Sleeping Beauty Pantomime Script by Alan P Frayn, Stage Right Creative

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by Alan P Frayn
“I cannot remember using so many superlatives to describe one show” (The Stage)

“Exceptionally inventive – a panto that has everything!” (Amateur Stage Magazine)
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PANTOMIMES

Sleeping Beauty

A very creative adaptation, full of artistry and magic, re-awakens this tale-of-old, with bucket-loads of comedy!


For a great traditional pantomime, but a refreshing break from the more conventional format, this cracking new version of Sleeping Beauty is right on the money!

An extra-large portion of comedy and some very original twists and turns along the way make for a novel and artistic production.  The storyline is cleverly managed and the common imbalance between Act I and Act II content has finally been resolved!

Nurse Dottie Dettol, the puddle-brained Muddles and two hapless heralds, Fetch and Carrie, ensure the laughs come thick and fast, especially when they meet head-to-head in a hilarious schoolroom scene.  With generous possibilities to keep the Chorus busy, there are also more principal roles for females than the norm.  

Whilst there are lots of opportunities and suggestions for the more ambitious, it can be staged effectively with a minimum of scenery.  

Full cast and scenery requirements are listed below

Many productions of this script have won NODA and drama federation awards, including Market Drayton AO&DS, The Bolsover Drama Group, Saundersfoot Footlights and NOMADS, Newmarket (all of whom won NODA “Best Pantomime” awards)!

"...Sleeping Beauty was a triumph. With an up-to-date script from Alan Frayn a scintillating show has evolved in this fun-filled, scrumptious slice of panto magic!”  (Cornish Guardian)
sleeping beauty
St Giles Pantomime Society
sleeping beauty
Frome Musical Theatre Co
EXCERPT from Act II Scene 2: The Forgotten Room © Alan P Frayn

(ROSE enters SR and is startled when she sees the WITCH, disguised as a hooded old woman at her spinning wheel.)
WITCH:(Disguising her voice) Don’t let me startle you, dear.
ROSE:I'm sorry, but "hoodies" aren't allowed in the Palace!
WITCH:Oh, but I’m just an old lady going about her work.
ROSE:That’s a strange contraption.
WITCH:It’s just a spinning wheel, my dear.  You’ve seen an old woman spinning before, surely!
ROSE:Only Nurse Dottie when she’s had a few too many sherries! … How does it work?
WITCH:Well, the treadle makes the wheel spin and it turns flax into thread.
ROSE:(Ironically) Whoa – hold on!  I can’t keep pace with this hi-tech age we live in!
WITCH:Would you like to try, sweetheart?
ROSE:Could I?
WITCH:But of course, my dear!
ROSE:(To audience) Do you think I should, girls and boys, mums and dads?
(The audience responds: “No!”)
WITCH:(Standing up and coming DS) Oh, yes she should!
(The audience responds: “Oh, no she shouldn’t!”)
WITCH:(Stamping her foot) She should, she should, she jolly well should!
(The audience shouts: “She shouldn’t, she shouldn’t, she jolly well shouldn’t!”)
ROSE:Ooh, but it’s the chance of a lifetime.  (She sits at the stool.)  It’s not dangerous, is it?
WITCH:(Turning nasty) What do you want – a risk assessment? (Controlling her temper:) No, you’ll be alright, my child.  We don’t want you having an accident now, do we?
(ROSE starts to pedal very slowly.)
WITCH:That’s right, nice and slowly at first … Now a little faster … And faster still … (Shouting:) Faster, I say!
ROSE:(Trying to oblige, she suddenly pricks her finger.)  Ouch! (She sucks her finger.)
WITCH:Oh dear!  Did you prick your finger, my precious?
(ROSE stands, but is obviously starting to feel drowsy and she soon collapses.)
WITCH:(She casts off her hood and addresses the audience in her ordinary voice:) See?  She’s dying – just like I predicted all those years ago!
PRINCE:(Entering SR and running to Rose) Rose!  Whatever’s happened?  (He stoops beside her.)  Oh, no!  Why did I send you in alone?  I must take you back to your family …
MUSIC:Dramatic Play-out
(The PRINCE starts to pick ROSE up as the WITCH gloats and lights fade to blackout.)
Characters
KING CACTUS: Typical King character. (Male)
QUEEN MARIGOLD: Queen, less worldly than the King. (Female)
PRINCESS ROSE: The Sleeping Beauty. (Principal girl)
DOTTIE DETTOL: Pantomime Dame, nursemaid to the Princess. (Obviously, best played by a man)
MUDDLES: The foolish Palace handyman. (Usually male, but could be played by female)  
PRINCE ALEXIS: Young prince from a far-off land. (Can be played by male or female, as Principal Boy)
FETCH &
CARRIE:
The Palace messengers, typical panto-style comedy twosome. (Male and female)
GOOD FAIRY LILAC: Typical good fairy character. (Female)
BAD WITCH HAZEL: The evil witch. (Female)
RAINBOW FAIRIES: 4 or 5 “trainee fairies”, possibly youngsters.  Can be speaking or non-speaking. (Female)
CHORUS: Villagers
Courtiers
School “Children”
DANCERS: Featured in musical numbers as desired.  Also perform the optional ultra-violet scene.
Scenes  (Notes on simplified scenery are also included in the script)
ACT I  
Prologue: Mixed Blessings (Front of Tabs, front cloth or DS starcloth)
Scene 1 : The Village of Muddleby on Marsh (Full stage village scene)
Scene 2 : Post Haste (Front of Tabs or front cloth)
Scene 3 : The Royal Christening (Full stage Palace interior scene)
Scene 4 : Spell Check! (Front of Tabs or front cloth)
Scene 5 : The Village Schoolroom (Half-stage scene)
Scene 6 : The Golden Key (Front of Tabs or front cloth)
Scene 7 : Happy Birthday? (As Act I Scene 3, plus Palace clock)
ACT II  
Scene 1 : Outside the Palace (As Prologue, plus Tower)
Scene 2 : The Forgotten Room (Half-stage scene with spinning wheel)
Scene 3 : Back at the Party (As Act I Scene 7)
Scene 4 : A Recipe for Disaster (As Act II Scene 2, with cauldron)
Scene 5 : In Your Dreams! (As Act I Scene 3)
Scene 6 : The Forest of Thorns (Half-stage scene)
Scene 7 : The Awakening (As Act I Scene 3, possibly with cobwebs)
Scene 8 : Muddle Along with Muddles (Front of Tabs)
Scene 9 : Sweet Dreams (Probably as Act I Scene 1 or 3)
AMATEUR STAGE MAGAZINE WROTE ...

