Scene 4

Full ScriptsScene 1 | Scene 2 | Scene 3 | Scene 4 | Scene 5 | Scene 6 | Scene 7 | Scene 8

1972 1981 2000 2013
LEADING PLAYER
Well I’ll sing you the story of a sorrowful lad
had everything he wanted, didn’t want what he had
He had wealth and pelf and fame and name and all of
That noise
But he didn’t have none of those simple joys
His life seemed purposeless and flat
Aren’t you glad you don’t feel like that?

So he ran from all the deeds he’d done,
he ran Things he’d just begun
He ran from himself, now that’s mighty far to run
Out into the country where he played as a boy
He knew he had to find those simple joys
He wanted someplace warm and green
We all could use a change of scene

Sweet summer evenings, hot wine and bread
Sharing your supper, sharing your bed
Simple joys have a simple voice:
It says why not go ahead?
Wouldn’t you rather be a left-handed flea
Or a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
Than a man who never learned to be free
Not ’til he’s cold and dead

Sweet summer evenings so full of sound
Gaining a lover, gaining a pound
Simple joys have a simple voice
It says: take a look around
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
on a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till he’s underground

Enter Berthe. Pippin’s Grandmother. Warm strong,

BERTHE
Still attractive.

LEADING PLAYER
Still attractive. Charlemagne’s mother. Now living in the country where she enjoys those…
Sweet summer evenings, sapphire skies
Feasting her belly, feasting her eyes
Simple joys have a simple voice
It says: time is living’s prize
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Or a fig on a twig in Galilee
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day he dies
Na na na na na na na na Na na na na na na na na

PIPPIN
Berthe!
BERTHE
Damn. I hate needle point.

PIPPIN
Berthe.

BERTHE
Yes? What is it?

PIPPIN
It’s me, Pippin.

BERTHE
Pippin. Pippin? Pippin. Oh Pippin! I can’t believe it. Oh, how good it is to hold you… to hold you like when you were a little boy. Remember Pippin?

PIPPIN
Of course I remember, grandma. That’s why I came here.

BERTHE
Oh Pippin, you look terrible. You need some fresh air, some sun, and good food. Some, uh, frolicking…

PIPPIN
Grandma, you haven’t changed a bit.

BERTHE
But you have Pippin. Now something is the matter. What have you been doing with yourself?

PIPPIN
I went to war, Grandma.

BERTHE
That’s why you look so terrible. Men and their wars. Sometimes I think men raise flags when they can’t get anything else up.

PIPPIN
Grandma, sometimes you really say shocking things.

BERTHE
I try my best. But Pippin, what’s wrong?

PIPPIN
I don’t know, Grandma. I feel empty and vacant.

BERTHE
Empty and vacant? Now Pippin. You listen to me. You’re going to hear something very wise. Now don’t take life so seriously. Just take things as they come. Don’t do too much planning, and don’t do too much thinking. How’s that for wisdom so far?

PIPPIN
Well frankly, Grandma, it sounds pretty dull.

BERTHE
It’ll be much better with music. Maestro.
When you are as old as I, my dear
And I hope that you never are
You will woefully wonder why, my dear
Through your cataracts and catarrh
You could squander away or sequester
A drop of a precious year
For when your best days are yester
The rest’er twice as dear….
What good is a field on a fine summer night
When you sit all alone with the weeds?
Or a succulent pear if with each juicy bite
You spit out your teeth with the seeds?
Before it’s too late stop trying to wait
For fortune and fame you’re secure of
For there’s one thing to be sure of, mate:
There’s nothing to be sure of!
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
But Grandma it’s time that I’m worried about-

BERTHE
Now you sit down. And don’t say anything until I’m finished. I’ve got three more choruses to do. But you can all join in with me if you wish. And that goes for all of you out there, too. But, just the choruses. The verses are all mine.

