Outside Twankey’s Laundrette In Peking Square
Music cue 3: Chorus. After song ends…Exit Chorus (SR)
Enter Wishee (SL) dragging on a laundry basket.
WISHEE: Hiya boys and girls! My name’s Wishee Washee, and I work here at Twankey’s Laundrette – usually on my own. My brother Aladdin’s more interested in chasing girls, than profits. And mum spends more time seeking suitors, than pressing suits. So, I’ve bought myself a high-tech, time and motion machine off Amazon. It’ll record everybody’s movements throughout the day and prove who does the most work around here. I’ll just go and fetch it in. (exits and returns with the machine) Now, this is a very expensive piece of kit and I don’t want anybody messing with it. Would you mind keeping an eye on it for me? Thanks. (places machine DSR in front of main curtains) If anybody goes near it, just shout red-alert! And see what happens.
Enter Foo Yung (SL)
FOO YUNG: Hello, Wishee!
WISHEE: Hiya, Foo Yung.
FOO YUNG: Is Aladdin about?
WISHEE: No, he’s probably off chasing girls as usual.
Enter Aladdin at a run (SL)
ALADDIN: Quick Wishee, I need somewhere to hide!
WISHEE: Who’s after you this time Aladdin? A furious father, a mortified mother, or some girl you promised the earth and gave the elbow?
ALADDIN: It’s the police!
FOO YUNG: What have you been up to, Aladdin?
ALADDIN: I haven’t got time to explain, they’ll be here at any minute!
SFX: Police whistle.
WISHEE: Hide inside the laundry basket, Aladdin. (holds open the basket lid)
ALADDIN: Thanks, Wishee. (climbs inside and shuts the lid)
Enter Tai and Chi at a run (SL) blowing whistles.
WISHEE: Eh-up! It’s Tai and Chi, the wrong arm of the law.
CHI: Have you seen your brother, Aladdin?
WISHEE: Yes, officer – we live in the same house.
CHI: I meant, in the past five minutes.
WISHEE: No, I haven’t. What do you want him for anyway?
TAI: He insulted a police officer.
FOO YUNG: You ought to be used to that by now.
WISHEE: How exactly did he insult you?
TAI: He asked me the time, and when I suggested he buy a watch, he suggested I boil my head.
WISHEE: I see you took his advice then.
FOO YUNG: I thought you could ask a police officer anything.
CHI: You can.
FOO YUNG: Then perhaps you can tell me how to stop some man, canoodling with his girlfriend, underneath my window every night.
CHI:J ust go up to him and say – excuse me sir, but isn’t that your wife coming up the road?
FOO YUNG: And that’ll make him stop, will it?
CHI: It certainly stopped me. (laughs) Just a little police humour there.
WISHEE: I didn’t realise the police had a sense of humour.
CHI: Oh, yes. Give him another sample, Constable Tai.
TAI: She was only a constable’s daughter, but she let the chief inspector. (laughs)
FOO YUNG: Repeating old jokes like that ought to be a criminal offence!
CHI: Maybe Aladdin is hiding in that laundry basket.
TAI: I’d better check it out. (goes to open basket)
WISHEE: (holding lid down) You don’t want to look in there, officer.
TAI: (suspicious) And why not?
WISHEE: Because it’s full of stinky old laundry.
CHI: It sounds like you have something to hide.
WISHEE: Not me officer – I’m as honest as the day is long.
TAI: Days are short this time of year. Open it Constable Chi.
WISHEE: You’ll be sorry.
CHI: (lifts lid) Phwoar! (slams it shut) What a pong! It smells like a student’s bedsit. Anybody hiding in there would be dead within seconds.
TAI: Let’s go Chi. Or we’ll be late for escorting the Princess Jasmine.
CHI: (to Wishee) Tell Aladdin we’re hot on his trail.
TAI: And we always get our man.
CHI: (spots machine) Hello! What’s this ‘ere then? (touches it)
MACHINE: Warning! Unauthorised handling! This unit will self-destruct in ten seconds! Nine-eight-seven…
TAI: & CHI: (face each other) Run!
