Dame Hilda Owl has two sons Terry and Freddie. Terry is a schoolteacher and is engaged to Tabitha (Tabby) Kat. Freddie is a bad lot who ran away to escape gaol.
A Mr Fowl is the new Squire. It is none other than Freddie Owl who is now rich. He means to evict his mother from her cottage and marry Tabitha.
Terry and Tabby elope to Bong Island to get married where they meet the Pigg sisters. They discover that Periwinkle was recently married to Freddie Owl who stole her money and ran away. They confront Freddie, who is then arrested by the local village Constable. The Constable then asks Dame Hilda Owl to marry him. Cue celebration.
Cast – 3 Male, 3 Female, 7 M/F
Hilda Owl (M/F), Terry Owl (M/F), Tabitha Kat (F), Thomas Kat (M), Freddie Owl (M), Robin Outugo (M/F), Snatch and Grabbit (M/F), John Constable (M), Patricia Pigg (F), Periwinkle Pigg (F), Hoot Owl (M/F), Parson Turk (M/F)
Village, Hilda’s cottage, School House, Bong Island, Out to Sea
An excerpt from The Owl and the Pussycat
Village Square, the backdrop is Hilda’s cottage USR next to the Schoolhouse
Constable (walks to centre stage) ‘Allo ‘Allo ‘Allo (knees bend on each ‘Allo, he is swinging his truncheon). Well it is a lovely day, the sun is shining the villagers are really happy and today is the day we meet our new Squire. Oh, I’m sorry, let me introduce myself. I am John Constable. Yes, I know! My father was a great art lover and wanted me to become a famous artist but I’m afraid my artistic skills extend only to regular visits to the White Hart (or other local pub). So my dear old mum, God rest her soul took one look at my feet and you know what they say large feet, large (a beat) truncheon and decided that I’d best become a Policeman. So here I am. Constable John Constable. People do get a bit confused sometimes but it’s a nice job and a lovely village. There’s one person in particular that’s lovely and that’s Mrs Hilda Owl who lives in that little cottage over there. I think she’s lovely but I’ve never had the courage to tell her that I love her. (Audience Ahh!) Oh, I feel worse than that! I know it’s sad isn’t it? A grown man like me but she’s far too good for me. Maybe one day I’ll be able to tell her how I feel about her but for now I’m just happy to see her everyday as I patrol the streets. Oh look out here she comes now.
Hilda Owl (Bustles on to the stage from SR carrying a basket full of washing) Hello Constable, lovely day.
Constable (Constable goes all shy)Yes Mrs Owl it is a lovely day and made all the better by your presence here. (Embarrassed, he scuttles off) Must get on patrol. (exit SR)
Hilda Owl Such a lovely little man, there was a time when I thought he and I might, well you know, but it didn’t ever happen. Such a shame, I do like a man with a large truncheon. Anyway, my name is Hilda, Hilda Owl. I’ve lived here most of my life in my lovely little cottage. I take in washing and ironing to earn a crust and what a job that is. Oh, it’s no fun I can tell you my hands are red raw with all the washing and scrubbing I have to do (Audience: Ahh!) Oh no, it’s much worse than that come on bit of sympathy now. Oh the life of a washerwoman. You should see the state of some of their washing. I mean old Mrs Skiggins, well judging by the state of her underwear she ought to be called Skiddings. Look at this. (Throws knickers at proscenium arch where they stick to a hidden pin on the wall) See I told you! Oh, you’ve got to laugh haven’t you? Well I hope you have or we’re all in for a very dull evening. I’m a widow, I used to be married, well I used to be a lot of things but you shouldn’t believe all the stories, some of them aren’t true. (School bell rings) Oh, that’s the school bell it must be lunchtime. Now you’ll get to meet my son Terry he’s the Headmaster. Well in fact, he’s the only teacher but Headmaster sounds a much better title. He’s a good boy, he’s in love with Tabitha Kat who lives in the Gate House with her father Tom, and we’re all hoping that she and Terry will get married soon. I do have another son but he was a really bad lot, he ran off several years ago and we haven’t seen him since thank goodness. No, he really was a horrible boy! He’ll have come to a bad end. You mark my words. Anyway, everybody is very excited to meet our new Squire who’s due to come and meet his tenants this morning. Nobody has met him yet. The old Squire Justin Time, was a lovely man but died quite suddenly. One day he was fine the next he was gone. Strangely he died just after Mr Fowl, he’s the new Squire, went to see him to persuade him to sell the estate. Apparently, Squire Time said he wouldn’t sell and then he just up’d and died. Squire Fowl bought the estate from the heirs.
