Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.
The children are rising up. Join the revolt in this Broadway Junior adaptation of the Tony Award-winning hit!
Restrictions May Apply
Show Essentials
+ Ensemble

Full Synopsis

Matilda JR opens with enthusiastic school children (and their equally enthusiastic parents) singing their own praises…except Matilda. According to her parents, she is nothing but a nuisance ("Miracle"). At Matilda's home, her father, Mr. Wormwood, reveals his scheme to sell old automobiles as brand-new luxury cars to Russian businessmen. Matilda says that she doesn't believe this is fair, and her father insults her, believing her intelligence and love of books to be unnatural. Matilda goes to her room, pausing on the way to mix her father's hair tonic with her mother's hair dye ("Naughty"). The next morning, Mr. Wormwood's hair is green.

Matilda drops by the library to visit Mrs. Phelps, the librarian. The girl tells Mrs. Phelps the first part of the tale of the Acrobat and the Escapologist, two circus performers deeply in love. The tale cuts off just as the couple is primed to perform their most dangerous trick yet. Matilda starts her first day of school the next morning, surrounded by intimidated new children and scary big kids ("School Song"). Fortunately, Matilda's teacher is Miss Honey, a sweet woman who cares deeply for her students. Miss Honey immediately recognizes Matilda's advanced intelligence, prompting her to visit the school's vicious headmistress, Miss Trunchbull. The teacher hopes to promote Matilda to a more challenging class, but Trunchbull refuses, insisting that Matilda cannot be an exception to the rules ("The Hammer").

After school, Mr. Wormwood returns home, furious that the Russians did not fall for his scheme. Matilda questions him about it, and he notices her book, prompting him to rip the book apart. In an act of rebellion, the girl lines the rim of her father's hat with superglue, watching in satisfaction as he puts the hat on his head ("Naughty - Superglue - Part 2"). At school the next day, Matilda's classmate NIGEL runs through the playground in a panic, saying he has been blamed for a trick on Trunchbull. He says that if she finds him, she will put him in the infamous chokey, a cupboard lined with nails, spikes and broken glass ("The Chokey Chant"). Matilda tells the students to throw their coats onto Nigel. When Trunchbull storms onstage, Matilda tells her Nigel has been asleep under the coats for the last hour due to his sleeping disorder. Trunchbull reluctantly accepts this explanation and leaves after bullying another student.

While Mr. Wormwood realizes his hat is glued to his head at Wormwood Motors, Mrs. Wormwood is at the Wormwood house, answering the door when Miss Honey knocks. The teacher tries to explain to Mrs. Wormwood how special her daughter is, but the girl's mother doesn't listen and pushes her out the door. Miss Honey stands outside, wanting to fight for Matilda, yet feeling helpless ("This Little Girl"). Meanwhile, Matilda is at the library continuing her circus love story for Mrs. Phelps. The escapologist announces that their act is cancelled because his wife, the acrobat, is pregnant. However, the acrobat's sister refuses to cancel the act, referring to the contract the performers signed. Matilda promises to continue the next day.

At school the following day, Miss Honey pulls Matilda aside and promises to bring in extra books to challenge the girl. Matilda is thrilled. But her joy is short-lived as Trunchbull bursts into the classroom, accusing Matilda of eating a piece of her cake. The true culprit, however, is Matilda's hungry classmate Bruce, who accidentally reveals his guilt with a loud, chocolaty burp. Trunchbull comes up with a twisted punishment for Bruce, bringing out the rest of the massive cake for the boy to eat in one sitting. The kids cheer on the boy, who finally finishes off the huge dessert ("Bruce - Part 1"). Despite his victory, Trunchbull takes Bruce to the chokey. Matilda is upset by the unfairness of this. She goes to the library, launching into the next part of her dramatic circus tale. During a performance, the acrobat slips and falls, breaking every bone in her body and passing away-but not before she gives birth to a baby girl. However, the girl grows up with an abusive aunt and a father who is unaware anything is wrong. The story cuts off once again, and the scene shifts to the children in Matilda's school, singing about what life will be like when they grow up. Miss Honey and Matilda join in, wondering what they can do to right all of the wrongs in their lives ("When I Grow Up").