I’ve never wondered if I was afraid
When there was a challenge to take
I never thought about how much I weighed
When there was still one piece of cake
Maybe it’s meant the hours I’ve spent
Feeling broken and bent and unwell
But there’s still no cure more heaven-sent
As the chance to raise some hell
Everybody….
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Verse!
now when the drearies do attack
And a siege of the sads begins
I throw these regal shoulders back
And lift these noble chins
Give me a man who is handsome and strong
Someone who’s stalwart and steady
Give me a night that’s romantic and long
Then give me a month to get ready
Now I could waylay some againg roue
And persuade him to play in some cranny
But it’s hard to believe I’m being led astray
By a man who calls you granny
One more time! Come on boys! And this time let’s hear it from everybody! One Two Three Four!
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Come on! You ought to know it by now!
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

Berthe
Out! Out!
Sages tweet that age is sweet
Good deeds and good work earn you laurels
But what could make you feel more obsolete
Than being noted for your morals?
Here is a secret I never have told
Maybe you’ll understand why
I believe if I refuse to grow old
I can stay young till I die
now, I’ve known the fears of sixty-six years
I’ve had troubles and tears by the score
But the only thing I’d trade them for
Is sixty-seven more…

ALL
Oh, it’s time to start –

BERTHE
Aaaah! And you up there! Out! Now let me take this one all by myself, all right?
Oh, it’s time to keep livin’
Time to keep takin’ from this world we’re given
You are my time, so I’ll throw off my shawl
And watching your flings be flung all over
Makes me feel young all over

BETHE AND BOYS
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Remember that Pippin!

PIPPIN
She’s absolutely right! It’s time for me to start living and stop worrying! Maybe that’s the secret. Just to enjoy all the simple things in life. The fresh air. The cool clean water and fresh fruit off of the-Oh yes, and women.

LEADING PLAYER
Sex presented pastorally.

PIPPIN
of course, women.

My days are brighter than morning air
Evergreen pine and autumn blue
But all my days are twice as fair
If I could share
My days with you

Excuse me.
My nights are warmer than firecoals.
incense and stars and smoke bamboo.
But nights were warm beyond compare
If I could share
My nights with you

To dance in my dreams
To shine when I need the sun
With you
To hold me when dreams are done
And oh….
My dearest love
If you will take my love
Then all my dreams are truly begun

And time weaves ribbons of memory
To sweeten life when youth is through
But I would need no memories there
If I could share
My life with you
I found it!
(Dance sequences.)

GIRLS
Pippin, come on, Pippin, we’ve got more for you.

PIPPIN
Enough. That’s enough. Leave me alone.
LEADING PLAYER
Boy, when you frolic you really frolic don’t you? Well how do you feel now?
PIPPIN
I feel empty and vacant. There has to be something worthwhile that I can do with my life.

LEADING PLAYER
Hey. You just started! There are so many things you can try.

PIPPIN
Like what?

LEADING PLAYER
Like take a look at this.

PLAYER
Good morning. Peasants revolt. King slays thousands.

PIPPIN
Hey, look at this.
PLAYER
Hello there. Peasants are protesting a rise in taxes were slaughtered yesterday by Charlemagne’s soldiers. The king warned that any further dissent would be treated in the same manner.

PIPPIN
Oh, I can’t believe that. My father would never slaughter people just for protesting. That can’t be true.

LEADING PLAYER
Now would a newspaper print anything that wasn’t true?

PLAYER
Hi. Third massacre to bring new laws from crown. All political activities henceforth to be rigidly controlled.

PIPPIN
But my father can’t just tell people what to think.

LEADING PLAYER
Why not? He’s the king.

PIPPIN
I don’t care. People have that right to speak out freely.

LEADING PLAYER
There’s no doubt about that.

PIPPIN
Well, something has to be done about it.

LEADING PLAYER
You’re absolutely right.

PIPPIN
We’re surrounded by injustice and tyranny.

LEADING PLAYER
And prejudice. Don’t forget about prejudice.

PIPPIN
I’m finally beginning to see what my father really is. He forces people to fight and die over land that they couldn’t care less about.

LEADING PLAYER
That’s right!

PIPPIN
I think it’s time for a change.

LEADING PLAYER
It is time for a change.

PIPPIN
We’ve got to dedicate ourselves to a better world for all people.

LEADING PLAYER
Testing, testing.

PIPPIN
…peace and justice must be restored to this great land. The tyrant must be overthrown. Terror and bloodshed must be ended. We need a leader. With the wisdom and the courage to sweep out the old order and create a better world. Down with Charles, up with… me!

