Scott Wegener is a multi award-winning creative writer who believes in looking on the lighter side of life’s predicaments but still values how serious life is. This site features a wide variety of Scott's published and performed works. If you want to use any of these pieces, or commission something origional, contact Scott Wegener

May 19, 2012

Noah's Arkestra

An Orchestral Children's Story


Summary: A conductor tells the children of the audience a story about Noah’s Ark and the instruments keep interrupting with sound effects - to the apparent frustration of the conductor, who eventually plays along with it.


Conductor:
“How many of you have heard the story of Noah?


[pause for a show of hands, then act surprised and disappointed as everyone already knows the story you were about to tell]


“Oh . . . all of you.


[mutters as if disappointed that this isn't a new story for the kids] “Great” 


“Well, it’s my favorite story so you’re going to hear it again.
A long time ago, God spoke to a man named Noah. He told him he needed to build a huge boat to save some of the people and animals from a big flood that was coming.
So Noah and his sons started to chop down some trees.” [makes chopping motions with arm]


Drummer: SNARE, SNARE, SNARE, (calls out:) “TIMBERERRRR” LOWER TOMS & BASS DRUM thud.


Conductor: [looks around to the drummer with a confused glare - as if to communicate ‘what was that all about’]

“And they cut up the logs and hammered them in place”


Conductor: [Makes four large hammering gestures, in a conducting like manner, to which the
Drummer hits his Snare Drum each time, but the rhythm slows to a stop by the fourth as if the conductor is not amused with the drummer - and turns around slowly and gives an angry glare this time towards the drummer]


“And it took more than 100 years to finish this giant boat. Soon after it was finished, the animals started to come.”


“There were elephants”
[jumps at the sound of the trombones blast]
Trombones: Sliding elephant trumpeting sound
Drummer/Timpani: Toms, heavy walking 8 beats


Conductor: [spins around with a look of rage - but come to realise the kids are loving it and you will now start to play it up from now on. With a sly smile, continues].


“In fact, they were probably baby elephants”.


[All at once]
Trombones: quieter trumpeting this time
Drummer: quieter toms - 8 beats
Trumpets: play ‘baby elephant walk’ ditti


“And there were tiny little sparrows.”
Flutes: Trill


“And a mummy goose.”
Soprano/alto sax: high squeak
“And a daddy goose.”
Baritone/tenor sax: deep honk


“And two little mice”
Keyboard: first line ‘hickery dickery dock’ then chromatic up the keyboard


“Some horses . . .”
Trumpets: give “Horse race trumpet call ditti”
Drummer: snare horse running “da da dum, da da dum”


“. . . came walking SLOWLY!”
Guitar: Slow walk  dum de da de, dum de da de
Trumpet: Whinnie


“Snakes slithered up”
Clarinet/oboe: Middle east snake charming ditti
Drummer: Cymbal brushing hiss


“And even bees . . .”
2 Violins: steady low notes for a few beats.


“. . . and mosquitos”
2 Violins: steady clashing high note for an annoying length of time


“And soon they were all in the ark, and an Angel came and shut the giant door.”
Drummer: Drum roll then Tom and Base drum thud


“And they waited and they waited and everyone grew quiet restless”
Whole orchestra: random ‘animal’ noise playing until conductor cuts you off]


“ but, after a week, something happened. It started to rain”
Violins: quiet slow plucking

“and it got heavier"
Violins: faster plucking

 “and and heavier
Drummer: start snare quietly and build to roll.


“and there was thunder . . .”
Drummer: Loud tom fill, continuing with the snare ‘rain’ though till the rain stops


“. . . and lightning”
Orchestra member: stands up and turns a torch on and off at the audience a couple of times.


[Conductor wonders why an orchestra member has a torch with them]


“And the water level rose higher and higher and the ark began to rock, UP


Whole Orchestra: starts a chromatic scale up


“  . . .and down. “
Whole Orchestra: changes from where they are to a chromatic scale down.


“UP. . .”


Whole Orchestra: chromatic scale up


“  . . .and down.” 
Whole Orchestra: chromatic scale down.


“and after 40 days of rains . . . it stopped”
[gives a slow extension of his arm, building the tension, then abruptly cutting off the drummer]
Drummer: stop on Conductor’s signal


And they waited and waited for the water to go down, and Noah let out some birds
Flute: trill


“and when there was enough dry land the door of the ark was opened”


Drummer: snare then toms/bass thud


[moving at a faster tempo now, as if the animals were all leaving quickly]


“out came the Elephants
Trombones: trumpeting
Drummer: toms - 8 beats
Trumpets: play ‘baby elephant walk’ ditti


Conductor: “And the tiny little sparrows”
Flutes: Trill


“And mummy goose”
Soprano/alto sax: high squeak
“And daddy goose”
Baritone/tenor sax: deep honk


“And a few hundred mice”
Keyboard: chromatic DOWN the keyboard


“The horses . . .”
Trumpets: give “Horse race trumpet call ditti”
Drummer: snare horse running “da da dum, da da dum”


“Snakes”
Clarinet/oboe: Snake charming ditti
Drummer: Cymbal brushing hiss


“The bees . . .”
2 Violins: steady low notes for a few beats.


“. . . and mosquitos”
2 Violins: steady clashing high note until conductor slaps his cheek
[Conductor slaps cheek]


“And noah and his family built an altar and praised God for keeping them safe.”


“And God sent a beautiful rainbow . . .”


Harp/keyboard: slow ascending ‘brrrrrrring’ sound


“to remind us that he’ll never flood this earth again.”


Whole orchestra: Straight in with “Jesus Loves me” chorus to wrap things up. 

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