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     English Wordplay ~ Listen and Enjoy

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Drama for Learning English:
A Play to be produced in Thailand.

The best way for school children to learn English is to have fun - by writing, producing and performing a stage or audio play.

In this way they will learn painlessly without realising how much they are absorbing.

The Script of The Ugly Duckling
French a famous Danish fairy tale
by Hans Christian Anderson,
dramatised and directed by Shaun MacLoughlin
with Assistant Director Mimie Acuna
and with thanks to Lars Caben Fischer and Walt Disney for the inspiration.

CAST
Storyteller 1
Storyteller 2
Storyteller 3
Storyteller 4
Stork
Mother Duck
Duckling 1
Duckling 2
Duckling 1
Duckling 1
Father Duck
Old Duck
Ugly Duckling
Ladyship
Turkey Cock
Farmyard hens
Farmyard Girl
Spiteful Duck
Biter Duck
Wild Duck 1
Wild Duck 2
Gosling 1
Gosling 2
Three Huntsmen
Fierce Dog
Old Woman
Tom Cat
Hen
The Peasant
The Peasant's wife
Peasant's children
Children feeding swans
Their mother
Their father
The Raven
The three beautiful Swans

Many parts can be doubled

(DEPENDING UPON TIME AND BUDGET THE STAGE MAY BE DECORATED WITH TREES AND LIGHTED WITH RIPPLING WATER EFFECTS. UPSTAGE RIGHT IS A NEST LARGE ENOUGH FOR AN ACTOR TO SIT ON. IT HAS FOUR LARGE DUCK EGGS AND ONE LARGER SWAN'S EGG - IF THIS IS BEYOND OUR BUDGET LET US HAVE A PICTURE OF THE SAME THAT CAN LATER BE FOLDED DOWN FOR MOTHER DUCK TO SIT ON. DOWNSTAGE LEFT TWO STORYTELLERS APPEAR. UNLIKE THE OTHER ACTORS THEY MAY HAVE SCRIPTS TO READ FROM).
STORYTELLER 1:





STORYTELLER 2:



THE STORK:
Stork It was lovely summer weather in the country, and the golden corn, the green oats, and the haystacks in the meadows were beautiful.

(THE STORK STRUTS ONTO THE STAGE)

The stork walking about on his long red legs chattered in the Egyptian language, which he had learnt from his mother.

The corn-fields and meadows are surrounded by large forests, in the midst of which are deep pools. It is, indeed, delightful to walk about in the country.
STORYTELLER 1:












STORK:
Stork
The Farmhouse illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
Thank you, Stork.

(MOTHER DUCK ENTERS AND SITS UPON HER EGGS)

In a sunny spot stood a pleasant old farm-house close by a deep river, and from the house down to the water side grew great burdock leaves,

so high, that under the tallest of them a little child could stand upright.
STORYTELLER 2:






STORYTELLER 1:
Waiting to hatch
Waiting to hatch by Jerry Pinkney
Thank you Stork!

In a snug spot by the river sat a duck on her nest, waiting for her young brood to hatch.

She was getting tired, for the little ones were a long time coming out of their shells, and she seldom had any visitors.

(FATHER DUCK APPEARS NERVOUSLY PACING UP AND DOWN)
STORYTELLER 2: Except for her husband, who was anxious and impatient. He was very much in love with his wife.
STORYTELLER 1: But he was also very jealous.
Father duck waiting
by Walt Disney
Mother duck waiting
From 1938 cartoon


(THERE ARE SOME LOUD CRACKS; AND FOUR DUCKLINGS APPEAR.)
STORYTELLER 1: At length one shell cracked, and then another, and from each egg came a living creature that lifted its head and cried:
DUCKLING 1: Peep, peep.
MOTHER DUCK: Quack. Quack.
STORYTELLER 1: said the mother.
MANY DUCKLINGS Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep. Peep.
FATHER:





STORYTELLER 2:







STORYTELLER 1:
Father duck waitingHow wonderful. They are beautiful, like you my darling.

