Power Ants and Hoppers

Book and Lyrics by: Michael C. Stepowany

Music by: Garrick Alden

 

 

Characters:

Narrator – A vaudevillian entertainer, with black derby and cane.

Eartha - a “Mother Nature” woman... a consummate ‘hippie” complete with the retro ‘70’s hair and clothes- but stately

 

The power Ants: The ants have a working, physically strong look to them... with the accessories to make them look ant-like

Setti - the leader

Metti - a little ditzy

Iggy - the organizer

 

The Hoppers- the grass hoppers have accessories to make them appear as grasshoppers. Perhaps a half mask as well.

 Blue - the worrier

Clover - a bit self centered

Zoyza - the leader of the ‘always play’ plan.

 

 

(Five  wagons of huge 7 foot tall blades of green grass are circled around the hut of Eartha.  The narrator begins in the middle of the blades of grass unseen by the audience... the music begins... and the narrator puts a hand out from between the blades of grass and motions with her forefinger... to ‘come here’.  She continues to move from one blade of grass to another mysteriously summoning the audience.)

N.B.: ‘*’ indicates a Sound cue

(*A slow mysterious pulsing begins...  ‘Rustling’ noises can be herd from behind the blades of grass)

 

 

 

NARRATOR                                                            (Sung from behind the ‘grass’)

COME ON DOWN                                    COME ON DOWN

COME ON DOWN                                    COME ON DOWN           

DOWN TO THE GROUND                        COME ON DOWN

COME ON DOWN                                    COME ON DOWN           

ALL

WHAT’S THAT NOISE?                              WE CAN HEAR IT

IT’S ALL AROUND                                     WE ARE NEAR IT

WHAT’S THAT NOISE?                               WE CAN HEAR IT

DOWN ON THE GROUND                         ON THE GROUND….

 

                       (Narrator emerges from the grass.  The Narrator is wearing a sleek black outfit complete with black derby and                                  cane)

 

(fast tempo  may be “talked-sung”)

WELLLLLLLL.. GATHER ROUND CHILDREN

GATHER ROUND.

HAVE A SEAT PLEASE THERE, AND GATHER ROUND.

THE STORY IS ABOUT TO BEGIN SO QUIET PLEASE

I WANT TO DRAW YOUR ATTENTION DOWN.

WAY DOWN.

WAY DOWN

TO HERE

 

 

IMAGINE DOWN ON THE GROUND

WHERE THE BUGS WORK AND PLAY

THE TINY WORLD OF INSECTS AND PLANTS.

LOOK DOWN…DOWN ALL THE WAY

 

GOOD... THAT’S GOOD

NOW…

 

SONG BEGINS (2:40)

WELCOME TO THE MEADOW

WE LIVE HERE IN THE DIRT

WE PLAY AMONGST THE BLADES OF GRASS THE TWIGS AND THE PEBBLES TOO

WE KNOW HOW THINGS DOWN HERE WORK, WE KNOW JUST WHAT TO DO.

 

LET ME WEAVE A STORY OF THE OLD AND OF THE NEW.

THE TALE I’M GONNA’ TELL IS TOLD FOR ALL OF YOU

IT’S HOW WE’RE GONNA’ WORK AND HOW WE’RE GONNA’ PLAY

IT’S ABOUT PLANNING AHEAD AT THE END OF THE DAY.

 

End of song

NARRATOR (Continues)

So gather round all you here…

And I’ll begin the story proper

It’s a story of the power ants

And the lazy grass hoppers

Now let me introduce you to somebody you all know.  She is in the air... she is in the trees... she is in the water and in the seas.... she is the Queen of the great outdoors... the Princess of night and day ... I give you Miss Eartha Windinfire!

 

Eartha

Hello kids…my friends call me Mother Nature… and you know… you should never mess (*thunder) with Mother nature!

