The Nutcracker Musical Play
    • 30-minute musical play for grades 2-6
    • Includes the script, teacher's guide, and audio recording (which contains a vocal and instrumental version of each song)
    • Simple to do - no music or drama experience needed!

    Our version of the Nutcracker story uses the famous music from Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite, complete with silly lyrics! The show works great both as a holiday play or just for fun.

    Please scroll down to read the script, listen to the songs, read reviews, and get all the details about the play (plot, curriculum/content, educational standards, and vocabulary).

    Item # Description Availability Qty Break Price Quantity
    PLAY - For individual teachers or directors
    Order 1 copy of play for each teacher/director who will be using it. Includes permission to print/photocopy for all participating actors. Mix and match 2 or more plays to get them for $35 each.
    Downloadable Version of Play
    - You will receive a PDF and MP3 files
    Download 1
    Printed Version of Play
    - You will receive a Spiral-Bound Book and Audio CD
    In Stock 1
    Duo Version - Download AND Printed Book
    - You will receive 1) a PDF and MP3 files, and 2) a Spiral-Bound Book and Audio CD
    In Stock 1
    SITE LICENSE VERSION OF PLAY - For whole schools or grade levels
    Order 1 site license per school/site. Includes permission to print/photocopy for all participating students AND teachers. Why a site license? Because it's cheaper than ordering 3+ individual copies of the play.
    Downloadable Version of Site License
    - You will receive a PDF and MP3 files
    Download 1 $90.00
    Printed Version of Site License
    - You will receive 3 copies of the Spiral-Bound Book and Audio CD
    In Stock 1 $90.00
    Extra/Replacement Audio Recordings
    Downloadable Audio Files
    - You will receive a ZIP file containing individual MP3s
    Download 1 $12.00
    Audio CD
    In Stock 1 - 9
    Downloadable Audio Files (MP3) + Audio CD
    In Stock 1 $20.00
    Sheet Music
    Downloadable Sheet Music (PDF)
    Download 1 $12.00
    Printed Sheet Music
    In Stock 1 $8.00
    Downloadable Sheet Music (PDF) + Printed Sheet Music
    In Stock 1 $16.00


    Important Note

    All of the music in this show comes from the actual Nutcracker Suite by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky! (We can do that because he's dead.) We've picked the best songs, rearranged them in different styles, and added hilarious lyrics. Audiences will love the familiar tunes with their Bad Wolf spruce-up.


    When Marie receives a Nutcracker from her eccentric godfather, she has no clue that she'll soon be involved in an epic dance-off between the Prince of the Dollies and the seven-headed Mouse King. This is an even-more-fractured version of the already-silly story made famous by the Nutcracker ballet (no tights required!). Our retelling covers both the events made famous by the ballet and the omitted parts of the original story by ETA Hoffmann. Free of holiday references, the show can be used any time of year, or dolled up as a celebration of the holiday of your choice!

    The Nutcracker can be a great complement to your curriculum resources in language arts, a twist on a beloved holiday tale, or a "just for fun" silly show that all ages will enjoy. And, like all of our plays, this show can be used to improve reading, vocabulary, reading comprehension, performance and music skills, class camaraderie and teamwork, and numerous social skills (read about it!) -- all while enabling students to be part of a truly fun and creative experience they will never forget!

    Publication Information

    Author: Lisa Adams and John Heath (Book and Lyrics), Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Composer), and Mike Fishell and Roy Fishell (Arrangements)
    © 2018 Bad Wolf Press, LLC

    Song Samples


    Flexible casting from 11-40 students. Use as many Toys, Mice, etc. in each scene as desired. One student can easily play several roles if needed, and individual roles can be doubled up (Marie, Drosselmeier, and Nutcracker/ Nephew are in several scenes and actors can easily be swapped out halfway through). Note that all roles can be played by either boys or girls.

    Pyotr Tchaikovsky
    Lev Ivanov
    Godfather Drosselmeier
    Mouse King
    Mouse Soldiers (2)
    Toys (2)
    Soldiers (2)
    Dollies (4)
    ETA Hoffmann
    Alexandre Dumas
    Lady Mouserings

    and a CHORUS composed of all actors who are not playing roles on stage at the time.


    This is the first third of the script.

    (CLASS enters and sings:)

      Song 1 - Listen to a clip now!

    Welcome to our Nutcracker; we all hope you like it
    Welcome to our Nutcracker; having fun is our one goal.
    We took the tale and shrunk it under half an hour
    No way we overthunk it; that is not the way we roll!

    There's not one arabesque in sight all night
    We've got jokes and a song or eight, all great!