Exit Tai and Chi at a run (SL)
FOO YUNG: (panicking) Maybe we should run too, Wishee!
WISHEE: Relax, Foo Yung. It’s just a safety device to stop people messing with it. It’ll reset shortly.
MACHINE: Unit resetting!
WISHEE: What did I tell you? (lifts lid) You can come out now, Aladdin.
ALADDIN: (climbs out wearing a large clothes-peg on his nose) Phew! What a stink! It’s lucky I found this clothes peg.
WISHEE: Where were you earlier, Aladdin? I had to drag this laundry basket all the way from Peking Monastery on my own.
ALADDIN: I sometimes wish mother didn’t have a contract with those monks.
FOO YUNG: Why not?
ALADDIN: They have some very dirty habits.
WISHEE: If that washing isn’t done by the mum gets home, she’ll blow her top.
FOO YUNG: You worry too much, Wishee.
WISHEE: Well not anymore.
ALADDIN: (slaps him on the back) That’s the spirit, Wishee!
WISHEE: (slumps shoulders) I’m too tired to worry.
ALADDIN: Foo Yung will help you get the washing done – won’t you Foo Yung?
FOO YUNG: Of course I will.
WISHEE: Thanks Foo Yung.
FOO YUNG: I’ll take this laundry basket inside.
WISHEE: I’ll just have a little rest, first. (goes to rest against basket just as Foo Yung moves it – and falls down) Owah!
ALADDIN: (helping him up) Are you all right, Wishee?
WISHEE: (rubbing his head) I’ve bashed me bonce!
FOO YUNG: I better check he’s not concussed. What’s two times two, Wishee?
WISHEE: Erm – seven?
ALADDIN: He’s fine. (pointing) What’s that strange-looking object, Wishee?
WISHEE: It’s my automatic monitoring machine.
ALADDIN: What’s it monitoring?
WISHEE: You for a start. I just wish I could win the lottery and then pack this job in.
FOO YUNG: Cheer up Wishee, things could be worse.
FOO YUNG: The washing machine could break down.
WISHEE: Don’t jinx it – I don’t fancy washing people’s unmentionables by hand.
TWANKEY: (off) Yoo-hoo! Mummy’s home!
ALADDIN: Speaking of unmentionables.
Enter Twankey (SL) with several boxes of washing powder.
TWANKEY: Here we are again, another day up to my washing in dirty armpits. I mean, up to my armpits in dirty washing. (to audience) Oh, hello! I didn’t see you there, sitting on your fortune cookies. What a morning it’s been. I don’t know whether I’m coming or going. Me Feng Shui’s all over the place, and me Yin and Yang has gone to pot. I’ve had a very trying day. The butcher tried, the baker tried, the milkman tried. I sometimes feel as though I’m living in a soap opera.
WISHEE: You mean you’re all washed up?
TWANKEY: Watch it you juvenile detergent, or I’ll give you a good lathering! All I want is for a man to pick me up, whirl me around and drain me dry.
ALADDIN: You don’t want a man, mum – you want a spin drier.
Music cue 4: Enter Abanazar (SL)
FOO YUNG: Ey-up, it’s Darth Vader!
WISHEE: (to Abanazar) If you’re searching for the dark side, you’re way off course.
ABANAZAR: I’m looking for Widow Twankey’s establishment.
TWANKEY: This is Twankey’s world famous textile rejuvenating and cleansing emporium.
ABANAZAR: You mean, it’s a laundrette?
TWANKEY: Yes, and I’m the proprietor. What can I do for you Mr…?
TWANKEY: What can I do for you Mr Ebenezer?
ABANAZAR: It’s Abanazar! And I’m looking for a boy called, Aladdin.
Aladdin goes to speak, but Twankey clamps a hand over his mouth.
TWANKEY: He’s not in trouble, is he? Only I warned him against climbing the palace walls, to try and cop a look at Princess Jasmine.
ABANAZAR: Doesn’t he know its certain death, for commoners to look upon the Princess?
