Select Page

The Current Place-based Script

 Moscow – Based  Peace Child

by  David Woollcombe

Songs & Lyrics by David Gordon                             Based on The Peace Book by Bernard Benson

Location: Anywhere!  In 2050, the story imagines Peace Day being celebrated in towns and villages across the world. This script was created for a theatre company in Moscow: the challenge for you is to imagine your young people starting it in your community. You have to re-invent the story, using local names for your characters, your language, your president, and your ideas for how the story might happen.

Stage Setting: Bare Stage – screen at back; Peace Child symbol projected on the screen;

Cast: For this version, the 8 x Named Characters have Russian names: Marina, Vanya, Nina, Yegor, Nadia, Misha, Zhenya, Sasha. For your production, you will need to re-name them with names local to your country; there other male and female performers (minimum 8 – no maximum) – who dance, sing and play the Story-teller, Professor, President, Aides, Secretary-General, Diplomats etc. If possible, there are also, 4 x young children who sit with the Story-teller.


Scene ONE:  Peace Day  2050:

SONG  ONE:  Come into my Joy / As I go through my years / Peace Day 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Lights go down. Screen goes dark. Wait until the audience fall completely silent. Beat – then Opening Chord: Peace Child symbol with title: PEACE DAY 2050 comes up on screen. A spotlight splits the darkness & picks out the figure of the Girl singer down stage Right. She comes forward and sings:

Girl:                Come into my joy!

A second spotlight picks out the Boy singer, down stage Left: 

Boy:                Come into my pain!

They move towards each, other, reaching out and joining hands: 

Girl:                Come – you be a friend of mine!

Boy:                I’ll be the same! (repeat x 2)

Girl:                As I go through my years with many thousand tears

I never see my guiding light

The clouds in front of me won’t ever let me see

I’ve grown so weary of the night

Boy:                I’ve tried so many times to read between the lines

But the words keep turning round

And a thousand fears keep ringing in my ears

And I’m so weary of the sound –

Girl & Boy:     So give me Peace Enough,

Peace Enough, Peace Enough!

So give me peace enough, for peace of mind

Everything’s coming up sunshine! (x2)

They come forward, clapping their hands as the house lights come up and the Chorus / Company dance in down the aisles, singing and greeting the audience: 

Company:       Come into my joy.  Come into my pain.

Come you’ll be a friend of mine

I’ll be the same   (x2)

The dancers process on to the stage and perform the spirited, upbeat Peace Day dance: 

Company:        (Majestic) Peace Day, Peace Day we all say

Happy world.  Happy Day

Wear a leaf and show the way

Celebrating this peace day


Peace Day Peace Day we all say

Happy world, holiday,

Wear a leaf and show the way

Celebrating this Peace Day!


Peace Day, Peace Day – sing and dance

It will be a big romance

People of the world as one

Peace Day, Peace Day has begun.


Celebrations, jubilations

Laughter, shouting – lots of fun.

Singing dancing – take your partner

Celebrations have begun.


Celebrations, jubilations

Laughter shouting – join the fun!

Smiling dancing – take your partner

Happiness for everyone!


Peace Enough for all mankind

Healthy body, happy mind

Faith and love, the world as one –

Peace Day, Peace Day has begun.


Come into my joy.  Come into my pain.

Come you’ll be a friend of mine

I’ll be the same   X 2

Come into my joy.  Come into my pain.

(Ralentando)  Come you’ll be a friend of mine.

I’ll be the same.

They hold a tableau for applause then turn and fall into each other’s arms, wishing each other:

ALL:     Happy Peace Day!  Happy Peace Day!!

Into this melee walks the Story-teller, a mystical figure in a long, colourful cloak. S/he stands unnoticed at the back of the throng, until one of the child members of the company notices him/her:

Child  1        Hey Look!! It’s the Story-teller!

They all stop and turn, amazed – happy!  Then they all surround and greet him/her:

Company:     Happy Peace Day!  Happy Peace Day Story-teller!!

Storyteller     Thank you, thank you – and Happy Peace Day to all of you!  (They applaud!)

Welcome to Peace Day 2056 here in Moscow!!   So – can anyone tell me what Time is it?

Everyone consults their watches;

Company:     (variously):  ‘bout ten past seven-forty…. Yeah! 19.40 – just gone half-past seven…. Etc.

ST                 No – what TIME is it? – what stage in Human Development are we in right now?  Is it the Stone Age?

Company:     No!!

ST                 A Time of War?

Company:     No!!

ST                 What Time then?

Marina:         A Time of Peace!

Vanya:          A Time of Collaboration!

Youth 3:       A Time of Harmony between Humanity and the Environment!

Youth 4:       Green Peace Time!

ST                 A good time to be alive then?

Youth 5:       The Best!  (All nod and cheer in agreement!)

Youth 6:       Think back to your childhood, Storyteller: could you imagine a Palestinian football team beating Tel Aviv at a Cup Final in Eilat and being cheered by Israeli fans in Jerusalem?!

Youth 7:       Or a world in which climate change is a distant memory.

Youth 8:       Or one where they closed down the UN Refugee agency because there are no more refugees;

Youth 9:       And the World Food programme!

Marina:         Did they close that?

Youth 9:       Yeah!  No more hungry people!

ST                 That’s incredible, isn’t it. So – no more challenges for your generation?

Vanya:          Oh sure!!  School’s are still shite!

Youth 3:       – and the Health Service is close to collapse

Youth 4:       – and we’ve still got too many people driving around in stinky old petrol cars

Youth 5:       And aeroplanes.

Youth 6:       Youth unemployment is still way too high!

Youth 7:       Too many jobs are done by robots and computers

Youth 8:       And there’s way too many places where there’s not enough fresh water!

Youth 9:       And the rich are still too rich –

Marina:         – and the poor are still too poor

Vanya:          Yeah! Inequality sucks.

ST                 Sounds tough!

Vanya:          But nothing like as tough as what you guys had to sort out in the early part of the century.

Youth 3:       I can’t believe that people of our age were actually told to go and fight and kill people!

ST                 That was what wars are all about!

Youth 4:       What’s worth dying for?!

Youth 5:       Thank God we have peace is all I say.

ST                 Thank God indeed.  But people helped. My generation helped, didn’t we?  You still want to hear the story of the Peace Child do you?!

Company      (Uproariously)  YES! – Please!  Go on! – Let’s do it!!

Youth 6:       We know all the parts!

Youth 7:       And some of these guys won’t have seen it. (pointing at the younger children & audience)

Youth 8:       They have to learn it like we did.

ST                 So – you really do all know all the lines?

Youth 7:       We could do this story in our sleep!

ST                 So – let’s choose who’s going to play which part? We’ll do it in the old way, in a circle. That’s right!  Give me the basket…                                                           MUSIC

The cast kneel in a circle around the Story-teller. One of them hands him a basket full of coloured leaves with the character’s names on them. Quietly, they all sing as the Storyteller scatters the leaves – which they either catch or pick up from the floor.

SONG  TWO:  Now if you close your eyes 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Now if you close your eyes, you can be what you want,

And if you close your mind, you can feel what you need –

Don’t you see, it’s your destiny –

Can’t you see, it was meant to be –

It’s happening everywhere!

People waking up!

Together facing a great new dawn –

Reaching out for Love!

Do you believe in miracles?

– have faith in things unseen?

Take a good look around you now –

– no, no! It’s not a dream.

So open up your eyes – and fly beyond the sky!

And open up your mind – you can feel beyond your dreams!

Now open up your hands – you can touch the Universe! 

Then put your hands in mine and behold: – a brand new world! 

During the song, the Cast stand in a tableau with the Story-teller – holding hands. They bow.       Fade to Black


Scene TWO:  History Lesson: Year 0 to 2019:

The Storyteller takes a big, old Story book and sits on the downstage right corner of the stage, perhaps with some children from the audience on stage. The Storyteller opens the book and starts to read:

ST             Once upon a Time, a long time ago –

When our Universe was young

Our world was a paradise made of love

According to a heavenly plan


Soon there came a light from the universe

As bright as bright could be –

Making Man out of dust and earth

And leaving him to Destiny.


A pattern soon emerged of things to come,
And problems Man would face:

Tribes of men – not quite the same –

Would compete for food

And the best bit of land

Starting off the game called “War”                               [MUSIC starts]


It began with a stone, then came a stick

Soon there was an axe and a spear

Then came a club, then an arrow – then a gun! –

And bullets were flying everywhere!


Conflict raged all over the world

Hatred and envy in every land!

Tribe against tribe, man against man!

Nobody seemed to care!                                              


With each generation passing by

Men found new skills of war

Hydrogen and cluster bombs,

Mercenaries and terrorists;

Cold wars, dirty wars,

Underground – overground

In the air – out in space!

WAR! – set out to kill the human race!

Dancers emerge, dressed as soldiers down the ages, with murderous intent. The music builds to the choral entry and the stage fills with marching people either side, with flags, banners and weapons of war.


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

We’ll fight our way to distant hills, a bloody battle have

We’ll raise our sword and kill them all]

We’ll raise our countries flag!

We’ll kill our brothers, kill our friends,

Kill each other till the end!

We’ll kill our women, children too,

Kill them all until we’re through

Kill them all until we’re through.

The Dancers kneel facing the audience. As a group, they raise their hands and faces in prayer, singing the Prayer:

God save our land, long live our flag,

On to the war we go – praise to our dead

But who says we’re right, who says we’re wrong

Honour and pride – to this we belong!

The Battle – the soldiers fall on each other, murdering, maiming until all lie dead. Screams of pain, howls, wailing – then a massive drum roll crescendos into a roaring explosion, and the mushroom cloud appears on the screen. Bodies fly everywhere and writhe in pain, as the chorus, quietly sung:

Oh come and save us!  Oh come and save us!

Oh come and save us from what we do!

Our world is through!

The cast rise up, looking to the audience, moving down stage slowly, appealing:

But who can save us!  But who can save us?

But who can save us from what we do?

God – where are you?

The chorus hold their look a moment. A hail of machine gun fire; the chorus disintegrate in terror running from the stage through the audience or into the wings. Lights Fade to Black. Spotlight on the Storyteller and the younger children.

ST             Where indeed?!  But there was another war going on – the war between mankind and the environment. A war which mankind showed every sign of winning. A war that would destroy the very eco-systems that allowed humanity to live. But none of us knew much about it back then. It wasn’t the slightest bit important to us! We had other battles to fight!

Scene THREE:  2019 – The Story Begins 

Two girls, Nina and Nadia, walk across the stage dressed for a party. They pause, chatting:

Nina          You didn’t?!  Where??

Nadia         At the park gate. It was the best kiss ever!

Nina          You’re kidding me!  Vanya?!

Nadia         The very same!

Nina          So – did you – when – did….?

Nadia         No – nothing. Zhenya moved in on him after that – and I was out of the picture. But I’ll always have that one kiss….

Nina          You lucky beast!  Do you think he’ll like this top?

Nadia         It’s fine!  You look great in it.

Nina          So – you think he might notice me?!

Nadia         As much as if you put a big flashing light on your head saying: “I’m Available, Vanya!”

Nina          Aww!  You’re so lucky: you’ve got Yegor waiting for you – all dark and handsome with eyes only for you!

Nadia         Mmmmm!  I know.  He is gorgeous, isn’t he?!

Nina          I s’pose!  For an Armenian low-life….

Nadia         (slapping her playfully) – Let’s go do battle!!

They head up stage where the curtains open and a raucous disco party spills out with the whole cast getting down and dancing to latest disco beat – or live song.  MUSIC

SONG  FOUR:  Party Song (to be chosen by Russian producers) 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

In the chaos of the party – we meet the characters of the Core Cast: Nadia, Nina and Zhenya – three attractive young women in their late teens; Vanya – an attractive football jock; Misha – a nerdy student; Yegor – a long-haired, dark, art student type and Sasha – a bearded serious philosopher type. In this party scene, we see a neatly choreographed changing of partners as Zhenya dances with Vanya – then hits on Yegor; Nina moves in on Vanya – who is impressed with her, and Nadia looks really pissed as Zhenya and Yegor dance in each other’s arms. The shy, spotty Misha taps Nadia on the shoulder and, reluctantly, she starts to dance with him. Meanwhile – the party rages on – people drinking and chatting at the side of the stage, having a great time!

The dance number ends – Nina is in a deep embrace with Vanya.  Nadia wants to go home:

Nadia         C’mon, Nina!  We’ve got Lectures tomorrow ….

Nina – waves her away, irritated. Her mind is only on kissing Vanya.

Misha        (to Nadia) I’ll walk you to the bus….

Nadia looks at her friend jealously. Looks back at Misha.

Nadia         (angry, but resigned) Oh – OK then!

They Exit                                                                                                                     BLACK  OUT


Scene FOUR:  2019 – The AWAKENING 

The Storyteller comes forward into the spotlight – the background changing behind her to a picture of the earth from space:

ST             So much the environment! We didn’t care!  We were blissfully unaware that anything was going on – a hot war which, every day, was inflicting terrible damage on our World and destroying the very possibility of a future life for us and for our children.  Out of sight – Out of mind – until the day one of our Professors insisted that we come to the main Lecture Hall of Moscow University to hear a speech by a woman we’d never heard of. Christiana Figueres! She’d been the UN’s leading coordinator for some big agreement on Climate Change. None of us really knew what to expect: but, as obedient students, we did what we were told – and went along.

As the Storyteller speaks, a lecturer who looks like Christiana Figueres comes on to the stage and speaks in English through the PA.  The story-teller withdraws and the Lecturer’s voice takes over – as Climate Change slides come up behind her.

Lecturer:    …. And as we can see, the Arctic Ice Cap has shrunk by over 1000% in area and volume in the last 30 years. In the United States, there are many who will tell you that Climate Change is not happening. Well it is – and here is the evidence.

