Bye Bye Birdie — Young Performers’ Edition


The Young Performers’ Edition is a one-hour adaptation specially tailored for elementary school and middle school aged children. The materials have been prepared to help your school or organization mount the best possible production and to give your children an exciting and rewarding experience.
BYE BYE BIRDIE is a satire crafted with the fondest affection telling the story of a rock and roll singer who is about to be inducted into the army. An English Teacher, What Did I Ever See in Him?, Put on a Happy Face, One Boy, A Lot of Livin’ to Do, Kids and Rosie are musical theatre classics. This is the tops in imagination and good old-fashioned fun.

*Music samples courtesy of Strada Music Co. and Charles Strouse Music.

  • Synopsis
  • Credits
  • Rehearsal Materials
  • Cast List
  • Brief History
  • Upcoming
  • BYE BYE BIRDIE is one of the most captivating musical shows of our time. It tells the story of a rock and roll singer who is about to be inducted into the army. The singer, Conrad Birdie, an Elvis Presley type, has a pompadour and thick sideburns; he wears gaudy gold costumes and speaks in a rugged voice. Albert Peterson, his agent, is a very pleasant mild mannered young man. Albert’s faithful secretary Rose Alvarez keeps him and Birdie moving forward in the world. Rosie concocts one final national publicity plan before Conrad’s induction.
    Conrad will bid a typical American teen-age girl goodbye with an all-American kiss. Kim MacAfee in Sweet Apple, Ohio wins the honor. All of the phones in her town are already busy during The Telephone Hour as Kim has just been pinned to Hugo, a local boy. She is a pretty girl of fifteen and sings with spring like ardor How Lovely to Be a Woman, as she pulls on the plaid woolen socks and the baggy mustard colored sweater considered stylish and popular among young ladies.
    The arrival of Birdie in Sweet Apple causes people of all ages to swoon. Birdie says that his success is due to the fact that he is Honestly Sincere when he sings, and the quiet little town goes into a spin. The MacAfee household is completely upset by the visiting celebrity. It is decided that Birdie will give his One Last Kiss on the Ed Sullivan show. Kim’s father who laments the whole uproar, tries to break into the act and behaves like a ham on the TV show. Hymn for a Sunday Evening is a salute to the greater glory of Ed Sullivan.
    Birdie becomes disgusted with his life and goes out on the town with the teenagers. He feels tense with Albert and is tired of being supervised. The parents of Sweet Apple cannot understand the new generation and express this in Kids. Rosie, still waiting for that band of gold from Albert after eight years, invades a Shriners’ meeting. An extremely hilarious ballet ensues. She then decides to become the Latin American spitfire that she is painted as, by Albert’s lead-footed catastrophe-ridden mother. She is determined to become Spanish Rose. Kim is reunited with Hugo, and Rose with Albert in the lovely number Rosie. Other hit numbers include A Lot of Livin’ to Do and Put on a Happy Face.
    BYE BYE BIRDIE is a satire done with the fondest affection. It gives an insight into the everyday life that is very much part of us all. It is the tops in imagination and frivolity; a show that will be enjoyed by the cast as much as the audience.

    A Musical Comedy
    Book by Michael Stewart
    Music by Charles Strouse
    Lyrics by Lee Adams
    Originally Produced by Edward Padula
    Adaptation and support materials for the Young Performers’ Edition
    Developed by iTheatrics
    Under the supervision of Timothy Allen McDonald

    The names of the authors shall immediately follow the title of the play and shall be at least fifty (50%) percent of the size of the title of the play. The names of the authors shall be equal to each other in size, boldness and color, and no more than four principal performers shall have billing of a size equal to or larger than the authors. In the programs, the credits shall appear on the title page thereof.

    The title page of the program shall contain the following announcement in type size at least one-half the size of the authors’ credits:

    is presented by arrangement with
    560 Lexington Avenue, New York, New York 10022

  • 1  Director’s Production Guide
    1  Piano-Vocal Score
    30 Young Performer’s Books
    1  Disc Set, consisting of:
    1 Sing-Along CD
    1 Performance CD
    1 Choreography DVD

    Production Kit Description

    Young Performer’s Books, containing the complete script and all vocal material.
    Sing-Along CD, to help your cast learn the songs.
    Performance CD, with orchestral accompaniment for your production.
    Choreography DVD, containing simple, effective dance steps and staging ideas for selected songs.
    Piano-Vocal Score, as an additional rehearsal tool.
    Production Guide, complete with background material, directorial pointers, details on incorporating the show’s production into the school curriculum and suggestions for involving your community at large.

