Musicline School Musicals
The Greatest Show Cover

The Greatest Show

by Mike Horth & Jan Porter

Pricing & Order Info.
Ideal Cast Size 44
Speaking Roles 30
Minimum Cast Size 33
Duration (minutes)50-60

Why choose this Musical?

Editable Word Doc Script available

30 speaking roles

See "Casting" tab below for full instructions.

Any number of chorus parts

CDs of Backing Tracks plus essential sound effects available

No pianist required! This CD includes ALL the Backing Tracks, Incidental Music and Special Effects in the order you need them enabling production and direction to take place without specialist musical expertise.

CD of Vocal Tracks available for learning the songs

Sing It! "Karaoke-Style" songs

*** NEW *** AudioScript
AudioScript Logo

An "Audio Book" style read-through of the entire show performed by professional voice actors. It teaches each child their lines, when to perform them and most importantly, HOW to perform them. The copy and repeat method is simply the best and quickest way to learn. The AudioScript product is available as downloadable MP3 files or as a standard Audio CD. Have a listen to a sample of the AudioScript product on the "Samples" tab below.

Full Performance Piano/Vocal Score available (Grade 5/6 Standard)

See "Script & Songs" below.

Full Production Notes

Check out the "Production Notes" in the "Script & Songs" tab below.

No problem props

FREE printable resourses

Including 3D printable moustaches! Click "FREE Resources" tab below.

Simple staging

Click "Script & Songs" below then click "Production Notes".

Instant Scenery with our digital backdrops
A different backdrop for EVERY scene change

Supplied in both a PowerPoint presentation and as individual JPG files.

School Play Backdrop
No more Scenery Painting!

Age range: Key Stage 2 Production (7-11 years)

Duration: 50 - 60 minutes

Pickle's Perambulating Palace of Performers gets their show on the road for the new season, but there is trouble ahead! Several other travelling shows are going out of business under strange circumstances and Herbert the showman is pushing his brother Professor Pickle the scientific inventor, to come up with a new act to keep the audiences happy.

Then disaster strikes: the show is sabotaged! The escapologist is trapped in his costume, the ventriloquist bound and gagged and the performing dogs are let out to chase the musical cats out of the ring. Herbert's reputation is ruined!

Could it all have something to do with Horace Heckle and Tyrus Snide? Two disreputable quack doctors seen selling their remedies in every town? And who is the fanatical Colonel Obadiah Blastpipe, creator and collector of all things mechanical? With a riotous mix of Victorian melodrama, steampunk and circus acts, the Pickle family must bring the saboteurs to justice... oh, and at the same time make sure that the show still goes on!

Scene One

Pickle's travelling show is ready to go on tour for the new season. Herbert Pickle the showman is keen to get going and gathers everyone together. We meet his family including Professor Pickle the inventor; the performers enter and move through the audience demonstrating their skills. Finally Herbert's melodramatic wife, Petunia Pickle appears after a delay and the cast sing the opening number Get This Show On The Road. The backdrop reveals brightly coloured show trailers and wagons with the new name of the show: "Pickle's Perambulating Palace of Performers".

After the song, the Pickle children, Lily and Branston, discuss the show's new name and how worried Herbert is about the future of his show, as many shows are mysteriously going out of business. Prof enters with Herbert to explain that he has been neglecting their usual scientific exhibitions because he is working on something else that will make their fortune. Unseen by the cast, a sinister figure in a dark cloak sneaks in and listens to the conversation about Prof's secret new invention. A young girl, Flossie enters asking for a job but is kindly rejected by Herbert as they have no work. The family feel sorry for her and Mrs Tickle makes her a cup of tea before she leaves. The scene ends with the sinister figure, Ratfink, very pleased with his discovery of a secret invention which he will tell the "Colonel" about.

Scene Two

Dr Heckle and Mr Snide, quack doctors, take advantage of the show in town, and set up their stall nearby. They sell their dubious medicines to a crowd who gather around them. With their helpers the Ragamuffins, they advertise their products in the song We've Got The Cure.

