The Little Horror Shop (Musical)

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Advertising sign on the musical building Photo by Ignasi masip

The small horror shop (English original title "Little Shop of Horrors") is a musical by the composer Alan Menken and the librettist Howard Ashman . It was based on the B-film Little Shop Full of Horrors by Roger Corman from 1960. The musical premiered on May 6, 1982 in New York . The German premiere took place on May 6, 1986. In Germany the piece is one of the most frequently performed musicals without a fixed location.

The 1986 film The Little Horror Shop by Frank Oz is based on this musical.


Most of the story takes place in Mr. Mushnik's flower shop in the suburbs of a large American city. The main character Seymour Krelborn is taken from the orphanage by him and mercilessly exploited as an assistant. In the course of the first scenes, this setting is illustrated by the songs Hop-La-Hop and Vorstadt / Downtown . The female protagonist of the musical is the clerk Audrey, who is secretly loved by Seymour. However, she is engaged to the sadistic dentist Orin Scrivello. Three female characters, Ronette, Chiffon and Crystal, take on the role of a theater choir , commenting on the action in words and songs.

When the two employees of the flower shop are again waiting in vain for customers, Mr. Mushnik tells them that he has to close the shop. As a rescue attempt, an unusual plant that Seymour bought from a Chinese is placed in the window. In fact, the plant, which Seymour calls "Audrey II", attracts many new customers, which saves the ailing shop from ruin (Song Da-Doo ). However, the plant seems to wither, whereupon Seymour tries everything to save the plant. During the song Wachs für mich / Grow for Me , he finds out how to keep the plant alive: He feeds it a few drops of his blood.

The plant grows noticeably through this unusual food. From scene to scene a new, larger version of the plant doll comes onto the stage. While the first versions of the plant are still the size of a hand puppet , they take up a large part of the stage towards the end of the piece. In parallel with the growth of the plant, sales in the shop increase because the onlookers buy bunches of flowers. The store becomes famous. The press, radio and television report on the song Miracles exist / Ya never know about Seymour and his extraordinary plant. Audrey daydreams about a life with Seymour in a little house Irgendwo im Grünen / Somewhere That's Green . Mr. Mushnik decides to adopt Seymour as his son and to run the flower shop with him from now on. To celebrate this development, the two dance a tango ( Mushnik & Sohn / Mushnic & Son ).

At some point, Seymour no longer sees himself able to raise enough blood for Audrey II. He is desperately looking for a solution. Then the plant, which is already so big that the whole puppeteer is in it, begins to speak. She persuades Seymour in the song Gib's mir! / Feed Me! to kill the dentist Orin Scrivello, Audrey's fiancé. So Audrey II would get food and Seymour could win Audrey. Determined to put this plan into action, Seymour goes into rival practice. However, he fails to shoot the sadistic dentist ( Jetzt / Now ). The dentist tells his life story in a rock 'n' roll song ( dentist / dentist ). Fortunately for Seymour, the dentist dies of a technical defect in an overdose of nitrous oxide . Seymour takes Scrivello's body to the flower shop, chops it up, and feeds it to Audrey II.

After the break that follows, the largest version of the plant dominates the set. The flower shop has become an attraction and business is booming. Audrey now openly adores Seymour. The union of Seymour and Audrey as lovers forms the romantic climax of the musical with the duet Now You Have Seymour / Suddenly Seymour . Mr. Mushnik, who noticed blood stains on the floor and has become suspicious, threatens to extradite Seymour to the police. Meanwhile, the plant requires again after feeding ( meal time / Supper Time ). Seymour claims to have put the daily income in the plant's mouth because it would be safe there. When Mr. Mushnik steps into the wide open mouth in search of the money, it is devoured in one piece.

The plant's reputation attracts traders who offer well-paying jobs to the once poor Seymour. One of them signs a contract with him for offshoots of the plant. The plan is to sell the offshoots worldwide. Commercial success enables Seymour to make a dramatic social rise ( The Latter Become First / The Meek Shall Inherit ). However, the plant calls for further sacrifices. Along the way, she tells Seymour that her plan was to rule the world from the start. Seymour decides to put an end to the growth of the plant and kill the plant. Audrey surprises him as he prepares weapons and poison after business hours. In a sequel to the song Essenzeit , Audrey complains that the plant is thirsty. When Audrey pours some water into her mouth with a watering can, it almost becomes the plant's next meal. Seymour can, however, pull them out of the closing mouth at the last second. Seymour admits to the injured Audrey that he fed humans to Audrey II. Shortly thereafter, Audrey dies of her injuries. Her final request to Seymour is to leave her body to the plant. In the end, it is still "somewhere in the country". After bedding the dead Audrey in the slowly closing mouth of the plant, Seymour takes up the fight with the plant. But it is already too strong and also devours Seymour. The next day the dealers appear and take offshoots as agreed. The finale is followed by an epilogue of the three narrators and the victims, in which the audience is warned about the bad plants ( Don't give it to them! / Don't Feed the Plants! ).

Track list

Scene with Audrey and Seymor Photo from Otterbein University Theater & Dance, USA
  • Prologue - Little Shop of Horrors
  • Downtown (Skid Row)
  • Because Doo
  • Wax for me
  • Somewhere in the country
  • dentist
  • Mushnik & Son
  • Fate, what a turn / give it to me
  • Now
  • Not today
  • Now you have Seymour
  • Mealtime
  • The last become the first
  • Mealtime recapitulation / Audrey's death
  • final

Differences to the film "Small shop full of horrors"

  • Mr. Mushnik and Audrey are both devoured by the plant.
  • Seymour has no mother, but is an orphan.
  • Audrey II is still called "Audrey Jr." in the original film.
  • The appearance of Audrey II is declared an alien invasion.
  • Audrey II appears more human and more evil.
  • Mr. Mushnik tries to charge Seymour with the murder of Orin. In the original film, he hides the incident.
  • Some of the names have been changed: the sadistic dentist "Phoebus Farb" became "Orin Scrivello".
  • The masochistic patient (Nicholson) does not appear.
  • The scene with the prostitute is also missing.

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