On the PA, her voice fades down and the voice of a Russian translator takes over, explaining these slides:

More slides come illustrating the dreadful things that will happen to the Planet:    MUSIC Starts

Lecturer:    (Translator) There is plenty of other evidence – more Hurricanes, more forest Fires like those in California which have increased massively in number as temperatures rise – more rain bombs like this one over Houston Texas which flooded the city with as much water in one day as flows over Niagara Falls in 3 days. And droughts – endless droughts which cost farmers billions and drove thousands to commit suicide, and millions off their lands and into the cities…..

Fade the lecturer’s voice; fade up the music of the Song – slides continuing in rhythm with the music – and the dancers acting out with movements that reflect the content of the lyric and the pictures.

SONG  FIVE:  World 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

World – look at the way we are

Look at the things we do

Look at the words we say

Life! – look at the way we live

Look at the love we had

Look at the things we’ve made


Gone, gone are all those lovely days

Gone are all the peaceful ways

All that’s left is old and grey

And our world is fading

Our world is dying – today!


Can’t you see the tide is changing?

Don’t you know that truth is fading?

People coming out from under

Slowly rising to the thunder


Listen to the shouting people

Broken churches, broken steeple

There’s no one for them to follow

Every one’s a God tomorrow


Can’t you see the world is dying?

Repentant people all are crying

Law and order has been drowned

Chaos rules and has been crowned!


World – look at the way we are

Look at the things we do

Look at the games we play

Life! – look at the way we live

Look at the things we build

Look at the love we’ve killed


Gone, gone are all those lovely days

Gone are all the peaceful ways

(Diminuendo) All that’s left is old and grey

(Diminuendo / ralentando) And our world is fading

(Softly) Our world is dying – today!


Lecturer:    ….  So this, Ladies and Gentlemen, is our challenge: preventing this   –  from becoming this. Or rather it’s your challenge – your generational challenge.  Our generation has analysed the problem. We’ve created the technologies that can solve the problem and, in the Paris Agreement, we have created the framework of a political agreement that can drive forward the solutions. But it is your generation which is going to have to take the driver’s seat – because, right now, there is a vacancy. No one is pushing it.  So – are you up for it?

Audience    Yes (weakly)

Lecturer      I’m not convinced. Are you up for it?!

Audience    Yes! (Slightly stronger)

Lecturer      One more time: ARE YOU UP FOR IT?!!

Audience    YES!!

Lecturer      That’s better. Thank you!  Any questions??

Marina        Thank you. Thank you very much. I knew nothing about this – and now you’ve got my attention. So – what do you want us to do to ‘rise to our generational challenge?’

Lecturer      Simple: show these slides to everyone. Tell your friends. Tell your family. Make them feel that it’s as important as you and I do.

Marina        Raise awareness. I thought you’d say that. It’s important, yes – but it’s not going to change any one’s mind politically, is it?

Vanya         I mean – you were the head of the UN Climate Agency – and if you can’t force those changes, how on earth is a bunch of kids like us supposed to do it?

Nina           We wouldn’t know where to start!

Marina        In Russia, we trust our government to get decisions like this right….

Vanya         There’s nothing kids can do about climate change….

Lecturer      There’s plenty you can do! In your lifestyles – become vegetarian; recycle – don’t fly or use the cars too much. Walk, bicycle, take a train. And you can do as I say: tell people to do the same as you. To live sustainable lifestyles.

Vanya         But – if this climate crisis is so serious, we want to do more than that, don’t we!?

All              YES!

Lecturer      Thank you. Thank you for your concern – and for your questions.  I don’t know what the situation is here in Russia – but I know what my choice has been, ever since I first learned about the problem. I have taken a decision to devote every hour of the days I have left on this earth – to give my life – to solve this problem. And to you, I make the same request: Give your life.  Thank you….

They applaud.  And Stand up – applauding loudly. And the Lecturer bows, and takes her leave.  The young people all cluster round Marina – who is a very bright, attractive young woman.

Vanya         Great question!

All              Yeah! – well done; good job! etc.

Marina        (Challenging them)  So – are you?

Vanya         Are we what?

Marina        Going to give your lives?

Vanya         I don’t know. Are you?

Marina        I’m thinking about it.  I’d like to talk about it.

Vanya         So would I.

Zhenya       So would I

All              Yeah – me too! Let’s do it.

Marina        So – let’s talk. She doesn’t know Russia. We do!  There’s got to be something that we can do to show leadership on this issue

Nadia          Right!  Starting, as she says, with finding out more about it!

Zhenya       Yeah! Why didn’t we get more lessons about this in school?!

Misha         It’s all there on the web if you want to find out.

Yegor         It’s all so scary!

Sasha          Too scary for kids to worry their pretty little heads about!`

Marina        But – it isn’t just scary:  like she said,  so much of the new technology is really exciting!

Vanya         We have to get our heads around this. This is our future.

Misha         But Russia’s prosperity depends almost entirely on oil.

Marina        For now! Our future depends on us becoming a world leader in building the green economy!

Yegor         That’s our challenge, guys:  what are we going to do with our lives to change all that?

Nina           I have NO clue!

Zhenya       So let’s get down to the café and talk about it right now!                    They EXIT. Drum Roll

Scene FIVE:  2019 – What we gonna do?

Music begins – the powerful introduction to “I who am I?” Sasha & Marina come forward and sing:

SONG  SIX:    I   WHO  AM  I ? 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

I who am I? What is this world

Why am I here?

I what am I? What is my cause?

Why must I be?


Is there a reason for living

And having this place of our own?

What power conceived me

Abandoned me to the unknown?


We, who are we, what is this place?

Why are we here?

We, who are we to be so lost

And all alone?


Is there a reason for living

And having this place of our own?

What power conceived me

Abandoned me to the unknown?

Vanya                          I, who am I, what is this place?

Why am I here?

As the song ends, the soloists bow and go back around the stage to join the group of Youth as they come forward, carrying chairs and a table, led by an old professor. They set up the chairs and table as though in a small bar or café, and sit down chatting – sipping their beers or coffee:

Yegor         What is a “generational challenge” anyway?

Professor    Well – for some generations, it was winning a war against fascism; for others – it was building an empire; for others – creating an industrial revolution. For your generation, she’s probably right: saving the world from catastrophic climate change by building a green, sustainable economy is probably your main generational challenge!

Zhenya       But how on earth do we do that – ?

Misha         – in a country where 48.5% of our exports are petroleum products?

Professor    That figure is reducing. Other exports are rising much faster than oil and gas.

Nadia          I heard that the Gulf States are reducing their dependency on oil exports

Misha         Yeah right: the Emirates used to be just about 100% dependent on oil. Now that’s down to less than 3%.

Professor    It’s going to take a while for Russia to reduce its dependency that far.

Vanya         There are so many jobs in petroleum – extraction, sales, refining. It’s a huge part of our economy.

Nina           I read that, in Germany, there are more people working in the Green Economy than making cars!

Zhenya       What is a “green economy”?

Prof/Yth 1  Renewables…  you go! / No you…

Sasha          It’s every human activity that conserves, heals and enriches the natural environment while fulfilling human needs.

Marina        Sustainable development, right?

Vanya         Right – building windmills

Nadya         Hydrogen fuel cells!

Yegor         Solar parks!

Misha         Internet and cloud-based service companies

Professor    You’re right. All right. And it’s true – far more jobs will be created by a Green Economy than were ever created by the brown, fossil-fuelled economy. And much more wealth!  The billionaires of your lifetimes will be the people that lead the creation of a green economy.

Sasha          Not here in Russia!  Germany – China – they’re way ahead of us

Marina        And the USA: President Trump may have pulled out of the Paris Climate agreement, but all over the USA, there are people and companies building solar cities, electric cars, hyperloop trains – they know the way the wind is blowing.

Nadia          Scandinavia leads on a lot of this stuff too…

Professor    But it all started in Russia!  You know who Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky was?

All              Of course!

Professor    Well – he is often called the “Father of Sustainability” – because, as a scientist, he took the thinking of Teilhard de Chardin about human consciousness and the Noosphere – and linked it to the biochemistry of evolution. In simple terms, that is sustainable living – not drawing down the natural capital of our planet and leaving nothing for future generations to live on.

Zhenya       And that’s the mistake that previous generations have been making?!

Sasha          Thinking that the earth’s resources were infinite!

Vanya         And that we could merrily plunder them for ever!

Marina        With no thought for tomorrow!

Vanya         That’s what we have to change!

Zhenya       But how?  That’s the only lifestyle most of us know!

Professor    It’s a change of mindset that we need. Instead of “Me – Me – Me! / Now – Now – Now!” – we need to think of the future!  The leadership that our country can give to the world now that leads us all towards a sustainable future.

Nina           Like Vernadsky did?

Professor    Exactly!

Marina        Russia’s the world’s biggest country by land mass –

Yegor         – by a wide margin, isn’t it?

Misha         Yes – the next biggest is Canada, and we’re double the size of that.

Vanya         So we should be the biggest contributor to the creation of a green economy, right?

All              Yeah!

Marina        We should lead the building of it!

All              Right!

Zhenya       I think I know exactly where to start….

They run off – taking the café tables and chairs with them.                                        Black Out.


Scene SIX:  In the Office of the Promoter

They drag on a huge desk – behind which sits the elderly character of the Promoter.  The kids are shown in by an attractive secretary. They are very nervous in the presence of the great man!

Zhenya       It’s so kind of you to see us1

Promoter    It’s my job to see new talent. Why wouldn’t I see you?!  How can I help?

Sasha          Well –

Vanya         Our world is dying!

Marina        And we want to save it!

Promoter    And – ?

Misha         You see – it’s all about Climate Change –

Nadia          It’s killing our Planet

Yegor         But we knew nothing about it

Nina           Because our teachers didn’t want to worry our pretty little heads about it!

Sasha          But we think we should know about it

Zhenya       All the kids – in every country in the world!

Marina        And Russia should be leading the building of the Green Economy

Misha         Because Vernadsky was Russian!

Promoter    Vernadsky?! –

All              Yes!

Promoter    Climate – Green Economy?!  What the hell are you talking about?!  I thought you were going to sing me a song!!

Yegor         (hurrying to the piano)  We are – we are !

Sasha          We wrote you a whole song – all about it!

Zhenya       Because we want you to do it?

Promoter    What?!

Marina        A Rock Festival

Vanya         A Festival for our Future

Nina           A Festival to save our world!

Yegor starts to play – and the kids come forward, singing:

SONG  SEVEN:  We want this world to survive for ever 

SCORE                      VIDEO ( – go to end)                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

All the time through the day and through the night

I think about my life in this world

So many times I’ve tried to find

A way to live my life – a way to ease my mind


I know this world could die for ever

And people are the reason why

Children and parents lovers and poets

They just can’t hear our planet cry –


We want this world to survive for ever

And all the people join their hands together

In a bond of love, kindness and friendship

We can make peace with the earth


Too many people have died in wars

And we want that no one else should suffer

Not again.

Half the world lives in despair

We’ve got to show them, show them that we care!


We know our World is a wonderful place

And we must help to keep it so

I want to believe that this world will  be

A peaceful place for all to grow!


We want this world to survive…. etc.

Let’s join our hands together

Let’s make peace throughout our world!

The Promoter waits while the applause dies down. He lets the silence settle – then he stands and claps slowly, walking around the kids – looking at them very seriously:

Promoter    So you want me to put together a Rock Festival to raise awareness around the world of the problem of climate change?!

Kids            Yes!

Promoter    Streamed globally – with top rock stars from around the world?!

Vanya         Exactly!

Promoter    “Rock for the Future!”

Zhenya       You got it!

Promoter    I like it!  I’ll do it!!

The kids are stunned.

Marina        You’ll do it?!

Promoter    Yes.

Nina           That’s amazing!

Nadia          Incredible!!

Slowly the realization dawns on the Kids.  A slow “Whoop” starts with Nadia – and spreads as they all jump for joy. The Promoter stands back – watching happily at the pleasure he has created.

Marina        (to the promoter)  Thank you!

Storyteller Interlude

A spotlight comes up on the Storyteller downstage right as s/he explains to the children:

Storyteller   So – two months later, the Olympic Stadium in Moscow was filled to the rafters with screaming crowds, all eager to hear their favourite rock groups – and to learn about the threats to the future.

Child          What about the Kids?

Storyteller   They were the hosts! – watch….


Scene SEVEN:  2019  –  “Rock for the Future

 On the screen behind, a large Banner is being erected saying “Rock for the Future” – music starts and the band comes on stage as though playing at an open air rock concert. The company watch from the side as they sing:

SONG  EIGHT:   Contemporary Russian Rock song

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

As the song ends, four of the Kids come forward to speak to the Crowd

Zhenya       Thank you!  Thank you so much!  Who ever would have thought we’d fill the Luzhniki Stadium for a Concert about Climate Change? – and have 30 million people watching around the world on TV.  This is as good as the World Cup!!

Misha         Climate Change has been good to Russia!  It’s opened up the Transpolar Sea Route – the TSR – which will bring billions to our economy!

Nadia          It’s melted the permafrost opening up millions of acres for farming and cultivation;

Sasha          And it’s enabled year round fishing and fish-farming in seas that were previously closed to us!

Zhenya       But it’s not all good news!

Nadia          As sea levels rise, cities like St Petersburg  will need massive sea walls just to stay alive. And the cities servicing the TSR shipping lanes may also suffer…

Misha         But the biggest danger is that global warming will melt the Himalayan Ice fields which feed the seven great rivers of South Asia – and feed over 2 billion people in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and IndoChina.

Sasha          When those rivers dry up – as they surely will some time in the future – 2 billion people will be forced to move. And there’s only one place for them to go….

Misha         North.  To Russia.

Nadia          To the vast empty spaces of Siberia.

Zhenya       And when they arrive, we must be ready for them. Russia must be ready for the biggest migration the world has ever seen.  And when they arrive – we want them to be HAPPY!

The Band strikes up and sing – as the entire company does a spectacular dance number!

SONG  NINE:   We want you to be happy now / Mwi zhelayem schastya vam 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Mwi zhelayem shastya vam

Shastya vetom meeryeh balshom

Kak sontse pa ootram

Poost anaw za khaw deet vdawm


Mwi zhelayem shastya vam

Ee anaw dolzhnaw bweet takeem

Kawg da twee shastleev sam

Shastya paw delee zdroo geem!