Ratfink enters and asks them if they would be interested in a money making scheme. Heckle and Snide jump at the chance and are invited to meet Colonel Obadiah Blastpipe at the old engine sheds, the following evening.

Scene Three

The Pickles put on their first performance: singing cats, clowns and a gladiator routine with the strongman and Prof's giant magnet.

Scene Four

Heckle and Snide arrive at the old engine sheds to find a worker struggling with an elephant off stage. Various workers (the cogs) move robotically working with metallic objects. Ratfink greets them and the wacky Colonel Obadiah Blastpipe introduces himself in the song Obadiah.

Blastpipe tells Heckle and Snide of his plan to own the most amazing show on Earth: The Great Steampunk Spectacular! He has already stolen various creatures from other shows and caused the collapse of many different circuses and travelling shows; but science is the way forward for showmen and he is still looking for some amazing inventions. He wants Heckle and Snide to sabotage the Pickle's show and steal Prof's secret invention. Heckle and Snide readily agree.

Scene Five

The Pickles stage another show. Branston begins with his flea circus which goes well, then Harry Houdidit the escapologist comes on to do his routine. However his straitjacket has been tampered with and he has to hop off stage to boos from the audience. Herbert quickly introduces the next act, the Wild West show, to be told that Buffalo Bill has been tied up backstage. Very embarrassed, Herbert introduces the ventriloquist Victor Chatterson to be told that he's been bound and gagged. Finally the dogs are let out, they chase the cats and everything descends into chaos. The show is booed offstage.

Backstage the family examine the damage, and sing The Show Goes On.

Prof enters after the song to announce that the saboteurs couldn't get into his trailer, and all his inventions are safe. To cheer up Herbert, he reveals his secret invention, but won't tell the others.

Lily and Branston find a packet label on the floor that reads "Pimple Poultice". They determine to go shopping the next day.

Scene Six

Heckle and Snide prepare their stall for the day where they are featuring moustache trainers and artificial teeth. They have given Flossie a job because she has beautiful teeth and they will use her to advertise their products.

The "Kaiser" moustache exhibition is performed with the help of the Ragamuffins then Flossie comes on to sing the ballad Artificial Teeth, aided by Heckle and Snide in the chorus. As the public start to purchase the products Flossie meets up with Lily and Branston, who tell her that their show had been sabotaged the night before. Flossie has some notion of what might have happened and says that she will come to Mrs Tickle's trailer that evening.

Scene Seven

Obadiah is holding a Dragon's Den scenario to collect more inventions. A group of prospective inventors waiting to see Obadiah, sing What An Invention.

Ratfink and Obadiah become increasingly fed up at the useless inventions on offer, then see Mrs Tickle and her "flying dusters". Mrs Tickle is dismissed angrily when they discover it is a cleaning business not an invention, but she listens to their conversations and gets evidence of their evil deeds.

Lily, Branston and Flossie enter to help Mrs Tickle who tells them that apart from stealing inventions and ruining shows, Obadiah is also capturing animals and encasing them in metal plating and chains to create a mechanical menagerie.

Flossie is particularly horrified and reveals that she is a great animal lover and fell out with her family because she wanted to start a wildlife park.

Heckle and Snide arrive to tell Obadiah that the sabotage failed to get Prof's secret invention. Obadiah is furious and plans to do the job himself.

Lily, Branston, Flossie and Mrs Tickle leave to warn Herbert about Obadiah's impending raid.

Scene Eight

The penultimate scene takes the form of a comic silent film, with no dialogue just piano music and subtitle cards.

Heckle, Snide, Ratfink and Obadiah raid Prof's trailer and try to capture him. Petunia reacts in a melodramatic style and Lily and Branston are chased by Heckle and Snide. Flossie saves them using itching powder and Lily manages to grab Obadiah's keys. Obadiah chases after them but Branston enters with Prof's giant magnet which attracts all the metal ornaments on his outfit and captures him. The police enter with Flossie's father Lord D'Enture, and the villains are arrested. Flossie runs to her father and they are reconciled.

