: (Looks up into the sky.) There looks like a storm brewing.
Storyteller 2: The wind started to blow really strong, the rain came down in buckets, there was a loud clap of thunder and the lightning lit up the sky.
(The partygoers look scared and they move side to side.)
Storyteller 3: A huge wave tipped the boat over on its side. Everyone was thrown into the sea.
Everyone: Help, help.
Person 3: Where is the prince?
Person 4: He was next to me.
Person 1: Look, he is going under the water.
Person 2: Someone must help him.
(They struggle to save him but they can’t reach him.)
Little Mermaid: I must save the handsome prince.
(She dives down into the ocean and brings him to the surface. She uses all her strength to hold his head up.)
Little Mermaid: He is still alive. I must get him to the beach.
Storyteller 1: She arrived on the beach with the prince. He was still sleeping.
Storyteller 2: Some people saw him on the beach and ran to his rescue. The Little Mermaid swam off before she was seen.
Little Mermaid: He is safe now. I can go home.
(She swims underneath the water.)
King: Where have you been? I was so worried. (He hugs her tightly.)
Little Mermaid: I got stuck in the storm. I’m home now.
(King leaves the stage and the Little Mermaid looks sad and forlorn.)
Storyteller 3: The Little Mermaid felt very sad. She longed to see the handsome prince again.
(Enter her five sisters.)
Mermaid 1: What’s the matter, Little Mermaid?
Mermaid 2: You look so sad.
Mermaid 3: We thought you would be happy now that you are allowed to swim to the surface of the ocean.
Mermaid 4: You should be happy and excited.
Little Mermaid: Swimming to the surface of the ocean was all I ever wanted, but…
All Mermaids: But what?
Little Mermaid: When I went to the surface, I met the most handsome prince, but I will never be able to see him again. That’s why I’m sad.
Mermaid 5: Well, I have an idea. You could visit the Sea Witch and ask her for her help.
Mermaid 1: That’s not a good idea at all.
Mermaid 2: The Sea Witch is evil.
Mermaid 3: She won’t do you a good turn for nothing.
Little Mermaid: What choice do I have? I’m desperate to see the prince again.
Storyteller 1: Little Mermaid swam towards the Sea Witch’s house. The journey was long and treacherous. She had to fight her way passed sharks and avoid whirlpools and some very dangerous mermaid-eating plants.
Storyteller 2: Eventually, she arrived at the Sea Witch’s castle
Sea Witch: Hello, Little Mermaid. I was expecting you.
Little Mermaid: (Bows, looks scared.) You were?
Sea Witch: Yes, I see everything in my cauldron. I will change your fish tail into legs so you can walk on land, but every step you take will be extremely painful. It will be like walking on sharp swords.
Little Mermaid: I’ll do anything to be with the prince again.
Sea Witch: This comes at a price. I want you to give me your voice.
Little Mermaid: I’ll give you anything.
Sea Witch: If the prince marries you, you will become a proper human. If he marries someone else, you will die and become the foam of the waves. Either way, you will never return to the ocean and your family again.
Little Mermaid: I’ll do it. Here, take my voice.
Storyteller 3: The Sea Witch took the voice and in return gave her a bottle with a potion in it.
The Little Mermaid swam towards the surface. She swam towards the beach. When she arrived, she drank the magic potion. It didn’t taste good and she fainted.
Storyteller 1: The next day, the Little Mermaid was lying on the beach. She opened her eyes and the prince was bending over her smiling.
Prince: Who are you? Where did you come from?
Little Mermaid: Shakes her head and points to her mouth.
Prince: You have no voice? Here, let me help you?
Storyteller 2: The prince helped the Little Mermaid to walk, but every step was more painful than the last.
Prince: Come back to my palace. I’ll take care of you. You are the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen.
Storyteller 3: As the days passed, the prince and the Little Mermaid became closer and closer. The Little Mermaid longed to tell him that she loved him.
Storyteller 1: One day, the Little Mermaid heard some bells ringing.
(The prince comes in.)
Prince: I’m getting married today. My father arranged for me to marry a princess from a nearby kingdom.
(Enter the Prince’s fiancée.)
Prince’s fiancée: You must be the beautiful girl that the prince found on the beach. Please come to our wedding. We are getting married on the big boat out there.
Little Mermaid: (Nods her head.)
Storyteller 2: Everyone celebrated the wedding on the big boat. As the first ray of dawn lit, the Little Mermaid threw herself into the sea and her body dissolved into foam.

