inside the witch's house
ENSEMBLE stand in a half-square with SAM and JAMES CS making the oven, and HARVEY and DAN SL making the cage. GRANDMA joins the ENSEMBLE. HANSEL is inside the cage, GRETEL is sweeping, and WITCH is generally being horrible to both of them
NARR. 1: Back at the witch's house-
NARR. 2: Hansel and Gretel had finally realised that this woman-
NARR. 1: Who had seemed so kindly-
NARR. 2: Was in fact up to no good.
NARR. 1: They took their time.
NARR. 2: You're telling me.
WITCH: Sweep faster, you lazy girl!
GRETEL: I'm sweeping as fast as I can.
WITCH: Well, that's not fast enough, is it?
NARR. 1: Anyway. The witch kept the children there for three days-
NARR. 2: And every day, the witch would send Gretel to feed her brother-
NARR. 1: Because the witch wanted to fatten Hansel up-
NARR. 2: And eat him.
NARR. 1: Just so. But luckily, on the fourth day, Gretel realised what was going on-
NARR. 2: And came up with a cunning plan.
GRETEL walks over to the cage with some food, which she gives to HANSEL.
GRETEL: (in a stage whisper) Use this chicken bone - pretend it's your finger.
GRETEL walks back SR and starts sweeping up again. WITCH goes over to HANSEL. GRETEL watches.
WITCH: Stick your finger out of the cage so I can see how fat you are.
NARR. 1: But Hansel didn't stick his finger out - instead, he used the chicken bone his sister had given him.
HANSEL sticks the chicken bone out of the cage.
NARR. 1: And so when the witch felt it, she thought he was very thin - far too thin to eat.
NARR. 2: (aside) She was shortsighted as well.
NARR. 1: In fact, I think she was practically blind.
NARR. 2: Well, you'd have to be, to think a chicken bone was actually a finger.
NARR. 1: Exactly. Er - anyway.
WITCH: Dammit - you're still far too thin to eat.
HANSEL & GRETEL: (aside) Phew!
While the NARR.s speak, WITCH turns and gesticulates to GRETEL, occasionally turning to HANSEL and doing the same.
NARR. 1: And so it went on. But on the fifth day-
NARR. 2: The witch lost all patience.
WITCH: I've lost all patience with you people. I'm going to eat you now.
WITCH starts towards HANSEL.
GRETEL: No! Please don't eat my brother!
WITCH: Stupid girl! Go get the oven ready.
GRETEL goes to get the oven ready while WITCH unlocks HANSEL's cage. She drags him to the oven.
WITCH: Well? Come on, girl, I haven't got all day. I'm starving!
WITCH: Hurry up! Test the temperature, will you.
GRETEL: What? I don't understand...
WITCH: (impatiently, letting go of HANSEL) Urgh, I'll show you then.
WITCH leans over into the oven.
WITCH: See? It's really very simple.
HANSEL and GRETEL push WITCH into the oven. She screams and burns. And dies. Obviously.
NARR. 2: And so that was the end of the witch.
NARR. 1: It's all getting a little dramatic...
NARR. 2: Indeed.
inside the witch's house