The Titanic Class Play or Assembly
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Cast size 30 - easily reduced as explained in production notes.
Duration: 15 minutes
This Titanic assembly or class play examines what happened on the Titanic's maiden cruise and looks at why it was such a shocking tragedy. Suitable for upper Key Stage II children (plus) this assembly combines delivery of information and drama.
As I was writing this script, I was struck by how many other 'related projects' could accompany this story - and I have supplied a list at the end of the script (including:the history of shipwrecks, history of the other 'giant' ocean cruisers - it was seeing the Queen Elizabeth at Southampton and then visiting the local maritime museum that inspired me to write this script; famous naval battles, history of the Royal Navy etc; plus of course tying in with The Tudors: Raising of Tudor Rose, Armada; with the Anglo Saxons: Sutton Hoo; role of the navy in Second World War - to name but a few). I thought these might particularly appeal and provide interest to 'reluctant readers' - dare I mention boys?
Since writing this script, the fate of the Costa Concordia has hit the headlines - this ship hitting rocks off the Italian mainland on Friday January 13th 2012 - turning everyone's minds to the ill-fated Titanic, just months before the centenary of its sinking April 15 1912. I have produced a FREE comparative study of these two events plus an extended version of this Titanic Assembly - entitled Titanic Assembly plus Costa Concordia, which adds a brief section about the Costa Concordia (at the end of the original script).
Other scripts on maritime theme:
· Smugglers Song Assembly – adaptation of Rudyard Kipling poem
· Ocean Assembly
· Mary Rose Assembly
· Smugglers, Pirates and Shipwrecks available either separately @£5.99 each or as a set of 3 for 2 @ £11.99 (plus free Pirates Quiz).
· ‘Jawesome Jury’: Sharks versus Humans!
First sample text:
Music: Theme Music from the Titanic movie or ‘Nearer My God To Thee’
Child 1: April 15 2012 marks the centenary of the sinking of The Titanic.
Child 2: On April 10 1912 the world’s largest and most luxurious passenger steamship, The Titanic, set off on its maiden voyage
Child 3: From Southampton to New York City
Child 4: Carrying two thousand, two hundred and twenty eight people on board.
Child 5: Just four days into the journey, disaster struck.
Child 6: At twenty minutes to midnight, April 14th, the Titanic struck an iceberg
Child 7: And sank just two hours and forty minutes later.
Child 8: There were just seven hundred and five survivors, less than a third of those who started the journey.
Child 9: Only three hundred and six bodies were recovered.
Child 10: News of the tragedy sent shock waves around the world. Questions were asked.
Child 1: How could this catastrophe have befallen a ship that had been called unsinkable?
Child 2: Why were there not enough lifeboats to rescue everyone?
Child 3: Why were the lifeboats not filled?
Child 4: Why did it take so long to launch the lifeboats?
Child 5: Why were the numbers of survivors so much higher for first and second class passengers than for third class passengers?
Child 6: These are just some of the questions we will be attempting to answer today, as we look back to what happened on that fateful night, April 14th 1912.
Child 7: But before examining the fate of those unfortunate people, let’s take a look at this giant of a ship.
(Children hold up model of The Titanic)
Child 8: The Titanic was the largest passenger steamship in the world.
Child 9: It was eight hundred and eighty two feet and nine inches long – that is approximately the length of forty buses!
Child 10: It was one hundred and eighty five feet high – that is the height of a seventeen floor tower block!
Child 1: There were twenty nine cold-fired boilers, providing steam to power the three massive propellers.
Child 2: It could hold up to three thousand, five hundred and forty seven passengers and crew.
Child 3: But it only had twenty lifeboats – with room to take one thousand one hundred and seventy eight people – approximately half the number that was aboard the Titanic.
Child 4: With sixteen water-tight compartments, the Titanic was thought to be practically unsinkable. Even with a giant hole, resulting in two compartments being flooded, the Titanic could have stayed afloat.
Child 5: In the event, five flooded so the Titanic sank.
Child 6: Proving that the Titanic was not unsinkable, after all.
