HELP SAVE EL OCEANO, comedy one act play for young audiences by Loreta Kovacic
This COMEDY one act play with MUSIC was written for Middle School theater team to perform for a younger audience (Elementary up to 3rd grade). There are 10+ roles: two F, one M and 7+ Unisex. For 10 to 30 actors. There are 10 main roles and a chorus of many Morajan citizens. One Middle School class of 10 to 30 students can participate. Duration: 30 min. This play includes 4 original songs.
Set is minimal; it is set on a tropical island. Three main images are: tropical beach, science lab, and watermelon contest.
STORY is about our two famous Cyclops Scientists on the imaginary island of “Morajo” who discover an antidote to an ocean pollutant, which is produced by the two Evil Jellyfish. This show celebrates SCIENCE and discovery. It can be considered BILINGUAL: written in English with a few words and short phrases in Spanish, because most citizens of Morajo are bilingual. They refer to their Mexican culture, and they all learn to dance the famous “Cyclops Dance.” Actors do not have to speak Spanish. All actors can easily learn a few short phrases and words in Spanish. This show is INTERACTIVE. It invites audience to participate in dance and movement.
Dr. LORETA KOVACIC is a performing artist, writer and a teacher, an immigrant from Croatia who settled in Houston, the city she happily calls her home since 1990. As an internationally acclaimed musician, entertainer and teacher, she finds inspiration in the multi-cultural environment of her hometown, Houston. She started her career as a teenage rock star in Croatia, where, aside from actively performing as a classical pianist, she was also known as her country’s first female rock electronic keyboard player.
Houston Public Radio compares the style of her compositions to Eric Satie, and Houston Press notes how she “moves from classical to pop milieus as fluidly as her fingers dance around the ivories”. Loreta calls her style “Slavic & Western” and she calls herself and her band, the “Texas Slavs”. She loves performing with her husband Joe Parani, who plays on his home made theremin, accompanying Loreta’s songs with the passion of a one of a kind space flight trainer from NASA. Their original children’s album, “Brother Tadpole classics” has been nominated for a Grammy in 2011.
Loreta Kovacic holds a Doctorate Degree in Music from Rice University. She performs at a wide range of venues including Carnegie Hall, Museum of Fine Arts Houston and Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Discovery Green, Orange Show and Mucky Duck in Houston. In Croatia she preforms live for radio and TV on shows such as “Good morning Croatia”, etc. The music from her many CD’s has been played on the International Space Station.
Loreta often performs her original plays with music and produces them at AlchemistPianoTheatre in Houston. Her musical plays have been commissioned by CAMH, Mardi Gras Museum in New Orleans and Discovery Green in Houston. These comedy one-act plays are influenced by Theatre of the Absurd. They are interactive, easy to produce and fun for both actors and the audience. Loreta’s stories are all about Saving the Earth, the Ocean, our Souls, etc. Characters are funny and use plenty of physical comedy. Most of Loreta’s plays are intended for young audiences, children up to 3rd grade, but can be enjoyed by parents simultaneously.
Dr. Loreta Kovacic is now a middle school music and theater teacher. "Cyclops Dance" is a song from her Grammy nominated album that is featured in this play. Ms. K loves comedy and her plays have been labeled as “Theatre of the Absurd for children”. She is a freelance writer for Houstonia magazine, Croatia Week, Glasstire and RedPub.
This show was first performed at Discovery Green, later at Esperanza School (2015) and the latest performance was at Janowski Elementary in Houston on May 18th, 2018. Loreta wrote and published all songs on YouTube.
By JASON HERBST, AlchemistPianoTheatre board member,
Unified Communications CEO
firstname.lastname@example.org Tel. 713-459-3369
“Dr. Loreta Kovacic, who is fondly referred to as the “Alchemist”, is an accomplished musician, teacher, author, community leader and theater director. Her spirit is what makes her a true alchemist in that she has the uncanny ability to transform the seemingly normal into true gold. This ability is reflected in the students she works with, inspiring in them the new level of confidence through music and performance.”
I HAVE MUSICAL SCORES if you NEED THEM. Please contact me via email.
