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Trail of Tears
Small Cast (Touring) Play for Theatres, Schools

Sound Cues

Script Sample

Running Time: About 45-50 minutes
Flexible cast of 3, 2 Male, 1 Female
Easily adapted for larger cast (see below)

CHOSEN ONE:  Cherokee brave, young man (M)

WALKING BEAR: Chosen One's father (M)
Also plays WHITE MAN, FRANK, ANDREW JACKSON, and several Government Officials.

SNOW OWL: Chosen One's wife (F)

The use of a small cast helps facilitate a workable touring production. It can also cause the director and company to look for innovative ways of conveying dialogue and action, which can be conceptually challenging and exciting. However, if a larger cast is required, please consider the following breakdown of 11 characters:

Suggested Larger Cast
Cast of 11: 5 Male, 3 Female, 3 M/F

Chosen One: Male
Walking Bear: Male
Snow Owl: Female
Frank: Male
Joe: Male
Government Officials: Male / Female
Andrew Jackson: Male
White woman: Female
Narrator: Male / Female
Deer: Male / Female
Sun: Female

True Story of Native American History
Trail of Tears - Repertory Theatre of St. Louis School Tour
Professional Touring Production - Rep of St. Louis - 2011!

"Trail of Tears was a big hit!  The script does an excellent job with a very difficult subject. The script was very well written!"
John Cusumano, Over The Edge Productions, Stroudsburg PA

Cues, sound effects, original background music

The CD Soundtrack contains special sound effects and background music (traditional Native American music and original music written for the play) that may be used to greatly enhance the performance. It does not contain music for the performers to sing along with. Cues have 10 seconds of silence at the end - times shown below include silence.

1.  FLUTE  (1:07)


3.  FLUTE  (0:51)

4.  MUSIC BOX  (0:40)

5.  DRUM, CITY SOUNDS  (1:54)

6.  FLUTE  (0:46)

7.  VIOLENT CROWD  (4:01)

8.  MUSIC BOX, TUMULT  (0:52)

9.  HORSES, FLUTE  (2:51) 

10.  CHEERING  (0:52)

Note: Some teachers choose familiar songs, obtain sheet music and insert these songs into the play.  We recognize that each school has a wide variety of educational needs to fulfill and we invite you to be creative in your use of our scripts; including changes or additions that are appropriate for your students. As author/publisher of our own creative works, we do ask that you obtain proper copyright permission for any additions you might make - that responsibility is up to you.

Music & Sound Resources Available on the Internet
( Sheet Music, Song Books, CDs, DVDs, Sing-along, Karaoke, Sound Effects )

 National Endowment for the Arts Winning Play!
ArtReach Plays and Scripts for Schools and Kids!  - Trail of Tears Trail of Tears - National Endowment for the Arts Winning Play!
Imaginary Theatre, St. Louis Repertory Theatre 2011, School Tour!


Trail of Tears is a very dramatic play about an important chapter of American History.  But there are many light moments.  Here the stoic Chosen One shows he likes a girl, Snow Owl, who will beome his wife...

(CHOSEN turns upstage, SNOW runs in laughing. SHE carries 2 lacrosse sticks. CHOSEN follows her in, bumping into BEAR, who is on his way out. BEAR takes gun from him and exits.)

SNOW: (laughing) You play like an old woman!

CHOSEN: I play like an honest man!

SNOW: Ha. Anyone can see you cheat!

CHOSEN: Cheat! Me? You caught the ball in your hands!

SNOW: I did not.

CHOSEN: I saw you!

SNOW: You're imagining things.

(SHE starts to cross past HIM)

CHOSEN: Imagining things?! Give me those sticks.

(HE grabs sticks as SHE walks by. However, SHE doesn't let go of them and allows herself to be pulled into CHOSEN. HE is visibly flustered and turns away.)

CHOSEN: Now I understand why girls can't play in the real game. You have no respect for... for the rules!

SNOW: Oh, for heaven's sake. Chosen One, calm down. You look all puffed up like a big turkey. Bac - bac - bac!

(SNOW imitates turkey.)

CHOSEN: Now stop that. Stop!

SNOW: Braach! Bracc! Brach!

CHOSEN: I've had enough of this. I have work to do.

(Starts to go, SNOW gets shoes, speaks over her shoulder.)

SNOW: (singing, sweetly) Oh, Chosen One...

CHOSEN: (halts, hesitates) Yes?

SNOW: I found your shoes outside my house last night.

CHOSEN: My shoes? Huh! They must have belonged to someone else.

SNOW: They were your hunting shoes — the soft ones with the red beads. I'm sure they belong to you.

(SHE holds them up for him to see.)

CHOSEN: Ah, well, yes. I must have dropped them...

(HE goes to grab shoes. SNOW pulls them away and taunts HIM with them.)

CHOSEN: Uh... dropped them by your...

(Again SHE pulls away, laughing. After a few moments of this game CHOSEN is quite agitated. SNOW suddenly drops the game and speaks directly to HIM.)

SNOW: If you want to marry me you must ask me in plain terms. I've learned a thing or two at the White Man's school. You can't just leave your shoes outside a girl's door if you want her to marry you. (gives him shoes) This is old fashioned.

CHOSEN: Old fashioned?

SNOW: An Indian tradition. It's very... backward, Chosen One. When a White Man asks a woman to marry him, he goes down on one knee — like this... (SHE demonstrates.) He takes off his hat, of course. And he takes her hand like so. He says, "My lady, will you marry me?" And he kisses her very lightly on the fingers.

(SHE holds his hand, he is moved, lingers then draws his hand back and moves away.)

CHOSEN: I never heard of anything so... so...

SNOW: Civilized. It's civilized, Chosen One. If any man ever wants to marry me he must ask me in a civilized way. And, also, I expect presents.

CHOSEN: Presents?

SNOW: Very nice presents.

CHOSEN: But you are supposed to give me a deer skin coat and an ear of corn and you are supposed to...

SNOW: I want a gold ring.


SNOW: Yes, and I'm supposed to wear it on this finger — like a lady.

CHOSEN: You are not a white lady, you are a Cherokee woman. We have our own way of doing things! For generations our people have been marrying in the same way. The Cherokee way.

SNOW: Very well, then. (turns away — then back) Don't forget your shoes.

Note: This is a sample from the actual script.  To review the entire play, order the PERUSAL SCRIPT (online instant download).

Cast List

Sound Cues

Script Sample


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