The 4 x other kids come forward, breathless, acknowledging the applause, waving – Happy!  They then become very earnest as they communicate their newly-discovered knowledge:

Marina        Ladies and gentlemen:  we need your help to rise to the biggest challenge our country –  and our world! – has ever faced.

Vanya         Our country has one of the biggest oil and gas reserves in the world!

Nina           And it would be so simple if we could just use all that up – build a green economy based on renewable energy using it, and then transition to 100% renewables once it’s all gone!

Yegor         Yes – but the bitch of it is – if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change, we – and the rest of the world – have to NOT use 80% of what we’ve found.

Nina           But half the world’s economy is based on oil and gas!

Vanya         It’s what’s made Russia rich!

Marina        So today, we’re rocking for the future!  And that future has got to be green – if there’s going to be any future for our generation – and any future generations.

Yegor         We’ve got to do this thing guys!  The old guys will help us – and they’ve done a lot of the ground work. But they’ll all be dead before this shit hits the fan – and it will be us, and our children and grand-children who will have to make the Green Economy happen.

Vanya         (reflective) It’s a daunting task, my friends: but we want to join with our friends around the world – in every country! – One World in Freedom working together, not for ourselves, but for our future. For the future of our entire human family.

Marina        I’m from the very far East of this country – 11 time zones away. My family is watching this over their breakfast! And yet I know that, on this, we, and all the young people of the world, are united. In Eastern Siberia, we have a rich history and culture and, if I think of the generational challenges faced by my ancestors just to stay alive, and bring me into the world – I know that we can, all of us together, rise to this challenge. And achieve it. In friendship

SONG  TEN:   Siberian Folk Song

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

One solo dancer expresses the mood of the song through the first two verses. Then it grows and grows, involving more singers, building to a spectacular climax.


Scene EIGHT:  Intercontinental TV Talk Show

In English – a voice comes over the Tannoy: “Looks Great!  We’re ready  – Let’s GO! 4 – 3 – 2 – 1!” Music starts – Lights come up on a TV Studio with Cameras downstage right and left and an empty stage in the middle. The Company come on dressed in sharp suits, as oil executives. They do a vibrant up-beat dance number, with images of oil refineries and oil infrastructure behind them:

SONG  ELEVEN:   Military Industrial / Petroleum Energy Complex 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

It’s a petroleum energy complex

Get on and get trained – join this gravy train!

Get passionate about making money!

You’re all in a state! – the climate can wait!


You’re out of your depth in this jungle

Get into our game! – or you’ll take the blame –

When it ends up in a horrible shambles!

At least you’ll have fun – before your life is done!!


Oh – what a hopeless case you are!!

Your heads are in the clouds!

Oh – what a crazy lot you are!

Thinking should NOT be allowed!


Because – unless in your schools

You live by the rules

And do what you’re told

You’ll never win the gold!!!


You broke the generational contract!

Get back to your schools – start obeying those rules!

We’re out here trying to make you some money

Where the money all goes – Nobody knows!


Get back to your schools and get learning

If the money is made – you’ll make your grades!

Your mums and your dads and your teachers

Want success for you now – so don’t make a row!!


Oh – what a hopeless case you are!!

Your heads are in the clouds!

Oh – what a crazy lot you are!

Thinking should NOT be allowed!


Because – unless in your schools

You live by the rules

And do what you’re told

You’ll never win the gold!!!

Chuck         (The Oilman walks on – clapping them) Thanks a lot, guys!  Well done! That’ll show ‘em!  Kids! And climate change! What a pain in the ass!                                         BLACK   OUT

Storyteller Interlude

A spotlight comes up on the Storyteller and a small group of children:

Child          What did he say?

ST              Just that his whole company is not a big fan of climate change! Or kids!  Because – if what the kids were saying was true – the Oil Companies risked going out of business. So – they were understandably angry! The Kids had become such big media celebrities because of the concert, TV stations were keen to put them up against these oil company executives so they could get a nice fight going between them.


Scene EIGHT:  Intercontinental TV Talk Show: (contd.) 

In the Black-out, they bring on three chairs and a coffee table. As the lights come up, Marina and Vanya come on and sit in the chairs with an older Chat Show Host. Logo of a famous Russian chat show is projected on the screen.  The host introduces the show and they talk – in Russian:

Host           Welcome to the <<-??->> show where tonight we welcome the hosts of the Rock for the Future concert!

APPLAUSE! Prompt flashes on the Screen. Marina and Vanya acknowledge

Host           So – what drove you to do the Concert?

Marina        Climate change is our biggest generational challenge!

Vanya         So we thought that our generation should be aware of it.

Marina        Not as a classroom – schooly thing but as something fun, something sexy

Vanya         Something full of opportunities.

Host           Well we’ll be joined in a moment by our friends in America who gave us that song which introduced our show, and I think they’ll disagree with that assessment. But what has been the reaction since?  What kind of audience response have you had?

Marina        Overwhelming!

Vanya         You’ve seen yourself – the social media traffic: over a million hits from Russians alone!

Marina        And the comments – 99% supportive and wanting to help

Vanya         I think we’ve created a million vegetarians overnight!

Marina        But outside Russia too: we’ve logged about a hundred thousand comments from about 130 countries since the Concert. The people of the world are right behind us on this issue.

Vanya         The world is looking to Russia for leadership on all this

Marina        It’s a great feeling!

Host           I can imagine. But, as you know, there are many in the multi-national oil and coal industry who think that you are seriously misguided. So let me introduce now Chuck Hazard, CEO of the World Oil & Coal Consortium who joins us via the magic of our new voice translation system from Houston. Let me ask you first, Chuck – what are your thoughts on Climate Change?

Chuck         (On the screen – speaking in English, but we hear him in Russian) Well – it’s a bunch of hogwash, isn’t it? There’s absolutely zero scientific proof that the changes we are seeing in the climate is being caused by the Oil Industry.  The climate changes naturally all the time!

Vanya         99% of the world’s top scientists would disagree with you.

Chuck         Well I don’t know who’s paying those scientists to say that, but I know what my scientists tell me, and its 100% convincing.

Marina        Well – we all know who’s paying them!

Host           Fair Point, but you’re never going to agree on the science. So if we accept that something’s happening – what would you like Chuck and his friends to do?

Vanya         Stop digging coal. Stop drilling for oil!

Marina        Come with us to all the world’s major capitals – and lobby governments to levy massive taxes on fossil fuels – and support and subsidise the building of a Green Economy in every country, based on renewable energy.

Vanya         We have the technology!  We just need governments to legislate for it – and company’s like those Chuck represents to make it.

Host           What do you say to that, Chuck?

Chuck         I say to you kids, GET REAL!  Fossil fuels are cheap and abundant!

Marina        No they’re not!

Vanya         They’re going to be all run out in 20 years!

Chuck         That’s NONSENSE!  We’ve got enough oil and coal to last us at least a thousand years, maybe longer! And it’s cheap and its plentiful – and it drives our cars and our industries, warms our homes in winter and keeps them cool in Summer. Can you imagine what would happen in the markets if we suddenly said we were not going to mine our existing reserves but leave them in the ground because some silly kids were worried about Climate Change?!  It could cause total meltdown in the markets!  You could kiss goodbye to all the profits we make for your pension funds! It would decimate industry and agriculture. It’d be the end of the world as we know it!

Marina        It will be the end of the world as we know it when we lose trillions of dollars-worth of coastal real estate to sea-level rise –

Vanya         – and billions of dollars every year due damage by hurricanes and extreme weather.

Marina        Not to mention food and fresh-water losses

Vanya         And ocean acidification.

Chuck         You kids have no idea what you’re talking about!

Marina        I’m sorry, sir! We know exactly what we’re talking about

Vanya         – and you don’t want to talk about it because the only people you’re talking to are the people whose profits are paying your salary?!

Marina        Whose profits are destroying our planet – and Our Future!

Host           You’re very aggressive!

Vanya         We care about our future!  We’ve got to live in it – you won’t!

Marina        You’ll be dead!  But we didn’t come here to argue with Chuck: right now, all we want is for him to stop being part of the problem and become a big part of the solution.

Chuck         How do I become ‘Big part of the solution’?

Vanya         By shifting your business into non-carbon, renewable energy.

Host            What do you say to that Chuck?

Chuck         A few windmills pissing in the wind!? You’re kidding me, right?  I can make more money out of one day’s tar sands mining than a whole year of putting up windmills.

Marina        I don’t think that’s true.

Vanya         The Danish and German wind industries have consistently been posting higher returns on their renewable investments compared to that of the oil and coal companies.

Chuck         I’m not German or Danish: with the tax system we have in this great country – I can make more money mining oil than covering the scenery with hideous windmills.

Host            So – the problem is with the US tax system?

Marina        Exactly!  The US and many other governments are so completely bought and paid for by the big corporations like the ones that Chuck represents, they cannot possibly do the right thing!

Vanya         Unless, Chuck, you come and help us! The Green Economy will create millions of jobs – will conserve the fisheries, improve agriculture, enrich communities, help eradicate poverty. And you can be a pioneer of that Green Economy – and be a hero.

Marina        Not a dinosaur…

Chuck         And how exactly do I change from dinosaur to hero?

Vanya         Join us! Help us! Kids can’t build the infrastructure of a Green Economy. Only big companies can do that. And, with your help, we can work out a tax and subsidy regime that makes it more profitable for your company to invest in the green economy rather than in the old, brown polluting economy!

Chuck         I can’t do that!

Vanya         You can!

Host            He’s never going to do that!

Chuck         You’re Mad!

Marina        No, Chuck! Extremely sane. If you’d said a century ago:  “We’re not going to invest in roads and cars – because Railways and Canals are what we’ve always done…” – you’d be bankrupt. Same with energy now! All the smart people are already investing in renewables – building windmills, investing in solar voltaics, ground source heat-pumps. That’s where the profits are going to be made this century.

Vanya         Chuck, I hear your new wife just gave you a baby daughter. Flossie!

Chuck         Ah, Flossie – she’ll be the death of me!

Marina        No, Chuck!  You’ll be the death of Flossie unless you change what you’re doing here.

Chuck         That’s not fair!

Host            – don’t be offensive, guys.

Vanya         It is true, Chuck – and you know it! 99% of the world’s scientists are not wrong!

Marina        It’s like you’re putting a gun to her pretty little head and squeezing the trigger…

Vanya         But – you don’t have to! Instead of being the bad guy in all this, you could be the Hero, leading the way to a bright, sustainable future!

Marina        Clean, sustainable energy – warming the homes of your nation and our’s for generations.

Vanya         Bringing us prosperity we can live with – not profits that will kill us all.

Marina        Come on, Chuck! You know it makes sense!

Chuck         I don’t know what to say?

Vanya         Say Yes! – Yes to Life!  Say “Yes!” to your daughter’s Future!

Marina        No to poverty, pollution, desolation and death! No to the end of the world as we know it!

Host            How are you guys so certain? You’re just kids! I wasn’t that certain about anything when I was your age?

Vanya         Look at this: [The Arctic circle slides flash up on the screen] The Arctic ice-cap in 1980 – and the Arctic ice-cap now.

Marina        That’s not some ice-eating bug, munching away the Ice-cap. That’s global warming.

Vanya         We can’t reverse that – and may be the TSR will be good for Russia, and good for the world.

Marina        But that’s not the point here

Host            What is the point?

Vanya         The point is: we’ve got to start building a worldwide energy grid NOW!

Marina        Providing renewable energy to every home and factory in the world – 24/7!

Vanya         – bringing energy from places where sun and wind are plentiful, like in the desert – to places  where we need it.

Marina        And when we’ve done that – we’ve got to build a worldwide water grid bringing fresh water from places that are flooded to places where there are droughts!

Vanya         Those are HUGE infrastructure projects?

Marina        Projects that only companies like the ones Chuck represents can do!  And it will make them immense profits – which they will richly deserve because they will be saving humanity.

Vanya         Surely that makes business sense, doesn’t it Chuck?

Host            Makes sense to me. Does it make sense to you, Chuck?!

Chuck         [firmly, decisively] No. It doesn’t and it never will!  Because I believe my scientists, not your’s. And even if I was able to persuade my government that you’re right, there’s no way we would persuade all governments to change. The Saudis, the Chinese – Venezuela?! They’ll never agree. And unless we all do, none of us can! Believe me – I see where you’re coming from, and a big part of me admires you and wants to help you!  But I can’t.  And I know my share-holders – the big ones anyway, and they’d think I’d gone soft in the head if I start talking to them about transitioning to Green Energy. They’d sack me in a heartbeat – and then I’d be no use to you!  Sorry kids!

Host            Well that about wraps it up for this evening. I hope you’ve enjoyed this as much as I have! I’m tempted to give a points victory to the kids – because I think you touched the heart of an oilman, didn’t they Chuck!

Chuck         I love kids so of course they touched me!  But they didn’t change my mind…

Vanya         We will, sir, we will!

Marina        Give us time!

Host            Thank you all – and thank you for watching.  Good night and Good Luck!!     Black Out


Scene NINE:  In the Green Room

The lights come up – and a table is set up with soft drinks. The Host and Marina & 2 com in and help themselves to glasses of water. They talk about the show.

Host            You know – I think you might have turned him!

Marina        Thank you!  We certainly threw everything at him.

Host            Well – like I said, a points victory if not a knock-out punch.  So what’s next?

Vanya         We’ve got a ton of social media to sort through!

Marina        Everyone wants us to do everything!

Vanya         Tomorrow!

Host            Well my producer had a suggestion: she’d like you to come with me to the next Climate Change Conference of the Parties – be a part of the talent team.

Marina        Are you serious?!

Host            Not sure – but if you’re up for it, I’ll try to push it through. You’re a good team. If the ratings from tonight are as good as I think they will be, there shouldn’t be a problem.

Vanya         Show us where to sign!

Host            So – you’d be up for it?  It wouldn’t get in the way of exams or anything…?