(HE KISSES HER)

(THE DUCKLINGS PEEP SOME MORE)

They all quacked as well as they could, and looked about them on every side at the large green leaves.

Their mother allowed them to look as much as they liked, because green is good for the eyes.
STORYTELLER 2: They found how much more room they now had, than while they were inside the egg-shell.
DUCKLING 1: How large the world is!
MOTHER: Do you imagine this is the whole world? Wait till you have seen the garden; it stretches far beyond that to the parson's field, but I have never ventured to such a distance.

Are you all out?

(SHE RISES)

No, I declare, the largest egg lies there still. How long will it take!? I'm quite tired of it.

(SHE SITS ON HER NEST AGAIN AND THEN AN OLD DUCK VISITS HER)
OLD DUCK: Well, how are you getting on?
MOTHER: One egg is still not hatched. It will not break. But just look at all the others, are they not the prettiest little ducklings you ever saw? They are the image of their father.
OLD DUCK: Hmm. Let me see the egg that will not break.

(SHE EXAMINES IT. THEN:)

I have no doubt it is a turkey's egg.
FATHER: Hmm. How could that be? My wife is faithful
OLD DUCK: (IGNORING HIM) I was persuaded to hatch some once, and after all my care and trouble with the young ones, they were afraid of the water. I quacked and clucked, but all to no purpose. I could not get them to venture in. Let me look at the egg.

(SHE EXAMINES IT AGAIN. THEN:)

Yes, that's a turkey's egg.
FATHER DUCK: Are you insulting my wife?
OLD DUCK: (IGNORING HIM) Take my advice, leave it where it is and teach the other children to swim.
MOTHER: I think I will sit on it a little while longer. I have sat so long already, a few more days will be nothing.
OLD DUCK: Please yourself.

(SHE WADDLES AWAY. MOTHER DUCK SIGHS AND CONTINUES TO SIT ON THE LARGE EGG))
STORYTELLER 1:











UGLY DUCKLING:
hatching
The Ugly Duckling hatches
by Jerry Pinkney
The Mother Duck sat on the large egg for another five days!

THERE IS A VERY LOUD CRACK AND THE UGLY DUCKLING APPEARS. HE HAS SLEEVES THAT WILL DOUBLE AS WINGS)

At long last it broke, and a young one crept forth crying:

Peep. Peep.
STORYTELLER 2: It was very large and ugly. The Mother and father stared at it.
MOTHER DUCK: It is not at all like the others.
I wonder if it really is a turkey.

(FATHER DUCK EXAMINES IT)
FATHER DUCK:



MOTHER DUCK:

FATHER DUCK:



MOTHER DUCK:

FATHER DUCK:
Father duck waitingMy God! It seems you really have been unfaithful.
Who is the Father?

You of course. Who else?

I would never father such an ugly child. I don't believe you.

Up to you.

I saw the way that Turkey looked at you.
MOTHER DUCK: What are you talking about?
FATHER DUCK: You were making eyes at him.
MOTHER DUCK: Don't be ridiculous.
FATHER DUCK: (POINTING AT THE UGLY DUCKLING) There's the proof.
MOTHER DUCK: Up to you, if you don't want to trust me.
FATHER DUCK: I'm leaving you.

(HE STORMS OFF IN A TEMPER. SHE SHRUGS)

Oh well. We shall soon find out, when we go to the water. He must go in, if I have to push him myself.
STORYTELLER 2:
Burdock leaves
Burdock leaves
On the next day the weather was delightful, and the sun shone brightly on the green burdock leaves.

(THE MOTHER DUCK LEADS THE DUCKLINGS TO THE WATER)

So the mother duck took her young brood down to the water, and jumped in with a splash.

(BIG SPLASH)
MOTHER DUCK: Quack. Quack.

(FOLLOWED BY FOUR SMALLER SPLASHES)
STORYTELLER 2: One after another the little ducklings jumped in.
STORYTELLER 1: The water closed over their heads, but they came up again in an instant, and swam about quite prettily with their legs paddling under them, as easily as possible.
STORYTELLER 2: And the ugly duckling was also in the water swimming with them.
MOTHER: That's not a turkey. How well he uses his legs, and how upright he holds himself! He is my own child, and he is not so very ugly after all, if you look at him properly. Quack, quack! come with me now, I will take you into grand society, and introduce you to the farmyard.

