The Day the Crayons Quit:

The Day the Crayons Quit:
A theatrical adaptation of the book by Drew Daywalt
Lights up on stage. Duncan is sitting at a desk stage right; Narrator is front/center stage.
NARRATOR: Once upon a time, there was a boy named Duncan. Many of you are as young as Duncan
would have been… or at least as young at heart. Duncan enjoyed the finer things in life, such as a nice,
cold glass of chocolate milk, a bright sunny day ripe for exploration, and his extensive collection of
Pokémon cards. But what Duncan loved most of all… was art.
DUNCAN: I will be the greatest artist who ever lived! Step aside, Picasso! Vincent, get Van-Goghing! I am
Duncan, master scribbler! King of Doodle-land!
NARRATOR: Duncan enjoyed painting, a charcoal sketch here and there… he’d even branched out into
some very post-modern sculpture for his tender age. But what Duncan enjoyed most of all was to draw
with his tool of choice – a box of crayons.
DUNCAN: Crayons! Of all the art supplies, you are the BEST! You’re like 2% chocolate milk straight out of
the carton! You’re like the sunniest day of summer! You’re… you’re like the best Pokémon card in my
deck… Charizard, obviously. Crayons, you’re my all-time favourites!
NARRATOR: Duncan liked the way crayons smelled. He liked the way their coloured wax looked on a
sheet of paper. He liked that when their tips became dull, he just had to peel away a piece of their paper
wrapping and keep right on colouring. There was really nothing Duncan didn’t like about crayons… in
fact; you might say that Duncan thought of his crayons as old friends.
DUNCAN: (putting crayons back in a box) Alright, guys. See you tomorrow.
NARRATOR: That is… until the day the crayons QUIT!
(Enter all crayons with picket signs, grumpy and bickering with each other)
YELLOW CRAYON & GRAY CRAYON: (chanting) We’re not ha-ppy! We’re not ha-ppy!
PINK CRAYON: Down with this sort of thing!
BEIGE CRAYON: I’ve had it! I DRAW the LINE!
PURPLE CRAYON: Womp wommmmp
BEIGE CRAYON: Ha ha… no pun intended, but you have to admit, that wasn’t bad. (Winks)
PINK: Ugh. Could you be any more annoying!?
BEIGE: Well, as a matter of fact, I…
PEACH: I’m pretty sure that was a rhetorical question, bud.
WHITE CRAYON & RED CRAYON: Rhetori-whaaaa?
BLUE: Rhetorical! It means…
RED: Oh, of course YOUUU’D have an answer, Mr. I’m-blue-and-I-know-everrryything!
Orange and Yellow Crayons walk past each other without speaking
GREEN CRAYON: You guys, please! I simply can’t work in these conditions!
ORANGE: Who can! Things are a scribbly mess around here!
Yellow Crayon mocks Orange Crayon
NARRATOR: Duncan hadn’t seen it coming, but it seems that things in the crayon box were not all
sunshine and rainbows after all. You see, what happened was, on the day they quit, Duncan went to
take out his crayons and found a stack of letters with his name on them.
Narrator exits stage left.
DUNCAN: Helloooo Duncan! You’ve got MAIL! Call me Captain Popularity! Secretly Admired! I am the
Post Officer! Ok, but seriously… who wrote these? Hello? Anyone?
Duncan sits down at his desk and opens the first letter in the stack. Red Crayon enters from stage left.
RED CRAYON: Hey Duncan. It’s me, Red Crayon. We need to talk. You make me work harder than any of
your other crayons. All year long I wear myself out colouring fire engines, apples, strawberries and
EVERYTHING ELSE that’s RED! I even work hard on HOLIDAYS! I have to colour all the Santa’s at
Christmas and ALL the hearts on Valentine’s Day! I need a rest! Your overworked friend, Red Crayon.
NARRATOR: Duncan was startled by what he read. A letter from… a crayon!? So much for a declaration
of love from the cute girl in his Science class, or an invite to a top secret weekend Pokémon tournament.
