The Nightingale
a play script adaptation of
the classic fairy tale by
Hans Christian Andersen

Cast List
NARRATORThe story teller23
EMPERORA wise, powerful man, very impressed with his own kingdom and delighted with sensual pleasures.23
NIGHTINGALEHumble, kind, singer of the world’s most beautiful music.8
CAVALIERA follower. Not terribly bright or innovative. Tries to control everything, but mostly knows nothing.20
KITCHEN GIRLBrassy, bold, rude, no-nonsense servant14
ARTIFICIAL NIGHTINGALEA machineno lines, just sounds
MESSENGERShy, scared, frail young lad who falls on good fortune by bringing the Artificial Nightingale to court2
PLAYMASTERVery pompous intellectual, very impressed with the trappings and appearances of things rather than with truth2
BODY PHYSICIANCourt doctor, a quack, practices medicine in a very old-fashioned manner5
WATCHMAKERMostly blind, finicky person with a mind for details and the precision of small things5
DEATHThe Grim Reaper.2
DEEDSSpirit incarnations of the Emperor’s good and bad deeds3 each
COURT LADIESYoung ladies who are trying to impress everyone at court with superficialities.2 each
PAGESServants to the Emperor. Very concerned with proper decorum and ritual.2 each
VILLAGERSInnocent, naïve, poor members of the empire2 each

Note: The cast size may vary, depending on how many LADIES, PAGES and VILLAGERS are cast.

Note: Gender of all characters is interchangeable and will have no affect on the theme of the story, despite the fact that the parts have been written to reflect the gender of the characters in the original tale.

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