18 characters. 6 pages in length. Approximately 6 minutes running time. A short nursery rhyme adaptation by playwright, Mariah Beachboard.
18 Siblings in the Old Woman’s Shoe is an adaptation of Mother Goose’s nursery rhyme, ‘There was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe.’ In this version of the tale, the Old Lady’s eighteen children tell the story about the time a bird suddenly flew into their home. With the old woman away, the children must work together to “shoo” the bird back outside! This short play is perfect for young actors to perform!
Mariah Beachboard has taught acting and directing over 13 years. She directed Mary Poppins, Honk!, Scapin, and The Canterbury Tales for CYT Fredericksburg. She performed with Theatre IV, Carpenter Science Theatre Company, the Rude Mechanicals, and Riverside Dinner Theatre in Virginia, and with Theatre Huntsville in Alabama. As co-owner of Spoken Word Events, LLP, she co-wrote and produced marketing videos for the Spotsylvania Education Foundation. Mrs. Beachboard holds a BA from Mary Washington College (MWC) and toured in Turkey with the college’s acting troupe. She apprenticed with the Fredericksburg Theatre Company. She holds an MBA in Marketing from American Intercontinental University. Most recently she was named a finalist in the Rocket City Playwright Series. Currently, she studies voice acting at Hollywood Huntsville. She hopes to work one day with the creative networks Minnow Beats Whale or Night Vale Presents.
Excerpt from the play:
CAST OF CHARACTERS
Two: Usually optimistic
Three: Easily traumatized
Five: Ready to defend!
Six: A kid who favors action!
Eight: Dislikes unpleasantness
Ten: A hero
Twelve: Appreciates beauty
Fourteen: Easily amazed
Sixteen: A crybaby
Seventeen: A jerk
Eighteen: A cheerleader
(A gaggle of kids are clumped together into 3 or 4 groups. In the center of each of these groups is a board game – minus the pieces)
There was an old woman who lived in a shoe – with a lot of kids.
We live peacefully and play nicely together.
(Laughs) What house have you been living in?!
THREE is right. We are a rowdy bunch.
(The kids are noisy for exactly 3 seconds.)
We fight over everything!
That’s my hair tie.
I clearly remember wearing this yesterday.
Nuh-uh! You wore this other black hair tie.
How do you expect her to remember which is which?
They are exactly alike!
I can tell the difference.
Me too! See the frayed part there?
SEVEN wears the frayed one.
EIGHT wears the stretched one. Oh yeah!
(sarcastic) Well, I’m glad we got that straightened out.
Now let’s talk about important things!
Like why you always steal my broth!
ONE day we faced a real problem. A HUGE problem.
It wasn’t so terrible.
Are you kidding me? I was traumatized.
THREE, everything “traumatizes” you.
Hey! Don’t make fun of Three!
Hey knock it off!
ONE is trying to tell a story.
Do we have to tell that story?
It’s so embarrassing.
I like it!
What does that mean?
It means Ten only likes it because Ten gets to be a hero.
We were all heroes.
Hmm, really? I wouldn’t say Sixteen was a hero. Sixteen screamed like a baby.
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