TWANKEY: Me and my big gob. (begs) Please don’t drag him off to prison, Mr Bonanza!
ABANAZAR: It’s Abanazar!
TWANKEY: Give him another chance, Mr Ave a banana!
ABANAZAR: It’s Abanazar!
ABANAZAR: Silence you, stupid old fool!
ALADDIN: How dare you speak to our mother like that!
ABANAZAR: Who are you boy?
ALADDIN: I’m Aladdin. Now apologise, or I shall deal with you myself.
ABANAZAR: Careful boy, I’m a master of the black arts.
TWANKEY: How interesting – I’m a medium myself.
ABANAZAR: How do you know you’re a medium?
TWANKEY: It says so on my knickers.
ALADDIN: You don’t scare me, Abanazar.
ABANAZAR: Then what I’ve heard is true.
FOO YUNG: What have you heard?
ABANAZAR: That Aladdin is the bravest amongst the Emperor’s subjects.
ALADDIN: Flattery will get you nowhere.
ABANAZAR: What about money?
TWANKEY: Keep talking.
ABANAZAR: I can offer Aladdin the chance to obtain riches beyond your imagination.
WISHEE: Nothing’s beyond mum’s imagination.
ALADDIN: What must I do, to obtain all these riches?
ABANAZAR: Nothing much – just fetch me an old lamp.
FOO YUNG: Is that all?
ABANAZAR: Indeed so.
TWANKEY: There’s one under the kitchen sink Aladdin – fetch it out here quick!
ALADDIN: Yes, mum. (turns)
ABANAZAR: Wait! The lamp I speak of, lies within a cave in the forbidden mountains.
ALADDIN: (turns back) Why do you want this old lamp?
ABANAZAR: Old things hold a fascination for me.
TWANKEY: Really? (grabs his arm) Tell me more, Mr Alabama.
ABANAZAR: It’s Abanazar! (brushing her off) And I’m into antiques – not antiquities!
TWANKEY: You’re not exactly brand new yourself, pal.
WISHEE: Why can’t you fetch the lamp yourself?
ABANAZAR: The cave entrance is too small for me to enter – but not for a young boy.
TWANKEY: It sounds a bit dangerous to me.
ABANAZAR: I guarantee Aladdin will come to no harm. Music cue 5: What was that?
FOO YUNG: (looking off SR) It’s Princess Jasmine’s entourage, returning to the palace.
ABANAZAR: Then I will take my leave.
ALADDIN: But what about the lamp?
ABANAZAR: We shall meet again, Aladdin. (exits SL)
TWANKEY: We’d best leave too, before the royal party arrives.
ALADDIN: I want to stay here and see Princess Jasmine.
FOO YUNG: But it’s certain death for anyone who claps eyes on the Princess.
WISHEE: She can’t be that ugly, surely.
ALADDIN: I hear that she’s the most beautiful girl in all China.
WISHEE: Why can’t we look at the Princess, anyway?
TWANKEY: Ours is not to reason why – ours is but to scarper or die.
ALADDIN: You can all scarper if you like, but I’m staying put.
FOO YUNG: You’re willing to risk death just to see the Princess?
ALADDIN: I like living dangerously. Music cue 6:
TWANKEY: Don’t even think about it, Aladdin.
TIGER LILY: (off) Clear the streets on pain of death!
All look (SR) and Aladdin climbs in the basket unseen and shuts the lid.
WISHEE: The Princess’s litter is almost here!
TWANKEY: Let’s get out of here, quick!
FOO YUNG: (looks around) Where’s Aladdin?
WISHEE: He must’ve scarpered after all.
TWANKEY: Then let’s do likewise.
FOO YUNG: What about the laundry basket?
TWANKEY: We’ll fetch it later.
Exit all (SL)
Enter Tiger Lily (SR) followed by Tai and Chi sweeping the floor.
TIGER LILY: Clear the streets on pain of…! (spots Tai & Chi) What are you both doing?
TAI: Clearing the streets like you asked.
TIGER LILY: I meant, cleared of people – not rubbish!
CHI: In that case we’ll need bigger brushes.