At the Wormwood home, Mr. Wormwood announces that by tweaking the speedometers in his cars, he has completed a successful business deal with the Russians. While the rest of the family is thrilled by the money, Matilda is disgusted that her father cheated the businessmen. Mr. Wormwood threatens to ban her from the school and never let her read again. Alone in her room, Matilda tells the rest of the circus story to herself. The escapologist discovers that his sister-in-law has been beating his daughter, and he leaves to confront her, but he never returns again.

The next day at school, Trunchbull believes the students are up to something ("The Smell of Rebellion"). Her fears are confirmed when Matilda's sneaky classmate Lavender puts a newt into Trunchbull's water jug. She immediately begins pointing fingers and figuring out who to blame, but Matilda silences her with a yell. Trunchbull yells back, but suddenly everything slows down and goes quiet as Matilda explains to the audience that she can sometimes find a calmness in herself that allows her to do amazing things ("Quiet"). In this moment, the calmness allows her to throw the glass with the newt at Trunchbull. The headmistress screams and runs away. Miss Honey dismisses the class, but Matilda stays behind to show the teacher her ability. They walk together, and Miss Honey reveals that she is poor and lives in a shed. Her father died when she was little, and her cruel aunt became her legal guardian and the owner or her childhood home. Miss Honey suspects her aunt killed her father, but she has no proof. Matilda asks who Miss Honey's aunt is. Reluctantly, Miss Honey reveals that her aunt is none other than Trunchbull.

In Miss Honey's classroom the next day, Trunchbull challenges the class to a spelling test. The students spell every word right-proof that Miss Honey's kind, patient teaching methods have paid off. When Trunchbull claims a student has spelled a word wrong and tries to drag her to the chokey, the whole class begins spelling wrong so there will be no room for all of them in the cruel device. As Trunchbull claims she has multiple chokeys for all of them, writing appears on the chalkboard-writing that appears to be from her dead brother-in-law. Trunchbull leaves the classroom screaming. The children sing in joy ("Revolting Children").

A few days pass, and Miss Honey has inherited her parents' house, taken over the role of headmistress, and removed all the chokeys. Matilda, meanwhile, is about to be whisked off to Spain by her family. Her father is on the run from the Russian businessmen, who have realized that they were cheated by him. However, Miss Honey has a proposition: let Matilda stay with her. After just a bit of reluctance, Mr. and Mrs. Wormwood agree, and Matilda and Miss Honey are both overjoyed ("Bows").

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Cast Size: Large (21 or more performers)
Cast Type: Ensemble Cast
Dance Requirements: Standard

Character Breakdown

Matilda Wormwood

The hero of the show. She’s brilliant, resilient, creative, and kind, despite growing up in difficult circumstances. Her parents treat her poorly, but Matilda escapes into a world of books, which puts her reading level far above the other children in her class, and she develops a bit of magical power in an effort to defeat Trunchbull. Cast a fantastic singer and great actress in this role who can embody both Matilda’s cleverness and her kindness.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: Bb3

A student at school with Matilda. He has the very first solo line of the entire show, so make sure to cast a good singer in this role. He also has some featured moments as one of Matilda’s schoolmates, so it’s helpful if Eric is also an expressive actor.

Gender: male
Vocal range top: Eb4
Vocal range bottom: C3

A student at school with Matilda. She has a few solos and lines, but her most featured moment is when Trunchbull throws her through the air using her pigtails. Cast a good singer and mover in this role.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: Eb5
Vocal range bottom: C4

One of Matilda’s schoolmates. He has the bad luck to get caught after eating Trunchbull’s cake. Bruce goes through quite a transformation throughout the show and has some important solos, so cast an excellent singer and actor. Keep in mind that just because Bruce eats the cake, it doesn’t mean he has to be physically larger than the other children – just cast an actor who can portray Bruce’s journey throughout the show.

