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Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

A clever blend of fairy tales Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, & the Frog Prince with good roles for all as four girls seek their perfect match.

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Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

This is a clever blend of fairy tales with lots of good roles as Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and the Frog Princess trying to decide which of the Charming brothers is her perfect match.


Author:    Peg Herring

Synopsis:

        Imagine putting just about every fairy tale you’ve ever heard into one story. That’s what happens when Mabel, a good fairy, is sent to match wits with Shanara, a bad one. Mabel must pair the three Charming brothers with their perfect mates, but who is perfect for whom? Princesses Beauty, Snow, and Grace (the Frog Princess) are all great girls, but Shanara does everything possible to keep them from marrying, including the expected poisoned spindle and apple. The confused Rapunzel just wants a prince, any prince, but there are only three-or are there? Along the way, we meet a whiny queen, a ditzy fairy, and numerous fairy tale characters who make the story lively and familiar in new ways.


Synopsis:


Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

by 

Peg Herring



Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

 Copyright 2001 

by Peg Herring

All Rights Reserved

CAUTION: Professionals and amateurs are hereby warned that FOUR CHICKS, THREE HUNKS, AND A FROG  is subject to a royalty.  It is fully protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America, the British Commonwealth, including Canada, and all other countries of the Copyright Union.  All rights, including professional, amateur, motion picture, recitation, lecturing, public reading, radio broadcasting, television, and the rights of translation into foreign language are strictly reserved. 

The amateur live stage performance rights to FOUR CHICKS, THREE HUNKS, AND A FROG are controlled exclusively by Drama Source and royalty arrangements and licenses must be secured well in advance of presentation.  PLEASE NOTE that amateur royalty fees are set upon application in accordance with your producing circumstances.  When applying for a royalty quotation and license please give us the number of performances intended and dates of production.  Royalties are payable one week before the opening performance of the play to Drama Source Co., 1588 E. 361 N., St. Anthony, Idaho 83445, unless other arrangements are made. 

Royalty of the required amount must be paid whether the play is presented for charity or gain, and whether or not admission is charged.  For all other rights than those stipulated above, apply to Drama Source Company, 1588 E. 361 N. St. Anthony, Idaho 83445.

Copying from this book in whole or in part is strictly forbidden by law, and the right of performance is not transferable.

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Characters-

Guardian-wise older fairy who trains new ones

Metron-(m or w) fairy civil servant; rather a dithering type

Mabel-best of this year’s initiates; clever and resourceful

Shanara-evil fairy; always dresses in black

Alice-ditzy but kind initiate

Lothian-King; father of  Beauty

Irene-Queen; mother of  Beauty; a bit of a complainer

Fairies 2-11: initiates who bestow gifts on the king’s baby girl

Barry Charming-second of the charming brothers, intellectual but not practical

Dwight Charming-oldest prince, gorgeous but conceited

Lucky Charming-youngest brother-Mr. Personality-doesn’t know what he’s looking for in a wife

Joe Charming/Frog-the lost Charming brother, enchanted

Beauty-smart, but ditzy princess who sleeps 20 years

Snow White-beautiful princess who sleeps a few days 

Grace-serious, shy princess who falls for a frog

Lettuce/Rapunzel-good-hearted girl who is confused about her duty

Jacob Grimm-jester who may have been someone else in his youth-ages between Acts I & II

King Ethelred-Grace’s father

Queen Beatrice-Grace’s mother

Mirror-kindly older lady

Steward/Chatelaine-(m or w) in charge of the king’s banquet

   Fairy tale characters:

Goldie-little girl looking for a place to take a nap

Ella-Alice’s protegee

Rumplestiltskin-grumpy spindle owner

Hansel-kid looking for food

Gretel-likewise

Red Riding Hood-little lost girl

Wolf-a wolf!

Belle-girl with a caring father

Jack-not-too-smart guy with a beanstalk

Seven Dwarves-days of the week



Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

 Act I Scene i-Fairy hall

( curtain opens; stage is darkened; novices file in with candles NOTE: glo-sticks work very nicely here. GUARDIAN stands before them.)