 

For more children’s plays based on Hans Christian Andersen’s stories click on the link below.

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Posted in Drama for children, English as a second language, English teaching games, Esl, Esl Drama, Fairy Tales, Hans Christian Andersen, Storytelling, The Emperor's New Clothes

The Emperor’s New Clothes – A Playscript for Children

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Characters: Three storytellers, Dresser, Emperor, Two soldiers, Royal Advisor, Slick, Slicker, four subjects, father, small child.

Storyteller 1: Once upon a time, there was an emperor.
Storyteller 2: He didn’t spend much time ruling his empire
Storyteller 3: Because he was too interested in how he looked and what clothes he wore.
Emperor: (looking in the mirror) I wonder what clothes I’ll wear today. Dresser come here at once.
(Dresser comes rushing holding up two outfits, the emperor grabs one.)
Dresser: That is the tenth outfit you have tried on today, Your Excellence.
Emperor: It is important to look good when you are the emperor of all that you can see and beyond.
(Enter two soldiers.)
Soldier 1: (bows) Your Excellence, the enemy is attacking us.
Soldier 2: (bows) By land, air and sea. What shall we do?
Emperor: How dare you interrupt me with these trivial matters. I’ve way more important things to worry about, like what outfit I’m going to wear today. Please leave at once.
Storyteller 1: When the royal advisor came to advise, he dismissed him.
Royal Advisor: We must talk about how to run the empire.
Emperor: Go away, can’t you see I’m busy admiring myself and my beautiful clothes. Dresser, let’s go outside so all my subjects can admire my clothes.
(Walks up and down like he is on a catwalk. He turns and twirls so all his subjects can see and admire him.)
Subjects: (bows) You look amazing, Your Excellence.
Emperor: Dresser, next week is the annual royal parade. What shall I wear?
Dresser: You have 10,438 outfits to choose from.
Emperor: I need something new and different. I want to look fabulous. I want the whole empire to talk about me and my beautiful clothes. Find me the finest tailors in the land at once.
Dresser: (Comes on stage ringing a bell.) Hear ye, hear ye, the emperor needs a magnificent outfit for the royal parade. Can anyone help? Hear ye, hear ye.
(Enter Slick and Slicker.)
Slick: Do you hear that? We could make lots of money.
Slicker: But we aren’t tailors.
Slick: I know, but I’ve got a plan.
(They huddle together and whisper.)
(Dresser enters the palace with Slick and Slicker. The emperor is sitting on his throne.)
Dresser: I found them, Your Excellence.
Slick: I’m Slick.
Slicker: I’m Slicker. At your service. (Both bow before the emperor.)
Slick and Slicker: We are the finest tailors in the land.
Slick: I’m sure you MUST have heard of us.
Storyteller 2: The emperor liked to pretend he knew everything, so he said…
Emperor: Of course, I’ve heard of you.
Slick: Well then, you must know our clothes are very special.
Emperor: Special?
Slicker: Oh yes, they are magic clothes.
Emperor: Magic?
Slicker: Why, have you not heard? only very clever people can see our clothes.
Slick: Our clothes are invisible to stupid people.
Emperor: Make me a magic outfit at once.
Slicker: Well, it is very expensive.
Emperor: Money is no object. Here take this. (He throws a bag of money at them.) Now get to work at once. You have only a week left to make me the most spectacular outfit for the royal parade.
(Emperor and Dresser exit.)
Storyteller 2: After a few days, the emperor was excited to see his new outfit. He knocked on the door.
Emperor: Knock, knock, may I come in?
Slick and slicker: Oh no, you can’t come in. We want the outfit to be a surprise.
Emperor: Dresser, go inside and look at the outfit and tell me how fabulous it is.
(Enter Dresser. Slick holds up an imaginary outfit.)
Slick: So, what do you think?
Dresser: (Speaks to the audience.) I can’t see anything, but if I say so, everyone will think I’m stupid.
Dresser: It is wonderful, the emperor will be so happy.
Storyteller 3: He scuttled off to tell the emperor that his outfit was amazing.
Storyteller 1: News quickly spread across the empire about the magic outfit. Everyone came the day of the parade to see this fantastic suit.
Storyteller 2: On the day of the parade, the emperor entered the room for the first time.
Slick: (Holds up the outfit.) Well, what do you think?
Emperor: (Speaks to the audience.) I can’t see anything. I must be stupid, but I can’t let them now. I’ll pretend I can see it. (Turns to Slick and Slicker.) It is amazing, magnificent, fabulous.
Slicker: Well, put it on then.
Dresser: I will help you. You look fantastic.
Emperor: It is a perfect fit. Dresser, carry my train.
Storyteller 3: He admired himself one last time. The soldiers opened the palace doors.
Emperor: Let the parade commence.
Storyteller 1: The crowd gasped with excitement. They knew only clever people could see the clothes.
Subject 1: You look so handsome.
Subject 2: Such an amazing outfit.
Subject 3: What magnificent tailoring.
Emperor: The clothes I’m wearing must be beautiful.
Small child: I can’t see. I want to see the emperor’s new clothes.
Father: Come here, I’ll show you. (Father picks up the small child.)
Small child: But the emperor has no clothes on.
Subject 4: What did he say?
Subject 1: He said the emperor has no clothes on.
Subject 3: He is right, the emperor is naked.
Subject 4: The emperor has no clothes on.
Storyteller 2: Everyone started to whisper and the whispering turned into shouting.
Everyone: The emperor has no clothes on.
Emperor: (Looks down.) They are right. I’ve got no clothes on. (He tries to cover himself up.)
Slick and Slicker: Time to go with our bags full of money. (They tip toe off the stage quickly without anyone seeing them.)
Emperor: Cover me up at once. (Dresser comes running in with a blanket.)
Storyteller 3: The emperor got what he wished for. People talked about the emperor with no clothes for years to come.