 

*begin music

Eartha Intro

[Eartha Singing]

 

I AM MISS NATURE AND I KNOW YOU’VE HEARD OF ME

I LIVE IN THE AIR, ON THE GROUND, AND IN THE TREE                                   

I GIVE YOU THE NIGHT AND THE FREEZING WINTER AIR

I GIVE YOU THE FRIGHT IF YOUR CUPBOARD (AT HOME) IS BARE                                   

THERE IS NO STOPPING ME, YOU CAN’T STOP THE CLOCK                                               

MISS NATURE IS HERE FOR YOU, AND I’M NOT GOING TO STOP                                                                       

Narrator

Right Miss Eartha!

You all know who that is …it is impoooooosible to go anywhere here in the meadow without Eartha.. or as her friends call her…nature…. all around us!

Now pay attention kids.. let me direct you to Eartha’s place  Eartha’s place tells us what time of year it is… what time of year do you think it is?

(to the audience)

Is it the winter?

(looks for response)

Is it the fall?

No.. Its… (*drum roll) SUMMER!

(A drape depicting summer is pulled across the entrance to Eartha’s hut)

Summer that’s right... and down here in the meadow... it is summer too. 

Now here in the meadow… all kinds of creatures work and play.  Some work through the night…and some work through the day.

 

Let me direct your eyes over there (points to stage right) and you shall see a wondrous place.  Ladies and Gentleman... boys and girls...

It is my distinct pleasure to present to you (*drum roll) the ant hill!

 (Story teller points and Eartha places a large picture of an elderly lady wearing glasses and a head wrap)

 

Narrator

What is that?

 

Eartha

That’s Aunt Hill

 

Narrator

Aunt Hill?

 

Eartha

Aunty Hill… you know... she lives in the valley.

 

Narrator

NOT Aunty Hill … the Ant Hill!

 

Eartha

Ohhhhh the ant hill!

(Eartha shakes her fist... *thunder rolls)

Right.  Ant Hill it is.

 

                            (Eartha spins the picture around to show a picture of a large ant hill)

 

 

Eartha (To audience)

And who do you suppose lives in this ANT HILL? Mice? No… Dogs? No.. Cats maybe? No.. What? What lives in the ant hill?

All together now

A N T S… and here are three of them to help with our story.  You know boys and girls that ants work the whole day through.  They carry and they haul food for their ant hill.

 

Narrator

And they can carry huge loads.

 

Eartha

Ten times their body weight

 

Narrator

Twenty times.

 

Eartha

Glory halleluiah children.  Just imagine you being able to carry something that weighs twenty times what you weigh? Sweetheart, I get hot just thinking about it. (fanning herself)

 

Narrator

These ants are tough.  The ants are strong.  These ants are powerful workers and gatherers.  I give you... the power ants!

 

(The three ants enter.)

 

*Music Begins

Introduction Song

A march is heard

Ants March in.

Music begins

 

 

ANTS

HUH

HUH

ANT’S GONNA’ MARCH AND MARCH THE WHOLE DAY THROUGH… HUH

WE’RE POWER WORKERS EVERY DAY … YEAH YEAH

WE’LL WORK AND WE’LL CARRY CAUSE WE WA-ANT TO..AND

THINGS ARE BETTER WHEN WE WORK THIS WAY…HUH

THINGS ARE BETTER WHEN WE WORK THIS WAY

 

All

POWER ANTS!

(Power ants pose and snap to!)

(Ants march back to the ant hill)

 

Eartha

There they go…those cute little power ants.

 

Narrator

Yeah…. Did you see those outfits?

 

Eartha

Did you see those muscles?

                  (Eartha waves to the ants smiling uncontrollably)

 

Narrator

Now children...if I can direct your eyes over here (Narrator

points to SL) you will see the other half of our fabled story.  Living here in the meadow inside the blades of grass... are the creatures who can hop… and hop... and hop

                    (Eartha picks up a large stuffed rabbit and places it in front of Narrator)

 

Narrator

What is this??

 

Eartha

Bunny!

 

Narrator

Bunny rabbit? You bring out a bunny rabbit?  Come here Eartha, please. (Narrator

Places her hand on Eartha’s forehead) Just as I thought ...HOT!  Ok... maybe the children in the audience can help.  What do we have here? (Points to blade of grass)

 

Eartha

Grass (with the audience)

 

Narrator

 And what do the little creatures do?