LEADING PLAYER
Well I’ll sing you the story of a sorrowful lad
He had everything he wanted, didn’t want what he had
He had wealth and pelf and fame and name and all of
That noise
But he didn’t have none of those simple joys
His life seemed purposeless and flat
Aren’t you glad you don’t feel like that? So he ran from all the deeds he’d done, he ran
Things he’d just begun
He ran from himself, now that’s mighty far to run
Out into the country where he played as a boy
He knew he had to find those simple joys
He wanted someplace warm and green
We all could use a change of scene

Sweet summer evenings, hot wine and bread
Sharing your supper, sharing your bed
Simple joys have a simple voice:
It says why not go ahead?

Wouldn’t you rather be a left-handed flea
Or a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
Than a man who never learned to be free
Not ’til he’s under ground

Enter Berthe. Pippin’s Grandmother. Warm strong,

BERTHE
Still attractive.

LEADING PLAYER
Still attractive. Charlemagne’s mother. Exiled from court due to a personality conflict with her daughter-in-law, Fastrada. Now she lives in the country where she enjoys those

Sweet summer evenings, sapphire skies
Feasting her belly
Feasting her eyes
Simple joys have a simple voice:
It says time’s a living prize
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
A newt on the root of a banyan tree
Or a fig on a twig in Galilee
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day dies!
Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah

PIPPIN
Berthe!
BERTHE
Damn. I hate needle point.

PIPPIN
Berthe.

BERTHE
Yeah what is it?

PIPPIN
It’s me, Pippin.

BERTHE
Pippin. Pippin. Oh Pippin! I can’t believe it. Oh, it’s so good to hold you in my arms. Just like I used to hold you when you were a little boy. Remember Pippin?

PIPPIN
Of course I remember, grandma. That’s why I came here.

BERTHE
Oh you look terrible Pippin. You need some fresh air, some sun, some good food. Some, uh, frollicing, some hanky panky, matbe?

PIPPIN
I don’t know what I need grandma.

BERTHE
Oh, I know what I need, Pippin.

PIPPIN
Grandma, you know you haven’t changed one bit.

BERTHE
You have Pippin. Something’s the matter. What have you been doing with yourself?

PIPPIN
Well, I went to war.

BERTHE
That’s why you look so terrible. Men and their wars. Sometimes I think men raise flags when they can’t get anything else up.

PIPPIN
Grandma, sometimes you really say shocking things.

BERTHE
Well, I try my best. What’s wrong Pippin?

PIPPIN
I don’t know. I just feel so empty and vacant.

BERTHE
Empty and vacant? Now you listen to me, Pippin, and you’re going to hear something very wise. Don’t take life so seriously. Just take things as they come. And don’t plan too much. And don’t think too much. How’s that for wisdom so far?

PIPPIN
Well frankly, grandma, it sounds kind of dull.

BERTHE
Well it’ll be much better with music. Maestro. Oh, he’s cute.
When you are as old as I, my dear
And I hope that you never are
You will woefully wonder why, my dear
Through your cataracts and catarrh
You could squander away or sequester
A drop of a precious year
For when your best days are yester
The rest’er twice as dear….
What good is a field on a fine summer night
When you sit all alone with the weeds?
Or a succulent pear if with each juicy bite
You spit out your teeth with the seeds?
Before it’s too late stop trying to wait
For fortune and fame you’re secure of
For there’s one thing to be sure of, mate:
There’s nothing to be sure of!
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
But Grandma it’s time I’m worried about-

BERTHE
Now now now you sit down. You just sit down. I don’t want to hear another word out of you. Not til I’m finished. I’ve still got another three choruses to do. And you can all join me if you wish. And that goes for all of you out there, too. Yeah. But, just the choruses. The verses are all mine.

I’ve never wondered if I was afraid
When there was a challenge to take
I never thought about how much I weighed
When there was still one piece of cake
Maybe it’s meant the hours I’ve spent
Feeling broken and bent and unwell
But there’s still no cure more heaven-sent
As the chance to raise some hell
Everybody….
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Sages tweet that age is sweet
Good deeds and good work earn you laurels
But what could make you feel more obsolete
Than being noted for your morals?
Here is a secret I never have told
Maybe you’ll understand why
I believe if I refuse to grow old
I can stay young till I die
For, I’ve known the fears of sixty-six years
I’ve had troubles and tears by the score
But the only thing I’d trade them for
Is sixty-seven more…
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given

Out out out out! Out out! You up there, out. Now this time I’m gonna take it all by myself. Alright? And I’’m gonna take it from center stage. Boys?