Marina        The Hell with exams!

Vanya         This is our life’s work!  We have to do it!

Marina        Just one question: how does that translation thing work?

Host            It’s a new thing – sort of Google Translate, but with real-time voice translation.

Marina        Does it do other languages?

Host            Of course!  Do you want to see?

Vanya         Please.

Host            (Speaking into his lapel mike)  Control Room: can you give me playback in Japanese. (The screen flickers – and then comes back to the Chat Show, with the voice track in Japanese).  Try Swahili?! (the chat show continues in Swahili.)  Portuguese? (He looks at them, listening on his ear piece)  European or Brazilian?

Marina        Brazilian!  (It continues in Portuguese)  That’s brilliant!

Vanya         Can we get that show out online to our Social Media network around the world – with the translation widget attached??

Host            I’ll see what can be arranged.

Marina        Thank you!  Thank you very much

Host            My pleasure. You’re doing great work!  Good luck!!                             They Exit

Story Teller Interlude:

The Storyteller comes forward with the group of younger children. S/he reads from the Storybook as behind him/her – images of a big UN COP meeting, with huge conference rooms, panel speakers, vast audiences – and the Kids, talking in corridors, holding microphones in people’s faces, sitting in make-shift studios, interviewing important-looking people, asking questions at Press Conferences etc.:

ST               The host was as good as his word. Five of them travelled to  <<-??->> for the 22nd Conference of the Parties to the UN’s Paris Climate Change Accords.  It was the team’s first experience of a big UN meeting – thousands of people, chattering away – mostly in English, about obscure bits of language and science that didn’t seem to bear any relationship to the reality that Christiana Figueres had explained in such simple, direct terms.  But the Kids were celebrities amongst the non-government delegates – especially amongst the youth delegates, all of whom had seen their programme in their own language on social media. They looked to them for leadership – which they were eager to give, but – since their English wasn’t very good, they found themselves floundering.

Marina        (coming on with Vanya) Job ONE:  Learn better English!

ST               Speaking through translators, they made a big impression – and because they were getting youth leaders from around the world, and rockstars interviewed on Russian Television – they found themselves immensely popular.  At the end, no one was quite sure what had been agreed. But everyone was very jolly – and waved “Goodbye” saying: “See you next year!”   Back home, the team started thinking:


Scene ELEVEN:  The Café:

The Storyteller and the younger children withdraw as the Company take centre stage

Misha          Did any of that achieve anything?

Zhenya        Is that the best way to get the change we need?

Marina        I don’t think so….

Vanya         I absolutely KNOW it’s not so….

Nina            So – what are we going to do?

Nadia          Hey!  It’s Christmas!  We’re on holiday.  Let’s think about it over the holiday, put together a list of ideas – and meet again in January to figure it out.

Yegor          You mean like another Rock for the Future?

Sasha          Not that again!

Zhenya        That was soooo much work!

Nina            Whatever we do, it’s going to be hard work.

Vanya         But that’s what we’re here for. That’s our generational challenge – to do the heavy-lifting!

Sasha          We can do it!

Zhenya        ‘Course we can!  Happy Christmas everyone!                                        Black Out


Scene  TWELVE:  Vanya at Home

The lights come up on a domestic scene. A table is laid for a Christmas dinner – and the company dress up as family members. The old father sits and strums a balalaika, singing a Siberian folk song as his wife brings in the traditional Christmas dinner, followed by two younger children, Katya and Volodya, and their elder brother: Vanya. The song ends, they sit down, thank God for the food – and start eating.

Mother          We are all so proud of you, Vanya. Already you’re more famous than we’ll ever be!

Father           (to his younger children) – You must follow his example: work hard, pass your exams – and get to the University in Moscow!

Vanya           – or St Petersburg, or Kazan, or Ekaterinberg. They’re all very good!

Mother          But you got a scholarship to the best! (to the younger children) – and he worked very hard for it. No time-wasting on computer games…

Vanya           C’mon, Mum!  I wasn’t perfect!  I got told to leave two of my schools….

Father           That’s because you were too good for them, my boy!  You showed up the others for how rubbish they were!

Volodya        Was it fun being on TV?

Vanya           It was terrifying, actually!

Katya            But it must have been fun going on the big airplane!?

Volodya        I’ve never been on an airplane!

Vanya           It’s not good to travel too much: you should only go on an airplane if you absolutely have to! Otherwise it’s better to cycle or go by train.

Father           It’s all good experience for you  – and I hope good fun. But next year, you must knuckle down, work hard and get a good degree. Then I want you to go get some experience working for some of our competitors – before you come back and take over the family business – at a salary much higher than mine!

Vanya           You’ve got it all worked out, haven’t you Dad: but you know I could never in a million years work for your company. You mine and sell coal, for God’s sake!  And that’s killing the environment. I could never do that!  If you force me to work for your company – I would force you to close it down.

Mother          Don’t you dare talk like that to your father!

Vanya           But it’s true, Mum!  You know I love you both more than life itself – and I’m incredibly grateful for all the sacrifices you’ve made to allow me to go to University. But at university, I have learned about what we’re doing to our future. And that big Concert I did was all about closing down companies like Dad’s!

Father           My son – if you have a family, as I hope you will, your duty, like mine, will be to put food on the family table.

Vanya           I will, Dad, but there are million other ways of doing that which do NOT involve killing the planet!

Father           My company is NOT killing the planet!!  Who’s been putting these wicked ideas in your head?

Mother          It’s that girl, isn’t it – the Mongolian one from the East?

Vanya           She’s part of the team, yes!  But we all feel that way…

Katya            Are you in love with her?

Vanya           I think I am – a little. Rather a lot, actually!

Father           Get rid of her!  Get rid of ALL of them!!  They’re a bad influence on your. They’ll get you all thrown out!  This country’s success is based on its oil and coal. No one’s going to be successful if they try to close it down.

Vanya           We have to, Dad!  That’s the challenge facing our generation. To build renewable energy systems to replace the one’s you built?

Father           But – if there’s nothing wrong with our system, why waste time and money changing it?!

Vanya           Because everything’s wrong with it, Dad. Everything!

Mother          They have some funny ideas out East

Father           Choose a local girl, my son: one who shares our values and our culture…

Vanya           Dad: you may decide many things in my life, but NOT who I marry. (To the younger children)  You must not let him push you around. And when I’m not here, always remember that I’m out there not larking about on big planes and TV for the fun of it: I am working for YOU!  For your future!! We have to change the way we do things as a human family – the way we generate our energy, the way we grow our food, the way we do our politics so that we have peace with other neighbours.  You do understand that, don’t you? (They nod – music starts. He gets up and moves to the side of the stage as his father starts to sing)

SONG  TWELVE:   Father & Son 

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Father:                                    It’s not time to make a change

Just relax, take it easy

You’re still young, that’s your fault

There’s so much you have to know

Find a girl, settle down

If you want you can marry

Look at me, I am old, but I’m happy


I was once like you are now, and I know that it’s not easy

To be calm when you’ve found something going on

But take your time, think a lot

Why, think of everything you’ve got

For you will still be here tomorrow, but your dreams may not


Vanya:                                     How can I try to explain, cause when I do he turns away again

It’s always been the same, same old story

From the moment I could talk I was ordered to listen

Now there’s a way and I know that I have to go away

I know I have to go


Father:                                     It’s not time to make a change

Just sit down, take it slowly

You’re still young, that’s your fault

There’s so much you have to go through

Find a girl, settle down

If you want you can marry

Look at me, I am old, but I’m happy


Vanya:                                    All the times that I cried, keeping all the things I knew inside

It’s hard, but it’s harder to ignore it

If they were right, I’d agree, but it’s them they know not me

Now there’s a way and I know that I have to go away

I know I have to go

Vanya EXITS  – watched sadly by his family.                                    Slow FADE to Black-out      




Scene THIRTEEN:  At the Café  

The Company come on with chairs and tables – to set up the same café as Scene FOUR. They greet each other with hi-fives, and whoops of glee!

Vanya           Hey!  Happy New Year!

Company      (to each other) Happy New Years!

Yegor           So – how we all doin’?!

Nina              Don’t ask!

Nadia            My family think I’m quite mad!

Zhenya          Mine too

Vanya           It’s tough work being a celebrity but some one’s got to do it!

Marina          Did any one do the analysis of the Social Media over Christmas?

Misha           We did!

Nadia            About 14,800 requests to us to come speak at Russian Schools, Universities and community groups and 3,782 requests from foreign schools, universities and community groups.

Misha           And some of whom are willing to pay us – IF – we can do our presentations in English….

Vanya           Do we have to bother about that if we have the TV company’s translation gizmo?

Zhenya          We should.  You speak pretty good English, don’t you?

Vanya           Not as good as her!

Marina          I vote we split up the work and get back to as many of them as we can

Nina              Especially the international ones!

Sasha            Was there ever a time when so many people wanted to hear from Russians!

Nadia            Not since Pussy Riot! (They laugh!)

Vanya           But what are we telling them?

Sasha            Yeah!  What’s the gig?

Marina          It has to be a message of Hope!

Yegor           Accentuate the positive!

Zhenya          Sure – but remember what got our attention was being scared shitless by that woman!

Sasha            Yeah – we must make them aware of the dangers!

Marina          I agree – but then our goal is to get them really, really excited about the challenge our generation has to rise to with the building of the green economy….

Nina              – and how much money we’re all going to make from it!

Nina offers a hi-five, and they move into a huddle round the table, chatting – as a spotlight comes up on one  who starts to sing:


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Now I’ve been happy lately,

Thinking about the good things to come

And I believe it could be,

Something good has begun


Oh we’ve been smiling lately,

Dreaming about the world as one

And we believe it could be,

Some day it’s going to come


Cause out on the edge of darkness,

There rides a peace train

Oh peace train take this country,

Come take me home again


Lights come back on the Café table where the kids talk –

Vanya           You mean an International Tour?

Zhenya          Yeah – with Rock ‘n Roll

Marina          Let’s take Rock the Future on the Road!

Company      Yeah! – brilliant!  Love it!  Let’s do it!

Sasha            But what about our exams?

Nina              We’ll delay them for a year

Nadia            And who’ll pay for it all?

Zhenya          We’ll find sponsors!

Misha           If they want us, let them find sponsors: this could be good business!

Sasha            But a lot of these requests are from Low Income Countries

Nadia            They could never sponsor us!

Misha           And we really need to reach out to them

Marina          So let’s put together a budget

Vanya            – get some great bands together!

Nina              And put this show on the road!  (They turn and start to sing / dance!)


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Get your bags together,

Go bring your good friends too

Cause it’s getting nearer,

It soon will be with you


Now come and join the living,

It’s not so far from you

And it’s getting nearer,

Soon it will all be true


Cause out on the edge of darkness,

There rides a peace train

Oh peace train take this country,

Come take me home again

Storyteller Interlude

The Storyteller comes forward as the dancers pull to the back of the stage. The music continues under and slides come up on the screen – showing the places the Storyteller describes:

Storyteller   The first stop on the Peace Train ‘Rock the Future’ tour was China!! – home to the fastest growing economy the world has ever seen, and home to some of the most amazing efforts to build a green, sustainable economy….


Scene FOURTEEN – Rock the Future World Tour  

Two of the Company put on Chinese tunics and play the Chinese student Hosts to the Russian visitors. Images on the screen of the Shanghai Skyline mix across to the Forbidden City to the Great Wall to massive freeways and Beijing Airport. Music evokes the culture of China.

Misha          (Looking about in wonder!) Wow!

Zhenya        It looks like America – only cleaner!

Sasha          And check out the motor scooters: are they electric!?

China 1       Sure – we’ve been running electric motor scooters for twenty years now: I cannot understand why they have not caught on in other Countries?

Vanya         ‘Cos we couldn’t live in Moscow without the smell of smoke in the air!

China 2       China is building more Eco-Cities than anywhere else in the world!

Marina        And are they all totally zero-carbon?

China 1       Yes! China believes deeply in green economy – we are building cheapest solar voltaic sheets and wind turbines in the world.

China 2      And our 5-year plan sees 100,000 electric cars on the roads by 2020 – more than the rest of the world put together.

Yegor          But you’re still opening a new brown coal power station every week?

China 1       Not so much now – and it will get less

China 2       We still have many millions people living in bad poverty in West of China!

China 1       A green economy must continue the work to eradicate their poverty.

Nadia          And you think you can eradicate poverty and build a sustainable, green economy at the same time?

China 2       That’s why we build so many Eco-cities – right across the country.

Nina            That’s great!

China 1       You like? By 2050 – we have a thousand zero carbon cities – like this one.

China 2       With vertical farms on every corner.

Sasha          Sweet!

Marina        You plan to grow food right in city centres?

China 1       It is more efficient, yes!

China 2       Farm above – food shopping on the ground floor

Vanya         Total integration. Brilliant

Marina        The world must learn from you!

China 1       We are happy to share our experience – good and bad – with all members of the Shanghai Cooperation Group.

Zhenya        What’s the Shanghai Cooperation Group?

Marina        India, China, Russia, Pakistan, Bangladesh – most of South Asia….

Misha          That’s half the world’s population right there.

China 1 & 2     Yes, yes!

Nadia          So, when we get them to go zero carbon, that’s the climate change battle half won!

They hi-five each other, and their Chinese Hosts take off their Chinese tunics, and turn and start to sing / dance with the others:



SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Now I’ve been smiling lately,

Thinking about the good things to come

And I believe it could be,

Something good has begun


Oh peace train sounding louder

Glide on the peace train

Come on now peace train

Yes, peace train holy roller

Everyone jump upon the peace train

Come on now peace train

Storyteller Interlude  

The company scatter back to the wings, as the Storyteller comes forward:

Storyteller   Next Stop, Dubai and the United Arab Emirates where they were holding a massive World Expo on the theme: “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future” – with showcases on Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability. Dubai had just opened the amazing “Museum of the Future” – designed to be a “an incubator for ideas and a driver for innovation.” It’s silver loop construction provided a perfect backdrop for a Russian Rock the Future Concert:


Scene FOURTEEN – Rock the Future World Tour – Dubai: (contd.)