DUNCAN: Man! Just when I thought my life-excitement levels were about to get seriously amped up, I
get a scarlet letter from a hunk of wax!?
NARRATOR: But as he read the letter again, Duncan’s disappointment softened. He hadn’t realized that
Red Crayon was so… well… worn out. Duncan took a deep breath,
Pause while Duncan takes a deep breath
Opened the next letter
Pause as Duncan opens the letter
And read on…
PURPLE CRAYON: Dear Duncan. All right. Listen. I love that I’m your favourite crayon for grapes, dragons,
and wizard’s hats, but it makes me crazy that so much of my gorgeous colour goes outside the lines. If
neat friend, Purple Crayon.
DUNCAN: Ok, draaamaaaa! Some people would call that abstract flare, you know.
Peach Crayon hi-fives Purple Crayon
DUNCAN: Sheesh! Alright, already. Who’s next…
BEIGE CRAYON: Dear Duncan. I’m tired of being called “light brown” or “dark tan” because I am neither.
I am BEIGE and I am proud. I’m also tired of being second place to Mr. Brown Crayon. It’s not fair that
brown crayon gets all the bears, ponies and puppies while the only things I get are turkey dinners (if I’m
lucky) and wheat, and let’s be honest – when was the last time you saw a kid excited about colouring
wheat? Your BEIGE friend, Beige Crayon.
NARRATOR: Duncan realized that Beige Crayon did have a point. Ever since that whole gluten-free thing
had started, it didn’t seem like too many people got excited about wheat any more at all.
Duncan sighs, puts Beige Crayon’s letter on the floor, and opens the next
GRAY CRAYON: Duncan. GRAY CRAYON here. You’re KILLING ME! I know you love elephants. And I know
that elephants are grey… but that’s a LOT of space to colour in all by myself. And don’t even get me
started on your rhinos, hippos, and HUMPBACK WHALES… You know how tired I am after handling one
of those things!? Such BIG animals… Baby penguins are grey, you know. So are very tiny rocks. Pebbles.
How about one of those once in a while to give me a break? Your very tired friend, Grey Crayon.
DUNCAN: Yawning and stretching Rhinos and hippos and whales, oh my! Sorry Gray Crayon… I didn’t
realize you had such a heavy load!
RED CRAYON: Womp wommmp!
DUNCAN: Rubbing eyes and stretching NEXT!
WHITE CRAYON: Dear Duncan. You colour with me, but why? Most of the time I’m the same colour as
the page you are using me on – WHITE. If I didn’t have a black outline, you wouldn’t even know I was
THERE! I’m not even in the rainbow. I’m only used to colour snow, or to fill an empty space between
other things. And it leaves me feeling… Well… Empty. We need to talk. Your empty friend, White Crayon.
BLACK CRAYON: Empty? Really?
WHITE CRAYON: Oh, don’t you take that tone with me! You might as well be King of the crayon box!
BLACK CRAYON: Oh. Yea. Because I have it sooo easy. Pssshh. Give me a BREAK!
WHITE CRAYON: Fine. Let’s hear it. What could you possibly have to complain about?
Duncan opens letter; Black Crayon looks over his shoulder at White Crayon and then begins to speak
BLACK CRAYON: Hi Duncan. I HATE being used to draw the outline of things… Things that are coloured in
by other colours, all of which think they’re brighter than me! It’s NOT FAIR when you use me to draw a
nice beach ball and then fill in the colours of the ball with ALL THE OTHER CRAYONS! How about a black
beach ball sometime? Is that too much to ask? Your friend, Black Crayon.
DUNCAN: Guys. GUYS! When you’re thinkin’ ‘bout bein’ my crayons, it don’t matter if you’re black or
white! Hangs head.
NARRATOR: Duncan was starting to worry. Were any of his crayons happy? Had he managed to get
anything right? All of this crayon criticism had him feeling not only worried, but a little sad.
