Ancients and the Stars Assembly
Ancients and the Stars Assembly class play has a cast dating from prehistory to the present day! Quite a challenge (as always!) for our narrator! Most at ease with ‘civilized’ Ancients’, there are still those tricky moments with tricky characters – like overly curious astrologers!
Lots of fun rock music as always to enhance this star cast performance!
Ancients and the Stars Assembly is the second of a series of scripts on Space, written as a set of 4, the others being, A Brief History of Space, The Planets, and Stepping Back into Space: Past and Future. These can be bought separately along with Space Quiz based on the scripts’ content .. plus a few other ‘fun facts’! (This Quiz is also available separately) with a cast of around 25, Duration around 10 – 20 minutes.
Ancients and the Stars Assembly Sample Text
Music 1 – S Club 17 – Reach for the Stars
(Children file into the front of the hall, seating themselves in two rows facing the audience)
(Narrator, reading a set of notes, bumps into Prehistoric Hunter mid-stage. Narrator shrieks, leaping backwards in alarm, and Prehistoric Hunter ‘grunts’, holding his ground with a raised club)
Narrator: Who are you and what on earth are you doing here?
(Prehistoric Hunter makes series of ‘grunting noises’ waving club, and pointing to the sky)
Narrator: (Sighing with relief) Ah! Hipparchus!
(Aside to audience) He might be a bit ancient but at least he comes from a civilised society!
(Turning back to Hipparchus) A timely arrival! Just when I thought (pointing at Hunter) my time was up!
(Hipparchus gestures Hunter to return to his seat then turns to Narrator)
Hipparchus: I thought we were going to be talking about the Stars this morning?
Narrator: That’s right! And I’m very glad that you, Hipparchus – the world’s first great astronomer and dare I say, probably the greatest astronomer of ancient times – was able to join us. All the way from Greece and the Second Century B.C.!
Hipparchus: The pleasure is all mine! But we need to set a few things straight before we get going this morning.
Narrator: (Looking puzzled) Oh, really?
Hipparchus: Yes, really! You see that man who just gave you a bit of a fright?
Narrator: (Interrupting) Man? Bit of a fright? (Takes a deep breath) I can assure you that man/ape – call him what you like, just gave me a little more than just a bit of a fright! I was all set to meet a nice civilized man like yourself and .
Hipparchus: (Interrupting) But don’t you see? Stargazing has been going on since the very first humans appeared on earth. Way back to prehistoric times – like our hunter friend, there! He too used to gaze up to the skies to see which night might give him a full moon for hunting.
(Enter Early Farmer, gazing and pointing up at the sky)
Hipparchus: And then, around 10,000 years ago, the first farmers used the stars to help them know when the seasons would come and go – to help with the planting and harvesting of their crops.
(Exit Early Farmer)
(Enter High Priest, gazing and pointing up at the sky)
Hipparchus: People soon realized just how important astronomy was which was why high priests played such an important role in society.
(Exit High Priest)
Narrator: And you, Hipparchus, certainly played a crucial role in astronomical history.
Hipparchus: Well, among other things I did make a catalogue of eight hundred and fifty stars. I also made a comparison of the brightness of these stars, awarding them a ‘Magnitude’ from one to six. The brightest star is Sirius, the Dog Star, a First-Magnitude star. The faintest star I called a Sixth-Magnitude star.
Narrator: Ah! Another famous Greek Astronomer, Ptolemy! Welcome!
Ptolemy: Well, thank you! I developed a lot of Hipparchus’s work creating the basis for astronomical work right through until the 16th century!
Narrator: Yes, with that theory that the Earth was the centre of the Universe – with everything revolving around it! To think, we all overlooked the importance of the Sun
(Exit Ptolemy and Hipparchus)
Imhotep: Not me! Imhotep! In 2,800 B.C. I aligned the first great pyramid in Ancient Egypt – with the sun!
Narrator: (Stroking chin) Er um. Not single-handedly, I suspect!
Imhotep: Well, no. Those great pyramids did take some building!
(Enter Pharoah and Ra plus ‘crowd’ of Hippies; both groups sit quietly listening to the music and looking up at the sky)
Music 2 Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin
Narrator: (Coughing) Er, I hate to interrupt this er (making peace sign) cosmic experience but
Hippie 1: Ah, peace out man!
Hippie 2: Yeah, come and enjoy the sun!
Narrator: (Testily) OK. So, who do we have here? A group of ‘spaced out’ hippies from the ‘60s and
Ra: A sun god
Pharaoh: And a pharaoh!
Narrator: (Throwing his hands up in exasperation) And the link?
Hippie 3: Why, chill man! Isn’t it obvious?
Narrator: (Angrily) Would I be standing here asking the question if it was?
Hippie 4: It’s Stonehenge!
Ra: And the Pyramids!