The gleaming backdrop of the egg-shaped museum comes up on the screen as laser and disco lights play across the audience, bringing the audience to their feet with a rousing rock song. As it finishes, one of the Company puts on a dish-dash and comes forward with one of the others, addressing the audience who cheer and clap:

Arab            We thank you! Thank you for rocking up here in Dubai and exploring our ideas for an exciting, sustainable future! From our Expo here, you will see, I hope, that it is possible for an oil-based economy to transform itself into a centre of sustainability, peace and hope!

Marina        We do!  And we congratulate you on your great progress! –

Vanya         And we want our country – and the rest of the world to learn from your extraordinary success!

Nadia          What is completely amazing is how quickly you have done it!

Misha          In just a few short years, you have gone from a desert oil economy, to a completely diversified mixed urban economy!

Sasha          How the hell did you do that??

Arab            (very excited) Come see – at our Museum for the Future!  We will tell you everything!

Storyteller Interlude  

The company follow the Arab into the wings, as the Storyteller comes forward:

Storyteller   Inside – they saw and played with all the staggering displays – and met an American who insisted that they come visit his Clean-Tech Open Trade Show in California – and stage a Rock for the Future concert there. They agreed – but, first, they had an appointment in Africa to see for themselves how they could help young people in one of the poorest countries in the world build more prosperous, peaceful, sustainable livelihoods for their families.


Scene FOURTEEN – Rock the Future World Tour: (contd.)

The backdrop changes to an African Savannah. The company come on – with two dressed as African farmers – led by the Arab in the dish-dash:

Zhenya       So – these are your farms in Africa?

Arab           Yes! And see! They’re growing very well. [to an African] Aren’t they?

African 1    Very good. We make good money now.

Arab           And how is the Health Clinic?

African 1    Wonderful. Wonderful – thank you! We have had no child deaths at all so far this year – praise the lord!

Arab           Allah al Akhbar! Yes – and your family is well?

African 1    Better than ever, sir! – and we have only you to thank for that….

Marina        Our friend here does not seem so convinced?

African 2    No – it is good. No doubt we are living better than we did before. But now – again – we are slaves to a foreign master.

African 1    Ach! – No – he is joking, sir, Joking!

African 2    Not joking!  This land belongs to me – to my father and all my ancestors stretching back thousands of years. Just because you people have money does not mean that you can own our land. Land is the only thing we Africans have. We should not sell it for money….

Arab           But we gave you good price –

African 2    My land has no Price! It is part of my soul! You cannot buy my soul…

Marina        He’s right, isn’t he?

All              Of course!

Arab           But we try to help, Yes?

African 1    Yessah. Very much sah!

Sasha          You help yourselves first by growing the food you cannot grow in the desert.

Nadia          The help you give them is an after-thought.

Marina        A sustainable society is one that is fair to all

African 2    I have my family, my language and my land. That is all I have and I will fight to keep it!

African 1    No talk of fighting. We are peaceful people!

African 2    But peace is poisoned by hate. And I hate him for taking my land! My earth!  My soul!

African 1    No talk of hating, Please !

African 2    But I hate him for taking my land! My earth!  My soul!

Vanya         We must learn from you to help without generating resentment!

Zhenya       Development is NOT sustainable if it does not build peace and friendship!

African 2    This work does not build peace. It could lead to War – and war is the worst thing on earth.

The company turn and, in a dance that recalls the War song of Scene TWO – they sing / dance:


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Now I’ve been crying lately,

Thinking about the world as it is

Why must we go on hating,

Why can’t we live in bliss


‘cos out on the edge of darkness,

There rides a peace train

Oh peace train take this country,

Come take me home again

Storyteller Interlude  

The Storyteller comes forward as the slides change to show San Francisco and the Cleantech Open site:

Storyteller    Onward to California – where they found Russia listed second from bottom in the forty countries assessed for innovative green economy start-ups!  But the Americans were embarrassed as their President had just announced that he’d decided to withdraw from the Paris Climate Change agreements. They, too, were not happy with their government:

Scene FOURTEEN – Rock the Future World Tour: (contd.)

Amer. 1        (Coming forward, dressed in American jeans and a cowboy shirt) You’ve got to understand that the business of America is making money – and we’re all here because we KNOW we can make money from the Green economy.

Amer. 2        And make Peace, Justice and Prosperity for all at the same time!

Amer. 1        Have a lot of fun!  Make a lot of Money!  And help to save the world – That’s our motto!

Misha           Makes sense to me!

Nadia            You’ve got some pretty amazing innovations here!

Amer. 2        All commercially available madam!

Nina              (in Russian)  Here’s a car that will go a thousand miles on one battery charge!

Sasha            (in Russian)  And a wave generator that will power a whole village for ever from just sitting in the sea!

Zhenya         (in Russian)  Look at this house which will stay warm through the winter just from body heat and a single cooking stove!

Nina              (in Russian)  It’s unbelievable what they can do!  A whole disco that is powered just by the energy of people dancing!

Misha           (in Russian)  Look at this!  A Solar Plane that will fly around the world just using the power of sunlight!

Amer. 1        (in Russian) It’s done it already!  Now we are looking into commercial applications of the technology!

Marina          How do you speak Russian??

Amer. 1        Most of the people here are from somewhere else!  Koreans, Japanese, Brazilian – the digital economy knows no borders!

Vanya           Are you coming to the COP?

Amer. 1        I try not to get involved in those things: politicians give me a pain, right about here! (he points at his bottom)

Vanya           We know what you mean, sir!

Marina          They are the problem!

Misha           YOU – are the solution!

Amer. 1        Thank you!

Youth 5        We’ll tell them all about you.

American      You do that.


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Now we’ve been smiling lately,

Thinking about the good things to come

And we believe it could be,

Something good has begun


Oh peace train sounding louder

Ride on the peace train

Come on now peace train

Yes, peace train holy roller

Everyone jump upon the peace train

Come on now peace train

The Company come forward in a spectacular tableau – celebrating the Peace and Prosperity they believe is within their reach.                      

                                                FADE  TO  BLACK-OUT

Storyteller Interlude:

The storyteller leads her group of children forward as the Company moves back and faces the screen. The storyteller explains:

ST                 The Rock for the Future tour visited many, many countries – and everywhere they went, they found people, especially young people, ready to rise up to their ‘Generational Challenge’ of creating a Green Economy.

Child             So – why didn’t they just do it?

ST                 Because they didn’t have the money. They didn’t have the power!

Child             But – didn’t they just tell the grown-ups how stupid they were being?!

Child             I do it very politely – but if I keep at it, I usually get my way with teachers and parents!

Child             Why were they called Peace Child?

Child             They were almost grown-ups, weren’t they?

Child             Not children at all!

ST                 Wait and see. They hadn’t got a name, yet!  And yes – they did get their way, eventually. Otherwise none of us would be here!

The slide comes up of a huge conference room – with thousands of people sitting in rows listening, It is the Climate Change Conference of the Parties – and the Company come forward watching, arms folded, disconsolate.  They look at each other, glumly, as music starts – softly: 

ST                 The next Conference of the Parties to the Climate Change agreement was held in Katowice, Poland  The team were there, as usual. But this time, more than ever, they were angry. Angry that the governments showed none of their commitment and sense of urgency that they had found around the world – especially amongst young people. For governments – climate change came near to the bottom of their priority list. And the kids knew they had to change this. For dealing with it together – across borders, across religions, ethnicities, cultures – that was the way to build peace without which no development – sustainable or otherwise – could be achieved:


Scene FIFTEEN:  Disillusion:

The Company comes forward, singing – angry, pointing the finger at the audience.

SONG  FOURTEEN:   World  So  Blind

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

For every gain there is a natural loss

In every church a temple and a mosque

For every paradise there must be a hell

In every saint the devil dwells

For every mountain the must be a plain

In every sea a piece of land


But what we gonna do when it all runs out

What we gonna say when its to late

Are we going to blame it all on someone else

Just not ourselves


World so blind, pretending as if nothing is wrong

Hey there man !  I’m talking to you!

Wait a minute, don’t walk away now

Yes its you!  not someone else on a different floor

I mean you!  they’ll be breaking down your door

Blaming you forever more


Hungry children with their sunken eyes

Holding out their hands in vain

Wealthy nations with their mountains of food

Excuses flaunted without shame

No one seems to be responsible

No one wants to take the blame


But what we gonna do when it all runs out

What we gonna say when it’s to late

Are we gonna blame it all on someone else

Just not ourselves


World so blind, pretending as if nothing is wrong

Hey there man, I’m talking to you

Wait a minute don’t walk away now

Yes it’s you, not someone else on a different floor

I mean you, they’ll be breaking down your door

Blaming you forever more


Little families in their broken down boats

Going for a sail today they’d say

Tankers laden with the wealth of the world

They wave then turn away

Countries argue over who when and where

But do they really care


And what we gonna do when it all runs out….

What we gonna say when it’s too late

Are we gonna blame it all on someone else

Just not ourselves


World so blind, pretending as if nothing is wrong

Hey there man, I’m talking to you

Wait a minute don’t turn away now

Yes it’s you, not someone else on a different floor

I mean you, they’ll be breaking down your door

Blaming you forever more

The cast hold a tableau pointing fingers at the end of the song.                                            BLACK  OUT


Scene SIXTEEN:  The Victoria Café, UN Secretariat:

Coffee tables and chairs are set up across the stage; Vanya and Marina, Sasha and Zhenya, Nadia and Misha are sitting disconsolate at a table.  Around them diplomats are talking enthusiastically.

Vanya         (Putting down a thick report)  I think I shall go mad if I have to read any more of this bullshit!!

Zhenya       Why do they have to make it so complicated?!

Misha         Because it is!

Nadia          Not that complicated!  They make it more complicated than it really is so that they can confuse the heck out of their bosses and make them feel that they are earning their money!

Vanya         All I know is that it is doing my head in!

Marina        And it’s not working.  They use reports like these to inhibit progress rather than accelerate it.

Misha         I don’t what you guys are complaining about: the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals were two of the greatest successes the UN has ever seen!

Sasha          So – what are you suggesting Misha?  We just declare victory and move on??

Nadia          We have spent almost a year on this –

Marina        – and we’re really no further forward.

Vanya         We’ve raised a lot of awareness!

Sasha          Yeah – but much good it did us!

Nadia          Yegor and Nina had the right idea?!

Vanya         Yeah?! – I wondered where they’d gone?!

Nadia          Nina’s having a baby: so they’ve gone back to Moscow to finish their exams.

Marina        Just like that!

Sasha          Didn’t bother to tell any one!

Nadia          Well – they told me:  but I think they were a bit embarrassed.

Marina        It wasn’t exactly planned!?

Nadia          That’s putting it mildly….!

Vanya         Good for Nina!!  So – what do we think guys?  Let’s go make babies – and put this climate shit behind us!

Marina        It would be kind of responsible to finish our studies.

Sasha          There’s nothing to keep us here?!

Nadia          Well – the youth caucus does kind of rely on us.

Zhenya       – and we have got funding to last us through the end of the year.

Vanya         But what then?!  More reports!  More meetings!!

Marina        More faffing around!!

The Promoter and Chuck walk in with coffees and sit down at a table close to them, deep in conversation. They don’t notice the Kids…

Zhenya       Look who just walked in?!

Sasha          – and LOOK!!  Look who’s with him!

Marina        (leaping up and going to their table!) Hey guys! – what the hell are you doing here?!

Chuck         (in perfect Russian) Well – Hi!! How great to see you all!!

Promoter    We were just talking about you??

Zhenya       Wait a minute: Chuck – what are you doing speaking perfect Russian??!!

Chuck         I thought you knew?!  They put me on the show because they knew that I would understand what’s going on. I’ve lived in Texas for 20 years – but we still speak Russian at home!

Marina        The bastards!  They could have told us?!

Chuck         Get over it!  You changed my life that night!

Marina        You’re kidding me?!  Is that why you’re here?!

Chuck         I’m a part of the UN’s Sustainable Energy for All programme. It’s me, representing the oil industry, UNIDO, the World Bank, the European Commission, a few other donors and the Bank of America – it’s a great team!

Vanya         I heard! (to the promoter)  But why are you here?

Promoter    After the success of your tour, Chuck wants me to do something to promote his work!

Marina        Success – Ha!!

Chuck         What do you mean, kids?!  You’ve done more to bring climate change to the world’s attention than any other group in the world?!  You changed my mind, for God’s sake!

Promoter    And mine!

Chuck         And my board!  They’re all thrilled with the work I’m doing here at the UN!!

Promoter    You should be really proud of yourselves….

Zhenya       (Sadly) If you say so!

Chuck         So – what’s the next big idea?!

Promoter    I heard your Youth Delegation walked out of the last Summit!

Sasha:         We did!

All              Sorry….

Chuck         Don’t be sorry!!  It was great!! It’s about time those lazy, good-for-nothing Member State governments got a good kicking.  They’re holding us all back. What are you planning now?  I heard you raised a good bit of money on the back of your Rock for the Future tour?

Misha         We did – and we’ve got a good bit of it left.

Zhenya       Truth is – we don’t know what to do now.

Sasha          Yeah: we’re at a bit of a dead end.

Vanya         – and my Mom and Dad are pestering me to get back and finish up my exams.

Nadia          Mine too.

Marina        It is kind of over for us!

Chuck         Over?!! Did you say “OVER”???!!!

Marina        Yes

Chuck         No Way!! It’s Just beginning!  You can NEVER give up!  Ever?!

Promoter    Did any one ever tell you the secret of a happy marriage?

All              (Smiling, laughing)  No!

Promoter    The husband has to be scared to death of the wife. That’s why my third marriage has lasted so long!  I’m scared shitless of my wife!

Marina        (They laugh) So – we’re not married!

Vanya         So what’s that got to do with us!?

Chuck         EVERYTHING!!!  You walked away from their precious Summit so now they’re all scared to death of you.