But keep close to me or you may be trodden upon; and, above all, beware of the cat.

(THE CAT AND THE FARMYARD DUCKS APPEAR. THE MOTHER DUCK LEADS HER CHILDREN TOWARDS THGEM. A TREMENDOUS NOISE OF DUCKS QUACKING, THEN A CAT SPITTING AND HOWLING. THEY ARE FIGHTING OVER AN EEL'S HEAD)
STORYTELLER 1: When they reached the farmyard, there was a great disturbance, two families were fighting for an eel's head, which, after all, was carried off by the cat.
MOTHER: See, children, that is the way of the world.

(SHE LICKS HER LIPS)

Yummy!
STORYTELLER 2: She would have liked the eel's head herself.
MOTHER:
The Spanish Duck
The Spanish Duck
Stir your legs. Bustle about, and mind that you bend your necks to that old duck over there. She's the noblest of us all, and has Spanish blood in her. That's why she's so fat. See that red rag around her leg? That's a wonderful thing, and the highest distinction a duck can get. It shows that they don't want to lose her, and that she's to have special attention from man and beast.

Shake yourselves! Don't turn your toes in. A well-bred duckling turns his toes way out, just as his father and mother do-this way. So then! Now duck your necks and say quack!
DUCKLINGS: Quack. Quack. Quack. Quack.

(A SPITEFUL DUCK WADDLES UP TO THEM)
SPITEFUL: Look, here comes another brood, as if there were not enough of us already! and what a queer looking object one of them is. We don't want him here.

(ANOTHER DUCK FLIES UP AND BITES UGLY DUCKLING IN THE NECK)
UGLY DUCKLING: Ouch!

(HE CRIES)
MOTHER: Let him alone. He isn't doing any harm.

(THE DUCK WHO BIT HIM REPLIES)
BITER: Possibly not, but he's too big and strange. So he needs a good whacking.

(THE SPANISH NOBLE DUCK APPROACHES)
LADYSHIP: What nice-looking children you have, Mother. They are all pretty except that one. He didn't come out so well. It's a pity you can't hatch him again.
MOTHER: That can't be managed, your ladyship. He isn't so handsome, but he's as good as can be, and he swims just as well as the rest. I hope his looks will improve with age, and after a while he won't seem so big.
He took too long in the egg, and that's why his figure isn't all that it should be.

(SHE PINCHES HIS NECK AND PREENS HIS FEATHERS)

Moreover, he's a drake, so it won't matter so much. I think he will be quite strong. I'm sure he will amount to something.
LADYSHIP: The other ducklings are pretty enough. Now make yourselves at home, and if you find an eel's head you may bring it to me.
STORYTELLER 1: So they felt quite at home. But the poor duckling who had been the last one out of his egg, and who looked so ugly, was pecked and pushed about and made fun of by the ducks, and the chickens as well.

(WE SEE THIS)
EVERYBODY: He's too big.
STORYTELLER 2:




STORYTELLER 1:




STORYTELLER 2:
turkey cockThe turkey cock, who had been born into the world with spurs, and fancied himself really an emperor, puffed himself out like a vessel in full sail.

And flew at the duckling, and became quite red in the head with passion,

(SEE TURKEY AS DESCRIBED)

So that the poor little thing did not know where to go, and was quite miserable, because he was so ugly and laughed at by the whole farmyard.
STORYTELLER 1: So it went on from day to day till it got worse and worse. The poor duckling was driven about by every one.
STORYTELLER 2: Even his brothers and sisters were unkind to him:
DUCKLINGS: You ugly creature, I wish the cat would get you.
MOTHER: I wish he'd never been born.
STORYTELLER 1: The ducks pecked him, the chickens beat him, and the girl who fed the poultry kicked him.