    GROUP A: You're gonna wanna hear it all
    GROUP B: You're gonna wanna cheer it all
    GROUP A: You're gonna wanna use your flash
    GROUP B: You're gonna wanna give us cash.
    A: You're gonna wanna
    B: Gonna wanna
    A: Gonna wanna
    B: Gonna wanna
    ALL: Gonna wish that you were us today!

    All set, so let's get cracking; time to tell our story
    Watch close, there's nothing lacking; crazy plot but lots of fun!
    Welcome to our Nutcracker; we all hope you like it
    Welcome to our Nutcracker; hey, the Overture is done!

    (TCHAIKOVSKY and IVANOV enter.)

    TCHAIKOVSKY: That song sounded familiar.

    IVANOV: It should, Tchaikovsky. You wrote it.

    TCHAI: I WHAT? I don't think so. Those don't sound like lyrics I would write.

    IVANOV: They're not. A modern composer wrote them using your music, the Miniature Overture from the Nutcracker Suite.

    TCHAI: Can they do that?

    IVANOV: Well, yes. Because you're dead.

    TCHAI (looking disappointed): Oh, that again. It does get in the way of things. You're dead too, aren't you?

    IVANOV: Oh certainly! It was way back in 1892 when I, Lev Ivanov, worked with you on the Nutcracker Ballet.

    TCHAI: Oh, that's right! I wrote the music and you choreographed the dancing. Is the show we're about to see going to be a ballet?

    IVANOV: I don't think so. There was a line in there about "no arabesques in sight, all night." I can't imagine why anyone wouldn't want arabesques in the thousands, but that's what the song said.

    TCHAI: So this is probably something new-fangled?

    IVANOV: I'm afraid so.

    TCHAI: With the same really weird plot?

    IVANOV: Almost certainly.

    TCHAI (indicates audience): And so these people should just go with it if they feel like some things don't make a whole lot of sense?

    IVANOV: Absolutely!

    TCHAI: Well, it's only 30 minutes. How bad can it be?

    IVANOV: Good point. Let's begin!

    TCHAI: We start at the home of three children: Louise, Fritz, and Marie.

    IVANOV: They are eagerly awaiting their Godfather Drosselmeier, who is a fantastic clock and toy maker...

    (THEY exit. MARIE, FRITZ , and LOUISE enter. MARIE and FRITZ look eagerly out the window while LOUISE does something teenagerish.)

    FRITZ: I see him! Godfather Drosselmeier! Right there!

    MARIE: Where? (SHE pauses, then elbows him.) That's not Godfather! That's the old lady from down the street.


    MARIE: Fritz! That's a DOG!

    LOUISE (trying to appear mature): Will you kids stop fidgeting? He'll be here soon.

    MARIE: Oh, don't try to be so grown-up, Louise!

    FRITZ: Yeah! You want presents from Godfather as much as we do.

    LOUISE (giggling): You're right! He makes the most wonderful clocks and toys.

    FRITZ: I hope he won't ask us any of his weird questions, though.

    LOUISE: He always does. But it's worth it!

    ALL THREE (grabbing hands and skipping excitedly in a circle): Pre-sents! Pre-sents! Pre-sents!

    (THEY sing:)

      Song 2 - Listen to a clip now!

    OH! YEAH!
    We just can't wait we just can't wait
    OH! YEAH!
    We just can't wait we just can't wait
    OH! YEAH!
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait
    OH! YEAH!
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait!

    Godfather comes once a year
    He's rather strange but oh so dear
    Drosselmeier's our favorite guy
    He's kinda weird; we let it slide

    Bring toys
    Bring toys
    Bring toys bring toys
    Bring toys for all the girls and boys

    OH! YEAH!
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait!
    OH! YEAH!
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait
    So excited so excited
    Can't wait can't wait can't wait can't wait!

    (DROSSELMEIER enters.)

    DROSSELMEIER (to MARIE): What's the square root of 9145?

    MARIE: Six and a half.

    DROSSEL: Wrong! (to FRITZ) What's the secret ingredient in the sauerkraut served at Heinrich's Hofbrau?

    FRITZ: Salamanders!

    DROSSEL: Wrong! (to LOUISE) What did the philosopher of Bankaresh say to the lemon tree at midnight?

    LOUISE: "I know you have friends. I know you tell lies. I know you serve your country."

    DROSSEL (astonished): Why yes, that is right!

    FRITZ: Do you have any toys for us?

    MARIE: Or dolls?

    LOUISE: Fritz! Marie! How rude! Godfather, I'm so sorry.

    DROSSEL: They are children. Born rude! You were the same when you were their age.

