Bethlehem’s Full Tonight

Year of composition
Jill Elliott
Easy (Grades 1-3)
1 minute
Voice + keyboard
Instrumental parts
Not available
Related scores

�The Innkeeper�s Children� provides a framework for a Nativity play, which can be as traditional as you like. By focusing on the role of children in the story, it allows large numbers of youngsters to take part without too many demands on the costume-making skills of parents and carers. Choose any Old Testament names for the children, eg. Ben and Rachel. The songs outline a simple story of Mary and Joseph arriving in a crowded Bethlehem (where everybody, young and old, has been busy coping with the influx of visitors) to be turned away from several inns. At the final inn they are about to be turned away when the innkeeper�s children (as many as you like, plus their friends, as necessary) remember their �cosy little den� at the back of the stable. This will be the ideal place for the visitors. The children go to bed but are unable to sleep for the excitement. Eventually they get up and go to the stable.

The framework allows you to add your own dialogue (scripted or improvised), Bible narrative, carols the children know, and as many other characters, traditional or not, as you wish. The original production at Wolvercote First School featured traditional carols, dancing, kings, shepherds, angels, stars and animals, and a script by the producer, Miss Gwyneth Stone.

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