Promoter    Your job is to make them a whole lot more scared. You’ve got to do something HUGE! Tahrir Square – Occupy – Arab Spring – Indignadoes – March for our lives!…  Wrap it all up into one huge Action and blow the governments away!  It has to be – has to be….??

Chuck         AMAZING!

Promoter    Yes.

Marina        If you say so.

Chuck         But you must DO so!  I can’t – and neither can the UN. They’re trussed and tied by bureaucracy and the fact that they have 193 bosses. You – the youth! – are free agents: and look at you, travelling around the world, uniting peoples and nations across borders with your smiles and your music in a way that diplomats can only dream of!  You can make the UN work – and you must, because you and I need this organisation to work for our future….

Vanya         How?

Chuck         I don’t know how!!

Promoter    You did Rock for the Future. That did more to unite nations than the UN’s done in years!

Misha         You did that for us!

Promoter    Yes – but it was your idea!

Chuck         You know all these clever internet things. You’re on Facebook, Facetime, What’s App – instagram!  You have to do it – because sure as hell, these guys here won’t.

Marina        So what do you suggest?!

Chuck         If you have to rely on us for ideas, we’re dead already!

Promoter    You have to come up with the ideas. We’ll help!

Chuck         I have got whole teams of people who will help!

Promoter    Me too – but it has to be led by you!  Invented by you!

Chuck         But it has to be HUGE!

Promoter    So STOP thinking that it’s over: it’s never over until you’re dead

Chuck         – and even then, you can do stuff online from beyond the grave!

Vanya         But what the hell can we do?!

Misha         We’ll think of something…

Chuck         COURSE  you will!!!!  You kids are the greatest!  You changed my life!  You will change the world.  I KNOW  you will!

Promoter    Let us know if there’s anything we can do.

Chuck         Money – Contacts in the US – contacts in the UN – contacts pretty much anywhere!

Promoter     We’re there for you!

All                Thanks (they shake hands)


Scene SEVENTEEN:  The Victoria Café – Later:

Chuck and the promoter leave in the black out, along with every one else, apart from Vanya and Marina. Lights come up slowly on them as Vanya looks in shock at Marina.

Vanya           What do you mean, “Yes!”

Marina          (She slowly turns to him) “YES!” – I love you!  “YES!” – I will marry you!

Vanya           Just like that?! (he gets up, knocking over his chair)

Marina          No!  I loved you from the moment you came up to me after that lecture.

Vanya           (turning back to her) Why?

Marina          You had kind eyes!  And you looked as though you really wanted to do something good with your life but weren’t sure quite what: and I felt immediately: ‘This is someone I could live the rest of my life with – searching to do good things…”

Vanya           Love at first sight?

Marina          I guess.

Vanya           That’s how it was for me!  Why did you never tell me?!

Marina          You never asked!

Vanya           I do now…

Marina          (getting up and coming to him)  And I tell you – Yes, yes, yes!

Vanya           That’s… that’s wonderful (they kiss).  I feel I should get down on my knees….

Marina          If you want.  (They kneel, facing each other, arms on each other’s shoulders)

Vanya           I promise – to love – to honour – and to care for you – in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, from this day forth, until death do us part.

Marina          I promise…. The Same! (She gets up!)  But – you know the best thing?  In all this good work we want to do – the fuel that drives everything is Love!

Vanya           Yes! – and it’s free and totally non-polluting!!

Marina          So – if we fill the hearts of every person on this planet with love – love for each other, love for the planet, love for the future – peace will be the result.

Vanya           Peace is the inevitable by-product of Love

Marina          So we will be peace-makers as well as future-savers!

Vanya           And “Blessed are the Peace-makers, for they shall be called the Children of God’

Marina          And our own children …. You do want children?

Vanya           Desperately!

Marina          They will be peace-makers?

Vanya           I hope so.  Nina said she’d like to raise a Peace Child.

Marina          When?

Vanya           She wrote back to me when I sent her an email congratulating her.

Marina          That! – that’s a great name for our group?

Vanya           What do you mean?

Marina          Peace Child…

Vanya           Singular?

Marina          Yes – you don’t say “Facesbook.” You say Facebook!

Vanya           Peace Child!  Creating Peace for each child!

Marina          And love – our love –

Vanya           – Everyone’s Love!

Marina          Will bring us Peace                                                                                Music starts

Vanya           Because Love is the most powerful force in the world

Marina          More powerful than the biggest nuclear bomb!

SONG  FIFTEEN:   Love will teach you this

SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Marina                                    Love, love will teach you this

Hold on to every smile and kiss

You never know how long it will last

Before your paths will have to part

And sorrow will overwhelm your soul

And you will feel no purpose to go on


Vanya                                     Love, love has brought me this

Pain most often follows bliss

Emptiness when he’s not there

Ecstasy when he re-appears

And I am happy by his side

As I fall into his arms, Tears and smiles

The Company come on in the background, and sing – softly – with them:

Love, love will bring you this

Love, love will make you rich

A new beginning to your life there will be

A paradise before your eyes you will see

And there you will abide

For as long, as long as it will last

With a feeling that you have lived

As the song ends, the Company bring forward chairs to their table. They crowd round Vanya and Marina, slapping them on the back.  Yegor pops a champagne cork: they toast the happy couple!

Sasha          Long life – and happiness!

Yegor         Congratulations!!  (to Vanya) – I never thought you’d have the guts to ask!

Marina        He almost didn’t!

Zhenya       I wish you many children!  The world needs more people like you!

Nadia          Peace Children!

Marina        Right!  We thought of a new name for our group:

Nina           Peace Child ??

Marina        Exactly!

Vanya         We think it’s perfect!  Peace! —  Child!!!

Sasha          What’s wrong with Rock the Future!?

Vanya         We think it’s a bit aggressive

Nadia          But Peace Child!?

Sasha          We’re not children!

Zhenya       – and we work to stop Climate Change – not Peace!

Nina           But we work for the children

Vanya         It was Nina’s idea: we’re working for her baby – for future generations.

Marina        And it’s not just climate change – it’s ending poverty, health for all, education for all

Nina           Human rights for all

Vanya         LOVE for all!  And – if you do all that, you have Peace!

Marina        So – Peace Child.  Like Face Book!

Zhenya       I like it!

Sasha          I think it’s a bit soppy…

Nina           What do the rest of you think?

Misha         It’s good branding!

Nadia          I think it could fly!

Zhenya       It’s better than Rock for the Future!

Misha         I was never happy with that!

Vanya         Yeah! – we need to re-brand! (They all murmur their agreement.)

Zhenya       I thought we were closing down – going back to get on with exams…??

Vanya         But Chuck wants us to do something HUGE ….!

Nina           He has no clue what?

Vanya         I’m fresh out of ideas too!

Nadia          I don’t see that there’s anything we can do!

Misha         So may we should all just go home, get on with our studies and forget about it?!

Yegor         Like everyone else seems to have done!

Marina        You’re kidding, right?!  (The Promoter comes in at the back, listening. They don’t see him)

Misha         Not really!  Look! – we’ve done Rock for the Future in 30 cities on five continents

Nina             –  mobilised millions of young people around the world to think about climate change!

Zhenya       But our governments have done fuck nothing!

Sasha          And unless they make it a priority to address climate change above all the other thousands of things they have to do – we’re toast!

Misha         And look at the latest Science report:  government commitments made in Paris have us heading for 5.4 degrees of warming. The scientists say we have to get it down to 1.5!

Nadia          Science is here – governments are there!

Vanya         So, you’re saying there’s no way we’re going to close that gap?

Zhenya       What is it that the oil companies have to do: write off 80% of their proven reserves?!

Misha         Yes! Trillions of dollars worth of assets.

Nadia          They’re never going to do that…..

Yegor         Not in a million years!

Vanya         So – there’s nothing else we can do.

Misha         We’re done!

Marina        I can’t believe I’m hearing this!!  I said I’d marry you because you get shit done!!  If you think I’m going to go back to my studies, graduate – have a big white wedding, get a nice flat, have babies and make you nice dinners – while our planet slowly fries….  Well, you just signed up to the shortest engagement in history!

Vanya         I’m sorry!  It’s just so hard…..!

Yegor         We’re not miracle kids?!!

Marina        We are!! We have to be!! “The impossible we do immediately!  Miracles take us a little longer….”  We just have to keep working at it.

Sasha          Well – you can. But my head’s getting a bit sore from banging it against brick walls….

Marina and Vanya look at each other, blankly – as the others wait for them to say something.

Promoter    (Coming forward) What would Gandhi do?  [They all turn, surprised, and look at him]

Yegor         Gandhi??

Promoter    Mahatma Gandhi – yes!

Nadia          What the fuck’s Gandhi got to do with any of this?

Promoter    It’s just a question people ask. Some ask “What would Jesus do?”  We used to ask: “What would Lenin do?” I ask “What would Gandhi do?” – because he liberated India from the British – which everyone said was impossible.

Vanya         You’re right: they all changed the world?!  How did Gandhi do it??

Misha         Hunger strikes!

Promoter    Yes!

Yegor         Oh great! Now you’re suggesting we all starve ourselves to death?!

Nina           That’s well sustainable!

Marina        Wait! Think about it: a Consumption strike!  We tell our elders: “NO! – we’re not going to consume your stupid goods!  We’re not going to buy your stupid cars or TVs…

Vanya         “We’re not going to go to your stupid schools and learn your stupid lessons that teach us so much crap about useless information….!

Marina        “We’re going to have a revolution!”

Promoter    You’re going to “Be the Change you want to see in the world!”

Misha         Did Gandhi say that?

Promoter    Hi did! – he was all about empowering young people.

Nadia          We could go on Strike!

Yegor         But we would still eat!?

Vanya         Sure – but only vegetarian!

Zhenya       So what we go on strike for?

Marina        To get our governments to listen to us!

Vanya         Gandhi never had the global connections we have!  We’re a billion strong on Facebook. We can reach every kid in the world –

Marina        – and if every kid in the world tells the idiot adults and governments who haven’t got time to deal with Climate Change – to think about our future security, they’ll have to listen to us.

Sasha          We can demand a meeting of the UN Security Council –

Zhenya       –  to secure our future security.

Marina        Our Planet’s Security

Nadia          They’d never let kids into the UN Security Council?

Promoter    They did for that Youth Peace and Security group.

Nina           A billion kids out on strike

Marina        – demanding that governments do what it takes to secure our planet’s future?

Zhenya       That’s a much bigger issue.

Yegor         It’s more than one speech at the UN Security Council

Sasha          It’s about creating a United Nations that works!

Nadia          – a United Nations that does things!

Marina        It’s a complete re-building of the world’s economy.

Misha         Problem: no one in government knows how to do that?

Sasha          But those groups we met on our tour do!  In Dubai – in California, in China.

Promoter    They’re doing it – but not nearly fast enough.

Vanya         And every kid needs to know that it is possible to do it.

Nina           Like we do!

Marina        But to do it, we have to have peace!

Yegor         No more wars!

Misha         – to give us the time and money to do it!

Nina           Peace Child!

Vanya         Right!  Let’s drink to Peace Child!

All              We can do it! (They raise their glasses and drink a toast….)

Misha         (doubtful, suddenly) Can we?

Marina        We’ll make Draft Treaties – so that every one knows what we need to do?

Youth 3      We can make a movie –

Youth 6      Tweets – whatsapp and facebook groups in different languages….

Marina        And we have one amazing secret weapon!

Nadia          What’s that?

Marina        This!! (she holds up a flash drive!)

Yegor         What?

Vanya         (smiling) The email addresses of every youth leader and NGO in every UN member state!

Marina        The one hundred million youth we’ve been in touch with over our campaign so far!

Misha         So we can bring every Kid in the world out on Strike!

Sasha          Kids on Strike!!

Zhenya       Right!

Nina           Sounds Fun!

Nadia          Kids on Strike!

Yegor         Sounds cool!

All              Kids on Strike – Kids on strike!! – Kids on Strike!!!!!!!                          BLACK  OUT


Scene EIGHTEEN:  Kids on Strike Central:

A Committee room in an office somewhere in New York.  The kids come on stage – Misha carrying a laptop computer.

Sasha          This is never going to work!?

Misha         ‘Course it is!

Zhenya       You’d join a school strike for time off school, wouldn’t you?

Nina           ‘Course I would!

Yegor         It’s a no-brainer!

Marina        But that’s exactly NOT the point: the point is that while they are off school, they’ll take the time to learn about Climate Change, how to build a Green Economy

Nadia          Human rights – peace-building, conflict transformation …

Misha         Sustainable behaviours, AI – robotics….

Vanya         The things that really matter!

Nina           OK, OK!  I know!  But for normal kids, the way to get them involved in all this is to tell them that it is a way to get time off school! Am I right?!

Marina        So we don’t even tell them that our goal is to get the UN Security Council to consider our draft treaties –

Yegor         We tell them –

Nina           But in the small print!

Zhenya       The headline appeal has to be: “Take a holiday from school!!”

Misha         So – shall I push the button?

Marina        Wait:  it sounds awfully trivial to me!

Vanya         The governments are really going to hate us!

Zhenya       They hate us already!

Yegor         What’s all this talk of Hate?!  This is an act of Love for the Planet.

Sasha          For future generations!

Nina           We’re Peace Child!!

Marina        – and we must take the moral high ground, defending our strike as a way of educating young people about the most important challenge of their lives!

Vanya         Their ‘generational challenge!!’ And the minute the governments call us a Security Council Meeting at the UN, the Strike is off!

Misha         Are we agreed?! (they all look at him silent, nervous. One nods)  So I’m going to push the button!

Misha pushes a big red button at the centre of the screen. A spiders web spreads out across the map

Nina           What have we done?!                                                                              BLACK  OUT

Storyteller Interlude  

The Storyteller comes forward as the slides change to show San Francisco and the Cleantech Open site:

Storyteller Not much, as it happened!  A bunch of e-mails went out around the world – and the impact was a big fat NOTHING! Nobody thought they were serious….

Child          So what did the kids do?