Child 7: Unfortunately, a false belief in the safety of the ship made many people reluctant to leave in the lifeboats. The first lifeboats to go were nowhere near filled to capacity – far more people could have been saved.
Child 8: The first and second class passengers fared a lot better than those in the third class.
Child 9: Apart from having enjoyed such luxury as a swimming pool, squash courts and gymnasium
Child 10: They were also the nearest to the lifeboats.
Second Sample Text
(Two look-outs stand to attention, saluting their captain)
Fleet: Frederick Fleet reporting for duty, sir!
Lee: Reginald Lee, ready for duty, sir!
(Captain Smith salutes them back)
Captain Smith: (Aside) It’s not much fun being on look out in the freezing cold, and they have been told to be particularly alert for icebergs. We’ve had several messages warning us so we need to proceed with extreme caution. (Yawning) Ah, well. They know where to find me. I’m off to bed!
(Exit Captain Smith)
Fleet: (Looking in direction of Captain Smith) All right for some! What I wouldn’t give to swap with him!
Lee: Quiet man! We have to be particularly vigilant tonight. You know what we’ve been told from those other ships – about heavy pack ice, icebergs and the like. And as it’s such a calm night, we’ll have no advance warning of any icebergs ahead – no waves hitting their rock hard surfaces and no splash to hear or see. I don’t know about you but I’m feeling just a little bit nervous!
Fleet: Oh, relax, Reginald. There’s nothing to worry about. Let me tell you about
Lee: (Gasping and pointing into the distance) Look! What on earth is that?
Fleet: Is what?
Lee: Look! Over there! Don’t you see it?
Fleet: (Gasping) You’re right! Quick! Pass me the phone! ‘Iceberg , right ahead! I repeat, iceberg, right ahead’
(Lee rings the warning bell three times, and both exit in a state of panic)
(Enter First officer, William Murdoch, clutching phone to his ear and John Phillips with radio equipment)
Murdoch: (Picking up phone, calmly at first) Yes, first officer, William Murdoch, here on the bridge. (Sudden change in tone) What? An iceberg, did you say? How many yards ahead? Just 500? Oh my lord, how are we going to turn in time? (Shouts out) Hard-a-starboard! Hard-a-starboard! Yes, yes, keep her going! (Loud scraping noise) Oh no! That’s the hull buckling! We’ve hit! That felt like serious damage!
(Enter Captain Smith and Thomas Andrews)
Captain Smith: What’s going on? What was that jolt I just felt?
Murdoch: That was us hitting an iceberg, sir! We managed to avoid a head on collision but I fear the iceberg has caused severe damage to the ship’s starboard side.
Andrews: We had better go and have a look, sir! I built this ship to withstand two compartments being breached, but that sounded a lot worse!
Captain Smith: (To Murdoch) Make sure everyone stays calm whilst Mr. Andrews and I take a look at the damage. Most passengers will still be asleep but for the rest, we don’t want any unnecessary panic.
(Exit Captain Smith and Thomas Andrews)
Murdoch: I’ve got a bad feeling about this. I hope those two get a move on. (Turning to John Phillips) Come on, Phillips! Any luck in contacting other ships?
Phillips: It’s not a good time, sir! I’m afraid everyone’s switched off as it’s after midnight.
(Enter Captain Smith and Thomas Andrews)
Captain Smith: Bad news, I’m afraid, gentlemen. Five compartments have flooded and as you know, the ship will stay afloat only with the loss of two. How long do we have, Mr. Andrews?
Andrews: Just one and a half hours, sir.
Captain Smith: (To Phillips) Are there any ships anywhere near us?
Phillips: I’m sending out messages letting other ships know our position and a CQD – Come Quick Danger!
Phillips: Ssshh! Wait! I hear something! Yes! Yes! Come at once!
Murdoch: Who was that?
Phillips: The Carpathia, sir!
Murdoch: Wonderful news! We’re saved!
Phillips: Well, it’s not that wonderful, I’m afraid. You see, the Carpathia is fifty eight miles away and even at full speed, will not get to us for another three hours.
Captain Smith: But we’ve only got one and a half hours!
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