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DISNEY'S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST JR.
Duration: 60 minutes
Music by Alan Menken
Lyrics by Howard Ashman and Time Rice
Book by Linda Woolverton
Once upon a time in a faraway land, an Enchantress turns a cruel, unfeeling Prince into a hideous Beast.
To break the spell, the Beast must learn to love another and earn her love in return before the last petal falls from an enchanted rose. Ten years later, in a small village far below the Beast's castle, a beautiful and intelligent young woman, Belle, yearns for something more than her provincial life (Belle). On his way to show his invention at a fair, Belle's father, Maurice, gets lost and seeks shelter in a castle. Enchanted Servants - Cogsworth, Lumiere, Babette, Mrs. Potts and Chip - try to make Maurice comfortable, but the Beast imprisons the intruder. To the dismay of the Silly Girls who fawn over Gaston, the village brute proposes to Belle, who turns him down (Belle - Reprise). When Belle sees Gaston's sidekick Lefou wearing her father's scarf, Belle runs off to search for him. Belle finds her missing father at the castle and offers herself in exchange for his freedom. The Beast agrees, sends Maurice back to the village, and escorts Belle to her bedroom, where she considers what she has done (Home). Seeing their guest forlorn, Mrs. Potts and Madame de la Grande Bouche comfort Belle (Home - Tag).
In the village tavern, Lefou and the Villagers try to lift Gaston's spirits (Gaston). When "crazy old" Maurice barges in claiming that he has seen a Beast, Gaston and Lefou form a plan to win Belle (Gaston - Reprise). At the castle, the Servants coach the Beast on how to act like a gentleman. When Belle refuses to accept the Beast's invitation to dinner, he loses his temper and tells her to starve. However, Lumiere and the Servants offer Belle an extravagant feast anyway (Be Our Guest). While Cogsworth gives Belle a tour of the castle, she wanders off into the forbidden West Wing. The Beast discovers her there and explodes, which causes the frightened Belle to flee the castle. In the forest, Belle is attacked by wolves. The Beast saves her but is injured in the process. Having a change of heart, Belle helps the Beast back to the castle and dresses his wound. The Servants recognize something different between Belle and the Beast (Something There) and express their hope that the spell may soon be broken (Human Again). Now dressed in a stunning gown, Belle dances with the Beast (Beauty and the Beast).
[Silly Girls, Belle]
[Mrs. Potts, Madame]
[Lefou, Silly Girls,
provide great opportunities to involve children that are more comfortable speaking than singing. The script is written to feature four Narrators, but you could adapt the roles to incorporate more students (or fewer) depending on the size of your cast. Be sure the students you cast in these roles can enunciate and project, as they are key to the momentum of this beautiful tale. You can cast the school principal, a teacher or a wellknown community member as the one of the Narrators to get your entire community involved. These roles can be completely non-singing, but the actors could be cast from your ensemble if desired.
BELLE is a smart, confident young woman from a small village. You will want to cast a child who is a strong singer and actress. Belle needs to be able to stand up to Gaston (and the Beast!) as well as those who don't seem to understand her, while being able to show compassion for her father, the Servants, and eventually the Beast. During auditions, you can bet that most of the girls will be trying out for the role of Belle. If there are several female students in your school that could perform the role, you should consider casting
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