    LOUISE: Ouch. Sorry.

    DROSSEL: Well my greedy little mites, here are the gifts I have brought. (HE pulls out a small clock for LOUISE, a toy soldier for

    FRITZ, a doll for MARIE, and a Nutcracker.)

    KIDS (hugging their gifts): Thank you!

    DROSSEL (holds up toy Nutcracker): And THIS is a special gift for the whole family. Watch this! (HE pulls out a nut and puts it in the Nutcracker's mouth and cracks it. NOTE: A toy Nutcracker really doesn't crack nuts, so just pantomime it.)

    (KIDS clap appreciatively)

    LOUISE: A Nutcracker! How fun!

    FRITZ: Yeah, but can it crack THIS?

    (FRITZ jams his toy or some other small object in the Nutcracker's mouth, and the Nutcracker's jaw breaks. You might choose to play a loud noise at this moment or simply have the actors' reactions make it clear that the Nutcracker has been damaged.)

    MARIE (very upset): Fritz, you BROKE it!

    DROSSEL: Greedy AND thoughtless! (HE wraps a bandage/scarf around the Nutcracker and gives it to MARIE.) See if you can fix this. Now begone with you, mites. I'm going to visit with your parents.

    LOUISE: Come to bed, Marie.

    MARIE (cradling the Nutcracker): I'm going to stay up for a while and take care of him.

    (ALL exit except MARIE. SHE yawns and falls asleep. CLARA, an old-fashioned china doll, and TOYS enter. THEY suddenly notice MARIE and stop short.)

    CLARA: Yikes! I thought it was safe for us toys to come to life!

    TOY #1: Why is Marie sleeping in the living room?

    TOY #2: How terrifying! Stumbling on a human face when you're not expecting it!

    CLARA: I know. They are SO creepy.

    TOY #1: Glad she's asleep anyway. When they're awake they just STARE at you with those blank eyes.

    TOY #2: It's the main reason I'm in therapy.

    TOY #1: Is it?

    MARIE (waking and sitting up, rubbing her eyes): Clara! Is that you? Genie? Bunny? [substitute names as needed.] You're alive!

    TOY #2: No we're not.

    MARIE: Yes you are! You're alive!

    TOY #1 (waving fingers like a magician or hypnotist): You're just dreaming, Marie. Go back to sleep...

    CLARA (to TOYS): Drop the act, guys. The jig's up.

    (CLARA and TOYS sing; MARIE watches from the side.)

      Song 3 - Listen to a clip now!

    All your toys and dolls come alive
    Every single night
    While you're sleeping
    Teasing and amusing
    Joking and a-schmoozing
    Taking time for musing on complexities of life.

    All your toys and dolls come alive
    Every single night
    While you're sleeping
    Playing and competing
    Writing and spreadsheeting
    We're free and blithe.

    Why don't we try to earn our keep
    When all the humans are asleep?
    Why don't we help with all the chores
    While Daddy drools and Mommy snores?
    Do the laundry, do the dishes, trim the hedges, feed the fishes
    Clean the oven, yes it's yucky
    Good thing we are fit and plucky!

    TOY #1:
    Dust the blinds and scour the tub and take the fridge apart and scrub

    TOY #2:
    Find what rolled beneath the chair
    (Our little hands can get in there)

    And do repair the creaky stair right there

    TOYS #1 and 2:
    We just might do it all if you believed your kids when they say

    All your toys and dolls come alive
    Every single night
    While you're sleeping
    Teasing and amusing
    Joking and a-schmoozing
    Taking time for musing on complexities of life.

    All your toys and dolls come alive
    Every single night
    While you're sleeping
    Playing and competing
    Writing and spreadsheeting
    We're free and blithe.

    (CLARA and TOYS exit. NUTCRACKER and SOLDIERS enter.)

    This concludes the first one-third of the script.

    Overall Customer Rating:
    review-star review-star review-star review-star review-star
    Customer Reviews: 3

    Glenwood, IA

    review-star review-star review-star review-star review-star

    • Fun show
    • Uses the familiar music from the Ballet
    • Learning experience
    • Some of the songs were difficult
    Fun and Interesting Show

    We presented "The Nutcracker" as part of a holiday show performed by children in the 3rd - 5th grade. At first the children found the musical a bit difficult to learn. They were slow on the lines and the songs, but as they got more into it, they began to have fun with the show. The audience made up mostly of parents and friends really enjoyed it and found it interesting and fun. As usual this Bad Wolf show delivered once again. The children had lots of fun working on it and also learned some background on the "Nutcracker" story that many adults are not even aware. Highly recommend.

