Conceived by Mary Hall Surface and David Maddox. Written by Mary Hall Surface. Lyrics by Mary Hall Surface and David Maddox. Music by David Maddox.
The Europeans who settled in the Appalacian mountains brought with them their stories of hapless Jack of English tales, the antics of Irish fairies and the dark journeys of the Brothers Grimm. These tales found new life in the light, the ghosts and the harsh realities of those mountains. Sing Down the Moon is a tapestry woven of many threads—three Appalachian Jack tales, one animal tale and two wonder (or fairy) tales. The equally rich musical heritage of the region was the inspiration for the original music so integral to the retelling of the tales. Although drawn from different traditions, each story follows a young person (or pig!) on that most difficult and essential journey—growing up.
Enjoy this award-winning 2 CD set—hear the entire show!
Jack and the Wonder Bean
A poor mountain boy trades his cow for a magic bean. When a wondrous bean tree sprouts up, Jack climbs it only to find a boy-eating giant and his scheming wife. Jack steals the giant's prize music, and his coin-covered quilt for the money. Then, barely escaping the giant's wrath, Jack chops down the bean tree. Jack and his momma now "have all the money and music they need to live happy."
A poor orphan girl becomes a servant to a grieving farmer after his kind wife dies. The girl, who patches her only dress with cat-hides, is called Catskins. Helped by the wife's ghost, Catskins tricks the farmer and escapes with a new dress, sash and ribbons. She finds a new home with a fancy lady and her daughter. They try to keep Catskins from going to the Rich Boy's party. But Catskins goes and charms the Rich Boy, who gives her his ring. Later, Catskins sends the ring to the Rich Boy in a cake she bakes as a sign of her love. The jealous daughter then tries to steal the Rich Boy for herself. But he finds his true love when he looks into Catskins eyes.
Jack's First Job
Jack gets a job by claiming he can do anything. But what Jack cannot do is make it home with his pay. Jack is paid differently each day, and despite his momma's patient instruction, Jack just can't get it right. He puts milk in his pocket, wears his hat filled with butter, dips a puppy in the creek, leads a glass jug home on a rope, and tries to put a donkey in a sack. But the silly sight of Jack makes the king's daughter laugh for the first time in two years. So the King gives Jack two wagons of gold and Jack returns home to his momma a rich man at last.
The Sow and her Three Pigs
A mother pig tries to prepare her three daughters for life out in the world. But Martha builds her house of chips and clay, and Mary decides on chips and bark. Only Nancy wisely builds her house of steal and iron where she will be safe from the hungry fox. When Momma dies, Martha and Mary soon fall prey to the fox. But Nancy's house cannot be "fiddy-faddied" down. Although the sly fox tricks Nancy into letting him in, Nancy in turn tricks the fox into hiding in a giant boiling pot. Soon the fox is Nancy's dinner and she lives happily ever after.
Jack of Hearts and King Marock
Jack beats the mysterious Marock in a card game, but when he tries to claim his winnings, Marock disappears. A brewer leads Jack to a pond where Marock's daughters turn to swans. Jack falls instantly in love with the youngest, Featherflight. She magically takes him to Marock. With Featherflight's help, Jack completes three tasks designed by Marock to trick him. When Marock learns he has been deceived, Featherflight and Jack use their magic and bravery to escape. Then Jack forgets Featherflight when he breaks his promise not to let anyone kiss hime when he returns home. Just as Jack is about to marry another girl, Featherflight remids Jack of their love and they are happily reuninted.
The Enchanted Tree
A girl is left all alone in the dark woods when wolves kill her father. As she cries beneath a strong tree, a crow comforts her and wins her trust with a magic key. Soon the two care deeply for one another. The crow asks her if she will journey to find a plain gold ring among sparkling jewels at the cottage of an old woman who, in fact, is an evil witch. The brave girl captures the ring but returns to find that her crow has vanished. As she leans sadly against her tree, it transforms into a handsome prince. He had been under the old woman's spell and was allowed to turn into a crow for one hour each day to seek the love and kindness that would set him free. The prince asks the brave, kind girl to be his bride, and she happily agrees.