Scene Nine

The family meet to discuss the capture of Obadiah and his cronies and it is revealed that Prof's secret invention was a bioscope which filmed the whole event. Therefore Obadiah and his gang were caught in the act with film evidence of their wrong doings and also provided the first film for the Pickle exhibition. Thanks to Prof, Pickle's show now has the most amazing scientific curiosity in the country! Their future is secure.

Flossie introduces her father to the Pickle family and tells them that he has agreed to open a wild life park at Denton Abbey (their home), in which the circus animals saved from Obadiah will be housed. The show ends with the family speculating about the wonders of silent film and inventions. The whole cast sing the final song The Greatest Show.

Speaking Roles By Number Of Lines

N.B. In the following list, the number shows how many SPOKEN lines each role has. An asterisk (*) before the characters name indicates that this character ALSO has solo or featured sung lines.

Character NameNumber of Lines
*Herbert Pickle - Showman75
*Obadiah Blastpipe - Steampunk megalomaniac47
Branston Pickle - Son, exhibits performing fleas46
Lily Pickle - Daughter, exhibits singing cats44
*Dr Horace Heckle - Disreputable quack doctor37
*Flossie Dentures - Aristocratic runaway35
*Mrs Tickle - Housekeeper33
*Tyrus Snide - Disreputable quack doctor32
*Ratfink - Obadiah's henchman29
Professor Pickle - Inventor and exhibitor of scientific curiosities25
Petunia Pickle - Wife and melodramatic artist20
Ibis - Audience and member of the public16
Mercure - Audience and member of the public16
Harry Houdidit - Escapologist13
Vagabond Charlie - Ventriloquist's dummy9
Lord D'Enture - Flossie's father7
Victor Chatterson - Ventriloquist5
Maximus Girder - Strongman5
*Donald Dufflecoat - Inventor and member of the public4
*Mrs Longlegs - Inventor and member of the public3
Flea 1 - Member of the Flea Circus3
Flea 2 - As above3
Flea 3 - As above2
Gladiator 1 - Member of the troupe2
Coco - Clown1
Cookie - Clown1
Buffalo Bill - Member of the troupe1
Gladiator 2 - Member of the troupe1
*Ragamuffin 1 - Heckle and Snide's helper1
*Cog 1 - Obadiah's minion1

Non-speaking roles: *Cats 1-3 (who also play wild animals 1-3); Dungo (member of flea circus); *Ragamuffins 2-4; Policemen 1-2; *Cogs 2-4; Scamp and Lady (performing dogs).

Suggested Cast List For 33 Actors

N.B. In the following list, the number shows how many spoken lines each role has. An asterisk (*) before the characters name indicates that this character ALSO has solo or featured sung lines.

Character NameNumber of Lines
*Herbert Pickle75
*Obadiah Blastpipe47
Branston Pickle46
Lily Pickle44
*Dr Horace Heckle37
*Flossie Dentures35
*Mrs Tickle33
*Tyrus Snide32
Professor Pickle25
Petunia Pickle20
Harry Houdidit - Also plays Policeman 113
Victor - Also plays Lord D'Enture12
Vagabond Charlie - Also plays Policeman 29
Gladiator 1 - Also plays Flea 15
Gladiator 2 - Also plays Flea 24
Maximus Girder4
*Donald Dufflecoat4
*Mrs Longlegs3
Flea 2 - Also plays Lady3
*Ragamuffin 1 - Also plays *Cog 12
Buffalo Bill1

Non-speaking roles: *Ragamuffins 2-4 (who also play *Cogs 2-3); Scamp (who also plays Dungo); *Cats 1-3 (who also play wild animals).