Oh, it’s time to keep livin’
Time to keep takin’ from this world we’re given
You are my time, so I’ll throw off my shawl
And watching your flings be flung all over
Makes me feel young all over

BETHE AND BOYS
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
She’s absolutely right! It’s time for me to start living and stop worrying! Maybe that’s the secret. Just to enjoy all the simple things in life. Like the fresh air and the cool clean water and fresh fruit right off the-
Oh yes, women.

LEADING PLAYER
Sex presented pastorally.

PIPPIN
Women, of course. They’re perfect.

My days are brighter than morning air
Resplendent on a glistening dew
But all my days are twice as fair
If I could share
My days with you

My nights are stolid and citadels.
and warmed by coals of glowing hue.
But nights were warm beyond compare
If I could share
My nights with you

To dance in my dreams
To shine when I need the sun
With you
To hold me when dreams are done
And oh….
My dearest love
If you will take my love
Then all my dreams are truly begun

And time weaves ribbons of memory
To sweeten life when youth is through
But I would need no memories there
If I could share
My life with you

(Dance sequences.)
PIPPIN
Just leave! Leave me alone!

LEADING PLAYER
Boy, when you frolic you really frolic don’t you? Well how do you feel now?
PIPPIN
Nothing’s changed. I still feel empty and vacant. There has to be something worthwhile that I can do with my life.

LEADING PLAYER
Hey, hey. You just started! There’s a whole lot of things you can try yet.

PIPPIN
Like what?

LEADING PLAYER
Take a look at this.

PLAYER
Good morning. Peasants revolt. King slays thousands.

PLAYER
The king warned that any further dissent would be treated in the same manner.

PIPPIN
I can’t believe that. My father can’t just tell people what to think.

LEADING PLAYER
Why not? He’s the king.

PIPPIN
I don’t care. People have that right to speak out freely.

LEADING PLAYER
There’s no doubt about that.

PIPPIN
Well, something has to be done about it.

LEADING PLAYER
You’re absolutely right.

PIPPIN
We’re surrounded by injustice and tyranny.

LEADING PLAYER
And prejudice. Don’t forget about prejudice.

PIPPIN
We’re talking about the execution of innocent people.

LEADING PLAYER
That’s right!

PIPPIN
Well, I’m finally beginning to see what my father really is. He forces people to fight and die over land that they couldn’t care less about.

LEADING PLAYER
That’s right!

PIPPIN
Well, I think it’s got to stop.

LEADING PLAYER
It has got to stop.

PIPPIN
It’s time for a change.

LEADING PLAYER
Damn it, it is time for a change.

PIPPIN
We have to dedicate ourselves to a better world…

LEADING PLAYER
Testing one two, testing.

PIPPIN
…peace and justice must be restored to this great land. The tyrant must be overthrown. Terror and bloodshed must be ended. (Beat.) I’m a politician.

LEADING PLAYER
You’re a revolutionary, and baby, you’re beautiful.

PIPPIN
We need a leader. With the wisdom and the courage to sweep out the old order and create a better world. Down with Charles, up with… me!
(Blackout.)

LEADING PLAYER
Well I’ll sing you the story of a sorrowful lad
He had everything he wanted, didn’t want what he had
He had wealth and pelf and fame and name and all of
That noise
But he didn’t have none of those simple joys
His life seemed purposeless and flat
Aren’t you glad you don’t feel like that?

So he ran from all the deeds he’d done, he ran
Things he’d just begun
He ran from himself, which is mighty far to run
Out into the country where he played as a boy
For he knew he had to find him some simple joy
He wanted someplace warm and green
We all could use a change of scene

Sweet summer evenings, hot wine and bread
Sharing your supper, sharing your bed
Simple joys have a simple voice:
It says why not go ahead?