GREEN CRAYON: Dear Duncan. As green crayon, I am writing for two reasons. One is to say that I like my
work load of crocodiles, trees, dinosaurs, and frogs. I have no problems and wish to congratulate you on
a very successful “colouring things green” career so far. The second reason I write is for my friends,
Yellow Crayon and Orange Crayon who are no longer speaking to each other. Both crayons feel THEY
should be the colour of the sun. Please settle this soon, because they are driving the rest of us CRAZY!
Your happy friend, Green Crayon.
RED CRAYON: Mocking “Look at me! I’m Green Crayon! No complaints here, I’m Duncan’s pet!”
GREEN CRAYON: Grouchy Oh, Shut up! You’re just ME with ENVY!
ORANGE CRAYON: Zip it, both of you! I cannot WAIT to hear what’s coming next.
Orange Crayon takes place slightly behind Yellow Crayon, mocking as Yellow speaks.
YELLOW CRAYON: Dear Duncan. Yellow Crayon here. I need you to tell Orange Crayon that I am the
colour of the sun. I would tell him, but we are no longer speaking. And I can PROVE I’m the colour of the
sun, too! Last Tuesday you used me to colour in the sun on your “HAPPY FARM” colouring book. In case
you’ve forgotten, it’s on page 7. You can’t miss me. I’m shining down brilliantly on a field of YELLOW
corn! Your pal (and the true colour of the sun) Yellow Crayon.
Orange Crayon & Yellow Crayon glare at each other, circling one another in silence.
Gray Crayon puts her hand over Blue Crayon’s mouth.
DUNCAN: Looking out into the audience Oh, my…
ORANGE CRAYON: Dear Duncan. I see Yellow Crayon already talked to you. The BIG WHINER. Anyway,
could you please tell Ms. Tattletale that he is NOT the colour of the sun? I would, but we’re not longer
speaking. We both know I am clearly the colour of the sun because, on Thursday, you used me to colour
the sun on BOTH the “Monkey Island” and the “Meet the Zookeeper” in your “Day at the Zoo” colouring
book. Orange you glad I’m here? HA! Your pal (and the REAL colour of the sun) Orange Crayon.
**Yellow & Orange do that think Naomi showed us before March Break in unison** ??
BLUE CRAYON: Well, it’s certainly tough to follow those two rays of sunshine (rolls eyes), but I demand
to be heard! Dear Duncan. It has been great being your FAVOURITE colour this past year. And the year
before. And the year before THAT! I have really enjoyed all those oceans, lakes, rivers, rain drops, rain
clouds, and clear skies. But the BAD NEWS is that I am so short and stubby, I can’t even see over the
railing in the crayon box anymore! I NEED A BREAK! Your very stubby friend, Blue Crayon.
PINK CRAYON: Oh, cry me a river!
BLUE CRAYON: I could draw you one!
PINK CRAYON: Of course you could!
BLUE CRAYON: What’s your problem, anyway!?
PINK CRAYON: It’d just be nice to have something to do once in a while, OK?!
Pink Crayon takes center stage
PINK CRAYON: Duncan. Okay, LISTEN HERE, KID. You have not used me ONCE in the past year. It’s
because you think I’m a GIRL’S colour, isn’t it? Speaking of which, please tell your little sister I said thank
you for using me to colour in her “Little Princess” colouring book. I think she did a fabulous job of staying
inside the lines. Now, back to us. Could you please use me sometime to colour the occasional pink
dinosaur or monster or cowboy? Goodness knows they could use a splash of colour. Your unused friend,
Pink Crayon.
NARRATOR: After reading through each letter of expression, Duncan truly thought he’d heard it all. But
nothing, and I mean nothing, could’ve prepared him for what his last crayon had to say.
PEACH CRAYON: Hey Duncan. It’s me PEACH CRAYON! Why did you peel off the paper wrapping? Now
I’m NAKED and too embarrassed to leave the crayon box. I don’t even have any underwear! How would
YOU liked to go to school NAKED? I need some clothes. HELP! Your naked friend, Peach Crayon.
DUNCAN: Pause; look out towards the audience YIKES!