    Burlingame, CA

    review-star review-star review-star review-star review-star

    • intriguing story
    Nutcracker is delightful!

    I'm not sure how it is going to play because we haven't started rehearsals yet, but in preparing I find it fun and creative. I love that the songs are directly from the Tchaikovsky music. I know the students are going to be excited by it.


    review-star review-star review-star review-star review-star

    • music - kids now recognize songs
    • plot was a bit hard for kids to follow
    Nutcracker review

    I was excited to do a brand new play with my class, and it went very well. Although this one didn't have a lot of the curriculum connections that I appreciate, I was still able to address stylistic use of language, vocabulary development, and reading strategies. It was a fun play to do and my students appreciated the fact that it was strange! Our audience loved it because, as adults, they got the humor.

    Common Core and Other National Standards

    Language Arts

    National Core Arts Standards


    Terms Related to Ballet

    arabesque overture composer choreograph waltz
    taffeta libretto footwork

    General Vocabulary-Building

    "overthunk" new-fangled square root sauerkraut philosopher
    godfather hofbrau jig (scheme) mite schmooze
    muse "spreadsheeting" blithe plucky scour
    nigh stoop glower stance linger
    zinger indubitably dimension feud famished
    concede confection marzipan rapturous diabetes
    rage (v.) "a fright" freelancer glitch profound
    thunderstruck shuck breakthrough forte cocktail weenies
    adieu "en fuego" (spanish for "on fire")
    Number of questions: 0

    Frequently Asked Questions About Bad Wolf Products and Licensing

    How does your pricing and licensing work?

    A: In short: each teacher/director using the play should have a copy of it. That's it! Your purchase gives you the right to use the play with as many classes as you wish, to photocopy the script for your actors, and to put on as many performances as you wish. This one-time purchase gives you a lifetime license. See below for more information on site licenses (for 3+ teachers or whole schools).

    Q: What comes in the package?

    A: Every musical play comes with the script and a 12-page Teacher's Guide that provides lots of tips and advice for using the play from start to finish. It also includes the audio recording for the play, which has all the songs both WITH and WITHOUT vocals. Sheet music is NOT included with the basic package, but it is available for $12. Extra/replacement CDs are also available for $12.

    Every non-musical play comes with the script and the 12-page Teacher's Guide.

    Q: I'm just one teacher putting on a play. If I use the play with multiple classes, do I have to purchase multiple licenses?

    A: No! Your purchase gives you a lifetime license to be used with as many actors and classes as you wish. If other teachers/directors wish to use the play as well, they will need to purchase their own licenses.

    Q: Do I need to purchase scripts for students?

    A: No! Your purchase includes permission to photocopy the script for your actors.

    Q: What is a "site license"? How do I know if I need one?

    A site license is the economical choice when a whole school or grade level wants to put on the same play. Instead of each teacher/director having to purchase a script, the school/site can purchase a site license. This comes with three copies of the play (or one digital download) and permission to make copies for any additional participating teachers, as well as all the actors. You do NOT need to purchase both a site license and individual copies of the play; just buy one or the other.

    Q: I understand that I can get two or more scripts for $35 each. Do they have to be the same play?

    Nope! The discount applies whether you are purchasing multiple copies of the same show or single copies of multiple shows.

    Q: What is the difference between the printed and digital versions? Which one should I get?

    There is no difference in terms of content. The printed version of a musical play comes with an audio CD in a plastic sleeve in the back of the book. The digital version comes with two downloadable files: the script (PDF format) and the songs (individual MP3 files compressed in ZIP format). The advantage of the digital version is that you will not pay shipping and you can start using it instantly. Please read the question following this one about the technical requirements for digital files.

    Non-musical plays are available in the form of a printed book or a PDF file.

    Q: What are the technical requirements for the digital version?

    1. You will need to have Adobe Reader (free) or another software application that can open PDF files.
    2. You will need to be able to open ZIP files. The vast majority of computers should be able to do this without difficulty. If you wish to download the music directly to your phone or tablet, you will need to download an app that will open ZIP files. Many free ones are available.
    3. You will need to have some kind of audio player (such as iTunes or Windows Media Player) that will play MP3 files.

    Advanced technical knowledge is not required; but please note that we do not have the ability to offer technical support for issues related to digital files. If you are unsure, it is probably best to stick with the printed version.

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    Q: Is it OK if I edit the script?

    A: Yes! Consider the play to be a jumping-off point. You are always welcome to change or omit anything that doesn't work for your class, administration, or parents. You are welcome to rewrite lyrics, lines, or jokes -- or add your own! (The kids love doing this, by the way.)

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