Posted in Aesop's fabes, Christmas plays, Drama for children, Esl, Esl Drama, Hans Christian Andersen, Oscar Wilde, Panchatantra plays, Rudyard Kipling, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Little Mermaid, The Nutcracker

The Fir Tree – A five minute play based on Hans Christian Andersen’s popular story.

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Characters: Three narrators, Little Fir Tree, Squirrel, Sun, Hare, Two woodcutters, Wind, Swallow, two children, Woman, Man.

Narrator 1: Once upon a time, there was a little fir tree.
Narrator 2: He was not very happy that he was so little.
Narrator 3: He wanted to grow big and tall.
Little Fir Tree: Oh, I wish I was tall like all the other trees.
Squirrel: You should be careful what you wish for.
Sun: Try not to grow up so quickly. You should enjoy the sunshine and the wind blowing freely through your branches.
Hare: Look on the bright side. I can jump over you because you are so little.
Little Fir Tree: I want to grow up and see the world.
Narrator 1: Every autumn, woodcutters would visit the forest.
Woodcutter 1: How about this little fir tree? Shall I cut it down?
Woodcutter 2: Don’t bother. That tree is too small.
Narrator 2: The woodcutters cut down lots of trees, took off their branches and dragged them off.
Little Fir Tree: Where are they going?
Wind: Don’t worry where they are going. Just enjoy being young and free.
Narrator 3: When Christmas time came, the woodcutters would take down the trees but not take off their branches.
Little Fir Tree: Where are they going?
Swallow: People take the trees and decorate them with colourful ornaments.
Little Fir Tree: Oh, how I long to be a Christmas tree.
Squirrel: No, you don’t.
Hare: Stay here with us.
Narrator 1: The tree was still not happy. The next Christmas came and the little fir tree had grown.
Woodcutter 1: Look at this fir tree.
Woodcutter 2: It will make a perfect Christmas tree.
Narrator 2: They cut the tree and sold him to a man who carried him off.
Child 1: What a beautiful Christmas tree.
Child 2: Let’s decorate it.
Narrator 3: After a few days, the fir tree was not happy.
Little Fir Tree: I have such a pain in my neck from standing up straight trying to hold up these ornaments.
(Children run around playing and shouting.)
Little Fir Tree: It is so noisy. I wish I was back in the forest with my friends, the hare, the squirrel, the swallow, the sun and the wind.
Woman: Well, Christmas is over for another year. It is time to get rid of the tree.
She takes off the ornaments. (Man enters.)
Woman: Take this tree away.
Man: I will put it in the yard.
Little Fir Tree: I’m outside at last. How I missed the fresh air.
Narrator 1: As he stretched out, his needles dropped off.
Little Fir Tree: what’s happening? I’m brown and I’m withering. I wish I had enjoyed myself when I was younger. I shouldn’t have wanted to grow up so fast.
Narrator 2: The next day, the man came back with an axe. He chopped up the tree.
Man: This will make great firewood and will keep the family warm this winter.
Narrator 3: The tree’s life was past.
If you want to read more plays for children based on Hans Christian Andersen’s stories click on the link below.