NARRATOR: Well, poor Duncan just wanted to colour… and of course he wanted his crayons to be
happy… And that gave him an idea.
DUNCAN: Crayons! Get over here!
(Crayons assemble in the middle of the stage, grumbling…)
DUNCAN: OK. Listen. I’m sorry I let you down. It’s just…well, I guess I’ve been seeing things in black and
DUNCAN: Oh geez (face palm) Poor word choice, forgive me?
Black Crayon & White Crayon glance at each other, then back at Duncan, nodding.
DUNCAN: What I meant to say is, well, I just didn’t realize that you all felt this way…
NARRATOR: Duncan went on to explain to his crayons how their colourful language had helped him to,
well, think outside the box!
ALL CRAYONS: Womp wommmmmp!
Beige Crayon fist-pounds the Narrator with a wink
NARRATOR: May I continue?
Crayons silently acknowledge.
NARRATOR: Becoming inspired You see, Duncan had neglected to see each of his crayons for the
individuals they were. They each had their own personalities, their own hopes and dreams, and they
each wanted to be valued for the unique contributions they made to each and every wax masterpiece,
and they…
PURPLE CRAYON: Lady! Slow down! I don’t mean to interrupt, but I think what you’re trying to say is…
PURPLE CRAYON: Singing He saw our true colours shining through, he saw our true colours, in me and
the rest of you, now we won’t be afraid to let them show, our true colours, true colours are beautiful…
ALL CRAYONS: Like a rainbow! Kind of squeaky, with jazz hands!
PURPLE CRAYON: We’ll work on it, guys.
PINK CRAYON: Awww! Bring it in!
Crayon group hug.
DUNCAN: Breaking up the group hug Well, I don’t know about you guys, but somebody who has two
thumbs is inspired and it’s me!
GRAY CRAYON: Uh, Duncan, that’s not quite how you do that one…
DUNCAN: It’s not?
YELLOW CRAYON: No, it’s more like…
BLUE CRAYON: Oh, I’ll show him. AHEM! Who has two thumbs and feels inspired? THIS GUY! I mean, you
know, if I had thumbs…
DUNCAN: OHHH! Ok, well anyway, thumbs or no thumbs, do you guys feels as pumped up as I do!?
DUNCAN: Are you ready to get ARTSY!?
All crayons groan and look at Beige Crayon
BEIGE CRAYON: You guys, I’m sorry, it had to be done.
DUNCAN: Well!?
DUNCAN: Ok, bring it in!
Duncan and crayons huddle together, ‘secret plan’ style
NARRATOR: Duncan and his crayons had seen the light. Together, they had turned a corner. Duncan was
ready to represent each and every colour as they deserved to be represented! Yes, all the world was a
canvas, and Duncan and his crayons merely players…
GRAY CRAYON: Breaking out of the huddle for a moment Lady, you’re doing it again.
NARRATOR: Oh, yes. Of course. Clears throat Duncan and his crayons were on the same page once
YELLOW CRAYON: Quickly Womp wommmp!
NARRATOR: With their differences set aside, they worked tirelessly through the night, sketching and
scribbling away at what they were all certain would be their greatest work of art yet.
When music ends, crayons appear to be exhausted
PEACH CRAYON: By George, I think we’ve done it!
BLACK CRAYON: Who is George, anyway?
NARRATOR: When Duncan showed his teacher his new picture, she gave him an A for colouring… And an
A+ for creativity!
the stage.
NARRATOR: Duncan learned a valuable lesson the day the crayons quit. We are all individuals in this
giant crayon box called life, and when we acknowledge and celebrate those things that make us each
unique, well, that’s when life becomes art.
You with the sad eyes
Don’t be discouraged
Oh I realize
It’s hard to take courage
In a world full of people
You can lose sight of it all
And the darkness inside you
Can make you feel so small
But I see your true colours
Shining through
I see your true colours
And that’s why I love you
So don’t be afraid to let them show
Your true colours
True colours are beautiful
Like a rainbow