Initiates, we gather for your last meeting as novices. You will perform the rite of the craft while the council makes its final decisions.(Initiates perform a solemn dance)

Gdn: The council has decided. Twelve of you will become fully initiated and begin the work of our organization: Women Intended To Create Harmony. You will each receive your assignments and begin the task  of helping humankind to achieve their destinies.  One of you, however, has been deemed unacceptable to our task.  Shanara-you have been given every chance to improve your attitude and your behavior. You have constantly created trouble among the fairy sisters, you have shown nothing but contempt for the human beings we are sworn to help, and you insist on wearing black, …which really irritates me! You are hereby banished from the W.I.T.C.H. council.

Shan: (Stepping toward her) You old bag! Do you think I care? I never wanted to join these goody-goodies anyway. I only came here to learn the magic arts that will make me powerful! (To the initiates) Have fun, girls-I’m sure we’ll meet again! (She leaves, laughing menacingly)

Grn: Oh, dear-I hope she hasn’t stolen too much magic. She was always snooping into things! (Gathering her thoughts) UMM! Ladies, you are now apprentice fairies, commissioned to go out into the human world and assure that your client meets his or her destiny.  Metron will hand each of you your first assignment. (Each fairy comes forward and gets a scroll from METRON as she continues. Fairies read their scrolls and smile as each learns her placement.) Before we disperse to our tasks, however, you have been invited, en masse, to attend the christening of a child-the king of Lothian’s daughter Beauty. He thought it would add a nice touch if the new fairy class attends. I’m sure he’ll expect gifts, so think of something appropriate. (LIGHTS fade)

(As fairies go through the line, MABEL and ALICE chat together.)

Alice: I hope I get something good for my first assignment. I’d like a sweet little girl that I can help find her way in the world, or maybe a lady who can’t have children-I’ve been practicing very hard on spells to cure that. I mean, I’ll take whatever I get, you know, but I really like working with nice people. Bad creatures really get to me, you know? I can take it for a while, but then it just -gets to me, you know? The Guardian says I have to learn to hold my temper, so I try, but anyone who is mean to someone else, you know? I 

can only take it for so long, then POW, something snaps inside me, you know?

Mabel: I see. Well, the Guardian is very wise, and if she says you must practice keeping your temper, you really should.

Alice: I know. What are you hoping for?

Mabel: I guess I’ll be happy with whatever the Guardian gives me to do. I don’t really have a specialty, like love potions or childbearing spells. I like surprises, I guess.

Alice: Well, there are enough of those in the world, you can bet!

 (They get into line and receive their wings)

Metron:   Fairies! Prepare yourselves and your gifts for Lothian’s christening party. (Losing her dignity a bit) And congratulations, girls-you were lovely!

Scene ii

(Lothian’s castle, throne room. Nobles are scattered around, there is a cradle CENTER, the KING & QUEEN sit on thrones behind it, and the 12 FAIRIES stand off L.  FIRST FAIRY is beginning the gift-giving; as each fairy speaks, she passes a hand over the cradle.)

Alice: My gift to the Princess Beauty- is beauty. She will be second to none.

F#2: My gift is kindness. She will be known for her sweet disposition.

F#3: My gift is music. The princess will play and sing like an angel.

F#4: I bestow talent in art. She will draw, paint and weave with genius.

F#5: I give the princess grace. She will move like the daintiest fairy.

F#6: My gift is courage. The princess will never fear what must be faced.

F#7: My gift is curiosity. Beauty will have an interest in everything.

F#8: I grant her charm. She will be loved by all humankind.

F#9: Happiness is my gift. Beauty will love life and laughter.

F#10: I bring skill. The princess will be able to learn quickly whatever she needs to.

F#11: My gift is athletic ability. The princess will be quick, strong and accurate.

Mabel: My gift-

Shan: (appearing R. in a puff of smoke) So, your highness! You invite the goodies, but not me! I’m going to make you sorry you never thought of me, King Loser! My gift for the princess is a curse-she will live happily for 15 years, but on her 16th birthday, she will prick her finger on a spindle and DIE!

King Lothian: A spindle? She’ll prick her finger on a spindle?

Shan: Pretty clever, huh? There are spindles everywhere in your realm-you’ll never hide them all! But you can try-just keep trying! (Disappears in a second puff of smoke.)             

