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Once Upon a Time

Sleeve to studio cast recording

Music by Roger Webb, book and lyrics by Norman Newell

First produced at the Duke of York's Theatre, St. Martin's Lane, London on December 21st, 1972, (26 matinée performances) presented by David Frost. The sets and costumes were by Tony Walton and the direction and choreography by Gillian Lynne. It starred Tim Curry, Tony Robinson and Kerry Gardner.


From the world of 'make believe' Newell and Webb have devised a spectacular pantomime entertainment with a sparkling score. Everyone's favourite childhood characters, including Little Red Riding Hood, Goldilocks, the Owl and the Pussycat and the Queen of Hearts, will charm the young and the young at heart. More than just a Christmas show, an all-the-year feast of joy and laughter.

Musical Numbers:



Act I

  1. Music Box and Introduction (Clown and Villagers)
  2. The Wonderful World Of Make Believe (Clown, Villagers, Tommy Tucker, Mary, Tweedledum, Tweedledee)
  3. Ding, Dong, Bell (Villagers)
  4. The Three Bears (Daddy, Mummy and Baby Bear, Judge [Clown], Town Crier)
  5. Incidental Music
  6. Incidental Music
  7. Three Famous Pussy Cats (Three Pussy Cats, Judge [Clown])
  8. The Owl and The Pussycat (Owl, Pussy Cat, Piggy, Villagers)
  9. Wicked (Witch, Wolf, Dragon)
  10. We Love Going To A Party (Two Soldiers, Villagers, Three Pussy Cats)
  11. No One Asks Us To A Party (Witch, Wolf, Dragon)
  12. Search Music - Incidental
  13. Why Does Everyone Hate Us? (Witch, Wolf, Dragon)
  14. Exit Music - Incidental
  15. Little Red Riding Hood (Wolf, Red Riding Hood, Grandmother)
  16. Royal March - Incidental
  17. The Queen Of Hearts (Clown, Kng and Queen of Hearts, Villagers, Maid)
  18. Pat-A-Cake (Company)
  19. Make Your Own Rainbow (Red Riding Hood, Villagers, Witch)

Act II

  1. Farmyard Barn Dance (Town Crier, Villagers, Goosey Gander, Witch, Wolf, Dragon, Ogre)
  2. Barn Dance Exit Music - Incidental
  3. The Scarecrow Song (Little Bo-Peep, Little Boy Blue, Scarecrow [Clown])
  4. Here We Go Round The Mulberry Bush (Schoolchildren)
  5. The Silver Sleigh Ride (Jack Frost, Snowman, Little Boy Blue, Daddy and Baby Bear, Schoolchildren)
  6. Everybody Loves The Sun But Me (Snowman)
  7. Adventure (Teacher, Schoolchildren, Daddy and Baby Bear)
  8. Adventure . Reprise (Teacher, Schoolchildren, Daddy and Baby Bear, Little Bo-Peep)
  9. All the Fun Of the Fair (Company)
  10. I Wish To Report An Incident (Town Crier)
  11. The Circus (Company)
  12. The Circus - Optional reprise
  13. The Roundabout Song (Clown)
  14. Walkdown - Reprise: In The Wonderful World Of Make Believe (Company)
  15. Playout - Reprise: Make Your Own Rainbow (Company)


The casting of Once Upon a Time is very flexible. It can be played with a large cast or (as in the original West End production) with a total cast of 18 (10 men and 8 women). Many of the secondary characters listed are "walk-on" non-speaking roles only, and as such can be expanded/eliminated as the director wishes. For example, the Three Blind Mice would most likely be cast from the chorus of villagers, and with the aid of appropriate props would "act out" the actions indicated in the lyrics at that moment.

10 female, 14 male

Main Characters

Secondary Characters

  • Aristocratic Pussy Cat
  • Clown
  • Cockney Pussy Cat
  • Daddy, Mummy and Baby Bear
  • Dandyish Pussy Cat
  • Dragon
  • Goldilocks
  • Jack Frost
  • King and Queen of Hearts
  • Little Boy Blue
  • Little Bo-Peep
  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • Ogre
  • Owl and the Pussy Cat
  • Snowman
  • Town Crier
  • Teacher
  • Witch
  • Wolf
  1. Baker's Man
  2. Blackbird
  3. Daffy Down Dilly
  4. Farmer
  5. Farmer's Wife
  6. Georgie Porgy
  7. Goosey Gander
  8. Grandmother
  9. Kitty Fisher
  10. Knave of Hearts
  11. Lady on a Cock Horse
  12. Little Miss Muffet
  13. Little Tommy Tucker
  14. Little Tommy Flynn
  15. Little Tommy Stout
  16. Lucy Locket

  • Maid
  • Mary
  • Old King Cole
  • Old Mother Hubbard
  • Dog
  • Percy Pig
  • Piggy-Wig
  • Ringmaster
  • Robin Redbreast
  • Three Blind Mice
  • Three Fiddlers
  • Tom, the Piper's Son
  • Turkey
  • Tweedledum and Tweedledee
  • Two Soldiers
  • Chorus of Schoolchildren
  • Chorus of Villagers
  • Circus Animals (Optional)

The doublings for the original West End production


  1. Clown
  2. Tom, Tom the Piper's son, The Owl, Jack Frost, Villager
  3. Georgie Porgy, Dragon, Piggy-Wig, Villager, Schoolchild
  4. Little Tommy Tucker, Little Boy Blue, Puss in Boots, Knave of Hearts, Ringmaster
  5. Cockney Pussy Cat, Wolf, Fiddler, Schoolchild
  6. Soldier, Fiddler, Dandyish Pussy Cat, Schoolchild
  7. Daddy Bear, King of Hearts, Farmer
  8. Town Crier, Old King Cole, Schoolchild
  9. Tweedledum, Turkey, Ogre
  10. Aristocratic Pussy Cat, Soldier, Fiddler, Snowman, Villager


  1. Red Riding Hood, Villager, Schoolchild
  2. Tweedledee, Baby Bear, Grandma
  3. Pussy Cat, Villager, Schoolchild
  4. Mummy Bear, Witch, Farmer's Wife, Teacher
  5. Lady on a Cock Horse, Old Mother Hubbard, Blackbird, Schoolchild
  6. Miss Muffet, Daffy Down Dilly, Villager, Schoolchild
  7. Mary, Little Bo-Peep, Goldilocks
  8. Goosey Gander, Villager, Schoolchild


Woodwind I

Woodwind II

Percussion I

Percussion II

Vocal Score and Libretto available on hire only