Terry comes on SR
Hilda Owl Oh Terry there you are. I heard the lunchtime bell ring. I expect you’re here to meet our new Squire.
Terry Owl Hello Mum. Yes, it’s all quite exciting isn’t it? I’m meeting Tabby here; she’s coming with her Father Tom Kat. They’re both quite eager to meet the new Squire. Well I suppose we all are as we all depend on the Squire’s estate for our homes and livelihoods. Mum, Tabby and I are going to ask Squire Fowl if he will allow us to convert the upstairs rooms in the school into a home for Tabby and myself. If he agrees, we’ll be able to marry and live there together.
Hilda Owl Oh, yes I know old Squire Time was so good about supporting the School and the Church and looking after the tenants who live in the village. I do hope Squire Fowl will carry on in the same way, as I have been known to be a little behind with my rent from time to time especially when the White Hart (or other local pub) has a guest beer on tap. Oh, I do like a nice pint of real ale.
Tabitha enters SR accompanied by her Father Tom Kat. Tabby rushes to Terry and they embrace.
Tabitha Hello Terry. (They cuddle up) Hello Mrs Owl. Isn’t it a lovely day? I’m so excited to meet the new Squire do you know when he’s going to arrive.
Tom Kat I told you Tabitha Squire Fowl should be here shortly. The message I got was to be here for the School Lunch bell. (worried face) I do hope he will want me to stay on as Gatekeeper and Gardener. (to Hilda) I have been quite worried you know. If I lose my job, I lose my house and that would mean that both Tabitha and I would have nowhere to live and no money. I don’t think I’ve ever been so worried in my life.
Hilda Now, now. Don’t worry Mr Kat you’ve always done a marvellous job of looking after the estate I’m sure Squire Fowl will have heard what grand chap you are he’ll be sure to keep you on.
Tom Kat I do hope you’re right Mrs Owl I do hope you’re right.
Constable runs on from SR
Constable Everybody, listen; listen. Squire Fowl is just making his way along the Main Street and he’ll be here in just a minute or two. Hurry now everyone line up to greet him. We should all try to make a good impression. (Villagers all enter SR and arrange themselves in two lines SL & SR ready for a dance) I only caught a glimpse of him but I’m sure that he looks familiar I just can’t quite place him in my mind. (worried, thinking face).
Terry Owl Now come along everyone we practised our welcome song so let’s have a party and make the new Squire really welcome.
SONG 2 – Villagers Terry, Hilda, Constable, Tom, Tabitha
At the end of the song, Squire F. Owl appears accompanied by Robin Outugo and they walk DC through the two lines of villagers. They end up at the front of the line where Hilda, Terry, Tabby, Tom and Constable are standing)
Hilda Owl I can’t believe it. You’re the spitting image of my other son. I know you can’t be him because he could never have the money to buy the estate from Squire Justin Time, well not legally anyway.
Constable I knew I recognised that face. You’re not Squire Fowl you are Freddie Owl, Squire F. Owl. I can’t believe you’ve come back here.
Squire Owl (sneering and superior) I’m so sorry to disappoint you Mother but I am indeed your long lost son. The son you loved so much that you drove him from your home all those years ago and here is my dear brother Terry with his arm around the girl that was to be my wife. How are you Terry? I hope you are well Tabitha. No doubt, we will be able to rekindle our relationship once I’ve settled in to my new home.
Horror struck faces from Terry & Tabby. Mrs Owl looks dumbfounded and the villagers look at each other in confusion
Tabitha I never agreed to be your wife you monster.
Squire Owl Really Tabby? I thought we had an agreement but even if we didn’t we soon will, when you hear my plans for you and your father. However, let me introduce my new Estate Manager Robin Outugo (O-2-go). He is a specialist in rent collection, arrears and evictions. No doubt, you’ll be seeing a lot of him in the next few weeks. (to the villagers) Now, let me thank you all for that glorious welcome, never have I felt so much at home in my own village. Robin would you like to say a few words.
Robin Outugo (severe and nasty) Thank you Squire Owl. I do have a few words for you all. From this point on under my stewardship, there will be no laxity and no excuses. Rents will be paid on time or Out U Go!