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My Travels With Cecil — a short play

The search for the English folk song in American folk music.

by R. Rex Stephenson

Great for groups, amateur, professional or educational,  who tour to schools.

Folk songs are the backbone of American music. And since our people came from all over the world, so did our folk songs. “My Travels With Cecil” dramatizes the true story of Cecil Sharp’s journey to discover English ballads still surviving in America. In 1916, Sharp and his secretary Maud Karpeles traveled throughout the Appalachian Mountains in search of folk songs that had originally been sung in Britain, but had since disappeared from their oral tradition. This play recounts Sharp’s desperate search for a song that has haunted him since his youth, “Soldier Boy.” The play is ideal for touring. It features numerous songs Sharp collected along with several dances. It might be good to mention that without Mr. Sharp’s work these songs would now be lost to the world.


  • 5W 4M 2either–(or with doubling 6W 4M)
    • Narrator (male or female)
      Mrs. Peerybingle (Dot)
      John Peerybingle
      Tilly Slowboy
      Stranger (later Edward)
      Caleb Plummer
      Mr. Tackleton
      Bertha Plummer
      May Fielding
      Fielding — May’s father (Could also be played by a female)
  • Simple open space setting, with props
  • Early 1900s costumes
  • About 45 mins.
  • Study Guide Available: PDF $9.95 –– PRINT: $12.95
  • ORDER # 3327



ZTPerformanceLicenceApp2016 (in PDF format) to download our Performance License Application. No production rights can be granted until this application is filled out and sent to us.


  • Script in PDF format  — Order #3327a : $20.00 (including lead sheets for the songs, from which you will be authorized to copy for your production)

  • First Performance Amateur/Educational Royalty — Order #3327d : $35


  • Second Performance Amateur/Educational Royalty — Order #3327e : $30

  • Study Guide — Order #3327s : $12.95 (Print Version) + shipping and handling

  • Study Guide — Order #3327se : $9.95 (Electronic PDF Version)

  • Professional Royalties will be quoted upon application


  • Blue Ridge Dinner Theatre — Ferrum, Virginia — 2003

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