10 + ROLES: Lab Man (M), Idea Girl (F), First Lady (F), 1-3 narrators (Unisex), Jellyfish 1 (U), Jellyfish 2 (U), Cyclops 1 (U), Cyclops 2 (U), 1-2 Choir Leaders (U), Cyclops Walking Prop (U)
CHOIR: All actors, the crew, plus more citizens (up to 20 more).
CREW: Sound tech, light tech, assistant director, makeup artist, costumes manager, props manager, and 4 Stage crew (chosen from actors/choir).
---ACT 1: Science Lab---
(Act One: all actors except Evil Jellyfish)
CHOIR (all) in a small circle with hands in the middle chant: “GO THEATER team. This is our big dream, working hard on our show, to the top LET’S GO!”
After this CHOIR makes a larger circle and SITS down on the floor.
1 WELCOME TO THEATER SONG (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
While music is playing, four crew members are setting up Science Lab scene: table in the middle, small props, chairs.
CHOIR LEADERS get audience to bark and raise their hands. They are “training the audience.”
Science Lab table with props: big poster SCIENCE LAB next to the table, large tubes and science experiment bottles with bubbles. Front stage Left are the narrators and the First Lady of Morajo on a stationary microphone. Choir of Morajan citizens are sitting in a big circle in the middle of the stage floor.
NARRATOR 1: “Welcome to MORAJO, our great tropical island nation. Our beautiful country is known for our love of science, our bilingual speaking, and our very entertaining, never boring citizens. Our typical greeting here is: (yells with hand up) MANOS ARRIBA! Now you!” (to audience): -----
“Here in Morajo we really love music. We enjoy many songs and great shows all year. Here is one of our singers right now. She will sing”>>>>>>>>>> “All right, all right, all right!”
This is a “show within a show.” Singer can sing a song from a famous musical such as “Part of Your World” from “Little Mermaid” or any other Broadway song.
2 SOLO SONG
CHOIR LEADERS and CHOIR applause at the end of song. Singer bows.
NARRATOR 2: (get serious all at the table look worried) “I am so sorry. This is really not a good time. Our friends just told us that our ocean is in danger! One of our bays has been polluted by the two very strange jellyfish, medusas. These two jellyfish are a brand-new species. They are bigger than normal jellyfish, almost the size of a human, and they are amphibian. They live in the ocean but are also capable of living on land. This is very alarming ALARMANTE!” (run in a circle. stop)
NARRATOR 3: “We have just called our greatest scientists, our two Cyclops sisters (or brothers) AKA the CICLOPES, and we must all join in the efforts to save our ocean. Our great FIRST LADY of MORAJO is here with me (shake hands) to call upon our science team and all our technical personal to join forces at the big Morajan SCIENCE LAB AKA LABORATORIA DE SCIENCIA.”
CHOIR LEADERS and CHOIR. (APPLOUSE! say: Bravo! Etc.)
FIRST LADY 1: (Next to narrator at the podium center front stage)
“We need to find the solution to this bad pollution, and we need to do it now. Our police and military have already located the two
Amphibian Jellyfish, the two MEDUSAS, and we have informed all of our citizens through our media. Now it’s up to our science/tech team to find the antidote. Good luck to all! Help save the ocean. Any way you can….AYUDANOS A SALVAR EL OCEANO.”
“We are so lucky indeed to have our Great Science team already on their way here to Morajo Science Lab. Our two famous sisters (or brothers) scientists, Juana and Juanita (or Juan and Jesus), helped us many times before. You all might remember them as the “Cyclops Sisters” (or brothers) AKA HERMANAS CICLOPES (or hermanos). This was a nickname given to them by their uncle from Mexico. We believe in our Cyclops scientists, and we pray for their focus and wisdom.”
CHOIR stand up. Two Scientists, Lab Man and Idea Girl go to front.
CHOIR LEADERS: “Hands up for the Cyclops! Manos arriba! Now you!” (to audience and choir)---
CHOIR: “Manos arriba!” (Choir sit back down)
CYCLOPS SCIENTIST 1: “I am so glad, dear First Lady, that we could all get together in our LAB so quickly. Muy rapido.”
