Calling All Storytellers!

As you know, 5HE is all about narrative. In rehearsals, we discuss settings like Middle Earth, characters like anthropomorphic firestorms, and pretty much anything else that gets us all on the same page.

It’s because of our work and process that we’ve become so obsessed with creating narrative for YOU (our audience). In The Weaver’s Tales, we start with traditional fairy tales, and then go wild.

So… we thought this might be a fun project to invite all of you into our work! Basically, we think you should be making your own Weaver’s Tales.

Let’s start slowly. Below I’m going to reproduce text from a really awesomely bizarre fairy tale, but I’ve chopped it off about halfway through. Where do you think the story should go? Vote for options 1-3 in the comments section. We’ll select a winner in a few days, then let you go wild by writing the next section of the tale, which we’ll read at The Weaver’s Tales afterparty on November 17th.

(control c’d from Sur La Lune Fairy Tales with love and respect)

The Enchanted Pig (A Romanian Tale)

ONCE upon a time there lived a King who had three daughters. Now it happened that he had to go out to battle, so he called his daughters and said to them:

‘My dear children, I am obliged to go to the wars. The enemy is approaching us with a large army. It is a great grief to me to leave you all. During my absence take care of yourselves and be good girls; behave well and look after everything in the house. You may walk in the garden, and you may go into all the rooms in the palace, except the room at the back in the right-hand corner; into that you must not enter, for harm would befall you.’

‘You may keep your mind easy, father,’ they replied. ‘We have never been disobedient to you. Go in peace, and may heaven give you a glorious victory!’

When everything was ready for his departure, the King gave them the keys of all the rooms and reminded them once more of what he had said. His daughters kissed his hands with tears in their eyes, and wished him prosperity, and he gave the eldest the keys.

Now when the girls found themselves alone they felt so sad and dull that they did not know what to do. So, to pass the time, they decided to work for part of the day, to read for part of the day, and to enjoy themselves in the garden for part of the day. As long as they did this all went well with them. But this happy state of things did not last long. Every day they grew more and more curious, and you will see what the end of that was.

‘Sisters,’ said the eldest Princess, ‘all day long we sew, spin, and read. We have been several days quite alone, and there is no corner of the garden that we have not explored. We have been in all the rooms of our father’s palace, and have admired the rich and beautiful furniture: why should not we go into the room that our father forbad us to enter?’

Sister,’ said the youngest, ‘I cannot think how you can tempt us to break our father’s command. When he told us not to go into that room he must have known what he was saying, and have had a good reason for saying it.’

‘Surely the sky won’t fall about our heads if we do go in,’ said the second Princess. ‘Dragons and such like monsters that would devour us will not be hidden in the room. And how will our father ever find out that we have gone in?’

While they were speaking thus, encouraging each other, they had reached the room; the eldest fitted the key into the lock, and snap! the door stood open.

The three girls entered, and what do you think they saw?

The room was quite empty, and without any ornament, but in the middle stood a large table, with a gorgeous cloth, and on it lay a big open book.

Now the Princesses were curious to know what was written in the book, especially the eldest, and this is what she read:

‘The eldest daughter of this King will marry a prince from the East.’

Then the second girl stepped forward, and turning over the page she read:

‘The second daughter of this King will marry a prince from the West.’

The girls were delighted, and laughed and teased each other.

But the youngest Princess did not want to go near the table or to open the book. Her elder sisters however left her no peace, and they dragged her up to the table, and in fear and trembling she turned over the page and read:

‘The youngest daughter of this King will be married to a pig from the North.’

Now if a thunderbolt had fallen upon her from heaven it would not have frightened her more. She almost died of misery, and if her sisters had not held her up, she would have sunk to the ground and cut her head open. When she came out of the fainting fit into which she had fallen in her terror, her sisters tried to comfort her, saying:

‘How can you believe such nonsense? When did it ever happen that a king’s daughter married a pig?’

‘What a baby you are!’ said the other sister; ‘has not our father enough soldiers to protect you, even if the disgusting creature did come to woo you?’ The youngest Princess would fain have let herself be convinced by her sisters’ words, and have believed what they said, but her heart was heavy. Her thoughts kept turning to the book, in which stood written that great happiness waited her sisters, but that a fate was in store for her such as had never before been known in the world.

Besides, the thought weighed on her heart that she had been guilty of disobeying her father. She began to get quite ill, and in a few days she was so changed that it was difficult to recognize her; formerly she had been rosy and merry, now she was pale and nothing gave her any pleasure. She gave up playing with her sisters in the garden, ceased to gather flowers to put in her hair, and never sang when they sat together at their spinning and sewing.

What Happens Next? Vote in the comments section for one of these options below – we’ll announce the winner in a few days, and the adventure will continue!

1) The sisters go on separate journeys to find their fates or avoid them. They encounter various obstacles along the way.

2) The King returns to find that his daughters have broken their word, and punishes them for their dishonesty.

3) In an attempt to change her fate, the youngest sister sends her oldest sister away, taking her name and presence amidst the castle. It was the only way she could ensure that she have the opportunity to marry a prince.

Adam is the pianist and Director of Artistic Programming for Fifth House Ensemble.
Fifth House Ensemble

9 Responses to “Calling All Storytellers!”

  1. Guest says:

    I like 3.

  2. Nancy says:

    I like 1…..but with a twist: the youngest sister runs away to find and/or avoid her fate while the other two stay where they are….also finding and/or avoiding theirs.

  3. Niki says:

    I vote for Nancy’s option!

  4. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mariah Haberman, FifthHouse. FifthHouse said: Calling all storytellers! Help us write a new Weaver's Tale on the 5HE blog! http://ow.ly/32R8b […]

  5. Jenny says:

    #1 is my vote as well!!

  6. Jan says:

    Go for No. 1 — plenty of narrative possibilities to follow!

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