 

Eartha

Hop?  Bunnies hop!

 

Narrator

Ok boys and girls…  say it with me

Grass

(Aud.) Grass

 

Narrator

Hop

(Aud.) Hop

 

Narrator

What do we get?

Grass… Hop…pers!

 

(Three grasshoppers hop out)

 

(Eartha picks up the rabbit and takes it to her hut.*thunder again)

 

 

*Begin Music

GRASSHOPPERS

WELL THE HOPPERS ARE HERE AND HERE WE’LL STAY .. WE’LL HOP PLAY ALL DAY

WE’RE HOPPING ALL DAY FROM ONE GAME TO THE NEXT … DON’T YOU SEE?

WE PLAY FOR KEEPS AND PLAY IT RIGHT

WE’LL PLAY ALL DAY AND PLAY ALL NIGHT

CAUSE FUN IS ALL THAT WE CAN THINK TO BE.

 

ANTS enter.

 

ANTS

STEP BY STEP WE FILL OUR HOME WITH FOOD … HUH

IN THE MEADOW ALL THE HOT LONG DAY

WELL WE WORK AND WE TOIL CAUSE IT’S WHAT WE DO

PLAN AHEAD THERE’S LITTLE TIME TO PLAY

 

GRASSHOPPERS

WE SING A DIFFERENT TUNE YOU KNOW… WE GOT PLENTY OF FOOD.

IT’S ALL RIGHT HERE IN THE GRASS AND ON THE TREES... FOR YOU AND ME

LET’S PLAY SOME MORE WHAT YA’ WAITING FOR?

LET’S PLAY FOR FUN DON’T BE A BORE

CAUSE’ FUN IS ALL THAT WE CAN THINK TO BE

 

CHORUS

 

NARRATOR

LOOK BOYS AND GIRLS ..                                                                                    

LOOK BOYS AND GIRLS

LOOK HERE TODAY                                                                                   

LOOK HERE TODAY

SOME WORK IN THE MEADOW AND OTHERS PLAY                                               

AND OTHERS PLAY

 

EARTHA

SOME EAT FOOD NOW … OTHERS SAVE IT FOR ANOTHER DAY                                   

SAVE IT FOR ANOTHER DAY

PAY ME NOW OR LATER... IT’S COMPLETELY UP TO YOU                                   

OHH OHH OHHHH

EARTHA AND NARRATOR

LET’S SEE WHAT THE HOPPERS AND THE ANTS DECIDE TO DO?

EARTHA

WHO IS RIGHT AND WHO MISTAKES?                                                           

WHO MISTKES?

NARRATOR

PLEASE PAY ATTENTION FOR GOODNESS SAKES                                               

GOODNESS SAKES

NARRATOR AND EARTHA

WHAT HAPPENS IN THE REST OF OUR PLAY?

SIT BACK AND WATCH… YOU’LL FIND OUT TODAY!

 

ANTS

ANT’S KEEP A’ WORKING THERE’S LITTLE TIME TO PLAY

WORKING IS THE ONLY THING WE KNOW

KEEP THE LINE ALWAYS MOVING ALL THE LIVE LONG DAY

LETS GET ON .. YEAH GET ON WITH THE SHOW…

 

HOPPERS

WE WON’T BE WORKING AT ALL TODAY... WE’RE GONNA’ PLAY AND PLAY

WE DON’T CARE WHAT THEY SAY IT’S OURS TO PICK AND TO CHOOOOOOO-SE OH YEAH

IT’S TOO DARN HOT IT’S TOO DARN LONG

WE RATHER PLAY AND SING OUR SONG

LET’S PLAY SOME MORE AND LET’S GET ON WITH THE SHOW…

ALL

LET’S WORK AND GET ON WITH THE SHOW 

LET’S PLAY AND GET ON WITH THE SHOW.

 

 

ALL

WITH THE SHOW

WITH THE SHOW.

 

Narrator

So... here in the glen... in the tall, tall grass, the ants and the hoppers go about their every day business... lets watch...

 

Eartha

(Eartha sits in a beach chair fanning herself.)