(WE SEE THIS, INCLUDING HENS PECKING HIM AND THE LARGE FARMYARD GIRL KICKING HIM. THEN THE UGLY DUCKLING FLAPS HIS WINGS, THE OTHERS BACK AWAY OFF THE STAGE AND THE TREES DISAPPEAR)
STORYTELLER 2: So at last he ran away, frightening the little birds as he flew over the hedge.
UGLY DUCKLING: They are afraid of me because I am ugly.

(STORYTELLERS 3 & 4 ENTER AND BOW TO STORYTELLERS 1 & 2, WHO THEN LEAVE THE STAGE)
STORYTELLER 3:




STORYTELLER 4:



STORYTELLER 3:
lonely
Lonely Ugly Duckling
Walt Disney cartoon
So the Ugly duckling closed his eyes, and flew still farther, until he came out on a large moor, inhabited by wild ducks.

Here he remained the whole night, feeling very tired and sorrowful.

In the morning, when the wild ducks rose in the air, they stared at their new comrade.
WILD DUCK 1: What sort of a duck are you?

(HE BOWS TO THEM VERY POLITELY, BUT SAYS NOTHING)
WILD DUCK 2: You are exceedingly ugly.
WILD DUCK 1: But that doesn't matter if you don't want to marry one of our family.

(THE WILD DUCKS LEAVE AND TWO GOSLINGS APPEAR)
STORYTELLER 4:





STORYTELLER 3:
goslings goslingsPoor thing! he had no thoughts of marriage; all he wanted was permission to lie among the rushes, and drink some of the water on the moor.

After he had been on the moor two days, there came two wild geese, or rather goslings, for they had not been out of the egg long, and were very saucy.
GOSLING 1: Listen, friend, you are so ugly, that we like you very well.
GOSLING 2: Will you go with us, and become a bird of passage?
GOSLING 1: Not far from here is another moor, in which there are some pretty wild geese, all unmarried.
GOSLING 2: It is a chance for you to get a wife; you may be lucky, ugly as you are.

(BANG BANG. GUNSHOTS. THE TWO GOSLINGS FALL DEAD)
STORYTELLER 3: The two wild geese fell dead among the rushes, and the water was tinged with blood.

(BANG BANG ECHOES FAR AND WIDE)
STORYTELLER 4:




STORYTELLER 3:




STORYTELLER 4:
goslings Flocks of wild geese rose up from the rushes.

(SPORTSMEN WITH GUNS APPEAR)

The sound continued from every direction, for the sportsmen surrounded the moor, and some were even seated on branches of trees.

The blue smoke from the guns rose like clouds over the dark trees.
STORYTELLER 3: And as it floated away across the water,

(A FIERCE DOG APPEARS)
STORYTELLER 4:


STORYTELLER 3:

STORYTELLER 4:




STORYTELLER 3:
goslingsA sporting dog bounded in among the rushes.

How he terrified the poor duckling!

He turned away his head to hide it under his wing, and at the same moment the large terrible dog passed quite near him.

His jaws were open, his tongue hung from his mouth, and his eyes glared fearfully.

(GROWL)
STORYTELLER 4: He thrust his nose close to the duckling, showing his sharp teeth, and then,

(SPASH SPLASH)

he went into the water without touching him,
UGLY DUCKLING: (SIGHS) How thankful I am for being so ugly; even a dog will not bite me.
STORYTELLER 3; And so he lay quite still, while the shot rattled through the rushes,

(BANG. BANG. BANG)
STORYTELLER 4: and gun after gun was fired over him.
STORYTELLER 3: It was late in the day before all became quiet, but even then the poor young thing did not dare to move.
STORYTELLER 4: He waited quietly for several hours, and then, after looking carefully around him,

(HE GETS UP AND FLAPS HIS WINGS)

hastened away from the moor as fast as he could.
STORYTELLER 3: He ran over field and meadow

(THUNDER AND LIGHTNING)
STORYTELLER 4: Till a storm arose, and he could hardly struggle against it.