"...It would be unfair to dedicate a disproportionate amount of space to one publisher and writer ... (following a long review of Robinson Crusoe & the Pirates in the same issue) ... and yet, by the same token, I cannot let this second "hot off the press" adaptation of one of pantomime's most difficult subjects pass without some introduction.

It is a traditional story which demands a totally imbalanced cast (as compared to any other pantomime).  Because the story starts at the birth of the Princess and no less than 18 years pass in the first six scenes, we don't meet the Principal Girl until Act I Scene 5 and, inevitably, by the same token, we only meet the Principal Boy a scene later, making both of these "leading" roles much smaller than usual.  On the other hand, Frayn has realised that such a constraining original story makes it possible to provide much meatier roles for the other characters and, in his version more principal roles for women than for men.

Once again he provides copious production notes in his five-page preface.  And one thing impressed me more than almost anything else – he has truly beaten the curse of the common imbalance between Act I and Act II – read the introduction to see what I mean."

“…This was a quick-fire family pantomime – funny, frivolous and as fantastic a frolic as you could find on any professional stage in the UK.”

Gulf Weekly, Bahrain

 

"...They chose a good script. Alan Frayn is one of the funniest writers in the business today and the script was very clever with plenty of gags. Dame Dottie Dettol picked out one poor fellow in the audience and ribbed him mercilessly throughout the evening. All in all, it was great fun, providing plenty of chuckles and quite a few moments of wonderment.”

SFD Spotlight Magazine

 

"...This was Alan P Frayn's adaptation of the famous fairy tale which tells of a beautiful princess who is cursed by an evil Witch ... it was pure comic genius."

The Bolton News

 

“…Like all good pantomimes (and this one was excellently written by Alan P Frayn) it opened with the good Fairy and her four young Rainbow Fairy helpers. The schoolroom scene, where poor Muddles was dropped on the floor so many times by the old fashioned school bench, had most of the audience in hysterics. Nurse Dottie Dettol, for me, was the star of the show. His ‘latching on’ to a member of the audience was perfect – it gave many laughs but without causing too much embarrassment. A very enjoyable evening for cast and audience alike.”

NODA Report

Bradford Players

"...Good quality family entertainment, I would guess, is the reason behind the everlasting popularity of panto. And this latest production of Sleeping Beauty has it by the bucketful. Written by Alan Frayn, the script is original and highly entertaining."

Brixham News

 

"…Along the way there were jokes aplenty and Alan Frayn's script was suitably adaptable to include a wealth of local references and remarks. There was a real warmth and friendliness about this pantomime that drew the audience members in and made them part of the fun. It was a truly delightful and entertaining show."

John O'Groat Journal

 

“…This magical panto is fun for all ages … enchanting, entertaining and very funny. Sleeping Beauty by Alan Frayn had all the ingredients for this kind of show – audience participation aplenty, jokes and slapstick humour. There were some good set pieces – in particular, a place name sketch, which was probably the funniest moment of the show.”

Northumberland Gazette

 

“…Just to say thank you for our wonderful pantomime script Sleeping Beauty. We had lots of favourable and positive comments from the audience as they were leaving. We found the script easy to work with from beginning to end and it was easy to bring the characters to life. The whole panto was slick, with lots of energy and above all fun!"

Rowntree Players

 

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