The Pied Piper of Hamelin, written by Robert Ketton, is a fun, fresh and exciting adaptation of the original poem of the same name written by Robert Browning. When a town becomes overrun by rats there is only one solution; to employ the assistance of a stranger who claims he can rid the town of these pesky rats. He plays a magical tune on his pipe, but when the mayor refuses to reward the piper for his efforts the townsfolk discover that not only rats are drawn to this magical tune.
Robert Ketton has taken a 19th century poem and created from it a piece of theatre that retains its nostalgic charm whilst introducing it afresh to a young, enthusiastic and modern audience.
Break students into groups of four or five and get each group to come up with five tableaux that tell the story of The Pied Piper of Hamelin. When it is time for the groups to present their finished work, get other members of the class to ‘caption' the freeze frames, as though they were to appear in a newspaper.
Get the class to imagine that instead of taking away their children as punishment, the Pied Piper brings a lawsuit against the townsfolk for breaking their promise. In the class, assemble a jury, a judge, a prosecutor, a defence lawyer, a mayor, some key townsfolk and the Pied Piper. Hold a mock court trial where witnesses will give evidence for or against the townsfolk. After all witnesses have been heard and final arguments made, the jury must decide whether the town must pay the money, and whether any other punishment should be issued against the mayor or the townsfolk in general.