It sure is hot honey...it’s a good thing I’ve managed to cultivate... um... grow all this wonderful nutritious... delicious... food.

 

              (Eartha fills a balloon with air)

Setti and [Blue] together

Ok power ants... you know what to do... onward we go

[Ok hoppers... you know what to do... onward we go]

 

Narrator

So the ants and the hoppers begin their day in the meadow. The sun it is beating down hard.  It is so hot boys and girls. Both the powerful ants and the hoppers decide what to do to begin their day here in the blades of grass, the soil and the rocks...

 

Clover

What a beautiful day

 

Zoyza

 A day to play

 

Setti

One step at a time ants

 

Iggy

Rickity... tickity.... ants, lets try to reach our quota early.

 

Zoyza

It is so hot.... I feel like I am melting.

 

Blue

Maybe we should try to find something to eat today?

 

Clover

Today? Why today?  There is always tomorrow.  We can always look for food tomorrow.

 

 

Zoyza

Besides, I am almost to the top level on this video game. Huh! Just enough shade for me… I feel like this is my lucky day!(Zoyza pulls out a game controller and begins playing. *An electronic video game noise is heard.)

 

Blue

Wow Zoyza... you are the best ... look at all the points you have collected!

 

Zoyza

Just watch me...I collect points like no other hopper you know!

 

Clover

Hey Blue... let’s you and I play a game.

 

Blue

What game?

 

Clover

Hide and go seek?

 

Zoyza

Almost there... one more ... almost...

(Clover hits Blue to get his attention)

 

Blue

What?

 

Clover

Hide and go seek?

 

Blue

Oh yeah ... you hiding or seeking?

 

Clover

Hiding... you will never find me Mr. Bluesy Hopper... now go count to ten please.

(Clover runs out into the audience Blue turns his back and begins to count.  *A sound indicating the video game is over is heard)

 

Zoyza

Darn dippity dip... I just got the slip.  Now I need to start all over again.

 

Narrator

...meanwhile... over at the ant hill... let’s see what the power ants are up to...

 

Iggy

Rickity tickity too

 

Setti

Here we go... what day is it today?

 

Iggy

Ummm? I give up. What day is it?

 

Metti

It’s a hot day whatever day it is...

 

Setti

Maybe somebody out there can help us?  Do you boys and girls know what day it is today?

 

(Response from audience)

 

Blue

Ten! Ready or not here I come... now where is that tricky in the clover hopper?

(Blue heads out into the audience to look for Clover)

 

 

Iggy

It is what day?

 

(Another response...)

 

Metti

I can’t hear you!

 

Setti

Good... that’s great... today is ________day... and we all know what we do on ______day!

 

Metti (raising hand)

I know... I know... pick me pick me

 

Iggy

Is this a trick question?

 

Setti

 We... work! We go throughout the meadow and look for food!

 

Iggy

Wait... we do that everyday while it’s hot!

 

 

Setti

Exactomundo powerful power ants.

 

(Metti exits quickly)

 

Iggy

Time to get moving...

 

(Blue finds Clover out in the audience)

Blue

Tag... you’re it... I found you

 

Clover

Dingity doggity bee ... you caught me.  Ok... my turn... I’ll go count to ten... you go hide.

 

Zoyza

Check this out hoppers... I am almost to the top...

 

Setti

Let’s find us some food! We need food to survive.  Food for now

 

Iggy

Food for later too.

 

(Metti returns with a small piece of grass)

Metti

Here ya’ go..!

 

Setti

Metti... what is that?

 

Iggy

It’s a piece of grass... you said we needed food.

 

Setti

We need food alright.  Everything we need is right here in the meadow. All we have to do is get it... and you bring us a teensy weensy piece from a blade of grass?

 

Metti

It was over there....

 

Iggy

That’s nice Metti... but we need more than just little pieces of grass... we need FOOD...so where do we go? Who has all the nourishment any power ant could want?  Who has all the riches of the earth ... the materials we need to keep us strong and powerful?  Why Miss Eartha Windinfire..that’s who. rickity tickity too. Let’s go power ants.  To the hut of Eartha Windinfire.