(EXTRAS CARRY ON A MODEL OF RICKETY COTTAGE)
STORYTELLER 3: Towards evening, he reached a poor little cottage that seemed ready to fall, and only remained standing because it could not decide, on which side to fall first.

(MORE THUNDER AND LIGHTNING).
STORYTELLER 4: The storm continued so violent, that the duckling could go no farther.
STORYTELLER 3: He sat down by the cottage, and then he noticed that the door was not quite closed, because one of the hinges had broken.
STORYTELLER 4: There was a narrow opening near the bottom large enough for him to slip through, which he did very quietly, and got a shelter for the night.

(HE CREEPS THROUGH AND LIES DOWN BESIDE THE OLD WOMAN, THE TOM CAT AND THE HEN)
STORYTELLER 3:


STORYTELLER 4:





STORYTELLER 3:
goslings A woman, a tom cat, and a hen lived in this cottage.

The tom cat, whom the mistress called, "My little son," was a great favourite.

(THE CAT PURRS)

He could raise his back, and purr,

(WE SEE AND HEAR SPARKS)
STORYTELLER 4:




STORYTELLER 3:




STORYTELLER 4:
and could even throw out sparks from his fur if it were stroked the wrong way.

hen(CLUCKING OF HEN)

The hen had very short legs, so she was called "Chickie short legs." She laid good eggs, and her mistress loved her, as if she had been her own child.

In the morning, the strange visitor was discovered,

(PURRING AND CLUCKING)

and the tom cat began to purr, and the
hen to cluck.
OLD WOMAN: What is that noise about?
STORYTELLER 3: Her sight was not very good; therefore, when she saw the duckling she thought it must be a fat duck
OLD WOMAN: I hope it is not a drake, for then I shall have some duck's eggs.
I must wait and see.
STORYTELLER 4: So the duckling was allowed to remain on trial for three weeks, but there were no eggs. Now the tom cat was the master of the house, and the hen was mistress, and they always said:
HEN AND CAT: (TOGETHER) We and the world.
STORYTELLER 3: for they believed themselves to be half the world, and the better half too.
STORYTELLER 4: The duckling thought that others might hold a different opinion on the subject, but the hen would not listen to such doubts.
HEN: Can you lay eggs?
UGLY DUCKLING: No.
UGLY DUCKLING: Then have the goodness to hold your tongue.
CAT: Can you raise your back, or purr, or throw out sparks?
UGLY DUCKLING: No.
CAT: Then you have no right to express an opinion when sensible people are speaking.
STORYTELLER 4: So the duckling sat in a corner, feeling very low spirited, till the sunshine and the fresh air came into the room through the open door, and then he began to feel a great longing.
UGLY DUCKLING: Let's go for a swim.
HEN: What an absurd idea. You have nothing else to do, therefore you have foolish fancies. If you could purr or lay eggs, they would pass away.
UGLY DUCKLING: But it is so delightful to swim about on the water, and so refreshing to feel it close over your head, while you dive down to the bottom.
HEN: Delightful, indeed! Why you must be crazy! Ask the cat, he is the cleverest animal I know, ask him how he would like to swim about on the water, or to dive under it, for I will not speak of my own opinion; ask our mistress, the old woman - there is no one in the world more clever than she is. Do you think she would like to swim, or to let the water close over her head?
UGLY DUCKLING: You don't understand me.
HEN: We don't understand you? Who on earth can understand you? Do you think you're more clever than the cat, or the old woman? Thank your good fortune that you are accepted here. Are you not in a warm room, and in society from which you may learn something. But you are a chatterer, and your company is not very agreeable. I advise you to lay eggs, and learn to purr as quickly as possible.
UGLY DUCKLING: I believe I must go out into the world again.
HEN: Yes do.

(AND SO HE LEAVES AND FLIES INTO RIPPLING WATER SOUNDS AND LIGHTING EFFECTS)
STORYTELLER 4: So the duckling left the cottage, and soon found water on which it could swim and dive, but was avoided by all other animals, because of its ugly appearance.
STORYTELLER 3: Autumn came, and the leaves in the forest turned to orange and gold.
STORYTELLER 4: Then, as winter approached, the wind caught them as they fell and whirled them in the cold air.