Wouldn’t you rather be a left-handed flea
Or a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not ’til he’s cold and dead

Sweet summer evenings so full of sound
Gaining a lover, gaining a pound
Simple joys have a simple voice
It says: take a look around
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
or a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till he’s underground

Enter Berthe. Pippin’s Grandmother. Warm strong,

BERTHE
Still attractive.

LEADING PLAYER
Still attractive. Charlemagne’s mother. Exiled from court due to a personality conflict with her daughter-in-law Fastrada. Now living in the country where she enjoys those…
Sweet summer evenings, sapphire skies
Feasting her belly, feasting her eyes
Simple joys have a simple voice
It says: time is living’s prize
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
Or a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Or a fig on a twig in Galilee
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till the day he
Not till the day he
Not till the day
Not till the day he dies
Na na na na na na na na Na na na na na na na na

PIPPIN
Berthe!
BERTHE
Merde! I dropped a stitch.

PIPPIN
Berthe.

BERTHE
Yes? Who is it?

PIPPIN
It’s me, Pippin.

BERTHE
Pippin. Pippin? Pippin. Oh Pippin! I can’t believe it. Oh, how good it is to hold you… to hold you like I used to when you were a little boy. Remember Pippin?

PIPPIN
Well of course I remember. That’s why I came here.

BERTHE
Oh Pippin, you look terrible. You need some fresh air, some good food. Some frolicking…

PIPPIN
Grandma, you haven’t changed a bit.

BERTHE
But you have Pippin. Now something is the matter. What have you been doing with yourself?

PIPPIN
I went to war, Grandma.

BERTHE
No wonder you look so terrible. Men and their wars. Sometimes I think men raise flags when they can’t get anything else up. But Pippin, what’s wrong?

PIPPIN
Well, Grandma. My life is going by. I have to start doing something meaningful, but I don’t know what it is. So I feel empty and vacant.

BERTHE
Empty and vacant? Now Pippin, listen to me. You’re going to hear something very wise. Don’t take life so seriously. Just take things as they come along. Don’t do too much planning, and don’t do too much thinking. How’s that for wisdom so far?

PIPPIN
Well frankly, Grandma, I expected a little more from you than that.

BERTHE
It’ll be much better with music. Hit it!
When you are as old as I, my dear
And I hope that you never are
You will woefully wonder why, my dear
Through your cataracts and catarrh
You could squander away or sequester
A drop of a precious year
For when your best days are yester
The rest’er twice as dear….
What good is a field on a fine summer night
When you sit all alone with the weeds?
Or a succulent pear if with each juicy bite
You spit out your teeth with the seeds?
Before it’s too late stop trying to wait
For fortune and fame you’re secure of
For there’s one thing to be sure of, mate:
There’s nothing to be sure of!
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
But Grandma it’s time that I’m worried about-

BERTHE
Now sit down. And don’t say anything until I’m finished. I’ve got three more choruses to do. But you can all join in with me if you wish. And that goes for all of you out there, too. But, just the choruses. The verses are all mine.

I’ve never wondered if I was afraid
When there was a challenge to take
And I’ve never thought about how much I weighed
When there was still one piece of cake
Maybe it’s meant the hours I’ve spent
Feeling broken and bent and unwell
But there’s still no cure so heaven-sent
As the chance to raise some hell
Everybody….
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Verse!
Sages tweet that age is sweet
Good deeds and good works earn you laurels
But what could make you feel more obsolete
Than being noted for your morals?
Give me a man who is handsome and strong
Someone who’s stalwart and steady
Give me a night that’s romantic and long
Then give me a month to get ready
Now I could waylay some aging roue
And persuade him to play in some cranny
But it’s hard to believe I’m being led astray
By a man who calls you granny
Come on boys! One more time! And this time let’s hear it from everybody! One Two Three Four!
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Come on! You ought to know it by now!
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

Berthe
So when the drearies do attack
And a siege of the sads begin
I throw these regal shoulders back
And life these noble chins
Here is a secret I never have told
Maybe you’ll understand why
I believe if I refuse to grow old
I can stay young till I die
now, I’ve known the fears of sixty-six years
I’ve had troubles and tears by the score
But the only thing I’d trade them for
Is sixty-seven more…

ALL
Oh, it’s time to start –

BERTHE
Stop!!! Let me take this one all by myself, all right?
Oh, it’s time to keep livin’
Time to keep takin’ from this world we’re given
You are my time, so I’ll throw off my shawl
And watching your flings be flung all over
Makes me feel young all over

BETHE AND BOYS
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Remember that Pippin!