  • ALBERT is the president of the Almaelou Music Corporation and is Conrad Birdie’s agent. He is a nervous, excitable man who spends most of his time trying to control the uncontrollable, with quite comic results. Look for an actor with excellent comic timing, a great singing voice and a natural likability. Albert carries much of the story, so choosing an actor who will be comfortable with such a responsibility is crucial —cast your best leading man.

    ROSIE is Albert’s girlfriend and secretary at the Almaelou Music Corporation, who is frustrated with Albert’s inability to commit to her. She is willing to do anything it takes to get Albert to give up the music business and settle down. Headstrong and confident, she is often one step ahead of Albert. Rosie needs to be a strong actor and a great singer. This is definitely a role for a student ready to shine in a leading role. Look for a young lady with tons of charm who can embrace that “go-get-‘em” personality.

    MRS. MAE PETERSON is Albert’s controlling mother. She loves her son, despite her disapproval of the way he runs the family business and (especially) his affection for Rosie. She has never stopped parenting Albert, and her mounting frustration throughout the show as Albert begins to stand up to her provides recurring comic relief. This is a non-singing role, so look for an actor with strong comedic timing and the ability to take positive risks in building a strong character.

    CONRAD BIRDIE is a teen heartthrob who has been drafted into the army. This character was written with Elvis Presley in mind. He says little but conveys much with his body language, swagger and, of course, his music. This is someone who knows that good looks and a killer smile will get him more than his personality. Look for a great singer/dancer with the ability to keep an over-the-top character alive while singing. This is a great role for a student who has tons of charm and can embody the “teen idol” persona.

    KIM MACAFEE is the self-confident young member of Conrad’s fan club who is chosen to receive a kiss from Conrad before he leaves for the Army. She sees herself as more mature than the average teenager. This is a large role for a talented singer and actor, so look for a student with a wholesome, innocent persona who will enjoy letting it go and have some fun along the way.

    HUGO PEABODY is Kim’s devoted steady boyfriend who is jealous that Conrad is receiving so much attention from Kim. This is a character-driven, non-singing role, so this is a great role to cast an up-and-coming student who isn’t quite ready to take on a leading role. When casting, think about the juxtaposition between Hugo and Conrad Birdie — casting a strapping Conrad and a diminutive Hugo will offer some great comic moments as the two compete for Kim’s affections.

    MR. HAARY MACAFEE is Kim’s father who thinks he’s in control of his family and his teenaged daughter (but isn’t). Mr. MacAfee should be a good actor with a decent singing voice who can find the comedy in his character’s frustration and irritability.
    Mrs. Doris MacAfee is Kim’s loving mother who knows just how to handle her husband and her household. Mrs. MacAfee should be a good actor/singer. When casting, look for the chemistry between Mrs. MacAfee and her husband — this actor should be able to play off of Mr. MacAfee’s gruffness with ease and charm.

    URSULA MERKLE is Kim’s best friend and the hyper-enthusiastic teenager who leads the girls in screaming for Conrad. This is a great supporting role to give to an energetic girl who will have fun creating a unique character with a one-of-a-kind voice. In casting, think of contrasting Kim’s “maturity” with Ursula’s youthful enthusiasm.

    RANDOLPH MACAFEE is Kim’s younger brother. This is a great small featured role for a younger actor with an unchanged voice who will get to create a fun character with only a few lines.
    The Mayor is the head figure of Sweet Apple, Ohio, who welcomes Conrad Birdie to town. A bit naïve to the effect Conrad has on the girls of the town, this is a great featured role for an ensemble cast member who can develop a fun character.

    THE MAYOR’S WIFE, EDNA, is one of the adults in the show who cannot escape the power of Conrad Birdie’s spell — also a great featured role for an ensemble cast member to have some fun with.

    GLORIA RASPUTIN is the dreamy, ambitious knockout whom Mrs. Peterson chooses to replace Rosie. She is looking for her big break in show business and hopes Albert can help her. Often played as a ditzy chorus-girl type, this is a good place to utilize a great tap dancer who will have fun with this featured dance solo and can create a gum-chomping, hair-twirling, larger-than-life character.

    MRS. MERKLE is Ursula’s overbearing mother who also gets a touch of Conrad Birdie Fever. Cast a good character actress who can incorporate her character into her singing voice.

    HARVEY JOHNSON is a typical nerdy teenager who can’t seem to get enough of the gossip going on in Telephone Hour. Cast a young actor who will have fun developing his character throughout this song and subsequent scenes.

