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A Thai Tale

A Thai Tale
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Nikki Harmon
Publisher: Dramatic Publishing
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 53
Pub. Date: 2017
ISBN-10: 1619591421
ISBN-13: 9781619591424
Cast Size: 3 female, 2 male, 3 either gender (8 total, can tour with 5)

About the Play:

A Thai Tale is a full-length comedic drama by Nikki Harmon. People come to the Banyan Tree to buy birds and fish, eels and turtles, and release them to "make merit" to improve their karma. A Thai Tale teaches children the importance of acceptance and freedom.

A Thai Tale is set in a Banyan tree in Thailand and teaches children the importance of acceptance and freedom. In Sai Ngam in Northeastern Thailand, Lĕk h̄æ̀ng h̄nụ̀ng, the egotistical first-bird-in-waiting to the queen of Thailand, has been kidnapped by an evil bird vendor! And now she’s stuck in a 350-year-old, 35,000-square-foot banyan tree. Gentle and kind Sumalee, third-bird-in-waiting, has come to her rescue, but she is caught and ends up trapped in the tree herself. Poor Songsuda, a pin-tailed parrot-finch, has been in the banyan tree so long that she’s forgotten how old she is and has given up all hope of ever getting out of there. On top of that, it’s really crowded because so many people buy birds, fish, turtles and eels to release into the tree for improved karma, which is silly since everyone knows that good karma comes from good deeds. When a wanderer of the world, singer of song and magician supreme (who is able to shape-shift into anything he wants) named Chatchom arrives, he might be their best and only chance at freedom, but Lĕk refuses to heed any suggestions from one who is of lesser birth than herself. All the while, Pichai, the evil bird vendor, keeps selling and retrieving birds over and over again. To help them escape, Chatchom shape-shifts into a monk and, with a simple bowl of rice, reminds Pichai of his kind nature and the lessons that his father taught him when he was young. In the end, Pichai leads Songsuda and all the birds, fish, turtles and eels out of the tree. Lĕk and Sumalee are returned to the queen’s gardens on magic feathers given to them by Chatchom, but only after Lĕk realizes that you can learn from everyone and that everyone and everything has worth and value, even a single grain of rice. A lesson in life for all of us!

A Thai Tale premiered in 2013 at The University of Central Missouri, where it won the university’s National Theatre for Young Audiences Playwriting Competition.

Cast: 3 female, 2 male, 3 either gender (8 total, can tour with 5)

About the Playwright:

Nikki Harmon is an American playwright, Casting Director. Her plays have been produced in India, Botswana, South Africa, England, Australia, China, Thailand, and throughout the U.S. and Canada. Among her awards, she has been a Finalist for the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize honouring the best English-language women writers worldwide.