Power Ants and Hoppers
Book and Lyrics by: Michael C. Stepowany
Music by: Garrick Alden
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
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
HAVE A SEAT PLEASE THERE, AND GATHER ROUND.
THE STORY IS ABOUT TO BEGIN SO QUIET PLEASE
I WANT TO DRAW YOUR ATTENTION DOWN.
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
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
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!
Hello kids…my friends call me Mother Nature… and you know… you should never mess (*thunder) with Mother nature!
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
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)
What is that?
That’s Aunt Hill
Aunty Hill… you know... she lives in the valley.
NOT Aunty Hill … the Ant Hill!
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.
And they can carry huge loads.
Ten times their body weight
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)
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.)
A march is heard
Ants March in.
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
(Power ants pose and snap to!)
(Ants march back to the ant hill)
There they go…those cute little power ants.
Yeah…. Did you see those outfits?
Did you see those muscles?
(Eartha waves to the ants smiling uncontrollably)
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)
What is this??
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)
Grass (with the audience)
And what do the little creatures do?
Hop? Bunnies hop!
Ok boys and girls… say it with me
What do we get?
(Three grasshoppers hop out)
(Eartha picks up the rabbit and takes it to her hut.*thunder again)
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.
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
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
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
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?
WHO IS RIGHT AND WHO MISTAKES?
PLEASE PAY ATTENTION FOR GOODNESS SAKES
NARRATOR AND EARTHA
WHAT HAPPENS IN THE REST OF OUR PLAY?
SIT BACK AND WATCH… YOU’LL FIND OUT TODAY!
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…
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…
LET’S WORK AND GET ON WITH THE SHOW
LET’S PLAY AND GET ON WITH THE SHOW.
WITH THE SHOW
WITH THE SHOW.
So... here in the glen... in the tall, tall grass, the ants and the hoppers go about their every day business... lets watch...
(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]
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...
What a beautiful day
A day to play
One step at a time ants
Rickity... tickity.... ants, lets try to reach our quota early.
It is so hot.... I feel like I am melting.
Maybe we should try to find something to eat today?
Today? Why today? There is always tomorrow. We can always look for food tomorrow.
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.)
Wow Zoyza... you are the best ... look at all the points you have collected!
Just watch me...I collect points like no other hopper you know!
Hey Blue... let’s you and I play a game.
Hide and go seek?
Almost there... one more ... almost...
(Clover hits Blue to get his attention)
Hide and go seek?
Oh yeah ... you hiding or seeking?
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)
Darn dippity dip... I just got the slip. Now I need to start all over again.
...meanwhile... over at the ant hill... let’s see what the power ants are up to...
Rickity tickity too
Here we go... what day is it today?
Ummm? I give up. What day is it?
It’s a hot day whatever day it is...
Maybe somebody out there can help us? Do you boys and girls know what day it is today?
(Response from audience)
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)
It is what day?
I can’t hear you!
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
Is this a trick question?
We... work! We go throughout the meadow and look for food!
Wait... we do that everyday while it’s hot!
Exactomundo powerful power ants.
(Metti exits quickly)
Time to get moving...
(Blue finds Clover out in the audience)
Tag... you’re it... I found you
Dingity doggity bee ... you caught me. Ok... my turn... I’ll go count to ten... you go hide.
Check this out hoppers... I am almost to the top...
Let’s find us some food! We need food to survive. Food for now
Food for later too.
(Metti returns with a small piece of grass)
Here ya’ go..!
Metti... what is that?
It’s a piece of grass... you said we needed food.
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?
It was over there....
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.