    MR. JOHNSON is Harvey’s father and one of the many parents in Sweet Apple desperate to keep control of their children as Conrad Birdie comes to town. This is a small featured part for an ensemble member.

    Other TEENAGERS in Sweet Apple include ALICE, DEBORAH SUE, HELEN, NANCY, MARGIE, PENELOPE, SUZIE, FREDDIE, KARL and various other BOYS and GIRLS. Have fun casting these roles out of the ensemble and encourage your actors to create distinct characters.

    Other ENSEMBLE roles include a POLICEMAN, various REPORTERS, a CONDUCTOR and a TRAINMAN, and other PARENTS of the Sweet Apple teenagers with featured lines throughout the script. Get everyone involved!

  • A special adaptation of the classic Broadway musical, Bye Bye Birdie, designed specifically for presentation by elementary and middle school students.

  • Find upcoming performances near you.

    Search for performances near you
    Organization City, State First Performance Last Performance
    Lincoln Theatre Company LINCOLN, CA 07/22/2016 07/31/2016
    Marquee Theatrical Productions AURORA, ON 07/28/2016 08/26/2016
    Anna Smulowitz Productions SOUTH HAMPTON, NH 07/29/2016 07/31/2016
    Thief River Falls Area Community Theater THIEF RIVER FALLS, MN 08/02/2016 08/04/2016
    Deborah Glenn Drama And Vocals PURCELLVILLE, VA 08/04/2016 08/06/2016
    Center Stage Performing Arts BOCA RATON, FL 08/04/2016 08/05/2016
    Colonie Youth Center ALBANY, NY 08/04/2016 08/04/2016
    Theatre Aspen ASPEN, CO 08/04/2016 08/06/2016
    Mozingo Center for Creative Arts LAKE ST. LOUIS, MO 08/05/2016 08/06/2016
    City of Fairfield FAIRFIELD, OH 08/05/2016 08/07/2016
    Young Actors Stage SACRAMENTO, CA 08/05/2016 08/07/2016
    Moore Musicals LLC SACRAMENTO, CA 08/14/2016 08/15/2016
    Rockwall Community Playhouse ROCKWALL, TX 08/19/2016 08/21/2016
    Motor City Youth Theatre REDFORD, MI 08/19/2016 08/21/2016
    Broadway Bootcamp FAIRFIELD, CT 08/27/2016 08/28/2016
    Spotlight Theater CASTLE ROCK, CO 10/07/2016 10/08/2016
    Foundation of Arts JONESBORO, AR 10/20/2016 10/24/2016
    Effingham Junior High School EFFINGHAM, IL 11/03/2016 11/06/2016
    Harrison Middle School YARMOUTH, ME 11/05/2016 11/05/2016
    Clay Middle School CARMEL, IN 11/10/2016 11/12/2016
    J.G. Pyne Arts Magnet School LOWELL, MA 11/17/2016 11/18/2016
    Court House Players GLOUCESTER, VA 11/17/2016 11/20/2016
    Mount Enterprise High School MT. ENTERPRISE, TX 11/18/2016 11/20/2016
    Christian Brothers Academy SYRACUSE, NY 11/18/2016 11/20/2016
    Westminster Middle School OKLAHOMA CITY, OK 11/18/2016 11/18/2016
    Sussex School MISSOULA, MT 12/09/2016 12/10/2016
    John T. Nichols Middle School MIDDLEBORO, MA 12/09/2016 12/10/2016
    Plano Children's Theatre PLANO, TX 01/13/2017 01/22/2017
    New Explorations into Science, NEW YORK, NY 01/20/2017 01/21/2017
    Sonoma Valley High School SONOMA, CA 01/27/2017 02/05/2017
    Jane Addams JHS SCHAUMBURG, IL 03/03/2017 03/04/2017
    Mahomet-Seymour Jr. High School MAHOMET, IL 03/10/2017 03/11/2017
    Zionsville West Middle School WHITESTOWN, IN 03/10/2017 03/11/2017
    Our Lady of Mercy Academy PARK RIDGE, NJ 04/07/2017 04/09/2017
    Blue Mountain Middle School ORWIGSBURG, PA 04/21/2017 04/23/2017
    Grace Christian School BLACKLICK, OH 04/21/2017 04/22/2017
    Rivertown Theaters of the Perf. Arts KENNER, LA 06/16/2017 06/18/2017
    Magnolia Arts Council MAGNOLIA, AR 06/21/2017 06/26/2017