Full Synopsis

Full Synopsis

Act One

Alice is sitting on a tree stump, reading a book. The book bores her, so she puts it down to take a little nap. As she falls asleep, she dreams her way into Wonderland....

A very white rabbit wearing a waistcoat and pocket watch comes hopping by; he is in a rush and very upset that he is running late. Alice asks where he is going, and he responds that he is headed down the rabbit hole. She asks if she can join him, and he indeed takes her. They fall for what seems like forever, ending up in a hallway. Alice loses the rabbit as he rushes through a door, so she tries various others, but they are all locked. Suddenly, a table appears, upon which is a key, a bottle and a glass box. Alice tries to open the doors with the key, which fits all of the locks... but Alice is too tall to fit through any of them! The table tells her to drink from the bottle, which causes her to shrink! Now small enough to fit through the doors, she has forgotten the key on the table and is no longer tall enough to reach it. Thinking to eat the cake in the glass box, she suddenly grows large enough to reach the key!

The Rabbit comes running through again and drops his gloves and fan. She puts the gloves on, which make her shrink once again. Alice is so confused by this place that she begins to cry and suddenly finds herself in a pool of water – she has cried so much that she is going to have to swim through her own tears! As she swims, a mouse comes swimming past her. As she converses with him, a duck, a lorry and a dodo come swimming up, too. They have come to find out who Alice is. After they all introduce themselves, the birds lead Alice and the mouse ashore. They decide that the best way to dry off is to have a caucus race: a race where they form a circle and then all start and stop whenever they wish, running in any direction they choose. All of the racers win the race and reward each other with prizes – Alice gives the animals candies, and they present her with a thimble. Then, the mouse begins to tell them a story that is long and bores them all. When he realizes that they are not listening, he becomes furious. After he runs off, Alice begins to talk about her cat back at home. This frightens the birds and they scurry off, as well. Then, the rabbit comes running back in, looking for his gloves and fan. Alice gives them to him, and he runs off again.

Next, a caterpillar appears. Alice is so confused about who and where and what she is, but she figures that a caterpillar would understand since he transforms into a butterfly. He explains that he is excited about the change since only the outside will change, but he will still be the same on the inside. Alice walks off and finds the Cheshire cat sitting in a tree in the courtyard of the Duchess. The Duchess, her cook and her baby enter. Alice tastes the cook's soup and asks if there is too much pepper in it. He becomes angry with her and they all start running around, talking about too much pepper and people just minding their own business! Then, the Duchess hands the baby to Alice and tells her to care for him while she gets ready to go play croquet. Upon closer inspection, Alice realizes that the baby is really a pig. The rabbit rushes in and hands Alice a ticket to go see the show at the Palace Music Hall. The first on the bill are Flora and Dora, who are dancing daisies. Next are Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee, identical twins who sing in harmony and dance. Then, the rabbit, who is the emcee, presents Alice as the next act. She is to sing the tale of the Walrus and the Carpenter. She does so with help from some of the others present. After singing, Alice is even more confused than ever, and all of the characters whom she has encountered come dancing and singing around her.

Act Two

Alice asks the rabbit where she should go next. He tells her that, in one direction, is a Hatter and, in another direction, is a March Hare. The rabbit claims that they are both mad, so she could go see either one, but Alice does not wish to see anyone who is mad. The Cheshire cat explains that everyone is mad in Wonderland before taking his leave to go see the Queen play croquet. Alice decides to go see the March Hare.

The March Hare, Mad Hatter and Dormouse are all seated together at a table. As Alice approaches, they all tell her that there is no room. Everything is mad and confusing with them. They are telling riddles to which they do not know the answers, reciting partial poems and continuously looking at watches that tell the day of the month... but not the time. Alice wonders why there are so many teacups, and they explain that it is always teatime, so they never have time to wash up. Alice gets frustrated with the tea party and leaves. The rabbit finds Alice and rushes her along to the croquet game, where the King and Queen are expecting them. They enter to find the King, Queen and Jack of Hearts, as well as three other playing cards all gathered. The Queen asks Alice who she is and why she is there. As soon as she responds, the Queen yells, "Off with her head!" The King stops her, and Alice begins to play a game of croquet. The Queen does not even allow Alice to play and declares herself the winner. When Alice tries to argue, the Queen threatens to behead her again! No matter what Alice says or does, the Queen threatens to behead her. The Queen asks Alice if she has seen the Mock Turtle. She replies that she does not even know what a mock turtle is. The Queen rushes off and says that Alice shall hear his story.

The Queen passes her off to the Gryphon and tells him to take her to the Mock Turtle. As he tells his story, the rabbit rushes in, announcing that the trial is about to begin. Everyone runs off to the courtroom. The trial, like everything in Wonderland, seems like total nonsense. All of the characters whom Alice has met are being called as witnesses and they are all displaying their madness and idiosyncrasies. As everything builds, Alice gets worked into a frenzy. She suddenly awakens and realizes that she has only been dreaming... but what a curious dream it was! The real world is a Wonderland, too. Alice is being called for supper – and she shall put too much pepper in her soup – and there are real rabbits and turtles and mice and caterpillars... and she even has a deck of playing cards with a real King and Queen.