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Dude, Where's My Lungs?


A Musical Play about Smoking

Bad Wolf Press provides fun and easy musical plays for K-9 classrooms

*  Bring your curriculum, your classroom to life
*  Absolutely no musical talent/ability needed!
*  Catchy melodies, dumb jokes, interesting stories
*  Everything you need at one low price
CLICK HERE to see Common Core Standards & Vocabulary for this play.
CLICK HERE to read Teacher Reviews for this play.

 

Casting

Flexible casting from 11-40 students.
Use as many Ad Executives, Accountants, etc. as desired.
One student can easily play several roles if needed. Note that
all roles can be played by either boys or girls.

Script

This is the first one-third of the script:

CHARACTERS:

CEO of Acme Tobacco Company
Johnson
CFO
McAlister
Advertising Executives
Chairman of the Board
Chairman's Flunkies
Researchers
Teenagers
Accountants
Naysayers
Media Consultants
Individual Actors out of Character (10)
and a CHORUS comprised of all students who are not playing roles on
stage at the time.

Song 1:    

(Introductory music begins. The cast comes out, possibly marching around
or through the audience. They carry three stage decorations: a banner or
large sign, a huge cigarette, and a giant pair of lungs on a stick. The sign
reads: "Acme Tobacco Company." The banner is hung at the back of the
stage and the cigarette and lungs are placed on the sides. The CAST sits
down, or exits, and the four members attending the Acme Tobacco
Company's Executive Meeting step forward. They are all dressed in suits,
or similar corporate attire. They can carry briefcases or notebooks or Palm
Pilots or some such managerial material. They can stand or just sit on chairs
facing the audience or settle around a table. If they do sit down at a table,
they should all be facing the audience. The music stops.)

CEO: Let's get this quarterly meeting of Acme Tobacco Company started.
Now who's going to take notes?

(EVERYONE looks at JOHNSON)

JOHNSON: Me? Ah, come on. Why do I always have to take the notes?

CEO: Because you're the only one here who doesn't know how to use email.

CFO: And you're completely disorganized‹and you've set your office on
fire three times this year.

CEO: So there's no chance any record of this meeting will survive
to become part of a class-action suit. You're essential to our
success, Johnson.

JOHNSON (happy): Gee, thanks.

CEO: Now down to business. Have you looked at our profits for the
last quarter?

CFO: They're holding steady.

CEO: That's not good enough! Shareholders expect better. The Chairman
of the Board expects better. McAlister, tell us about advertising.

MCALISTER: I've asked our ad agency to make a report. They're
right outside.

CEO: Bring 'em in!

(MCALISTER walks a few steps toward the AD EXECUTIVES and
beckons them in. THEY enter.)

AD EXEC #1: Ladies, gentlemen---The good news is that you tobacco
companies have made cigarettes the most heavily advertised product in
the world.

(TOBACCO BOARD cheers, gives each other high fives, maybe chants
"We're Number One."

AD EXEC #2: You SHOULD be proud of yourselves. You put your
money where your mouth is: 12 billion dollars in the last year in the
U.S. alone.

AD EXEC #3: We are spending more than 30 million dollars of your
money every single day just to land new smokers.

CFO: Excellent.

AD EXEC #1: Yes. But here's the problem: it seems no matter how much
you spend, no matter how cleverly we try to sell teenagers on cigarettes,
we can't get more than twenty percent of them to smoke.

CEO: Twenty percent?!

MCALISTER: With over a thousand smokers dying every day in the U.S.,
it means we're barely staying even.

CEO: How can this be?

AD EXEC #2: It turns out---and this defies everything we believe in
advertising---that teens can think for themselves.

ENTIRE TOBACCO BOARD: What?!!

AD EXEC #3: Exactly. Frankly, we're puzzled.

AD EXECS #1 AND 2: Why would they want to do that?


Song 2:    

AD EXECS:
Thinking for yourself is overrated 
Thinking for yourself is just too hard
So why make such a fuss?
When they can listen just to us!
Thinking's just a fad
Wouldn't they rather trust an ad?

Thinking for yourself gives you a headache
Thinking for yourself can give you zits
Our ad campaign's alive
But we¹re just fooling one in five
Thinking is to blame
Why won't they stop,
And come play our game.

Why or why do they mistrust us?
Why don't they believe our every word?
Why or why do they mistrust us?
Manipulation is becoming...a dirty word!

