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Swiss Family Robinson (068)

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SnapShot

  • 1. TITLE OF WORK: Swiss Family Robinson
  • 2. SUBTITLE: A Musical Adventure
  • 3. SELECT ONE: Adapted from a work in Public Domain
  • 4. REFERENCED WORK: (Title and Authors, please.): Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss
  • 5. MUSICAL STYLE: Standard Broadway
  • 6. NATURE: Comedy or Satire
  • 7. INTENDED AUDIENCE: General
  • 8. STRUCTURE: Spoken dialogue with occasional songs
  • 9. APPROXIMATE DURATION (Hrs/Min): 1 hr 45 min
  • 10. DESIRED INSTRUMENTATION: Piano
  • 11. BRIEFLY STATE THE THEME or MESSAGE: Sometimes, finding a family is the biggest adventure.
  • 12. NUMBER OF SETS: 1

Cast Description

EMILY MONTROSE early 20’s, female.  The daughter of a British admiral, she has seen the world. She can take care of herself in any scrape yet retains a charming femininity.  Mezzo-soprano

JOHN mid-40s, male.  The father: will do anything to protect his family.  Knows he must appear strong and resolute even when he is uncertain.  Can appear stern but is essentially good natured.  Baritone.

ELIZABETH early 40s, female.  The mother: devoted to her sons and to her husband.  Patient, kind and resourceful.  She knows how to manage her sons and husband.  Mezzo-Soprano.

FRITZ early 20s, male.  The eldest son: serious and simple in his ways but not stupid. Always the good boy, he has little patience for recklessness.  The more physical of the the boys, works with his hands, would be a farmer.  Burdened by a failed romance when they left Switzerland.  Baritone.

ERNST late-teens.  Male. The youngest son: bookish, scientific, knowledgeable on a wide range of subjects.  Tenor

FRANCOIS DUBOIS Mid 30s - late 30s, male.  Captain in the French Navy. Known throughout the Pacific for his free booting — done in the name of France.  Somewhat misguided but not a complete fool.  A hopeless romantic always in search of a great love so that he can make the ultimate “beau geste”.  Baritone

MONSIEUR SPOO Mid 30s to mid 40s, male.  First officer to Dubois.  He is a Walloon. Tends towards the inscrutable–calm in the face of crisis.  Baritone

JEAN CLAUDE/ADMIRAL MONTROSE male.  Jean Claude is a bumbling French sailor, easily intimidated.  Admiral Montrose, Emily’s father, is the very model of a modern  … Admiral.  Baritone.

ZIZI mid to late 30s, female. A Hufi warrior, An Amazon.  Despite misgivings, loyal to her Queen.  Fierce and sultry as are all the Hufi.  Mezzo-soprano.

LULU mid 20s, female. Zizi’s lieutenant.  Has a weakness for dashing French naval Officers.  Mezzo-soprano.

ONO/QUEEN KIKU MONO HOA female.  Ono, the Hufi with an air of indifference, from the darker side of Huffiness with more body art and piercings.  KIKU, Queen of Hufi is by reputation fiercely protective of their peaceful little island. Mezzo-soprano.

CAPTAIN, SAILORS in opening number doubled by ZIZI, LULU and ONO.

The play can be performed with these eleven players.  If desired and practical, HUFI and FRENCH SAILORS may added.  The doubling may then be reassigned

 

Synopsis

Act I

Emily Montrose is just trying to get to Australia to rejoin her father.  She is captured by pirates, shipwrecked, marooned and pursued by fierce Amazons.  And then … she meets the Swiss Family Robinson.  Having travelled the world and now confronted with domestic tranquility and perhaps even true love, she faces her greatest challenge yet. 

The Family,  John and Elizabeth with their sons Fritz and Ernst, set about to make a home upon the island.

Dubois, the pirate Captain, M. Spoo, his first officer and crewman Jean Claude pursue Emily relentlessly.

The Hufi warriors, Zizi, Lulu and Ono, seemingly lost, still try to honor their pledge to keep barbarians out. 

Dubois attacks the Family.  The Hufi attack everyone.  Emily, enlisting a clever ruse, almost manages an escape.  But her plan backfires.  The French capture Lulu.  The Hufi capture Jean Claude.  They both promise revenge upon Emily and the Family.

Act II

The Family and Emily have built an impregnable tree house.  The Hufi and French lurk below biding their time.  Fritz seems to warm to Emily’s charms.  Dubois serenades Emily.  Fritz worries.  Emily wants to search for rescue.  Fritz refuses to go with her.  They part.

Zizi and Spoo meet, lament their status as underlings and fall madly into each other’s arms.

Emily in a canoe and Fritz in the tree house reconsider their decisions.  If only they could now find their way back to paradise.

Dubois attacks again, captures Fritz.  The Family and Hufi stand by helplessly.  Emily swashbuckles to save Fritz.  Dubois realizing she loves another, releases her.

The Emily’s father comes to the rescue.  The Hufi Queen arrives to welcome the new neighbors.  They would like to stay but Emily appears undecided.  She could go with her father or … She kisses Fritz. 

Evaluation Form

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Notes

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