Thirteen-year-old Lady Elizabeth Tudor is not happy. Her annoying father [the infamous King Henry VIII] insists she hold auditions to find a fool who can make her laugh. But Elizabeth doesn’t much feel like laughing; a dreadful plague is sweeping through the city; the peasants are revolting; her eight-year-old half-brother has more power than her; her father and his newest wife want her married off; and, worst of all, she cannot shake her unresolved questions about the death of her mother. To ask is treason.
Enter Tictoc; a twelve-year-old fame-seeking dancer in conspicuous modern clothing. He speaks a bizarre lingo, possesses an outright ignorance of royal protocol and is painfully desperate for the princess’s approval – her influence will help him go viral! His audition – full of awkwardly-executed viral dance moves – is a disaster. Elizabeth is not amused. She threatens execution, just as the revolting peasants storm the castle! The room goes into lockdown, and Tictoc is now auditioning for his life.
With danger all around, Elizabeth cries for her missing mother, and Tictoc reveals his own secret: he is from the year 2022! He is the proof Elizabeth desperately seeks: if he is here, her mother might still be alive; dancing through the cracks of time.
Fast-paced, witty, and surprisingly touching, Dance Plague is an intelligent work for 11-14 year olds who love internet culture, unconventional princesses, and just a bit of magic. It is both a moving exploration of grief, and a joyful celebration of the ones who live passionately; who dance to the beat of their own drum; the ones born ahead of time; the ones who change history. It is a play that asks what we should let go of, and hold onto.
And it concludes with a spectacular dance party to rival The Dancing Plague of 1518!