TIGER LILY: Let me explain. (pokes Chi’s in eye)
TIGER LILY: Now do you see?
CHI: (covering one eye) Yes, but only half as good as I used to.
Enter Princess Jasmine’s (SR) in a curtained litter.
The litter stops (SC) Jasmine draws the curtain aside and steps out.
TIGER LILY: We can’t stop here your highness!
JASMINE: Why not, Tiger Lily?
TIGER LILY: This side of town is decidedly seedy.
JASMINE: It looks all right to me.
TIGER LILY: But it’s full of common people, your highness.
JASMINE: Don’t be such a snob, Tiger Lily.
Tai and Chi move around stage checking for danger.
TIGER LILY: But your highness must always conceal herself in the litter.
CHI: You can’t expect the Princess to hide in a pile of rubbish!
TIGER LILY: I said litter, you idiot – not rubbish!
TAI: I thought litter was rubbish.
TIGER LILY: Let me explain.
TAI: (moves away) No fear! It always hurts when you explain things.
TIGER LILY: (looking around auditorium) I don’t like the look of this place your highness
JASMINE: I know it’s not the London Palladium, but it’s still quite nice.
TIGER LILY: Not the theatre – the area! It might be full of thieves and muggers.
JASMINE: Don’t worry, we have PC’s Tai and Chi to look after us.
TIGER LILY: I wouldn’t trust them to look after a hole in the ground.
JASMINE: But they’re highly trained professionals.
TIGER LILY: Who trained them – Mr Bean?
JASMINE: I only want to have a quick look around, Tiger Lily.
TIGER LILY: But the Emperor will have my head if he discovers I let you to stop here.
JASMINE: He won’t find out, will he?
TIGER LILY: I’m not so sure – your father has many spies.
CHI: Oh, I love them!
TAI: Me too – with lots of lovely custard.
TIGER LILY: I said many spies, not mince pies!
JASMINE: Perhaps they are idiots after all.
TIGER LILY: I told you so. (to Tai & Chi) Go and make sure the streets ahead are cleared.
TAI: & CHI: Righto. (exit SL)
JASMINE: I’m thirsty Tiger Lily. Fetch some water from that shop we just passed, please.
TIGER LILY: Yes, your highness. Stay here and don’t move until I get back. (exits SR)
JASMINE: (to Bearers) Go with her, I want to be alone for a bit.
Exit Bearers (SR)
Aladdin raises the basket lid slightly and peers out.
JASMINE: I’ll just sit on this basket until they return. (sits on basket)
JASMINE: (jumps off – startled) Who’s there?
JASMINE: Aladdin who?
ALADDIN: A lad in a basket!
JASMINE: Show yourself at once!
ALADDIN: (climbing out) I’m sorry your highness I didn’t mean to startle you.
JASMINE: Why are you hiding in that laundry basket?
ALADDIN: Everybody knows its death for commoners to look upon your highness. So, I hid in there to try and catch a glimpse of you as you passed by.
JASMINE: And was it worth risking your life to see me, Aladdin?
ALADDIN: Yes, your highness. For you are even more beautiful than I imagined.
JASMINE: Flatterer – you may call me, Jasmine.
ALADDIN: Why did you stop here today your high – I mean, Jasmine?
JASMINE: Whenever I leave the palace, I must stay hidden in my litter and never see anything. So today, I decided to get out and have a look around.
ALADDIN: I’ve always dreamed of living in a palace – it must be wonderful.
JASMINE: Not when you feel like a prisoner. I’d give anything to be like you, Aladdin.
ALADDIN: You mean, poor?
JASMINE: You might be poor, but at least you’re free to live as you please – unlike me.
Enter Tiger Lily with a bottle of water, followed by Bearers.
TIGER LILY: Here we are your highness. (sees Aladdin) Who’s he?
JASMINE: His name’s Aladdin.
TIGER LILY: What’s he doing here?
JASMINE: Talking to me?
TIGER LILY: (to Aladdin) Don’t you know its death for commoners to look upon the Princess, let alone talk to her?