King L: Oh no! How can this be prevented?

Queen Irene: I can’t lose my only child-I can never have another!

Mabel: Highnesses-I have not yet given my gift.

Queen I: Praise be!

Mabel: I cannot remove Shanara’s spell-we haven’t that power.  I can only change it. The princess will not die when she pricks her finger; she will fall into a deep sleep for twenty years. (All gasp) I can extend the spell over all the kingdom so that you will share her sleep and wake refreshed after the time is up to continue your lives together.  Is that helpful?

King L: I will try to avoid the spell entirely by decree. (Raising his voice) All spinning wheels are hereby banned from the kingdom forever.  However, if my decree should fail to prevent this, I thank you for your gift. 

Queen I: We both thank you, and thanks to all of you. We can only hope that this can be averted. (Seizing Mabel’s arm) I went through 32 hours of hard labor for this child, now please-see what you can do to protect her from harm.

Mabel:   (Waves her hand over whole company) Well, I was going to give the princess common sense, but we’ll just have to hope she was born with that. (LIGHTS down)

Scene iii

(Later, in Metron’s office.  FAIRIES are getting ready to set out on their tasks. They chat happily. MABEL sits quietly off to the side. GUARDIAN enters and watches.

 

Fairy #3: I’m to mentor a wooden puppet. It seems he has quite a few adventures to get through.

Alice: I got a girl named Ella. It seems her family isn’t kind to her, and she must sleep on the floor  by the fire.

Fairy#2: I have some children who need some fun in their lives, it seems (Reads) John, Peter, and Wendy. They sound lovely. (Noticing Mabel) Where are you being sent, Mabel?

Gdn: Mabel, we must talk. (MABEL comes to her) You’re wondering why you got a blank scroll.

Mabel: Yes, Guardian. Have I done something wrong?

Gdn: On the contrary, my dear. You are our best and brightest. We were saving you for something very important; something we felt was imminent. And you’ve already proved yourself this evening when you saved the Princess Beauty from death.

Mabel: I just did what I could to help.

Gdn: It was very quick thinking, and you’ll need to do more of it if I don’t miss my guess. Shanara will be making trouble whenever she can from now on. We need someone to cross her at every turn. We haven’t the power to stop her, or even predict what she’ll do, but we can be on guard and try to fight her when and where we can. We believe you are the one to do this.

Mabel: Me? I don’t like to fight.

Gdn: No one who is truly brave does. We fight because we must, not because we choose to. Will you try to protect us all from Shanara?

Mabel: If that’s what you want of me, then yes. I will.

Gdn: Good. I will give you what I can to help-I have a magic mirror that always tells the truth and knows everything, but it can only answer specific questions. I will create an enchanted door between here and Lothian’s castle so you can move quickly from one to the other.  I will try to find you an assistant of some sort, too. Remember, my dear, it’s up to you. We in the Fairy Hall can only watch and wait.

INSERT-Shanara crosses stage, meets little girl.

Goldie: Excuse me, Ma’am, but I am tired and very hungry. Do you know where I can get some rest?

Shan: Of course, little girl. Right over that way is a cozy little house with food set out on the table for anyone who happens by. You could sit in a chair or even take a little nap there. No one will mind.

Goldie: Oh, thanks a million! (She runs off)

Shan: Don’t mention it, Babycakes.

Scene iv

(Fairy crosses with sign “16 years later”-Throne room. It is Beauty’s birthday, and there is a party going on. Couples dance as MUSIC plays. FANFARE-KING & QUEEN enter and are seated on their thrones)

King L: Welcome all, to my daughter’s birthday celebration. Beauty (Indicates her) is sixteen today, and it appears we have beaten the evil woman’s spell. I have invited all the eligible nobility in the area here so that they may become acquainted. Perhaps some alliances will be formed this night (Chuckles-everyone else chuckles just the same way). 

Queen I: We are very proud of our daughter’s accomplishments, so if you dance with her, be sure to ask her questions. She knows everything that books can teach. I, her mother, have taught her all the womanly duties that every girl should know. Beauty has all the accomplishments one could wish. (to husband) So what if she’s a little dingy and can’t decide which end of the candle to light? (Back to group) She will make a great queen for one of the eligible princes here tonight. She is our only child-have I told you that I was in labor for 33 hours? (All nod vigorously) Well, it was a trial, I can tell you,

King: (Interrupting) Musicians, play on!