PIPPIN
She’s absolutely right! It’s time for me to start living and stop worrying! Maybe that’s the secret. Just to enjoy all the simple things in life. The fresh air. The cool clean water and fresh fruit off of the-Oh yes, and women.

LEADING PLAYER
Sex presented pastorally.

PIPPIN
of course, women.

My days are brighter than morning air
Evergreen pine and autumn blue
But all my days are twice as fair
If I could share
My days with you

Excuse me.
My nights are warmer than firecoals.
incense and stars and smoke bamboo.
But nights were warm beyond compare
If I could share
My nights with you

To dance in my dreams
To shine when I need the sun
With you
To hold me when dreams are done
And oh….
My dearest love
If you will take my love
Then all my dreams are truly begun

And time weaves ribbons of memory
To sweeten life when youth is through
But I would need no memories there
If I could share
My life with you
I found it!
(Dance sequences.)

GIRLS
Pippin, come on, Pippin, we’ve got more for you.

PIPPIN
Enough. That’s enough. Leave me alone.

LEADING PLAYER
Boy, when you frolic you really frolic don’t you? Well how do you feel now?
PIPPIN
I feel empty and vacant. There has to be something worthwhile that I can do with my life.

LEADING PLAYER
Hey. You just started! There are so many things you can try.

PIPPIN
Like what?

LEADING PLAYER
Like take a look at this.

PLAYER
Good morning. Peasants revolt. King slays thousands.

PIPPIN
Hey, look at this.

PLAYER
This just in: Peasants protesting a rise in taxes were slaughtered yesterday by Charlemagne’s soldiers. The king warned that any further dissent would be treated in the same manner.

PIPPIN
Oh, I can’t believe that. My father would never slaughter people just for protesting. That can’t be true.

LEADING PLAYER
Now would a newspaper print anything that wasn’t true?

PLAYER
Now more on this developing story. Third massacre to bring new laws from crown. All political activities henceforth to be rigidly controlled.

PIPPIN
But my father can’t just tell people what to think.

LEADING PLAYER
Why not? He’s the king.

PIPPIN
I don’t care. People have that right to speak out freely.

LEADING PLAYER
There’s no doubt about that.

PIPPIN
Well, something has to be done about it.

LEADING PLAYER
You’re absolutely right.

PIPPIN
We’re surrounded by injustice and tyranny.

LEADING PLAYER
And prejudice. Don’t forget about prejudice.

PIPPIN
I’m finally beginning to see what my father really is. He forces people to fight and die over land that they couldn’t care less about.

LEADING PLAYER
That’s right!

PIPPIN
I think it’s time for a change.

LEADING PLAYER
It is time for a change.

PIPPIN
We’ve got to dedicate ourselves to a better world for all people.

LEADING PLAYER
Testing, testing.

PIPPIN
…peace and justice must be restored to this great land. The tyrant must be overthrown. Terror and bloodshed must be ended. We need a leader. With the wisdom and the courage to sweep out the old order and create a better world. Down with Charles, up with… me!

LEADING PLAYER
Well I’ll sing you the story of a sorrowful lad
had everything he wanted, didn’t want what he had
He had wealth and pelf and fame and name and all of
That noise
But he didn’t have none of those simple joys
His life seemed purposeless and flat
Aren’t you glad you don’t feel like that?

So he ran from all the deeds he’d done,
he ran Things he’d just begun
He ran from himself, now that’s mighty far to run
Out into the country where he played as a boy
He knew he had to find those simple joys
He wanted someplace warm and green
We all could use a change of scene

Sweet summer evenings, hot wine and bread
Sharing your supper, sharing your bed
Simple joys have a simple voice:
It says why not go ahead?
And wouldn’t you rather be a left-handed flea
Or a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
Than a man who never learned to be free
Not ’til he’s cold and dead

And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
on a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till he’s underground

Sweet summer evenings, sapphire skies
Feasting her belly, feasting her eyes
Simple joys have a simple voice
It says: time is living’s prize
And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
a newt on the root of a banyan tree
Or a fig on a twig in Galilee
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day he dies
Na na na na na na na na Na na na na na na na na
Enter Berthe. Pippin’s Grandmother. Quietly living in the country…

BERTHE
I can walk by myself.