ALADDIN: Then at least I shall die happy, for having seen her.
JASMINE: Don’t you fear death, Aladdin?
ALADDIN: I fear nothing – except for mum when she’s on the warpath.
TIGER LILY: It’s time to go your highness
JASMINE: I want to see more of Peking, Tiger Lily. Take the litter and return to the palace without me.
TIGER LILY: Not blooming likely! Your father will go berserk if the litter returns without you.
JASMINE: Just keep the curtains closed, and he’ll be none the wiser.
TIGER LILY: But it’s not safe for your highness to stay here alone.
JASMINE: Aladdin will protect me – won’t you Aladdin?
ALADDIN: With my life, your highness.
JASMINE: Please, Tiger Lily.
TIGER LILY: All right, but if your father lops my head off, I’m handing in my notice.
Exit Tiger Lily and Bearers with the litter (SL)
JASMINE: It feels wonderful to have some freedom at last.
ALADDIN: Would you like me to show around, Jasmine? (offers his arm)
JASMINE: I’d like that very much, Aladdin. (takes his arm)
Exit Aladdin and Jasmine (SR)
Enter Twankey, Wishee and Foo Yung (SL)
TWANKEY: That was a close call.
WISHEE: I wonder where Aladdin’s got to?
TWANKEY: Who knows? He’s always disappearing – just like your father.
FOO YUNG: I never met Mr Twankey – what was he like?
TWANKEY: He was a handsome Aussie busker. When we first met, he was playing Dancing Queen on his didgeridoo – I thought, that’s Abba-riginal. But he mostly loved singing in the rain.
WISHEE: That was his favourite song, was it?
TWANKEY: No, it was the only time he could get a shower.
FOO YUNG: So, what happened to him?
TWANKEY: He got fed up playing with his didgeridoo and joined a mariachi band in Mexico.
WISHEE: Were they a bit like The Mavericks?
TWANKEY: No, these were more like The Geriatrics.
FOO YUNG: How come you didn’t go with him?
TWANKEY: He didn’t tell me he was going.
FOO YUNG: You mean, he deserted you!?
TWANKEY: That’s right. I begged him to come home, but he said he was happy staying in Mexico, playing with his maracas.
FOO YUNG: Didn’t Wishee or Aladdin inherit his musical genes?
TWANKEY: No, but they certainly inherited his lack of intellect.
FOO YUNG: A bit thick, was he?
TWANKEY: Put it this way. He spent hours trying to find the corners for a jigsaw, until I pointed out it was a box of cornflakes.
WISHEE: I might not be musically inclined, but I know lots of musical jokes.
FOO YUNG: Let’s hear some then.
WISHEE: Okay – what kind of music do frogs prefer?
FOO YUNG: I don’t know, Wishee. What kind of music do frogs prefer?
WISHEE: Hip-hop! (laughs) What’s the most musical part of the body, mum?
TWANKEY: I don’t know, Wishee – what is the most musical part of the body?
WISHEE: Your nose – because you can pick it and blow it. (laughs)
TWANKEY: I know the most musical part of your body, and it isn’t your nose.
WISHEE: Can I help it if I like baked beans?
TWANKEY: (spots machine) Hello – what’s this funny contraption? (touches it)
MACHINE: Warning! Your weight is fourteen stone, ten. You will self-destruct in…
WISHEE: Voice override!
MACHINE: Unit resetting!
TWANKEY: Your weighing machine’s faulty, Wishee. I only weigh eight stone wet through.
WISHEE: It’s not a weighing machine, mum. It’s my automatic monitoring machine.
FOO YUNG: What does it monitor Wishee?
WISHEE: Everything and everybody.
TWANKEY: A bit like, I’m a Celebrity?
TWANKEY: How exciting! Do we get to vote people off then?
WISHEE: Sort of. You check it at the end of the show and decide which lazy employee to get rid of. (to audience) And we all know who that is, don’t we?
TWANKEY: I can’t wait. Now, take that laundry basket inside and empty it.
Exit all three into the laundrette with the laundry basket.
