A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Musical – “Topsy Turvy”

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While Count Olaf and Madame Lulu are in the fortune telling tent, the Hook-Handed Man pays host to the House of Freaks while holding the tagliatelle  to whip each freak act onto the stage. Despite that the Hook-Handed Man is offended to be seen as one of them despite his hooked hands. Each act showcases the freak’s talents. Hugo puts on coats he can’t get in. Kevin writes his name with both hands at once. Collette does her freaky contortions. As the two-headed Beverly and Elliot, Violet and Klaus eat an ear of corn. While Sunny can show her fangs and violent side as Chabo the Wolf baby. The audience proves to be as mean as their host as they throw stuff, jeer, point and laugh. All in all, as with any freak show, it’s a humiliating experience being put on display like that. In the show, Count Olaf introduces the freaks in a musical number mostly because he’s played by Neil Patrick Harris.

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Obviously, I had to go with “Topsy Turvy” from Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame. In the original Clopin pays emcee to the Feast of Fools which is actually Mardi Gras in 15th century Paris. It’s an exciting number but it showcases a dancing Esmeralda who Frollo, Phoebus, and Quasimodo will romantically vie for in varying degrees. Not to mention, it has Quasimodo endure a humiliating experience of being crowned the king of fools though he doesn’t really know what’s going on. Until they throw stuff at him and Esmeralda has to come and stop him. In this version, I have the Hook-Handed Man pay host and introduce the freaks.

 

“Topsy Turvy” (ASOUE Version)

Sung by the Hook-Handed Man

Troupe and Freaks:
Come one, come all
Step right up and come in and see
Freak acts for the family
Come one, come all
Come inside and take a seat
Boy, are you all in for a treat
Come and see the House of…

Hook-Handed Man:
…Freaks!

Come inside, at the Caligari Carnival
Freakish folks to cure your boredom and enthrall
Daring acts of freakishness for one and all
Once again, come in the House of Freaks

Look at Hunchback Hugo as he tries a coat (Fit in them you’d think but he surely won’t)
Ambidextrous Kevin can write his name with both (Great to see his both hands to write a note)
Everything is topsy turvy
At the House of Freaks

Troupe and Freaks:
Topsy Turvy

Clopin:
Everything is upsy-daisy

Troupe and Freaks:
Topsy Turvy

Hook-Handed Man:
Come on, freaks, please don’t be lazy

I’m no freak so please don’t you all judge me
Come inside to see the House of Freaks

Troupe and Freaks:
Topsy Turvy

Hook-Handed Man:
Hope you can watch and have the stomach

Troupe and Freaks:
Topsy Turvy

Hook-Handed Man, Troupe, and Freaks:
Jeer and throw in your junk and garbage
Mocking those with gross monstrosities

Hook-Handed Man:
Laugh at routines most unnervy
Feel free to be some extra scurvy

Hook-Handed Man, Freaks, and Troupe:
Come inside to see the House of Freaks

Hook-Handed Man:
Come one, come all
Hurry, hurry; here’s your chance
See the mystery and romance
Come one, come all
She can flex like no one can
Hailing from the Hinterlands
Colette la Contortista…
Dance!

Here it is, the moment you’ve been waiting for
Here it is, you don’t know what we have in store
Now’s the time we laugh until our sides get sore
Now’s the time to see two new freakish acts!

Baby Chabo is horrible and frightening
Beverly and Elliot are a pair of conjoined twins!

Violet and Klaus:
Hey!

Hook-Handed Man:
See Beverly and Elliot try to eat corn on the cob. Why?

Freaks and Troupe:
Topsy Turvy

Hook-Handed Man:
Freakish folks, forget your shyness

Freaks and Troupe:
Topsy Turvy

Hook-Handed Man:
Don’t forget to put on a smile

Troupe and Freaks:
Put your foulest features for all to see

Hook-Handed Man, Troupe, and Freaks:
Come inside to see the House of Freaks

Hook-Handed Man:
Ev-er-y-bo-dy!

Troupe and Freaks:
Come inside, at the Caligari Carnival

Hook-Handed Man:
Laugh at the freaks!

Troupe and Freaks:
Freakish folks to cure your boredom and enthrall

Hook-Handed Man:
Ha ha! Oh, what a freak!

Troupe and Freaks:
Come and see these twins eat corn on the cob

Hook-Handed Man:
Girls, give a kiss

Troupe and Freaks:
Come and see the beastly baby

Hook-Handed Man:
We’ve never had freaks like these

Hook-Handed Man, Troupe, and Freaks:
She’s an unholy product of a lady and a wolf
She’ll rip your face off so don’t you be a fool

Come inside this tent to drop in
Where the freaks are never stopping
For the chance to see the freak routines
With their talents that’ll put the top in
Top…sy… Tur…vy…

Hook-Handed Man:
Topsy Turvy
Mad and crazy
Upsy-daisy
At the House of Freaks!

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