(RED AND GOLD LEAVES AND THE SNOWFLAKES WHIRL IN THE AIR)
STORYTELLER 3: The clouds, heavy with hail and snow-flakes, hung low in the sky,

(THE RAVEN APPEARS)

and the raven stood on the ferns crying
RAVEN: Croak. croak.
STORYTELLER 4: It made one shiver with cold to look at him. All this was very sad for the poor little duckling. One evening, just as the sun set amid radiant clouds,

(HEAR THE FLAPPING OF WINGS)
STORYTELLER 3: there came a large flock of beautiful birds out of the bushes.

( THE DUCKLING LOOKS UP)
STORYTELLER 4: The duckling had never seen any like them before. They were swans, and they curved their graceful necks, while their soft plumage shown with dazzling whiteness.

(HEAR THE CRY OF SWANS)
STORYTELLER 3: flying swansThey uttered a singular cry, as they spread their glorious wings and flew away from those cold regions to warmer countries across the sea. As they mounted higher and higher in the air, the ugly little duckling felt a strange sensation.

(HE SPINS AROUND)
STORYTELLER 4: He whirled himself in the water like a wheel, stretched out his neck towards them,

(HE UTTERS A STRANGE SOUND)

and uttered a cry so strange that it frightened himself.
STORYTELLER 3: Could he ever forget those beautiful, happy birds; and when at last they were out of his sight, he dived under the water, and rose again almost beside himself with excitement.
STORYTELLER 4: He knew not the names of these birds, nor where they had flown, but he felt towards them as he had never felt for any other bird in the world.
STORYTELLER 3: He was not envious of these beautiful creatures, but wished to be as lovely as they. Poor ugly creature, how gladly he would have lived even with the ducks had they only given him encouragement.

(SNOW FLAKES FALL)
STORYTELLER 4: The winter grew colder and colder; he was obliged to swim about on the water to keep it from freezing, but every night the space on which he swam became smaller and smaller. At length it froze so hard that the ice in the water

(WE HEAR THE CRACKING OF ICE)

crackled as he moved,

(HE PADDLES HARD)
STORYTELLER 3: and the duckling had to paddle with his legs as well as he could, to keep the space from closing up.

(HE LIES DOWN)
STORYTELLER 4: He became exhausted at last, and lay still and helpless, frozen fast in the ice.

(A PEASANT APPEARS)
STORYTELLER 3: Early in the morning, a peasant, who was passing by, saw what had happened.

(THE PEASANT BREAKS THE ICE)
STORYTELLER 4: He broke the ice in pieces with his wooden shoe, and carried the duckling home to his wife.

(THE PEASANT PICKS UP THE UGLY DUCKLING AND CARRIES HIM ACROSS THE STAGE TO WHERE A PEASANT WOMAN BESIDE A FIRE APPEARS)
STORYTELLER 3: The warmth revived the poor little creature;

(CHILDREN APPEAR AND TRY TO PLAY WITH THE UGLY DUCKLING)
STORYTELLER 4: but when the children wanted to play with him, the duckling thought they would do him some harm; so he started up in terror,

(HE KNOCKS OVER A BIG MILK PAN)

fluttered into the milk-pan, and splashed the milk about the room.

(THE WOMAN CLAPS HER HANDS)

Then the woman frightened him still more.

(HE FLIES INTO BUTTER CASK AND GETS YELLOW AND THEN INTO THE MEAL TUB AND GETS MEAL STUCK EVERYWHERE. THE WOMAN SCREAMS, AND STRIKES AT HIM WITH THE TONGS; THE CHILDREN LAUGH AND SCREAM, AND TUMBLE OVER EACH OTHER, IN THEIR EFFORTS TO CATCH HIM; BUT HE ESCAPES)
STORYTELLER 3: The door stood open; the poor creature could just manage to slip out among the bushes, and lie down quite exhausted in the newly fallen snow.
STORYTELLER 4: It would be very sad, were I to relate all the misery and privations which the poor little duckling endured during the hard winter; but during that time he had a dream.