Enter Aladdin and Jasmine (SR)
JASMINE: I really enjoyed our walk, Aladdin.
ALADDIN: Me too Jasmine – shall we go all the way?
JASMINE: (shocked) I beg your pardon!?
ALADDIN: To the palace, I mean!
JASMINE: No, I’m afraid this is as far as we go.
ALADDIN: Have you gone off me already?
JASMINE: No, silly. But it would be suicide for you to approach the palace.
ALADDIN: I’ve scaled its walls many times, to try and catch a glimpse of you.
JASMINE: I can’t believe you risk your life just to see me, Aladdin.
ALADDIN: I’d risk anything for you Jasmine. Music cue 7: Aladdin & Jasmine. After song ends…
Enter Tiger Lily at a run (SL)
TIGER LILY: Your highness – you must return to the palace immediately!
JASMINE: Whatever’s the matter Tiger Lily?
TIGER LILY: Your father discovered that your litter was empty.
JASMINE: Oh, no!
TIGER LILY: He flew into a royal rage and threatened to have us all beheaded on the spot!
JASMINE: What stopped him?
TIGER LILY: Tai and Chi blubbed like babies and blamed it all on me. Your father ordered me to return with you immediately or face certain death.
JASMINE: Surely not?
TIGER LILY: Surely yes! Now let’s hurry, before he decides to cut off something even closer to my heart.
JASMINE: And what’s that?
TIGER LILY: My royal pension. (starts dragging Jasmine away)
ALADDIN: When will I see you again, Jasmine?
JASMINE: I’ll text you Aladdin!
Exit Jasmine and Tiger Lily (SL)
ALADDIN: (shouts) Don’t forget, Jasmine!?
Enter Wishee and Foo Yung with the laundry basket.
WISHEE: There you are Aladdin. Mum’s been looking all over for you.
ALADDIN: Wishee – what would you say if I told you I’d just seen Princess Jasmine?
WISHEE: I’d say you’d been sniffing too much washing powder and gone clean round the bend.
ALADDIN: But it’s true! I was hiding in the laundry basket when she passed by earlier.
FOO YUNG: You saw the Princess?
ALADDIN: Not only saw her – but talked to her and we fell in love.
WISHEE: That was a bit quick wasn’t it – even for a panto?
ALADDIN: Love doesn’t have a time limit Wishee.
FOO YUNG: No, but we do. We must get this laundry to the palace by lunchtime.
ALADDIN: Of course! That’s how I can see Jasmine again!
WISHEE: What are you on about, now?
ALADDIN: I’ll hide inside that laundry basket. Then once inside the palace, I’ll sneak out and find Jasmine
FOO YUNG: But if you’re found inside the palace, the Emperor will have you beheaded.
ALADDIN: I’ve already lost my head, Foo Yung – not to mention my heart.
WISHEE: Forget it Aladdin. I’m not risking my life smuggling you inside the palace.
ALADDIN: Please, Wishee! I’ll never ask you for another favour, ever again.
FOO YUNG: It would be a bit difficult without your head.
WISHEE: All right Aladdin, but on your own head be it.
ALADDIN: Thanks, Wishee. (climbs inside laundry basket)
Enter Twankey (SR)
TWANKEY: Have either of you seen Aladdin?
WIS & FOO: (shaking heads) Noooo!
TWANKEY: Typical. Right Wishee, let’s get this laundry basket to the palace.
WISHEE: It’s okay mum, me and Foo Yung will carry it. You might strain something.
TWANKEY: I’m stronger than you look, Wishee. Mind the laundrette please, Foo Yung.
FOO YUNG: Righto, Mrs. T. (exits inside)
TWANKEY: Ready Wishee – and lift. (they struggle to lift basket) Cor blimey, this washing weighs a ton!
WISHEE: It’s probably all the gold thread they use in the royal clothes.
TWANKEY: Yes, that must be it. Right then, you pull, and I’ll push. To you!
WISHEE: To me!
TWANKEY: To you!
WISHEE: To me!
Exit Twankey and Wishee with the basket (SL)