Storyteller   Two things.  First – they appointed youth Strike Leaders in every UN Member State to lead the campaign locally. Second – they worked up a series of treaties for governments to sign when they met at the UN Security Council.

Child          How did they do that?

Storyteller   Well – the translation gizmo helped….


Scene NINETEEN:  Kids on Strike Central:

A Committee room in an office somewhere in New York. The kids sit round the table, working the phones.

Sasha          (shaking the phone) The Japanese is not working!

Over the PA, we hear a torrent of Japanese coming over the phone. Misha comes over and pushes a few buttons. Suddenly the voice starts coming through in Russian. Sasha smiles his thanks to Misha.

Japanese Voice           Japanese youth are very obedient people.  They can never strike like you suggest!

Sasha          But it’s a matter of life and death! None of us know enough about it. Do your teachers give you any lessons on climate change??  Do you do exams on it??

Japanese Voice           No. But we hear about it on the news!

Sasha          That’s my point!  We all know a little bit about it – but none of us know enough! The school strike gives us all a chance to learn….

Japanese Voice           Well I shall put your points to our government liaison. They will know what to do

Sasha          But they don’t!! They won’t do anything – unless you take extreme action!

Japanese Voice           We trust our government to do the right thing…  Thank you and good-bye!

Sasha          Aaaargh!!  It’s useless  –

Yegor         You think you’ve got problems:  look at this interview in France:

The interview plays on the screen above them – they watch, as the simultaneous translation comes through in Russian– the interviewer is female, the teacher is male 

Interviewer      Let me ask you this: where in your curricula do you teach the challenge of the 2 degree threshold – or if it should be the 1.5 degree threshold?

Teacher           We – er….

Interviewer      And what do you teach them about the impact of the disappearance of the Arctic ice-cap – ocean flip-flop and all that?!

Teacher           It’s – er….

Interviewer      … nowhere in the current French curricula, is it?  You don’t have a clue what we’re talking about, do you?

Teacher           Er….

Interviewer      That’s our point!! – NOT to stop kids learning but rather to start them learning all the things that are absolutely VITAL to their future – like limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees!

Teacher           Mm. We show them how to use a thermometer in physics….

The kids all laugh – then the screen reverts back to the huge blank world map

Marina        It’s not funny!

Vanya         Not one single country has come through for us

Misha         It’s early days yet….

Nadia          Give it time!  Have Faith?

Marina        Do you have faith?

Nadia          I do, actually!  I’m a Christian

Zhenya       I’m a muslim – and if I didn’t believe that Allah absolutely does NOT want human beings to ruin his lovely planet through climate change – I wouldn’t be doing this stuff.

Yegor         I’m Jewish – and I believe EXACTLY the same thing. Judaism is all about stewardship of the earth.

Nina           I didn’t know you were Jewish.

Yegor         Is that a problem??

Nina           No!!  It’s lovely…

Marina        You religious folk are weird!  I mean – it’s not like as if there’s some one up there who’s going to come down in a cloud and magically make it all happen!

Sasha          Not as weird as putting your faith in that the bunch of bozos we were with at the UN last month!

Zhenya       If you believe they’re going to come up with the solution, you’re seriously deluded.

Marina        I prefer to believe that rational argument, people seeing the SENSE in what we’re talking about, will cause the break-through ….

Nadia          Is there a problem with doing both?!

Marina        We’d be foolish not to ….

Vanya         I pray that God sorts this out for us – but I will also use every ounce of energy I have to make it work.

Sasha          Let us all pray – ‘cos this thing’s going to take a miracle!!

With a “Ping!” – a small patch goes red on the map above them.

Marina        Shit – what does that mean?!

Misha         It’s Estonia!  They’ve called the kids out on Strike!!

Nadia          It means it’s happening!

Nina           We’re on our way, guys!

Zhenya       Have faith. Please – have faith!  Allah – God – does NOT want us to fry our world!

Yegor         That’s the best thing!  Christians, Jews, Muslims, atheists – we ALL have to work together on this thing.

Marina        Serious peace-building!

Sasha          It’s still a ridiculously impossible task we’ve set ourselves!

Nadia          That’s why we’ve got to have faith!

Zhenya       No amount of logic is going to win the battle!

Marina        And we all knew it was never going to be easy

Vanya          – or be quick!

Sasha          “Give your life!” – remember!

Nadia          But however bad it gets, I know – I KNOW – we’re going to make it!

Zhenya/Yegor   Me too!                                                                                       MUSIC  STARTS

They join their hands together and move forward, singing, and, as they sing – more and more countries on the map above them splash red:


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

If the sun lost it’s shine – and the trees started to die!

I guess I’d still be full of hope – and yes, I know the reason why!


If the wind grew too old, and the seas started to dry

Yes I would still be full of love – don’t ask – don’t ask me why!


I still believe in God

I still believe in us His people!

And if you really want to know

I still believe in this His world


So don’t turn your head away – don’t give up on who you are

Just keep loving more each day – and the world will shine for you!


I guess it’s all in the mind – what you feel is what you see

So within your heart just sing these words

Come sing – come sing with me!


We believe in God

We believe in us His people!

And if you really want to know

We still believe in this His world


We believe in God

We believe in us His people!

And if you really want to know

I believe          –           Yes we believe

I believe          –           Yes we believe

We believe in this His LAND!

As the song ends, they look around at the map – and are gobsmacked. Then they all fall into each other’s arms and hold a tableau in a group hug.   BLACK  OUT


Scene TWENTY:  In the Office of the Foreign Minister:

A large desk is set up centre stage. The National Flag and Seal appear on the Screen behind, The Foreign Minister sits at his desk. 2 x Aides nervously approach him from stage left:

Aide 1           Sorry to disturb you, Excellency…

Foreign Minister         What is it?

Aide 2           This business of the school strike.

Aide 1           You’ve heard about it?

FM               Yes? As you know, my children are beyond school age, so I have not paid it much attention.

Aide 2           It’s quite serious

Aide 1           Over a billion students are now out on strike

Aide 2           – including about half the students in the Russian Federation.

FM               I share your concern – but it’s a domestic matter. Nothing to do with my ministry.

Aide 1           Except that – they are demanding a meeting of the UN Security Council

FM               Why?

Aide 2           To discuss their recommendations on Climate Change –

Aide 1           – and other things.

FM               We can’t go calling on Security Council Meetings to discuss random children’s ideas…

Aide 1           Except that, if it gets the students to call off their strike, we shall earn the gratitude of many UN member state governments.

Aide 2           We have called the Perm Reps of China, USA, UK and France – and they would all support the call.

FM               So – why don’t they call it?

Aide 1           They’re waiting for your response, Excellency.

FM               Do we have to do anything about their recommendations?

Aide 2           Of course not, sir. Just ‘consider’ them….

FM               So – what might be the downside if we called it?

Aide 1           Our Perm Rep might have to make an introductory speech …

FM               We can manage that, don’t you think?

Aide 2           Of course, Excellency!

FM               (pleased with himself)  I might even make it myself!  Thank you!  Go do it. Good to show some positive Russian leadership in the P-5, don’t you think?

Aides 1 & 2  Definitely, Excellency!

They back away, deferentially.                                                                        BLACK  OUT


Scene TWENTY-ONE:  Kids on Strike Central:

A Committee room in an office somewhere in New York. The kids sit round the table, looking at a beautifully bound document:

Marina            So this is it?

Nina                It’s beautiful!

Nadia              Beautifully written at least: who wrote it?

Misha              It builds on “Statements” produced by 400 UN-related international meetings of young people over the last 20 years. From these, we prepared a draft of “Generational Priorities” which were sent out in 78 different languages to every kid who joined the school strike.

Sasha              It also went to media outlets in all 193 UN Member states.

Misha              Over a billion responses were received and analysed by our software. This document represents the best expression of the consensus views of the current generation of citizens under the age of 25 that the world has ever seen.

Vanya             But – what do we all feel?  Is it any good?

Misha              I like it because it’s an “Action Plan” – not just random statements.

Marina            I like it for its priorities: peace, good and honest governance,

Nina                Health, education, jobs, human rights – safety and security for all.

Zhenya            But climate change is way down the list.

Yegor              At least it’s on the list!

Nadia              In the UN’s MyWorld2015 survey – it almost wasn’t.

Vanya             Doesn’t matter guys!  We’re not representing ourselves at this meeting: we’re representing every single kid on this planet who has chosen to support us!

Misha              So – shall we send it out!?

Sasha              Just to the Security Council Member States….

Nina                Why not all of them?

Zhenya            And the Media?

Misha              Because it’s more of a story once the Security Council has reacted.

Marina            So – we just send it to the Permanent Representatives of the 15 Security Council Members?

All                   Yes.

Misha              Now?

All                   Now!

Misha              (Touches the screen on his smart phone)  Done!                                           BLACK  OUT


Scene TWENTY-TWO:  At the UN:

Lights change – the Big UN symbol appears on the screen at the back of the stage. The Company is split between those in dark suits, playing diplomats, and those in jeans who come as youth activists. Chuck and the Promoter come on with the diplomats, and greet the Youth Activists.

Marina        I don’t believe it! – you came!

Chuck         Of course I came!

Promoter    We are so proud of you guys!

Vanya         Thank you!

Chuck         No – thank YOU!  This is HUGE!

Sasha          Do you think they’ll listen?

Promoter    Let’s wait and see – but at least you got their attention!

The diplomats sit down around a horseshoe table designed to represent the UN Security Council Chamber. The Secretary General sits at the apex of the table and raps his gavel:

S G             Good morning everyone. We are gathered here to listen to the ideas of young people – who, as we have seen, have added a welcome element of urgency to our task of combating climate change and building a Green Economy. I am pleased to declare this Special Session of the UN Security Council “Open!” (She slaps the gavel.) Before we hear from the young people, I call upon the Government of the Russian Federation, who requested this meeting, whose Foreign Minister we are privileged to welcome to this chamber this morning. Your Excellency?

FM:            My government’s reasons for calling this meeting were both pragmatic – to get our Young People to go back to school! – and idealistic: we have read their Action Plan and, though naïve in parts, it expresses both the sense of urgency your excellency referred to, and a sense of the holistic approach we have to adopt in relation to these challenges. So – please: join me in welcoming these young people to this important meeting! (Polite applause)      

S G             I call upon the leaders of the Young People’s delegation to address us:

Marina:       It is an awesome honour to address your Excellencies in this iconic chamber! As we say in the Preamble to our Call, humanity stands at a crossroads: one way leads to prosperity and security in a green economy. The other leads over a precipice to human extinction along with the extinction of many of the great creatures with whom we share this planet.

Vanya:        We called the world’s young people out on strike because we wanted them to know first: that the precipice exists and we are very close to it. Second: HOW we’re going to work together to avoid going over it …

Yegor         Lessons none of us were really learning at school

Nadia          But it’s probably the most important lesson that any child born in the world today needs to learn.  And now – through our action – they do know.                          MUSIC starts

Marina        And – in the process – we have learned how to Unite Nations –

Sasha          … how to care for each other, leave no one behind, and Unite the world’s major religions.

Zhenya       More than that – we have found amongst us the Peace that this great organisation was set up to secure.

Yegor         We now know we can save ‘succeeding generations from the scourge of war.’

Marina:       In this building, you agreed the Sustainable Development Goals – Goals designed to bring us together as one big human family.

Vanya         The Action Plan we set before you today is designed to achieve those goals – to achieve peace and prosperity for every member of our human family.

Misha         The current dangers are great and, as your reports have often told us, the very survival of the human family is at stake.

Nina           That’s very frightening to a young person.

Marina        Through our studies, we’ve learned that we can survive.  But we need your help!  We cannot do it without you.

SONG  SEVENTEEN:   We want this world to survive for ever 

SCORE                      VIDEO ( – go to end)                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

All the time through the day and  through the night

I think about my life in this world

So many times I’ve tried to find

A way to live my life  – A way to ease my mind


I know this world could die forever

And people are the reason why

Children and parents, lovers and poets

We just can’t hear our planet cry!


We want this world to survive forever

And all the people join their hands together

In a bond of love, kindness and friendship

We can make peace with the earth


So many people have died in wars

And we want that no one else should suffer – not again

We mustn’t forget that many are poor

And half of our children lack even food!


We know this world is a wonderful place

It’s our home – where we live and where we grow!
I want to believe that this world can be

Peaceful, free – and happy home for all


We want this world to survive forever

And all the people join their hands together

In a bond of love kindness and friendship

We can make peace with the earth.


Let’s join our hands together

Let’s make Peace throughout our World!


S G             Thank you: I’ve rarely been so moved by a presentation in this chamber. Thank you – and now, Excellencies, may I suggest that we go through the Children’s Action Plan line by line – and see where we can find consensus?

Marina        (whispers) Why do they keep calling us ‘Children’?!

Diplo 1:      With respect, Secretary General, may I raise a Point of Information?

S G             Go ahead:

Diplo 1:      Does this meeting today mean that any interest group can use a campaign of civil disobedience to get access to this chamber?

S G             Absolutely not.

Diplo 1:      Thank you – and having trotted through their naïve little litany of proposals, can we have some kind of guarantee that their campaign will be called off?

S G             The campaign is already called off, as you must know, Excellency: it was called off the minute that this meeting was announced.

Diplo 1:      Good. Just let it be registered that my government regrets profoundly that the United Nations has allowed an interest group to put a gun to our head to force this meeting upon us.

S G             Your regrets are noted, Excellency –

Diplo 2:      A further point of information, Chairman: my government has a representative system of local, regional and national youth councils that allow the voice of youth to be heard in government. Are any of the views expressed in this Acton Plan the result of deliberations within such representative systems? – or any process that would give them some democratic legitimacy?

S G             Were national youth councils involved in the development of your Call?

Marina:       As we explain in the preamble, the Action Plan is based on youth statements and declarations going back over 20 years – revised and edited with comments and input from many millions of young people in every UN member state.

Sasha          We reached out to all of them, your excellencies. But, as we found with other elected officials, long-term issues like those in this Action Plan are not priorities for them. (murmurs of laughter around the room.)