 (MUSIC- couples dance. Three princes enter and are announced.)

Steward: The Princes Charming: Dwight Charming, Blessed with Physical Perfection and Huntsman Extraordinaire;  Barry Charming, Possessor of Mighty Wit and Great Intellect; and Lucky Charming, voted Most Likely to Be Kissed and All-around Ladies’ Choice.

(Princes stand off to the side, watching the crowd.)

Barry: Well, here we are, on display like a trio of prize roosters. I’d rather be studying Euclid.

Dwight: It’s not so bad, brother Barry. All the ladies can admire my spectacular looks.

Lucky: Sure, Dwight, but I’ll be the one they’ll all want. Old Lucky is the prize for tonight.

Barry: I don’t want to be chosen for looks, as you do, Dwight, or for my sparkling personality, like Lucky here.  I’d like to meet a woman who is my intellectual equal.

Dwight: Yeah, right. Us too, right, Lucky?

Lucky: Sure. Brains- that’s what I’m looking at-I mean for!

Barry: Not just brains-I love beauty too. I want a girl who is well-rounded…

Lucky:   Now you’re talking!

Barry: I mean talented in many areas, you moron!

Dwight: Well, you’re very talented in many areas, but you haven’t got the sense Nature gave a rabbit, so what good does it do? You and your talented female would probably drown because together you couldn’t decide to come in out of the rain. For myself, I don’t care if she can quote Aristophanes as long as she looks good beside me and can appreciate me.

Lucky:   (Teasing him) You mean you won’t mind marrying someone as gorgeous as yourself? Won’t you be jealous?

Dwight: No. I want my equal, just as Barry does, but my equal in physical perfection. You can always hire an intellectual if you need thinking done, but two perfectly beautiful people-what an ideal marriage!

Lucky:   I’m not sure what I want in a wife-right now I just want to meet them all and let them bask in my personal charm. Let’s get this party started.

(They start for the center, but SHANARA, in disguise, approaches them.)

Shan: Young gentlemen. You are all quite amazing. Forgive me, but I am aunt to Princess Beauty, and I recently returned from the East, where I bought some lovely trinkets that are said to be also good luck charms. May I present each of you with one, as a token of esteem?

Barry: Lady, it is not necessary, but we would be delighted to accept them if you will let us repay you with a dance later in the evening.

Shan: How nice. A young man with manners. You shall have a medallion, because you are so nice to an old woman. (Places it around his neck) Never remove these gifts, young men, for the good luck will escape from them. You, I think, should have the ring. (Puts ring on Dwight) And for you, charming Prince Charming, a brooch for your cape.

Dwight: We thank you, Lady, and we will claim our dances one by one. (They move off)

Shan: (Revealing herself to audience) I won’t be here, boys, but my magic will be working on you! There is a girl here tonight who is exactly right for each of you, but you’ll never know it! (Hides behind throne)

(PRINCES approach girls as MUSIC begins and couples dance.)

Dwight:  I am Dwight Charming. Have we been introduced?

Beauty:  I am Princess Beauty. It is my birthday we are celebrating.

Dwight: You are quite lovely, Princess.

Beauty:  How kind of you to say so. I have never considered beauty to be as important as some girls, though, since all princesses are said to be beautiful.  I prefer to look inside, to the intellect.

 (LIGHT fades, comes up on next couple.)

Barry: I am Barry Charming, at your service.

Grace:   I am Princess Grace of Bavaria, Sir.

Barry: Would you care to dance, or perhaps you would like to go outside and discuss the works of Plato?

Grace:  Whatever pleases you is fine with me, but I’d say that since it is raining outside, it makes sense to stay in here, whatever we do.

Barry: Sense. Yes.  I just can never manage it. Mother says I need a keeper.

Grace:   Really. (Rather put off)

Barry:   Yes. It seems I’m the smartest man in Christendom, but I can’t remember to tie my shoes unless Mother reminds me. I know all the arguments of Aristotle, though. Would you like to hear them?  