CYCLOPS SCIENTIST (2): “Si si, I am calling the POISON PREVENTION T and T central. Tengo un ojo!!! Un Ojo! HAHA Hallo Hallo Hallo Jelly T and TBUUUUUUUUUZZZZ ugh…our communication lines are…..down!!”
CYCLOPS SCIENTIST 1: “Jellyfish really messed it all up! Even landlines? Not just the ocean! No lo puedo creer! Medusas malas!”
LAB MAN: “Hey dear Cyclops amigas (or amigos), we are here to help you guys work on this! TO STOP that evil amphibian jellyfish!!!”
CYCLOPS 1: “Si Tadpole, let’s put on our glasses.” (puts on glasses)
CYCLOPS 2: “Mis gafas por favor! Hey Cyclops Hermana (or hermano), remember when we defeated la Llorona back in Mexico?”
CYCLOPS 1: “Si hermana. I remember like it was yesterday. We heard La Llorona by the river, and we started running like crazy.” (both run in place, physically reenacting the event. Funny.)
CYCLOPS 2: “I had said, ‘let’s run back to my room so I can look up Nanna’s Book of Magic that she left us when she died.’ Dear Nanna.”
CYCLOPS 1: “We found the book, gracias a Dios, flipping through the pages so fast, trying to find the antidote for La Llorona.”
CYCLOPS 2: “And there it was: with the picture and all! (speak slowly with emphasis) Take garlic, eat at least one clove fast. Then breath out fast. Garlic breath gets rid of La Llorona.” (show it)
CYCLOPS 1: “Did you brush your teeth? I guess not since La Llorona?! And we did it. Just like this (Act it out) But I got dizzy…” (fall carefully on the floor)
CYCLOPS 2: “And I helped you. I do remember that?”
CYCLOPS 1: “Yes you did. Are you gonna help me up now? Haha.”
CYCLOPS 2: “Let me think about it…” (funny, then helps her sister up) “And do you remember the Chupacabra?”
CYCLOPS 1: “Yeah, ya!” (Getting busy in the lab, not interested. Idea Girl and Lab Man enter.) “Let’s stop this chit-chat and get to trabajar. Our Lab Man and Idea Girl are here.”
CYCLOPS 1 and 2: “MANOS ARRIBA!” (Hands up-greeting.)
LAB MAN and IDEA GIRL: “MANOS ARRIBA!” (Greeting: hands up, then work together. Produce bubbles, make noise with tubes, science experiment in progress.)
NARRATOR 1: “Everyone else here, all the good citizens of Morajo and all of you here right now need to help our science team. Can you HELP SAVE THE OCEAN? You ask how? Well... In Morajo, we believe in the power of SOUND MEDITATION. MEDITACION SONORA. It is very similar to what many of you know as prayer….So all of you here, let’s use our Sound Meditation to help our science team right now! It goes like this: AA EE II OO UUU!” (show movements with arms 4 times) “Follow me!” Narrator teaches the Choir and the audience 5 arm movements.
3 AEIOUniverse (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
SONG with movement (4 times with CHOIR and audience)
CHOIR LEADERS go to the front row of the audience with arm movement: making letter shapes as you sing A E I O U. CHOIR and AUDIENCE (all) join in the song and movement.
NARRATOR 2: “Our Cyclops scientists are hard at work, experimenting with all kinds of crazy ingredients: hydrogen, garlic, POTIONS IN A BOTTLE, oxygen, magnum, etc.” (Science team make weird alchemist sounds: hmmmmm arrrr urh? Gh? Make your own science research sounds with small instruments? Make bubbles.)
CHOIR LEADERS: “Let’s send some good vibes to our science team. Aaa eee iii ooo uuu. This will help our Cyclops in the lab. Can we do it? Can they do it? Si se puede! Si se puede!” To audience: “Now you!”
CHOIR: “Si se puede! Si se puede!”
DRUMS announce discovery. Cyclops drum on the table.
CYCLOPS WALKING PROP comes up front to the table.
CYCLOPS 1 + 2: “Eureka!” (Sing) “We found it! SI SI SI.”