Vanya         Some youth councils drove consultations in their countries; most did not.

Diplo 2:      Thank you. (to his fellow diplomats) As I suspected, this Call for Action has no democratic legitimacy. We are only discussing it because we’ve been forced to do so by civil disobedience

Yegor         (In a loud whisper) Isn’t a Billion Young People out on Strike enough legitimacy?

Diplo 3:      Forgive me, Secretary General, just one other procedural point of information:

S G             Of course?

Diplo 3:      The diplomats around this table represent governments elected by citizens over the age of 18 or 21. Why, then, are we being asked to discuss an Action Plan prepared by, and informed by input from, citizens who are not constitutionally allowed to vote for the governments we represent?

FM             That is the point, Excellency!  We are considering the ideas of the citizens whose future we are required to secure.

Diplo 3:      I still submit this meeting is unconstitional – which is regrettable (murmurs of assent.)

S G             Your points are noted, Excellency. Shall we proceed?  (in a tired voice) Blah – bla-blah-bla-Blah!

Diplo 1       (equally tired and disinterested) Bla-bla-bla-Blah! Blah!  Blah! Bla-bla-bla-Blah!

Diplo 2       (a little heated)  Bla-bla-bla-Blah! Blah!  Blah! Bla-bla-bla-Blah!

Diplo 3       (responding angrily)  Bla-bla-bla-Blah! Blah!  Blah! Bla-bla-bla-Blah!

Diplo 1       (pouring calming oil on troubled waters)  Bla-bla-bla-Blah! Blah!  Blah! Bla-bla-bla-Blah!

Diplo 2       (wrapping up the conversation)  Bla-bla-bla-Blah! Blah!  Blah! Bla-bla-bla-Blah!

S G             Thank you. Your excellent points are noted.  If Excellencies agree, a report of this session will be delivered to the 3rd Committee in the Autumn. At the Committee’s sole discretion, a resolution may be drafted and forwarded to the General Assembly at its session next year – and, if carried, will have advisory status to member states. Is that acceptable to members?

Vanya:        Next year!!!??

S G             Given that there is no particular urgency, I suggest we take a coffee break now – and return to consider the Action Plan in detail in our second session. We resume in twenty minutes. Thank you! (he slaps the gavel – and they all EXIT)

The kids remain – looking at each other, trying to smile, but all a little shell-shocked

Sasha          What – was that all about??

Nina           All that Blah-blah!

Nadia          Where are the grown-ups?!!

Yegor         If these are the people we’re trusting to save the world – we’re toast!

Zhenya       “No particular sense of urgency…”  Which planet did he come from?

Vanya         Come on – she was the one decent one amongst them!

Misha         But here – look at this: (going through the papers on one desk) “Instructions from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: “On No Account allow serious consideration of the Children’s Treaties…”

Sasha          Bastards! – they never were going to do anything…

Nadia          They’re just going through the motions to get us to call off the strike!

Misha         Wouldn’t you do that in their position?!

Vanya         We shouldn’t have made those promises about ‘No Pre-conditions’

Marina        They have betrayed us.

Zhenya       The UN has let us down every step of the way

Misha         Copenhagen, Rio+20

Marina        – even Paris

Yegor         And the SDGs.

Nina           No one’s serious about those

Misha         We need new governments…. New people to sit in these chairs!

Sasha          (grinning mischievously) Well! – Look – that sign says Russian Federation. I know I can do a better job of representing my country than that guy with all his Blah-blah!

Nadia          That sign says China – one of my grandfathers came from there….

Quickly, they fill the chairs around the horseshoe table. Marina & 2 go to the SG’s chair

Marina & Vanya:  Can we be your gender-balanced co-chairs?

Zhenya       Great idea! – all those in favour? (All raise their hands)

Vanya         (slapping the gavel) We call this meeting of the Young People’s UN Security Council to order!

Marina        First motion, please!

Sasha          I move we agree our Climate Change target of 350ppm and the $43 Trillion dollar Investment Fund for the immediate transition to a Green Economy. Do I have a seconder?

Nina           I second that on behalf of Future Generations!

Vanya         All those in favour? Come on – raise those hands!

All raise their hands. The Boy slaps the gavel:

Marina        Agreed! Unanimously!!  Next – ?

Nadia          I move our Sustainability Education bill – to “Re-orient Education towards sustainability!”

Yegor         “That every Youth is instructed in the science of sustainability from the day they enter primary school to the day they graduate university and that they be assessed for their competence in this subject as a key requirement of graduation!” I second!

Marina        All those in favour?  (all raise their hands. The Girl slaps the gavel)

Vanya         Agreed! Next – ?

Misha         I move our comprehensive Peace, nuclear disarmament and de-militarisation Treaty –

Yegor         Remind me…

Nadia          The UN Standing Army?

Misha         No! – the UN Police Force designed to police the referendums in Kashmir, Nagorno Karabakh and Western Sahara within 12 months; to secure the South Asian Common Market; to broker the 2-state solution for Israel / Palestine with Jerusalem hosting both capitals; the African Great Lakes Union  – the expansion of Mercosur and ECOWAS plus the re-distribution of permanent seats on the UN Security Council to regional blocs.

Zhenya       It runs to 18-pages: its pretty comprehensive.

Nina           I know – we all supported it. I second…

Vanya         All those in favour? (all raise their hands. He smacks down the gavel!)  Agreed!

Marina        Next?

Sasha          I move our Development Treaty –

Yegor         Remind me

Nadia          That was the one about the Tobin Tax, giving the UN authority to raise and spend direct taxes to create a global welfare and energy safety net;

Sasha          And the whole scandal about debt – and preventing Vulture Funds suing governments for debt that they have bought at knock-down prices.

Zhenya       I remember – That’s appalling!  I second!

Marina        Great. All those in favour? (all raise their hands; the gavel smacks down!)  Agreed!

Vanya         Next – ? – we’re running out of time here –

Zhenya       The Environmental Security Council

Vanya         That was my idea! I second that from the chair!

Marina        All those in favour? (all raise their hands. He smacks down the gavel!)  Agreed!

Vanya         Great! Time for one more – if we’re lucky!

Misha         R2P?

Marina        Sure – go for it!

Nina           It’s a bit fuzzy this one…

Misha         Not fuzzy at all: “We hold it our sacred duty as citizens of planet earth to protect the human rights and dignity of all the peoples with whom we share this earth. We therefore commit to serve and protect those rights against all who would try to violate them – individually, communally, nationally, regionally and globally.”

Marina        I think that’s pretty clear!

Zhenya       We’re talking about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights actually meaning what it says.  I second that!

Yegor         Me too!

Marina        All those in favour!  (all raise their hands) Agreed (He slaps the gavel as the Diplomats come in, led by the Secretary-General. They stop, astonished at the young people occupying their chairs at the Summit table.)

S G             What the – ?  What’s going on here??!!

Zhenya       We decided we’d help things along a bit –

Nina           – get done in your coffee break what might take you guys 40 years to do!

Nadia          By which time, you’ll be dead and our world will be fried!

Diplo 3:      This is outrageous – they’ve been looking through our confidential briefings!

Misha         Yeah! – embarrassing isn’t it: to know you planned to agree absolutely nothing!

Diplo 1:      Get these kids outta here!  Call Security!!

Zhenya       No – we should call security on you!  You are the threat to OUR security!

Nina           We’re no threat to your’s!

Diplo 2:      Mr Secretary General: you must agree!  This is a most shocking breach of UN security – you must allow us to eject these Children immediately.

S G             Not a breach of security, but a breach of protocol, certainly, so I think our young friends had better leave.

Yegor         And let you faff around for another 40 years!

Sasha          Not likely.

Diplo 3:      Their insolence is insupportable. Call Security!

Diplo 2:      Eject them!

Misha         I suggest you re-consider: one click on my I-phone here and the billion young people who’ve been on strike these last weeks will come out again, baying for your blood! Think how that will make you look in the media?!

Vanya         And to your governments back in your capitals – for whom you were supposed to solve the problem!

S G             What would you have us do?

Marina        We would like you to sit with us, quietly, with open minds – and go through every element of our Draft Treaties

Vanya         We know we’re naïve! We need your experience in the art of the possible. But you also need our energy – our idealism – our  thirst for a future that works!

Nina           Please!  You were Children once.

Zhenya       You looked forward to lives filled with happiness, love and security!

Misha         Lawyers would call your failure to act on climate change an ‘intergenerational crime!’

Sasha          We should probably sling you in jail for murdering our future. (music starts…)

Nadia          Instead, we ask you to talk to us – to work with us!

Zhenya       It’s all we ever asked!

Vanya         To work with us to make the Future we Want!

Marina        The Future we need to survive

One comes forward and sings. During the song, the diplomats are bewitched and led like lambs to the table where  they sit together with the youth – reading through the papers, looking to each other for clarifications, working together, elders and youth – working it out. Together.


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

I was a child who ran full of laughter

I was a child who lived for a day

My eyes full of sunshine

My heart full of smiles

I was a child for a day.


We were the children who ran in the morning

We were the children who laughed at the sun

Who listened to those who spoke with their wisdom

We were the ones we would say.


We’re getting older as time goes by

A little older every day

We are the children of yesterday.


We are the men who worry of nothing

We are the men who speak without aim

Who listen to no one yet speak of their wisdom

We were the ones we would say.


We’re getting older as time goes by

A little older every day

We are the children of yesterday.


I was a child who ran full of laughter

I was a child who lived for a day

My eyes full of sunshine

My heart full of smiles

I was a child for a day.


We’re getting older as time goes by

A little older every day

We were the children of yesterday.

The lights fade very slowly on the scene of the elder diplomats and the youth working together. On the screen behind them, the UN Symbol ripples into the Peace Day 2050 symbol

Scene TWENTY-THREE:  Peace Day 2050: 

The spotlight picks out the Story-teller and her group as they return to the stage watching the diplomats and youth at work around the horse-shoe table.  During the scene – they, and the Chorus – slip away and the stage is cleared.

Child 4       So – was that it?

Child 3       All done and dusted in a 20-minute coffee break?

S T             No – silly!  We were stuck in that stifling room for weeks.  As you saw – we didn’t have much respect for diplomats at the start – and they were furious with us! But after a month of working together, we began to realise how much we needed each other.

Child 1       So – were you friends!?

S T             Good friends!  We laughed a lot – I don’t think laughter had ever been a big feature of the UN Security Council until we got there. And we sang, and we chatted and we banged heads together: we refused to take ‘No!’ for an answer.

Child 2       What happened to Vanya and Marina?

Child 3       Did they stay married?!

S T             They did – had three children, I think!  Their daughter’s a reporter on Channel 1 news; one of their sons is something in the government – and their other son’s in Japan somewhere.

Child  4      But what did they do?

S T             They bought a big farm back East – raised their family,  farmed, lived quietly and were very happy, I think!

Child 5       Don’t you see them?

S T             Once in a while!  We had a reunion a few years back and it was great!  Once a Peace Child – always a Peace Child!  But we went our separate ways – most of us. I became a teacher – another became a university professor. One runs a green business in Germany…

Child 6       But – how did you ever stop?

S T             Stop what?

Child 1       Changing the world?

S T             Very easily!  It’s exhausting – something to do when you’re young, like you!  And you should only change those things that MUST be changed.  Otherwise – just back off and let people get on with their lives….

Child 4       Thank you!

S T             For what?

Child 6       For being a Peace Child.

Child 2       Did you ever hear about that other one?

ST              What other one?

Child 1       The one in Papua New Guinea?

Child 1       Surely you know the story?

S T             No – did I miss something?

Youth         In school, when you learn your story, they tell you the Papua New Guinea story first.

ST              Tell me!

Youth         “When indigenous tribes made peace, they sealed it by exchanging a baby: each baby grew up with the other’s tribe and if, in the future, conflict threatened, each tribe would send out that child to negotiate a peace.

Child 1       Such a child was called a ‘Peace Child’!

S T             I didn’t know that.

Youth 4      It was a Christian Missionary who discovered the story: he used it to explain why God sent his only son, Jesus – to be a Peace Child between God and Human beings.

Youth 6      Our teachers use the story to show that young people can shoulder big responsibilities – even when we’re young.

Marina        Like you did.

ST              Fascinating! Perhaps that’s a better reason to celebrate Peace Day than my story. Because every child must learn to be a Peace Child?

Child 1       That’s our job, isn’t it?

S T             I guess!

Child 5       Don’t worry! We can do it –

Child 3       – if ever you need us to do it again.

S T             That’s very comforting. Thank you.                                                        MUSIC starts

Child 5       Come on – the party’s starting. You don’t want to miss the Peace Day Party, do you?

S T             Never!

Children     Happy Peace Day – and thank you for what you did!  (They gather round him/her in a hug)

S T             Happy Peace Day Everyone!

Cast & Chorus enter at the back of the theatre, dancing down the aisles – the dance troupe enter on stage, reprising the dance from the top of the show


SCORE                      VIDEO                                AUDIO                      INSTRUMENTAL

Sing!  I do wish the world would sing!

I do wish the world would say

How they love to live and play

How they need each other’s  –


Peace!  That is all we want to have,

That is all we want to share

Let us live our lives in peace

Oh let us give this life a chance to –


Love! – love is all I need,

Love is all I want,

Love is everywhere

Peace! – Peace is all I want,

Peace is all I need,

Peace – everywhere!

During the instrumental interlude, Youths 1 & 2 are hoisted on the shoulders of two leading chorus members. The Girl on the other side is likewise raised up, and the chorus process out through the aisles while the dancers fill the stage with a festive finale, flanked by the solo singers.

Come into my joy!                                         Love! – love is all I need,

Come into my pain!                                       Love is all I want,

Come you be a friend of mine,                     Love is everywhere!

I’ll be the same!                                             Come into my joy!

Peace! – Peace is all I want,                          Come into my pain

Peace is all I need,                                         Come you be a friend of mine!

Peace – everywhere!                                      I’ll be the same!

                                    (Repeat x 2)


T H E       E N D


© David Woollcombe – October 2018