Heidi

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Description

This adaptation of Johanna Spyri’s classic tale with original music and lyrics will delight and entertain all audiences!

Celebrating the themes of friendship, kindness and optimism this adaptation is true to the original tale of a young Swiss Orphan who brings joy and meaning to the life of everyone she meets.  Charming her gruff Grandfather when she goes to live with him in the Alps she soon befriends the whole Village, including the young Goatherd Peter and his blind Grandmother. When her Aunt Dete takes her to Frankfurt to live with the Sesemann family her Grandfather and the villagers are distraught and while Heidi makes friends with the sickly Clara Sesemann she grows ill herself without the fresh Mountain air and good healthy food. Will Heidi get back to her Grandfather and the Mountain she loves before she grows too poorly?

Full Synopsis

The musical opens with Aunt Dete taking young Heidi to the Alm-Grandfather, her paternal Grandfather whom she has never previously met and who lives high up in the Swiss Alps. As Aunt Dete and Heidi make their way up the mountain they are greeted by Villagers and Shepherds all wishing them a good morning and singing about the beauty of the Mountains in the opening number, Beautiful Mountain Morning.

Heidi’s Grandfather lives a very secluded life on the Mountain and spends most of his time with his Sheep and Goats. He is very lonely but won’t admit it and when Heidi first arrives he seems to resent her and is not very friendly. As time goes on and Heidi settles into the cottage, Grandfather notices how intelligent and cheerful she is and soon he begins to feel genuine affection for this Granddaughter until recently he didn’t know he had. It isn’t long before Heidi enthusiastically befriends her new neighbours, young Peter the goatherd, his mother, Bridget, and his blind maternal grandmother and with each season that passes, the mountaintop inhabitants grow more attached to Heidi singing A Gift called Heidi.

Sometime later Aunt Dete returns to take Heidi to Frankfurt to be a companion to a wealthy girl named Clara Sesemann, who is the same age as Heidi but very sickly and who stays at home every day. Heidi doesn’t want to leave the Mountain but knows she has no choice, Hard to Say Goodbye sums up hers and the Villagers’ feelings when she must leave.

Clara Sesemann is charmed by Heidi’s simple friendliness, and delights in all the funny mishaps brought about by Heidi’s lack of experience with city life. However, the Sesemann’s strict housekeeper, Fräulein Rottenmeier, sees Heidi as an unwelcome distraction in the Sesemann’s home and makes Heidi feel less and less welcome every day. Soon, Heidi becomes terribly homesick and grows alarmingly pale and thin. Her one diversion is learning to read and write, motivated by her desire to go home and read to Peter’s blind grandmother.

As Heidi continues to grow tired and pale the Sesemann household is brought to near hysteria by nightly sightings of what appears to be a ghost and the sense of panic is demonstrated by the number, Being Haunted. When Clara’s father and his friend the doctor keep awake one night to find out what is causing the disturbances, they see that the “ghost” is just Heidi, who’s sleepwalking in her nightgown. The doctor realises the Heidi is homesick and he warns Mr Sesemann that if Heidi is not sent home promptly, she will become very ill.

 

A delighted Heidi returns to the mountains and all her Mountaintop friends with the full company number Home Again. She and Clara continue to keep in touch and exchange letters. A visit by the doctor to Heidi leads him to eagerly recommend that Clara visit Heidi. He feels sure that the fresh mountain air will do her good. Clara makes the journey despite her parent’s initial worries and spends a wonderful summer with Heidi and becomes stronger on goat’s milk and fresh mountain air.

However, Peter, who has grown jealous of Heidi and Clara’s friendship, pushes her empty wheelchair down the mountain while Clara and Heidi are picking flowers. The wheelchair is destroyed and Peter, feeling guilty confesses what he has done to Clara and Heidi but without her wheelchair, Clara has no choice but to practice walking further and further and soon discovers she does not need the wheelchair anymore. When Clara’s Mother and Father come to collect her, they are amazed and overcome with joy to see Clara walking again and the whole company celebrates with the finale number, A Day to Treasure.

Cast List

8 Lead Roles

15 Supporting Roles – one cast member could easily play more than one role.

Flexible Ensemble group made up of Villagers, Sheep and Goats (if you so wish), Servants.

Lead Character and Casting Call Breakdown

Heidi    

A young girl who has recently become an orphan. At first, she is sent to live with her aunt but because of her aunt’s job, she is sent to live with her distant Grandfather up in the Alps. Heidi is unceasingly optimistic and wants to help everyone. She sees the best in everyone she meets and always wants to help. She quickly falls in love with the Alps and the Grandfather she had previously never known.

Peter    

A young goatherd, only a few years older than Heidi. He is very calm and friendly and often helps Heidi’s grandfather look after his Sheep and Goats. Peter loves the Mountains and being able to explore and be outside.

Aunt Dete  

Heidi’s aunt. Aunt Dete is kind and cares about Heidi but cannot look after her when she is at work.

Grandfather   

Heidi’s Grandfather is very gruff and stubborn but has a very kind heart. He lives high up in the Alps and is only used to talking to his Sheep and Goats and sometimes forgets how to be polite to people.

Clara Sesemann

The wealthy daughter of a family that live in Frankfurt. Clara is a sickly girl and so she cannot go to school but she longs to have a friend and that is why her parents arrange for Heidi to come and live with them.

Grandma   

Peter’s Grandma is blind but although she cannot see she is very aware and often senses people’s feelings and emotions much better than people who can see.

Fraulein Rottenmeier   

The Housekeeper of the Sesemann family home in Frankfurt. She is strict and unfriendly especially to Heidi who she believes isn’t good enough to be Clara’s best friend.

Doctor 

The kind and considerate Doctor who cares for Clara instantly recognises that Heidi is growing homesick and it is he who appeals to Fraulein Rottenmeier to send Heidi back to her Grandfather and the Mountains.

Song List

  1. Beautiful Mountain Morning.

Full Company Number as Heidi and Aunt Dete make their way up the Mountain.

  1. A Gift called Heidi

Full Company Number

  1. Hard To Say Goodbye

Full Company Number

  1. Being Haunted

Full Company Number

  1. Home Again

Full Company Number

  1. A Day to Treasure

Full company Number

Resources Available

  • Vocal Score
  • Props list
  • Costume plot
  • Teachers Pack
  • Choreography support guide

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