Resource Image

Potion Box Labels

Box labels for various potions by Heckle and Snide. We've provided JPG files, transparent PNG files and Vector format files.
Download .zip
Resource Image

Printable Moustaches

Image files for printing. We've provided JPG files, transparent PNG files and Vector format files.
Download .zip
Resource Image

Good and Bad Smiles

Good and Bad Smiles artwork.
Download .zip
Resource Image

False Teeth

Images of false teeth for printing. We've provided JPG files and transparent PNG files.
Download .zip
Resource Image

Silent Movie Slides

Download .zip
Resource Image

High Resolution Cover Artwork

High Resolution Cover Artwork for printing programmes etc.
Download .jpg
Resource Image

3D Printable Moustaches

3D printable files of 4 moustache styles.
Download .zip

5 Star Rating

The Greatest Show

"Amazing went really well. Yr6 loved it"
Mrs Maguire, St. Paul’s Nelson, Nelson

5 Star Rating

The Greatest Show

"Colouful, energetic and packed full of show stopping songs that your pupils will be singing in the playground!"
Denise White, Retired Head Teacher

Add your review

FREE "Sing it!" app!

Get our FREE "Karaoke-Style" Sing it! app on iOS and Android and enjoy many, many FREE Sing it! tracks.

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We now allow School / Purchase orders for orders which include downloads. However, please be aware that a member of the Musicline staff will manually authorise your order which can take up to 48 hours (or longer if we need further information from you). If you require the downloads to be instantly available, please pay by credit/debit card or PayPal on the last step of the checkout.

Product Name Product Price Qty
Script (Non-editable PDF) £10.00
Script (Editable Word Doc) £12.00
PDF & Word Doc Scripts £15.00
PDF Performance Piano Score (Grade 5/6 Standard) £12.00
MP3 Backing Tracks £10.00
MP3 Vocal Tracks £10.00
MP3 AudioScriptWhat's this? £10.00
Sing it! (PC)What's this? £10.00
Sing it! (MAC)What's this? £10.00
Backdrops (PowerPoint and JPGs)What's this? £15.00


The traditional means of getting your items. Most of our works are RING BOUND books or CDs of recorded music.

U.K. schools can order posted items with a school order number.
This facility is available at the end of the ordering process.

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Non U.K. posted items are sent express tracked airmail delivery anywhere in the world. Please allow 14 days for all international deliveries.

Product Name Product Price Qty
Script £14.00
Pack of 5 Scripts £35.00
Pack of 10 Scripts £55.00
Performance Piano Score (Grade 5/6 Standard) £16.00
CD of Backing Tracks £13.00
CD of Vocal Tracks £13.00
CD of AudioScriptWhat's this? £13.00
Sing it! CD-ROM (PC & MAC)What's this? £15.00
CD-ROM of BackdropsWhat's this? £19.00

  Performing Licence: valid for 12 months from date of issue for THIS musical only

The Musicline Performing Licence covers you to perform this musical.

It is illegal to perform ANY published musical without the appropriate licence which is only available from the publisher of that musical.

'Blanket' licences which you may have DO NOT cover the performing of published musicals.

A performing licence is required for EACH PERFORMANCE.

Size of your School Size Price per Performance Price Number of Performances Number
200+ Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £30.00
150-199 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £25.00
100-149 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £20.00
50-99 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £15.00
0-49 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £10.00
Youth Theatre (any size) £50.00

  Copying Licence: valid for 12 months from date of issue for THIS musical only

The Musicline Copying Licence covers you to copy ALL of any of the items you buy for this show either posted or downloaded.

This Licence is only available from the publisher of the copyright material.

It is illegal to reproduce or share ANY published material without the appropriate licence.

Size of your School Size Price of Licence Price Qty Qty
200+ Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £30.00
150-199 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £25.00
100-149 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £20.00
50-99 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £15.00
0-49 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £10.00
Youth Theatre (any size) £50.00

  Video Licence: valid for 12 months from date of issue for THIS musical only

The Musicline Video Licence allows you to record your performances and sell the DVDs without royalty payments applying. The Video Licence is given FREE OF CHARGE if you order a Performing Licence and a Copying Licence at the same time. Only fill in the box below if you wish to purchase a video licence separately.

Size of your School Size Price of Licence Price Qty Qty
200+ Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £30.00
150-199 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £25.00
100-149 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £20.00
50-99 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £15.00
0-49 Pupils on Total School Roll (Ofsted Figures) £10.00
Youth Theatre (any size) £50.00