Sunday, 30 December 2007

The Pratt Family Singers

A gentle but spirited musical protest by Male members of an Amateur Operatic Society* at the lack of involvement in the choice of its annual production viz. “The Sound of Music” – presented as a cabaret item at the Society’s post-show party in Lincoln in December 1970. [This event, although containing tragedy, was to change the lives of at least two people in a very happy way for ever.]

MAX : Excuse me, Ladies and gentlemen, I have an announcement that concerns you. “The Sound of Music” like the Kalsburg Festival has come to its conclusion; except of course that you don’t know quite what that conclusion is. We have all enjoyed the wonderful and successful production over the last two weeks, but I would like very humbly to suggest that you have not quite heard everything. And so, at tremendous expense and at very great personal danger, I ask you to give a very warm welcome to The Pratt Family Singers…

[Enter chorus, singing to guitar accompt.]

ALL : The hills are alive with the sound of music,
With songs they have sung for a thousand years;
The hills fill my heart with the sound of music,
My heart wants to sing every song it hears;

My heart wants to beat like the wings of the bird that rise
From the lake to the trees
My heart wants to sigh as the chime that flies
From a church on the breeze;
To laugh like a drain when it gurgles on
Through the sewers broad and deep,
To slurp through the night
And stop people getting their sleep.

We take to the pills when our hearts are lonely
We just can’t conceive – what else can we do ?
Our hearts are quite sad with The Sound of Music
For we can sing too !

CAPT : Maria, darling, will you still love me when I get old ?
“MARIA” : Why don’t you get old and see ?

CAPT : I am Sixty going on Seventy
There’s life in the old dog yet;
Better beware, be canny and careful
Better go see the vet.
You are Seventy going on Eighty,
Baby, you’re just my type.
Even though you are slightly askew
You’re certainly over-ripe.

Totally unprepared are you to face a world of Men;
If I were you I’d think it wise to start all over again.

You need someone younger and wiser
Telling you what to do
I am Sixty going on Seventy,
I’m nearly past it too !

“MARIA” : But how did we get into this mess ?
CAPT. : It’s a very long story…….

ALL : Let’s start at the very beginning
A very good place to start.
When you read you begin with ABC
When you sing you begin with Do-Re-Mi.

Dough, the cash that caused it all
Ray, the driver’s mate who got
Me, a nice young innocent girl,
Far away in some dark spot.
So, I had to call for aid,
“La !”, I shouted all in vain;
“Tee-hee !”, he cried, “I’ve got it made !”.
Now he’s short of Dough again ! [& Repeat from “Dough”]

MAX : But, Captain, if only we’d been properly advised

Every moment you haunt me,
Right or wrong, What a song,
Only serves to taunt me.

Blossom of snow,
What a blooming show,
Blooming show this autumn;

What a lesson we’ve taught ‘em.

[ & Repeat]

CAPT. : Yes, Max, but how can we put things right ?
MAX : Listen, and I’ll tell you.
[to audience]Are you all sitting comfortably, then I’ll begin…

MAX : No little chorus to sing have we,
No chance to show our great repartee,
ALL : How can men survive ?
MAX : Still, though our musical souls still ache,
We’ll carry on for the “County’s”* sake,
There’s a table to shift and a bed to make;
ALL : That’s how men survive.

ALL : On with the desk, then take a short rest
Till it’s time for Act One Scene Five;
Then, oh my Heck, it’s all hands on deck,
And the stage teems with men like a bee-hive.

Not very far off the beam are we,
Quaint and bizarre as a team are we,
Well-dressed young men of Propertee,
We’re keeping our hopes alive,
Dashing young men of Propertee,
We’ll make sure men survive.

CAPT. : Well, Max, if that’s the way you go about it the sky’s the limit.
MAX : How do we get there, Captain ?
CAPT. : We all know that. There’s only one way.

ALL : Climb every mountain, search high and low,
Follow every by-way, every path you know
Climb every mountain, ford every stream
Follow every rainbow, till you find your dream.

A dream that will need all the love you can give.
Every day of your life, for as long as you live.
Climb every mountain, ford every stream
Follow every rainbow, till you find your dream.

[& Repeat from “A dream”]


[* County Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society – the “County”]

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