Musical Plays

These are all ballad operas, which re-use existing music to fit new texts, as in the Beggars' Opera. Quintus Benziger's musical plays give young performers an opportunity to sing music that has stood the test of time, cleverly adapted to the language of the original books. All contain songs the chorus will enjoy singing, as well as a variety of solos and duets of a more demanding nature. Boys will enjoy singing these as much as the girls. Single-line vocal scores and full keyboard accompaniments are available.

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Great ExpectationsGreat Expectations is based on Dickens' popular novel. This musical adaptation abounds with folk tunes and also draws on 19th century classical melodies to match the life styles of the different characters. Keeping closely to Dickens' own words, this is a welcome change from other adaptations of his novels.

Suggested age range 11-18 years. Performance time approx. 1 hour 45 mins.
HumbugHumbug is based on A Christmas Carol by Dickens,this adaptation draws on music from popular Gilbert & Sullivan songs to create the 19th century atmosphere. It also includes two traditional Christmas Carols, and a dance mentioned by Dickens. This musical dramatisation gives plenty of scope for chorus participation, as well as solo singing and speaking roles.

Suggested age range 7-18 years. Performance time approx. 1 hour.
The Magic PiperThe Magic Piper combines the words of Browning's Pied Piper and the music of Mozart's Magic Flute.This musical version of The Pied Piper was written for Thaxted Primary School,who gave its first performance to great acclaim at the Thaxted Festival.

Suggested age range 5-11 years. Performance time approx. 1 hour.
Cabbages and KingsCabbages & Kings is based on Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass. The whole production takes place on a large chess board, with the actors playing their parts as chess pieces. To underline the variety of different characters, a kaleidoscope of musical styles is presented, using music spanning seven centuries and ranging from classical to pop. Cabbages & Kings has been successfully performed by schools in both Cambridge and Essex.

Suggested age range 9-18 years. Performance time approx. 1 hour 15 mins.
PortiaPortia is based on Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice. It draws on tunes which Shakespeare himself would have known. The result is a blending of words and music of the Elizabethan era.A distinctive feature in this adaptation is the use of Israeli folk tunes for Shylock. These provide a memorable ending to the trial scene.

Suggested age range 11-18 years. Performance time 1 hour 45 mins.
The Prince and the PauperThe Prince & the Pauper is a musical play written in 2010 for the centenary of its author Mark Twain. The tunes used are all from the Tudor period, in which thestory takes place. The two main characters understandably have the largest parts on stage, but there are opportunities for several minor characters and plenty of songs for the chorus.

Suggested age range 7-14 years. Performance time 1 hour 15 mins.

Song Sets for Children

Songs of the NutcrackerCarnival of the AnimalsSongs of the Nutcracker
Carnival of the Animals
To make these popular instrumental pieces still more accessible for children, Quintus Benziger has simplified the melodies and added words to make them into sets of songs.

They have been used with success in several schools, where they have been enjoyed as concert items and as class projects for singing and listening.

Church Music

This is a series of musical settings of the three main sections of the Communion service, using secular melodies from composers who never actually set the texts themselves, The list includes Purcell, Handel, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Elgar and Holst. Single-line scores and full keyboard accompaniments are available.

To buy any these publications, or to request inspection copies, please use the contact form