LEADING PLAYER
Warm, strong.

ATTENDANTS
Still attractive.

BERTHE
Very attractive.

LEADING PLAYER
Charlemagne’s mother, exiled from court.

BERTHE
Due to a personality conflict with her daughter-in-law, Fastrada.

PIPPIN
Gradnma!

BERTHE
I hate needle point!

PIPPIN
But you’re so good at it.

BERTHE
Pippin? Pippin? I can’t believe it. How good it is to see you and to hold you.

PIPPIN
Grandma, you look great.

BERTHE
Oh, no I don’t. I look terrible.

PIPPIN
No. You look great.

BERTHE
No. I look terrible.

PIPPIN
Alright, fine, you look terrible.

BERTHE
Is that any way to talk to your grandmother? Actually, you look terrible. You need some good food, and some fresh air, and some hanky-panky.

PIPPIN
Grandma, I don’t know what I need.

BERTHE
Well, I know what I need: I need some good, juicy gossip. Here, pull up a ball. You’ve got to tell me what’s been going on at court. Is that good looking priest still holding “confessions”?

PIPPIN
You haven’t changed a bit.

BERTHE
But you have Pippin. What have you been doing with yourself?

PIPPIN
Well, I went to war.

BERTHE
Well that explains it.

PIPPIN
I tried to own my own manhood, you know? Give my blood back. Yeah, I wanted to do something important, something meaningful, and that wasn’t it. I just- I feel… empty and vacant. So I think I need a plan. Yeah, that’s it, a goal and a plan. Well, no, no. I have a goal. I want to be fulfilled, but a good plan. That’s what I’ve been thinking about. I mean, you can’t just for rushing into whatever comes along and hope for the best. And, on the other hand, you can’t wait around wasting time and expect something to fall into your lap. So…

BERTHE
You lost me in the middle there. You think too much, Pippin. That’s your problem. You have to stop thinking. You have to learn to live in the moment. Look at this day. Look at it! The sun is shining, the air is warm, maybe tonight at the tavern there’ll be that lovely young girl you can hook up with and do those things you kids do, and come back and tell me everything in graphic detail.

PIPPIN
Grandma, would you stop, stop, stop. I don’t have time for that.

BERTHE
Time? You listen to me Pippin. I’m an expert on time.
When you are as old as I, my dear
And I hope that you never are
You will woefully wonder why, my dear
Through your cataracts and catarrh
You could squander away or sequester
A drop of a precious year
For when your best days are yester
The rest’er twice as dear….
What good is a field on a fine summer night
When you sit all alone with the weeds?
Or a succulent pear if with each juicy bite
You spit out your teeth with the seeds?
Before it’s too late stop trying to wait
For fortune and fame you’re secure of
For there’s one thing to be sure of, mate:
There’s nothing to be sure of!
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
But Grandma it’s time that I’m worried about-

BERTHE
Now you sit down. I don’t want to hear another word from you until I’m finished. Sit down. Sit down. I have three more choruses to do. But you can all join in with me if you wish. And that goes for all of you out there, too. All of you just sitting there, staring at me, looking dumbfounded. But, just the choruses. The verses are all mine.

I’ve never wondered if I was afraid
When there was a challenge to take
I never thought about how much I weighed
When there was still one piece of cake
Maybe it’s meant the hours I’ve spent
Feeling broken and bent and unwell
But there’s still no cure so heaven-sent
As the chance to raise some hell
Everybody….
ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….

BERTHE
Verse!
Sages tweet that age is sweet
Good deeds and good work earn you laurels
But what could make you feel more obsolete
Than being noted for your morals?
Give me a man who is handsome and strong
Someone who’s stalwart and steady
Give me a night that’s romantic and long
Then give me a month to get ready
Now I could waylay some aging roue
And persuade him to play in some cranny
But it’s hard to believe I’m being led astray
By a man who calls me granny
Alright, this time let’s hear it from everybody! One Two Three Four!

ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to take a little from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all….
Berthe
now when the drearies do attack
And a siege of the sads begins
I throw these regal shoulders back
And lift these noble chins
Here is a secret I never have told
Maybe you’ll understand why
I believe if I refuse to grow old
I can stay young till I die
now, I’ve known the fears of sixty-six years
I’ve had troubles and tears by the score
But the only thing I’d trade them for
Is sixty-seven more…

ALL
Oh, it’s time to start livin’
Time to keep takin’ from this world we’re given
Time to take time, cause spring will turn to fall
In just no time at all
Oh, it’s time to start Living-
BERTHE
Thank you, thank you. You’re a wonderful audience, thank you. But I’d like to sing this one… to him
Oh, it’s time to keep livin’
Time to keep takin’ from this world we’re given
You are my time, so I’ll throw off my shawl
And watching your flings be flung all over
Makes me feel young all over

ALL
In just no time at all….

PIPPIN
Okay! That’s my grandma. She’s absolutely right! It’s time for me to start living! Maybe that’s the secret. Just live in the moment. Enjoy the simple things. The fresh air. The cool clean water. The fresh fruit off of the-Oh yeah, and women.

LEADING PLAYER
Sex presented pastorally.

PIPPIN
of course, women.

My days are brighter than morning air
Evergreen pine and autumn blue
But all my days are twice as fair
If I could share
My days with you

Ouch! Excuse me.
My nights are warmer than firecoals.
incense and stars and smoke bamboo.
But nights were warm beyond compare
If I could share
My nights with you

To dance in my dreams
To shine when I need the sun
With you
To hold me when dreams are done
And oh….
My dearest love
If you will take my love
Then all my dreams are truly begun

And time weaves ribbons of memory
To sweeten life when youth is through
But I would need no memories there
If I could share
My life with you
Nope! I found it.
(Dance sequences.)
PIPPIN
Enough. That’s enough. Leave me alone.
LEADING PLAYER
Boy, when you frolic you really frolic don’t you? Well how do you feel now?

PIPPIN
Empty and vacant.

LEADING PLAYER
Oh, I don’t know. That looked like fun to me, what you were doing.

PIPPIN
But it wasn’t fulfilling. When am I gonna try something completely fulfilling?

LEADING PLAYER
Look, you just started. There’s a whole lotta things you can try.

PIPPIN
Like what?

LEADING PLAYER
Like taking a look at this.

PIPPIN
Peasants revolt. King slays thousands. Wait… Peasants protesting a rise in taxes were slaughtered yesterday by Charlemagne’s soldiers. No this can’t be true.

LEADING PLAYER
Now would a newspaper print anything that wasn’t true?

PIPPIN
But my father would never slaughter people just for protesting.

LEADING PLAYER
Why not? He’s the king. Now let’s see. Ah. Charlemagne, today, has given orders that non-believers be given the choice between baptism and beheading.

PIPPIN
What? Wait a minute. Forcing people to believe? Telling them what to think? Something’s got to be done about this.

LEADING PLAYER
You’re absolutely right.

PIPPIN
We’re surrounded by injustice and tyranny.

LEADING PLAYER
And prejudice. Don’t forget about prejudice.

PIPPIN
You know, I’m finally beginning to see what my father really is. He forces people to fight and die over land that doesn’t even belong to them.

LEADING PLAYER
That’s right!

PIPPIN
Well I think it has got to stop.

LEADING PLAYER
It has gotta stop!

PIPPIN
Yeah, I think it’s time for a change.

LEADING PLAYER
Pippin, it is time for a change.

PIPPIN
You know, it doesn’t matter that he’s my father. We can’t just sit around and wait for someone else to take action. Otherwise one day we will look around and ask what happened, and what happened is we failed to act!

LEADING PLAYER
Testing, testing.

PIPPIN
It is time to make a better world for all people, no just the rich and the powerful. This tyrant must be overthrown. Terror and bloodshed must be ended. We need a leader with you and the courage to sweep out the old order.

LEADING PLAYER
Revolutioooooooooon!

PEASANTS
Revolution!


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