LAB MAN: “What is it what is it?! Tell, tell, tell ussss! DINOS!” (Run around excited)
CYCLOPS 1: “I don’t know, he he. (joke) The secret ingredient is: GARLIC JUICE!” (Holds up garlic in his hand) “Just like my grandmother used to say. Garlic saves the day. Ajo Ajo!!! Thank you, Nanna! AJO FOR MORAJO!”
CHOIR LEADERS: “Great Job Cyclops!” (chant with drums) “AJO FOR MORAJO! AJO FOR MORAJO! Now You!” (to audience) –
CHOIR: “Ajo for Morajo, ajo for Morajo!”
LAB MAN: “Now we have to give it to the jellyfish somehow….PREGUNTAMOS A LA CHICA DE IDEAS?!!!”
IDEA GIRL: “Hmmmmmmm (in deep thought, walking with a big book in unpredictable directions, then sits down in a thinking pose) Wait, how to do this. Hmmmm, Ajo in Morajo for Medusa no le gusta Ajo no me gusta Ajo. Me gusta sandia! (Read the book) HA HA, I have an idea: a watermelon-eating contest! I see here (point in the book) that all these amphibians love competitions, and they are crazy for watermelon! Like totally crrraaazzzzy for it.” (Yells unrecognizable sound and jumps up. She walks to center stage with the Lab man.)
LAB MAN: (amorously, on his knee): “Oh mi lady, you make my heart sing. Or, as mi amigo Shakespeare would say using much better words, Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night!”
IDEA GIRL: “Mi Lord, perhaps this is not the right time? We need to get to work.” (a little embarrassed)
LAB MAN: (sits in the thinking chair, sings) “Work, work, work, work, work! Que hay de mi Corazon?! (Quotes Shakespeare) [Love me or hate me, both are in my favor-if you love me, I’ll always be in your heart-if you hate me, I’ll always be in your mind]-Shakespeare expressed long ago (staring at Idea girl, she helps him get up. Now he is energized and ready to go back to work, looking on his phone). Yeah, I researched jelly fish in the Library with Senora Gonzales and with Senor Google, and I found that all amphibians and all jellyfish do not like garlic, then again, who does?!! So we can put the garlic potion inside the watermelon slices….yeah! My mom used to do something like this. I can still remember that weird taste. Yyyuk.”
CHOIR LEADERS: “Great idea! GRAN IDEA! Now you!” (To audience)-
CHOIR: “GREAT IDEA! GRAN IDEA!”
4 CYCLOPS DANCE instrumental (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
-----------------------ALL EXIT / CURTAIN----------------------
---ACT 2: Watermelon Contest---
All are on stage.
CHOIR is SITTING in a circle. Crew changes Science Lab table to WATERMELON CONTEST table with props and poster.
NARRATOR 2: “The Evil jellyfish seem to be coming… They heard about the watermelon contest on Instagram!”
AMPHYBIAN JELLYFISH 1 and 2: enter dancing in a chaotic, jelly way: act- sing –dance. They walk into the audience after the first verse.
CHOIR: evil laughs on a count by CHOIR LEADER 123: HAHAHAHA…
5 EVIL JELLYFISH SONG (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
EVIL JELLYFISH 1 & 2: (evil lough) “ha ha ha uahgagahahahh! We are vicious!” (Act, act, act; move arms and legs like jellyfish.)
CHOIR: “Jellyfish glow evil queens; they’re the greatest ones you’ve ever seen.”
EJF 1 (sings) EJF 2 (talks): “This land is hostile, not welcoming at all, unfriendly bush and brush. You can’t go for a stroll, not at all.”
EJF 1: “Yet this is where you find the most amazing creatures. They fly you up to Mars or maybe to a local jail. They might, just as well!”
EJF 2 (speak): “Like my friend Stew, the snazzy snake fish unicorn.”
EJF 1 & 2 (sing): “We all could have been somebody the chorus sings.”
CHOIR: “LA LA LA LA!”
EJF 1 & 2: “But they’re just damaged goods compared to us, superb jellyfish.” (talk) “That’s us. Yes!”
