A musical play. Book, music & lyrics by David Wood.
First presented by the Worcester Repertory Company at the Swan Theatre, Worcester for Christmas 1970. The play was subsequently produced by Knightsbridge Theatrical Productions Limited and WSG Productions Limited at the Shaw Theatre, London for Christmas 1971 and 1972.
There have been many amateur productions, and foreign productions include many in Germany. Repertory productions include Manchester, Bristol and Leeds. In 1979 Whirligig Theatre presented the play at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London and on tour.
THE PLOTTERS OF CABBAGE PATCH CORNER is a musical play for child audiences. The insects live in a busy world in the garden. Their existence, however, is always overshadowed by the humans – the Big Ones. Infuriated by constant “spraying” the unattractive Slug, Greenfly and Maggot call for rebellion, strikes, ruination of the garden. The others, the ‘pretty’ insects – Red Admiral, Ladybird and Bumble Bee – oppose this and war is declared. Glow Worm and Ant reluctantly become involved.
Fortune swings one way and the other in a series of bitter campaigns. The garden goes to ruin and the Big Ones decide to build a garage on it. This brings the insects to their senses. They combine to restore the garden to its original beauty and thus preserve their home.
David Wood writes : This was my first original play, as opposed to adaptations. I have particularly fond memories of the first London production, directed by Jonathan Lynn and choreographed by Sheila Falconer, who, some years later, directed the Whirligig tour. It was in fact the very first Whirligig production, which successfully attracted sponsorship from Clarks Shoes, and paved the way for Whirligig’s touring work over the next two decades.
There are 10 characters. It is possible to double The Great Mushroom and Spider. Amateur and school productions have often added extra insects as a chorus.
“A milestone in children’s entertainment.”
“… guaranteed to rouse most juvenile hearts to frenzy of passion … during the interval I heard under-tens earnestly discussing the issues raised in the play … good songs … highly recommended … child’s play to warm the hearts of all.”
“… something fresh and worthwhile in children’s shows, which really tries to break new ground … entertainingly original … there is no better show for ages up to, say, 11.”
“… a new kind of audience participation … instead of goodies and baddies, we meet rivals who attract cheers and boos of equal vehemence … the contention in the audience when Ant changed sides must have been heard at St. Pancras, if not King’s Cross … child audience cheer insect contest.”
“David Wood’s suspense-filled delve into the insect world that is prey to human carelessness, indifference and cruelty.”
“An up-to-date story decked out with all the best ingredients for enchantment and delight.”
The play and piano/vocal score are published by Samuel French Ltd. First Class Professional & Foreign Rights : Casarotto Ramsay Ltd. UK Repertory Rights : Samuel French Ltd. UK Amateur Rights : Samuel French Ltd. The play is included in David Wood : Plays Two (Methuen) US Stock and Amateur Rights: Samuel French Inc.