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A LITTLE PRINCESS, the Musical Music by Andrew Lippa: book and lyrics by Brian Crawley, based on the 1905 children's novel of the same name by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, California - August 28, 2004 Southbank Centre. London - May 28, 2018 STORY Act One Sara is in trouble from the outset. She has been sent to her room without supper for coming to the table barefoot. Becky, a young maid about the same age, smuggles a muffin upstairs to Sara and peppers her with questions about what life was like in Africa. Everyone else at the London school has been stand-offish, so Sara is glad to answer the questions and invites Becky to picture the send-off that she received from her friends in Fort St. Louis (“Good Luck, Bonne Chance”). After the townspeople wish her the best, Sara’s father, Captain Crewe, bids her a private farewell. He reveals that he must send her to London, as he is embarking upon a mission of exploration to the forbidden city of Timbuktu. He promises that, once the Saharan trek is over, he will return to London to fetch her home (“Soon, My Love”). Sara and Becky’s reverie is over when Miss Minchin surprises the two girls. Servants and schoolgirls are not meant to mix; Minchin asks Becky to fetch her cane. Sara protests that her father’s instructions were that she was not to be corporally punished. Miss Minchin replies that she is aware of the instructions and will beat Becky in Sara’s stead. Between the bare feet and illicit camaraderie, Minchin is convinced that Sara has no idea how to behave in a civilized fashion. She therefore forbids Sara to speak to anyone without permission. Once the monstrous headmistress leaves, Sara vents her frustration (“Live out Loud”). The next day, the other schoolgirls corner Becky and demand to know everything that she learned about Sara. The girls are envious of Sara’s wealth and her privileges – she’s out riding a pony while the rest take their exercise in a courtyard – but curious, as well. Lavinia, the oldest and meanest of the girls, threatens to harm Becky just as Sara returns from her ride. Lavinia backs down when she sees Sara’s riding crop. She continues to tease Becky, though, joking about the accident that left Becky an orphan. To comfort Becky, Sara confides her own mother is deceased. She offers to help Becky get in touch with her mother’s spirit. Miss Amelia, Miss Minchin’s sister, can’t resist this idea. Sara begins to tell the girls how to contact spirits. Her tales are so vivid that they seem to come to life. Soon, the schoolgirls are joined by imagined Africans in a joyous dance; a spirit enjoins Becky to let her heart be her compass (“Let Your Heart Be Your Compass”). It is Sara’s first success with the other schoolgirls, but it is short-lived. During the dance, Lavinia leaves to fetch Miss Minchin, who arrives, furious. As part of Sara’s punishment, Minchin tears a letter from Captain Crewe into pieces. She also sends Becky to the workhouse. In Africa, Captain Crewe is met with one setback after another. His retinue dies off; his trade goods are stolen, and he is detained by a tribal leader with deep suspicions as to an Englishman’s reasons for being there. Feverish and despairing, Crewe imagines how happy his daughter must be in London (“Isn’t That Always the Way”). Sara’s defence of Becky has won her two new confidantes: Ermengarde, who has pieced together Crewe’s letter for Sara, and Lottie, the youngest of the schoolgirls, who is intrigued by the doll that Sara brought with her from Africa. Sara enlists their help to create such chaos at school that Becky is recalled from the workhouse and restored to her position. Miss Minchin, realizing that she has been outmanoeuvred, believes that all of Sara’s advantages come to her because she has been born lucky (“Lucky”). Meanwhile in Sara’s room, Ermengarde and Lottie apologize to Becky for their past transgressions against her and promise to be her friends in future, just as Sara is. Becky is cowed at first. Sara assures her that wealth