AD EXECS AND CHORUS:
Thinking for yourself can wreck the system
Thinking for yourself can make us broke
There's billions we have spent
And they are making just a dent
Thinking takes some pride
And that is why we have never tried...
Thinking for ourselves.

A FEW CHORUS MEMBERS:
Thinking takes some pride

AD EXECS: And that's why we have never tried.

(AD EXECS exit.)

CEO: This is depressing. We've got to find more teenagers.

CFO: Absolutely. Ninety percent of adult smokers started in their teens.

MCALISTER: Well, we'd better come up with a solution before the
Chairman of the Board hears about it.

CHAIRMAN (yelling from off stage): Where are those quarterly numbers!

CEO: Too late! It's the CHAIRMAN! Everybody hide!

(THEY all run around and hide in silly places, under table or chairs and
behind trash cans. CHAIRMAN enters with TWO FLUNKIES.)

CHAIRMAN: What are you all doing?

CEO: Oh, good morning, sir. We were, uh, just brainstorming.

CHAIRMAN: Brainstorming? On the floor? How about you, Johnson?
You get stuck taking notes again?

JOHNSON (proudly) Yes, sir! Every word, sir!

CHAIRMAN: Let me see.

(JOHNSON hands him his note pad.)

CHAIRMAN: Hmmn. What's this say?

JOHNSON (looking at notes): Oh, I wrote that as I was diving behind
the trash can. It says, "Too late! It's the Chairman. Everybody hide."

CFO: That was a metaphor, sir.

CHAIRMAN: A metaphor?

CFO: Never mind.

CHAIRMAN (looking at JOHNSON's notes): Hmmn. This twenty
percent is a problem.

(puts notes aside, addresses no one in particular)

You see, the key to our business can be summarized in one word.

MCALISTER: Ooh. I love these games. Let me go first. Let's see. One
word. Key to our business. Is it...cafeteria?

CEO: Cafeteria?

MCALISTER: I LOVE the cafeteria. Have you tried the onion soup? It's
the best.

JOHNSON: My turn, my turn. How about, "corporate greed"?

CFO: That's two words.

CHAIRMAN: Silence! The key to our business is...addiction.
Nicotine addiction keeps us in the black, gentlemen. And I don't
mean just lungs.
(HE looks at his FLUNKIES)
That was a joke.
(FLUNKIES laugh loudly, the BOARD joins in, then
CHAIRMAN silences them instantly with a hand gesture)
Here's all you need to know. FLUNKY!

FLUNKY #1 (by rote): Although seventy percent of smokers want to quit,
only five to fifteen percent succeed.

CEO: That's great, sir.

CHAIRMAN: It gets better. (claps his hands)

FLUNKY #2: Recent research shows that adolescent exposure to
nicotine can modify crucial brain development.

CFO: What's that mean, sir?

CHAIRMAN: It means the adolescent brain is more sensitive to nicotine
than an adult brain: so...teen smokers grow dependent on cigarettes faster.

MCALISTER: Stunning, sir.

CHAIRMAN: So you see, we just have to catch them when they're young.
Do whatever it takes.
(CHAIRMAN pulls out a lobster bib and puts in on;
FLUNKIES pull out fishing poles)
Then you reel them in for life.

Song 3:    

CHAIRMAN: 
Get 'em started
That's all it took

FLUNKIES:
Cast the line out
And then they're hooked.

CHAIRMAN:
Little nibble
And soon they're cooked...mmmm

FLUNKIES:
Let's go fishing
And get 'em hooked.

CHAIRMAN and FLUNKIES:
Go catch them when they're young
Don't go throwin' 'em back
Addicted in just weeks
and then they're trapped in our sack
Though most try to quit only five percent can
The rest can be dressed for our hot frying pan.

CHAIRMAN:
Let's go trolling
The fishing's great

FLUNKIES:
Get the napkins
I've got the bait.

CHAIRMAN:
They feel immortal
And overlooked

FLUNKIES:
We'll give them something
And get them hooked.

CHAIRMAN, FLUNKIES, CHORUS:
Go catch them when they're young
Don't go throwin' 'em back
Addicted in just weeks
And then they're trapped in our sack
Though most try to quit only five percent can
The rest can be dressed for our hot frying pan.

