Carousel of Progress (Magic Kingdom) – Current Version (1994-Present) – Act I

*Sung lyrics in bold.

(Theatre begins rotating from Preshow.)

CHORUS
There’s a great big beautiful tomorrow
Shining at the end of every day.
There’s a great big beautiful tomorrow,
And tomorrow is just a dream away.

Man has a dream and that’s the start.
He follows his dream with mind and heart.

FATHER & CHORUS
And when it becomes a reality,
It’s a dream come true for you and me.

So there’s a great big beautiful tomorrow
Shining at the end of every day.
There’s a great big beautiful tomorrow,
Just a dream away. 

(Birds chirping.)

FATHER (Spoken)
Yeah, it looks like the robins are getting ready to celebrate Valentine’s Day today. What year is it? Oh, right around the turn of the century. And believe me, things couldn’t be any better than they are today. Yes sir, buildings are towering now as high as twenty stories. And moving pictures flicker up on a big screen. We have almost 8,000 automobiles in this country, and we can travel by train from New York to California in less than seven days! And I even hear tell about two brothers from North Carolina who are working on some kind of flying contraption. (Chuckles.) It’ll never work. Closer to home, we’ve now got gas lamps, a telephone, and the latest design in cast-iron stoves. And that reservoir keeps five gallons of water hot all day on just three buckets of coal. Oh boy, it sure beats chopping wood. And isn’t our new icebox a beauty? Look at that! Holds 50 pounds of ice. 
Milk doesn’t sour as quick as it used to. And our dog Rover here keeps the water in the drip pan from overflowing. It wasn’t too long ago we had to carry water from a well. And thanks to progress, we’ve got a pump right here in the kitchen. Of course, we keep a bucket of water handy to prime it with. Yes sir, we’ve got everything we need to make life easier.

(SARAH and YOUNGER DAUGHTER appear behind left scrim.)

FATHER
Say, mother?

SARAH
Mmm?

FATHER
I was reading about a fellow named Tom Edison who’s working on an idea for snap-on electric lights.

SARAH
Electric lights? No more kerosine! No more gas!

FATHER
(Chuckles.) Sarah sure gets to the core of the apple.

SARAH
But we do have this new washday marvel. Now, it takes me only five hours to do the wash. Imagine, it used to take two days.

FATHER
Oh, that’s right folks. Now Sarah has time for other things, like—

SARAH
Like canning and cleaning the oven?

FATHER
Yes dear.

SARAH
Well ovens just don’t clean themselves, you know, dear.

FATHER
I know dear. (Chuckles.) And they probably never will!

SARAH
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to get the laundry off the line before it starts raining cats and dogs.

(ROVER barks. Blackout on left diorama.)

FATHER
Ah, don’t worry Rover. She didn’t mean real dogs. Besides, it’s not going to rain today. My lumbago isn’t acting up.

(Lightning and thunder outside as rain begins to fall.)

SARAH (Offstage)
I hate to say I told you so.

FATHER
Oh, look at it come down! All you have to do is put your wash on the line, right? Oh well, the cistern was low anyway.

(JIMMY appears behind right scrim, looking at stereoscope.)

JIMMY
Wowee! Look at that!

FATHER
Now James, I thought I told you to ask my permission before using my new stereoscope. That’s not a toy you know!

JIMMY
Ooh-la-la! So that’s Little Egypt doing the hoochie-koochie, eh Dad?

FATHER
Isn’t she a knockout? She’s the star of the new World’s Fair in St. Louis, and—(clears throat) now you put that away before your mother finds it.

JIMMY
Aw, Dad…

FATHER
You heard me!

(Blackout on diorama.)

FATHER
Well, we have one of those new talking machines. Now that is something. It plays music right here in our home.

(Lights up on left diorama, when GRANDMA sits listening to phonograph with her PARROT.)

RADIO (Singing)
There’s a great big beautiful tomorrow
Shining at the end of every day.

PARROT
(Squawk) She keeps that thing going all day long. (Squawk) Progress! (Squawk. Whistle).

(Lights out on left diorama as they come up on right diorama, where PATRICIA is sitting, half dressed.)

PATRICIA
Oh, papa!

FATHER
Yes Patricia?

PATRICIA
Papa! All these people! I’m… I’m indecent!

FATHER
(Chuckles.) Don’t worry, Patricia. They’re friends. (To Audience.) That’s our teenage daughter. She’s getting ready to go to a Valentine’s dance across town, on one of those new horseless trolleys.

PATRICIA
I think it’s very romantic you’re taking mother out for Valentine’s dinner this evening.

FATHER
Well, you know what kind of sport I am.

PATRICIA
I only hope I have an evening as romantic as yours and mother’s.

FATHER (Sternly)
Now you be home by nine o’clock, daughter. You hear me?

PATRICIA (Dejectedly) 
Yes papa.

(Lights out on diorama.)

FATHER
Well, with all this talking, I’ve worked up quite a thirst. I think I’ll take one of those new-fangled trolleys down to the drugstore soda fountain and meet the boys for a cold sarsaparilla. Oh, haha, I’m sorry, I forgot—we’re drinking root beer now! Same kind of thing, different name. Well, that’s progress for you. And, uh, speaking of progress…

(Theatre begins to rotate to Act II.)

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