What Never Was Before and Never Will Be Again
An Armenian fairytale by Hovhannes Tumanian
Adapted and scripted by Alfia Wallace
Narrator 1/Herald: Deanna Beaman
Narrator 2: Dylan Bondy
The King: Alfred Wallace
The Shepherd: Andrew Wallace
The Doorman: Jerry Katz
The Poor Man: Zachary Schilling
Narrators: Once upon a time, beyond reason, beyond rhyme lived a kingdom serene, in a fairytale scene.
Narrator 1: And in the kingdom lived a king, old and good but bored of everything.
Narrator 2: Every day he walked through his oh, so lovely hilly kingdom. And, bedecked in silk, perused its rather decent malls.
Narrator 1: Givenchy and Bulgari! But oh so bored, so bored was he.
Narrator 2: Every evening he dined with his oh, so lovely wife and discussed the affairs of his kingdom and its life.
Narrator 1: The king had it too good.
Narrators: He was bored, bored, BORED OUT OF HIS GOURD!!!
Narrator 1: And so one night, not outsleeping this blight, the king paced and thought, and finally caught an idea!
King: I've got it!! Maybe one of my subjects can tell me something fantastic that will get me out of this funk. I'll propose a contest! Whoever from among my subjects can tell me something which never was before and never will be again.. I'll give them half my kingdom! (laughs crazily)
Narrators: And so it was…
Herald: [Gets up on a stool and unfurls a scroll] Extra, extra! Read all about it! The king is giving away half his kingdom! Half the kingdom to the one who can reveal what never was before and never will be again! Extra, extra! Read all about it! The king is giving away half the kingdom and I'm out of breath!
[A shepherd comes up to the king, crook in hand.]
Narrator 1: A Shepard was the first to arrive.
King: Come, Shepard. What do you have to tell me.
Shepherd. Greetings, Your majesty. I've come to tell you an amazing thing. My father had a crook..
King: What, your father ran a criminal gang?
Shepard: No, no, no - a crook - a shepard's crook, like this. [stamps his crook]
King: Oh, ok. Please continue.
Shepard: My father's crook was so long that it reached the sky..
Shepard: and tickled the stars!
King (laughing): Oh, my dear shepherd. I've heard of such things. My uncle had a pipe for smoking tobacco. One end of it he put in his mouth, the other end of it was lit by the sun. Such things exist!
[ Shepherd walks away, scratching his head. The Doorman approaches. ]
Doorman: Forgive me, Your Highness, I wanted to come to you sooner, but I was tied up with business.
King: Oh? And what sort of business were you tied up in?
Doorman: Well, last night there was a terrible storm! Thunder roared! Lightening flashed! The sky was torn open by the storm! All night.. I sewed..
King: You sewed?
Doorman: I sewed. Sewed up the tears in the sky, yup.
King: (chuckling) Oh, yes, I've heard of such things. I've heard of such things. I mean, it's good of you to take that on, but it's just too bad that you did a bad job of it. Just look out the window, it's raining again. What kind of sewing is that? I tell you, I've heard of such things!
[Doorman scratches his head and walks away. Poor man with an empty barrel walks up.]
King: Greetings, young man. What can you tell me.
Poor Man: Greetings, Your Majesty. To tell you the truth, I'm here on business.
King: Business? What kind of business?
Poor Man: I came to collect on your loan, Your Majesty?
King: Loan. What loan? What are you talking about?
Poor Man: The loan! I lent you a barrel full of gold and I'm here to collect. What, have you forgotten?
King: What, are you insane? I borrowed a barrel of gold from you?
Poor Man: Yes! That's right! And I demand to be repaid!
King: (laughing) I never borrowed anything from you!
Poor Man: You did! And I have witnesses!
King: That never happened!
Poor Man: It did - and I received a message yesterday that you wanted to borrow a pair of chinchillas!
King: That never happened and never will happen! I already have 5 chinchillas!
Poor man: It never happened and never will happen? Then give me half the kingdom!
King: (catching himself) Oops. Uh - it did, didn't it?
Poor man: Well, if it did, then pay me back my barrel of gold!
Narrator 1: And so the king repaid the loan.
Narrator 2: He repaid it?
Narrator 1: Yep!
King: (laughing) Ok, you win. I'll pay back your barrel of gold. Bring the gold! [Herald pours gold coins into the barrel.]
Narrator 2: Oh come on, that never happened.
All: And it never will! [music comes up]
King: (to Poor Man) About those chinchillas.. would yours like to come over for a playdate? My chinchillas lead a kind of sheltered life and I think they play too many video games. Maybe we could get them together…
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Copyright 2003-2004 Alfia V. Wallace