(MUSIC. THREE BEAUTIFUL SWANS APPEAR , BRINGING BEAUTIFUL NEW GARMENTS, IN WHICH THEY DRESS HIM. THEY LEAVE AND HE SLEEPS AGAIN. AS HE AWAKES THE MUSIC FADES AND WE HEAR THE LARK)
STORYTELLER 3: lark When winter had passed, he found himself lying one morning in a moor, amongst the rushes.

He felt the warm sun shining,

(THE LARK SINGS)

and heard the lark singing, and saw that all around was beautiful spring.

(HE FLAPS HIS WONDERFUL NEW WINGS)
STORYTELLER 4: Then the young bird felt that his wings were strong, as he flapped them against his sides, and rose high into the air.
STORYTELLER 3: They bore him onwards, until he found himself in a large garden, before he well knew how it had happened.

(THE EXTRAS BRING ON TREES IN BLOSSOM)
STORYTELLER 4: The apple-trees were in full blossom, and the fragrant elders bent their long green branches down to the stream, which wound round a smooth lawn. Everything looked beautiful, in the freshness of early spring.

(THREE BEAUTIFUL SWANS APPEAR)
STORYTELLER 4: From a thicket close by came three beautiful white swans, rustling their feathers, and swimming lightly over the smooth water.
STORYTELLER 3: The duckling remembered the lovely birds, and felt more strangely unhappy than ever.
UGLY DUCKLING: I will fly to those royal birds, and they will kill me, because I am so ugly, and dare to approach them; but it does not matter. Better be killed by them than pecked by the ducks, beaten by the hens, pushed about by the maiden who feeds the poultry, or starved with hunger in the winter.

(HE FLIES TO THEM)
STORYTELLER 4: Then he flew to the water, and swam towards the beautiful swans.

(THE BEAUTIFUL SWANS RUSH TOWARDS HIM WITH OUTSTRETCHED ARMS. HE BENDS HIS HEAD TO THE STREAM.)
UGLY DUCKLING: Kill me.
STORYTELLER 3: But what did he see in the clear stream below? His own image; no longer a dark, gray bird, ugly and disagreeable to look at, but a graceful and beautiful swan.
STORYTELLER 4: To be born in a duck's nest, in a farmyard, doesn't matter is to a bird, if it is hatched from a swan's egg.
STORYTELLER 3: larkHe now felt glad at having suffered sorrow and trouble, because it enabled him to enjoy so much better all the pleasure and happiness around him.

(THE BEAUTIFUL SWANS SWIM AROUND HIM AND STROKE HIS NECK WITH THEIR BEAKS AS A WELCOME. THEN SOME LITTLE CHILDREN WITH THEIR PARENTS RUN INTO THE GARDEN AND THROW BREAD AND CAKE INTO THE WATER)
THE YOUNGEST CHILD See. There is a new one.

(DANCING AND CLAPPING THEIR HANDS THE CHILDREN RUN TO THEIR MOTHER AND FATHER)
CHILDREN:















STORYTELLER 4:
No longer ugly
No longer ugly by Jerry Pinkney
There is another swan come.
A new one has arrived.

(THEY THROW MORE BREAD AND CAKE INTO THE WATER)

The new one is the most beautiful of all.
He is so young and pretty.

(THE OLD SWANS BOW THEIR HEADS BEFORE HIM. HE HIDES HIS HEAD UNDER HIS WING)

Then he felt quite ashamed, and hid his head under his wing; for he did not know what to do, he was so happy, and yet not at all proud. He had been persecuted and despised for his ugliness, and now he heard them say:
ONE SWAN: He is the most beautiful of all the birds.
STORYTELLER 4: Even the elder-tree bent down its boughs into the water before him, and the sun shone warm and bright.

(HE RUSTLES HIS FEATHERS AND CURVES HIS SLENDER NECK)

And he cried joyfully, from the depths of his heart:
UGLY DUCKLING: I never dreamed of such happiness as this, while I was an ugly duckling.
THE END

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