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Norman Robbins
Dick Whittington

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Author's Note

The presentation of this pantomime should create no problem for the average drama group. The scenes alternate between full sets and lane scenes, thus allowing ample time for scene and costume changes. It has been specifically designed for production in the average hall, and obviously can be spread out to fill the largest theatre. As Dick Whittington is usually a very "male" orientated pantomime, opportunities for females are normally restricted to Fairy, Alice, and sometimes, the title role. In this version, I've tried to even things out more by replacing the usual Emperor or Sultan with a Sultana, and added the female slave Zubediah to replace a Vizier. Tommy can also be played by a female, and at a push, First Mate Starboard. The role of the Sultana however can easily revert to a male role by deleting two lines referring to her sex. Again, in the palace scene, if the Sultana is a good singer and it is decided to use her/him in the opening song, the Company song in the middle of the scene can be omitted. Songs for the production, not forgetting the dance and incidental music, should be bright and bouncy. Omit verses, and stick to the much better known chorus. As an old (very old) pantomime hand, may I advise a brisk approach, lots of smiles and positively overwhelming sincerity of characterization. Pantomime is FUN. Illogical, ridiculous, riotous and brash, but also beautiful and touched with pathos. What a young audience sees during your production can affect their theatre-going habits for the rest of their lives. Don't let them down.

Cast

Fairy Bow-bells
King Rat
Alderman Fitzwarren
Idle Jack
Sarah, the cook
Dich Whittington
Tommy, the cat
Captain Port
First Mate Starboard
Alice Fitzwarren
Sultana Bunn
Zubediah, her faithful slave
Chorus of Citizens (with some small speaking roles)
Fairies, Dancig Girls and Men, Sailors, Slaves, etc.
Junior Chorus of Rats, Fairies, etc.
Babes as required

Dedication

For Alan and Irene Wright in recognition of their fortitude in surviving the "friendship" of the Robbins family.

Copyright © Norman Robbins 1990