CHORUS
(while CHAIRMAN and FLUNKIES dance):
Doo bah doo bah Doo bee doo bah doo

FLUNKIES:
Cast the line out
And then they're hooked.

CHORUS:
Shoo bee doo bah Doo be doo bah doo

CHAIRMAN, FLUNKIES, CHORUS:
Let's go fishing
And get ¹em hooked.

CHAIRMAN (after song): Don't make me have to come back in
here again...or I'll come fishing for YOU.

(CHAIRMAN and FLUNKIES exit.)

CEO: Okay, we'd better come up with some ideas quick.

CFO: This is tough. Remember the good old days when teens would just
do whatever their friends did?

MCALISTER: Yeah. Peer pressure is our best friend.

JOHNSON: I thought dogs were our best friend.

MCALISTER: We're talking about selling cigarettes, Johnson.

JOHNSON: Dogs can sell cigarettes?

CEO: You're wasting your time, McAlister.

CFO: Let's call in the Public Relations Research Team. I bet they
can come up with something.

CEO: Brilliant idea. Go get them.
(CFO leaves)
These folks proved in our own labs that monkeys that SMOKE
live longer than monkeys that DON'T smoke.

JOHNSON: That's awesome! We need to ask how they got
monkeys to start smoking in the first place.

MCALISTER: Johnson...

JOHNSON: I mean, how do monkeys even buy cigarettes? I didn't
think they were tall enough to see over the counter of a convenience store.

MCALISTER: Johnson, the monkeys didn't buy cigarettes. They were
tied down in the lab and forced to inhale cigarette smoke.

JOHNSON: Oh. Can we do that with teens?

CFO (entering): Here they are, our Public Relations Research Team.

CEO: Excellent.

RESEARCHER #1: What you have here is a perception problem.

RESEARCHER #2: Our research reveals that most people, including
teens, think smoking is a smelly, ugly habit.

CFO: Nonsense.

MCALISTER: Nothing an industrial strength scrubbing or acid bath
can't handle.

RESEARCHER #1: Exactly. So what we need to do is to change
the perception.

RESEARCHER #2: When people started worrying about the health
effects of smoking, we ran the monkey trials.

JOHNSON: How DID you prove that smoking monkeys live longer
than non-smoking monkeys?

RESEARCHER #1: It's all in the fine print.

RESEARCHER #2: We just "forgot" to feed the non-smoking
monkeys. They didn't last more than a week.

JOHNSON: Wow. Do you think THAT would work on teens?

CEO: Johnson, we don't want to KILL our customers. At least not
before they can buy our cigarettes for a few decades.

RESEARCHER #2: We've done our own research on this
perception problem about cigarettes.

RESEARCHER #1: Once our findings are published, we think
smoking will gain a whole new attractiveness.

RESEARCHER #2: We've done a scientific survey of over half a
dozen smokers in the cafeteria...

MCALISTER: I LOVE the cafeteria!

JOHNSON: Wait. How many people did you talk to?

RESEARCHER #2: Six. They were carefully chosen.

JOHNSON: Can you do a survey with just six people?

RESEARCHER #1: Sure...and the results are just what we were looking for.

Song 4:    

RESEARCHERS: 
We've done the research
Our surveys agree
When your hair and your eyelashes
Smell like smoke and moldy ashes
You'll triple-up your popularity.

We've done the research
Our studies are clear
Tarnished yellow teeth look better
You just need the perfect sweater
A smoker's wrinkled skin won't show for years.

Woh oh oh oh
The public overreacts
Woh oh oh oh
They just don't have our facts.

ONE MEMBER of CHORUS (holding a clipboard -very official- speaks):
Eighty percent of Americans surveyed think cigarette burns on a sofa are
an important expression of postmodern home decorating.

RESEARCHERS:
We've done the research
Statistics don't lie
Every smoker will assure you
Awful breath should not deter you
Just keep a million Tic Tacs standing by.

We've done the research
The verdict is plain
That all smokers have fun more ways
You can see them outside doorways
Just jokin' round on sidewalks in the rain.

RESEARCHERS and CHORUS:
Woh oh oh oh
The public overreacts
Woh oh oh oh
They just don't have our facts.

ONE MEMBER of CHORUS (spoken): Research says, without a full
ashtray, a home is not a home.

RESEARCHERS:
They just don't have our facts.

(This concludes the first one-third of the script.)

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