(LIGHT fades, comes up on 3rd couple)

Lucky: Greetings, Lady. I am Lucky Charming.

Snow: I am Princess White, Snow White.

Lucky: Unusual name, Snow.

Snow: My mother left Siberia as a young princess to marry my father. She missed her homeland. I get my looks from her, I’m told, though I never knew my parents. But Lucky is an unusual name also.

Lucky: My real name is Willy, but you see- there was another Charming brother-Joe Charming. He and I went out hunting one day, and we got separated in a storm. I made my way home, but he never returned. People began calling me Lucky. 

Snow: I see.

Lucky: We all miss him. He was the best of us; always making everyone happy. My brother Barry is one of the most accomplished men in the world, and Dwight has the looks, of course, but we miss the joy that Joe used to spread with his warmth and charm.

Snow: How sad. Was he handsome?

Lucky:   Of course. All the Charming boys are handsome.

Snow: Yes. Well, I plan to marry the best-looking man in the world.

(Alice and Cinderella enter L., and approach Shanara.)

Alice: Excuse me. We seem to be lost. I was looking for the castle of Prince Rupert.

Shan:  This is the home of King Lothian.

Alice: Oh, my. I heard that Prince Rupert is looking for a wife and has invited all the fair ladies of the land to a ball. I’m taking my protégé here so she can meet him. She’s sure to catch his eye. 

Shan: I know about that ball. It’s next Saturday. Now if you’ll excuse me…

Alice: Oops! My mistake. (To Cinderella) It’s the wrong time, and the wrong place, dear. (Peering at Shanara) Is it…? Weren’t we at the academy together? I remember your face, but I can’t recall the name…

Steward:  There’s a pumpkin coach blocking the drive. Could the owner please see that it’s moved?

Alice: I’ve got to go. You just can’t trust mice, you know? You tell them what’s expected, but they just have very short memory spans. They mean well, though.(They start off). Good luck with your assignment, dear. I’m sure you’ll do very nice things for your humans. After all, that’s our job, you know.

Shan: Yes. I KNOW. (Watches them go). Now I can get back to business.

(Chants)  With my gifts before your eyes

      True love you’ll never recognize!

(SOUND of spell hitting, and two of the princes walk up to their perfect match: Barry to Snow, Dwight to Beauty, look at them for a second, and move on SNOW and BEAUTY look smitten.  Lucky stares off into space. LIGHTS fade on dancefloor and come up on sideset.)

Scene v

(Sideset-Council office-METRON is looking at a crystal ball and shaking his head.)

Met: What a mess! (KNOCK and MABEL enters)

Mabel: You sent for me, Metron?

Met: Mabel-everything’s in a tizzy. The council thought you might be able to handle this assignment, since your quick thinking has saved some sticky situations in the past 16 years. Shanara has been making trouble again. She’s blinded the Charming brothers to their true loves. Now they’ll never be happy, and who needs an unhappy ruler?

Mabel: What has she done?

Met: Some kind of spell has blocked their ability to recognize the one girl who can make each man happy. You see, Barry needs a girl who is his intellectual equal. Dwight needs a girl who’s as beautiful and vain as he is, and -we don’t know yet what Lucky needs, but we’re hoping it will be Princess Grace. We need you to straighten it all out.

Mabel: Sounds like a challenge.

Met: At least. Also, of course, Shanara is lurking about, trying to keep things stirred up. Watch out for her.

Mabel: Of course.

Met: Can you do it?

Mabel: I’ll try. Someone must stop her, and it might as well be me. She’s always hated me anyway. Beauty’s spell is due to happen tonight.  I have a feeling we can’t avoid that, but it will give me time to prepare for this job. I will be ready when the kingdom awakens for whatever Shanara has in store.

Scene vi-Throne room

Insert (Sideset-Spinning wheel sits on empty stage. SHANARA comes on with large box and begins to put spinning wheel into it.)

Voice: Hey! Where are you going with that?

Shan: I’m just going to borrow it for an hour; then I’ll bring it right back!

Voice: (Sticking head out from underneath.) I’m gonna need it tomorrow. The miller’s daughter will be looking for me.

Shan:

Four Chicks, Three Hunks, and a Frog

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