EJF 1: “Humanity look at me… Humanity, how I love you still.”
EJF 1 & 2: (jelly evil laugh, jelly talk, sing, improv.)
CHOIR: evil laughs on a count 123 by CHOIR LEADER: “HAHAHA!”
CHOIR with EJF 1 & 2:
“So, let’s put our slimy parts on….with tentacles and all, cause under this heavenly umbrella the sky’s about to turn black…. I’ll put on my jellyfish shirt, then I womp and wobble, then I gurst and gobble, like a soulful jellyfish glow…”
CHOIR LEADERS count 123 CHOIR evil laughs.
EJF 1 & 2: (talk) “Sikaya….” (improv. Sing, talk and evil laughter)
NARRATOR 3: “Despite all of this wobble and evil jellyfish talk, the Cyclops invite them to the table…A LA MESA.”
EVIL JELLYFISH 1: “OH! How we love competitions… and we love to win! NOS ENCANTA GANAR!!!!”
EJF 2: “OH! How we love watermelon too…it is so juicy! QUIERO SANDIA!!”
NARRATOR 3: “Everyone sit or stand around the table, while the Cyclops get ready to start the contest.”
CHOIR sits and stands around the table.
CYCLOPS (2): “Start now! (Everyone eats fast. All are eating real watermelon slices.) and the winner is: LAB MAN! He ate the most!”
CHOIR LEADER: “Great job, LAB MAN! Now You!”
CHOIR: “Great job, LAB MAN!” (Applause)
NARRATOR 3: “After they ate the watermelon, the two jellyfish suddenly feel strange…SENTIRSE RARO…”
EJF (1): “Oh, I feel so strange, I feel like I want to dance now….QUIERO BAILAR! I want to be on “Dancing with Stars.”
EJF 2: “Yeah me too, and I don’t even care that we did not win! I just want to kiss the winner…”
(EJF tries to kiss LAB MAN, runs after him, then TRANSFORMS gradually- in a very theatrical way: act, act, act!)
6 WELCOME TO THEATER DANCE (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
CHOIR stand up and free dance to the song. Fade out.
CYCLOPS WALKING PROP dances to front then goes dancing into the audience.
Two jellies and two Cyclops dance to the music as partners on center stage. Dance-act.
Evil jellyfish now dance while dramatically taking off their black clothes, glasses, and hats. They have white (or regular) clothes underneath, so that now they become completely white (or regular).
EJF 1: “I feel like a normal jelly fish again!”
NARRATOR 2: “Oh, our amphibian jellyfish, our MEDUSAS, look like normal jellyfish again. They are totally transformed! From now on, they will continue cleaning the ocean, not polluting it!”
CHOIR LEADERS: “MANOS ARRIBA!”
CHOIR: “Manos arriba!”
NARRATOR 2: “As you can see, things are good in Morajo again. Everyone is celebrating now, and everyone knows how to dance the famous Cyclops dance: like this in 6 movements” (show movement)
Choir is learning the movements with the Narrator. CHOIR LEADERS ask audience to stand up and learn.
SIX MOVEMENTS for CYCLOPS DANCE;
1 Hands crisscross, rock front and back.
2 Hands up
3 Cyclops eye turn around
4 Boogie--side to side
5 Yee-haw-- hold on suspenders foot in front
6 Free style: dance your own style (the crowd favorite!).
CHOIR and the AUDIENCE all dance.
CYCLOPS WALKING PROP comes up front to dance then goes into the audience.
CHOIR LEADERS join the audience front row.
7 CYCLOPS DANCE (Loreta Kovacic, YouTube)
Dance the Cyclops dance in six movements:
1 (hands crisscross, rock front and back) 2
CYCLOPS : We are the Cyclops, we live to play. //Hands up (now you)..MANOS ARRIBA..// 1 2
We love Morajo land, ho ho he hey. //Hands up…MANOS ARRIBA…//
//Let’s do the Cyclops dance// Hands up!//
CHOIR : //Let’s do the Cyclops dance.// Hands up //
CYCLOPS: //Boogie boogie boogie boogie// Yee-haw //
CHOIR: //Boogie boogie boogie boogie// Yee-haw //
CHOIR LEADER: Free style! (all dance individually)
CYCLOPS : We are the Cyclops, we live to play. //Hands up (now you)..MANOS ARRIBA..//
We love Morajo land, ho ho he hey. //Hands up…MANOS ARRIBA…//
Audience sits down. All FREEZE with HANDS UP until the end when they bow together and put hands down. Idea Girl, Lab Man, Narrator and First Lady all move to center front stage.
