The Jungle Book
Music by Kamala Sankaram
Libretto by Kelley Rourke
Youth Opera in One Act
For piano, voice and harmonium
Raksha: (mezzo-soprano) matriarch of the wolf pack
Baloo: (baritone) bear, tutor to young wolves
Bagheera: (soprano/dancer) cosmopolitan panther, friend of the pack
NOTE: although youth roles are assigned specific pronouns for readability, all can be cast as either male or female; pronouns can be re-assigned accordingly. Female Mowgli highly preferred.
Mowgli: (treble) human cub
Shere Khan: (at least two mature male voices) tiger. Shere' s Khan' s offstage roar is created with a " Lion' s Roar." This can be played as many times as the actors like in the given bar, based on the
dramatic context. In the finale, the " Lion' s Roar" becomes the "Heartbeat Drum."
Hyena: (soprano) can double as member of wolf pack, Shere Khan' s sidekick
Wolf Pack, which includes:
- Little Brother (or Sister)
- Rebel Leader
- Rebel Cubs
- Additional bit solos (every “solo cub” indication can be a different child.)
Animals, which include:
- Tropical Bird
- Twittering bird (voiced by bird whistle. Actors can play the whistle as many
- times as they like in the given bar. )
This score is based in part on Indian classical music, including ragas and vocal percussion. For more about how these styles work, please see the accompanying study guide, which also contains the pitches of the ragas used in the score.
In general, konnakol sections should be very assertive, almost yelled.
All youth choral parts are meant to be modular. In general, the top line is the melody and should be learned first. Once the cast is comfortable with the melody, the other parts can be added. Where the ensemble is in unison or indicated as high, middle, or low, singers can sing in the octave most comfortable for them. Where the parts are written in SATB, singers should sing in the indicated octave.
For clapping parts, Clap 1 is the basic part and should be learned first. If the cast is comfortable, Clap 2 can be added.
Spoken parts with notated rhythms should be as close to natural speech as possible.