IDEA GIRL: “From now on, our evil jellyfish is once again just a plankton, an ocean drifter who is stinging and sticky and can hurt you a little…but not much…and all in all, it is another small but significant part of our planet’s life cycle….”
LAB MAN: “Not really capable of doing any harm and not at all capable of polluting our ocean like some of us humans are.” (They hug)
NARRATOR 2: “Yes, all is good with the jellyfish, but we call for further action from you people. More than one bay in Morajo is still polluted but not by jellyfish. . . by us, humans…NOSOTROS HUMANOS!! So- help save el oceano. Please.” (Narrator and First Lady hug)
FIRST LADY OF MORAJO: “AYUDANOS A SALVAR EL OCEANO POR FAVOR.” 123: all unfreeze and BOW TOGETHER.
------------------THE END ------------------
At the end, Choir Leaders can ask the audience if they remember the “Cyclops Dance.” All can dance it again. (optional)
ROLES characteristics All need to learn a few words in Spanish
2 Cyclops scientists: funny, loud, quirky, good story tellers.
2 Evil Jellyfish: good singers and actors.
Choir Leader: loud and animated-connection to the Audience.
Lab Man: nerdy, in love with the Idea Girl.
Idea girl: smart and funny. Physical comedy.
First Lady of Morajo: calm, loud and poised.
Narrator(s): Loud, funny, great speaker. Can read from the script.
Cyclops Walking Prop: funny, physical comedy, big kid or an adult, interactive. No lines.
5 Songs, 7 music cues (all on YouTube):
1. “Welcome to the Theater” by Loreta Kovacic (original)
2. Solo Song: from Little Mermaid or any Broadway show
3. “AEIOU” by Loreta Kovacic (original)
4. “Cyclops Dance” instrumental (same as 7, minus the voice
5. “Evil Jellyfish” by Loreta Kovacic (original)
6. “Welcome to the Theater” DANCE (same as 1)
7. “Cyclops Dance” by Loreta Kovacic (original)
Lyrics change: say “MORAJO LAND” instead of “BALVARIA”.
SET= 6 items:
1. BIG TABLE folding table used for Lab, Contest, and as a DRUM.
2. POSTER double sided: one side is for the SCIENCE LAB, and the other side is for the WATERMELON CONTEST.
3. 2 TWO TABLE PROPS BAGS:
First act science lab props: table cloth. Bubbles, tubes, big book, bottles
Second act watermelon contest props: garlic, watermelon, plates, napkins, big tray.
4. ISLAND PROPS: palm tree, any trees, beach chairs, beach balls etc.
5. CYCLOPS WALKING PROP for adult or big kid made by students.
6. COSTUME BOX: 4 lab coats for 2 cyclops, lab man, and idea girl.
2 glasses for Cyclops
2 Cyclops eye hats, queen crown. and gold cape
for the First Lady.
*Narrators, choir leaders, and crew dress in jeans
and tie die T-shirts with beach glasses and hats.
Evil jellyfish: black robes and black skirts with
black feather hats.
USB with all songs for the SOUND TECH: transferred from YouTube.
3 mikes: 2 cordless: jellyfish and Cyclops share, lab man and idea girl share
1 Stationary mike center stage front for Narrators and the First Lady of Morajo. Choir Leaders do not use mikes: they speak in loud voices.
7 SOUND CUES:
1. WELCOME TO THEATER (start after chant)
2. SOLO SONG (Part of your world or any Broadway song)
4. CYCLOPS DANCE instrumental (end of Act 1)
5. EVIL JELLYFISH
6. WELCOME TO THEATER
7. CYCLOPS DANCE