Gender: male
Vocal range top: F#4
Vocal range bottom: C3

Alice, Hortensia, and Tommy are classmates of Matilda who each sing solos, and Hortensia has a few lines. These roles are great for good singers and movers who may be newer to the stage.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: C4

Alice, Hortensia, and Tommy are classmates of Matilda who each sing solos. These roles are great for good singers and movers who may be newer to the stage.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: C4

Alice, Hortensia, and Tommy are classmates of Matilda who each sing solos. These roles are great for good singers and movers who may be newer to the stage.

Gender: male
Vocal range top: Eb4
Vocal range bottom: C3

One of the kids at school with Matilda. She is kind and bright (though not as brilliant as Matilda) and quickly decides that Matilda is her best friend. Cast an actress in this role who can portray Lavender’s likability and friendliness.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: C4

One of the kids at school with Matilda. He is enthusiastic, sweet, and always in a bit of a panic. Nigel has a few solos and some great featured moments in the show, so cast a strong actor and singer in this great supporting role.

Gender: male
Vocal range top: D4
Vocal range bottom: C3
Mr. Wormwood

Matilda’s father. He is egotistical, rude, and not very bright, not to mention a liar. Though Mr. Wormwood is not a good person and he is mean to Matilda, his harebrained schemes can be hilariously funny, so cast a fantastic character actor in this role who can really land the comedy and isn’t afraid to play an unlikeable character. It’s helpful if Mr. Wormwood reads as older onstage and makes a dynamic pair with Mrs. Wormwood.

Gender: male
Mrs. Wormwood

Matilda’s mother. Like her husband, she dislikes Matilda and does not understand why her daughter loves to read. Mrs. Wormwood is selfish, obsessed with her own appearance, and believes everything she sees on TV. Her dancing lessons with Rudolpho are the most important part of her day. Cast a great actress who can portray Mrs. Wormwood’s nastiness but also play up her ridiculousness and lean into the comedy.

Gender: female

Matilda’s brother. He is not very bright, though he is the apple of his father’s eye. This is a hilarious supporting role for a younger actor with comedic timing, as Michael’s contributions to the scene usually function as deadpan one-liners.

Gender: male
Mrs. Phelps

The kindly librarian who loves hearing Matilda’s stories. This is a great featured role for a stronger actress who reads as older than Matilda onstage.

Gender: female

A character of Matilda’s creation. Everything this character does is grand and exaggerated – he’s performing for the cheap seats! Cast a solid actor and mover in this fun featured role.

Gender: male
Vocal range top: F3
Vocal range bottom: E3

A product of Matilda’s imagination. Cast an actor in this featured role that can give their all!

Gender: female
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: D4
Miss Honey

A teacher at Matilda’s school. She is kind, is generous, and really cares about the children despite her own desperate circumstances. Cast an excellent actress and singer who can portray Miss Honey’s sweetness and her strength. It’s helpful if the actress reads as older than the kids from onstage.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: Bb3
Agatha Trunchbull

The quintessential terrifying tyrant. As headmistress, she runs her school like a dictator, making up arbitrary rules to suit her every whim and dreaming up creative punishments. The Trunchbull can be played by a male or female (though the character is female). It’s helpful if Trunchbull is physically larger than the actors playing children. Cast a fantastic character actor and singer who can command the stage and embody Trunchbull’s larger-than-life villainy.

Gender: female
Vocal range top: F#5
Vocal range bottom: C4

Mrs. Wormwood’s self-obsessed dance teacher. This is a hilarious featured role for a comedic performer who moves well.

Gender: male

A custoner swindled by Mr. Wormwood. Though he shows up looking for payback, Matilda has had quite enough of revenge, and Sergei lets the Wormwoods escape. This is a great featured role for an actor who can embody Sergei’s intimidating presence.

Gender: male

Ensemble roles include Russians, Little Kids, Big Kids (including Big Kid 1, Big Kid 2, and Big Kid 3), Kids, Mums, Dads, the Cook, and the Mechanic.

Full Song List
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Miracle
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Naughty
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Acrobat Story (Part 1)
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: School Song
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: The Hammer
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Naughty - Superglue
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: The Chokey Chant
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: This Little Girl
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Bruce
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: When I Grow Up
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: The Smell of Rebellion
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Quiet
Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical JR.: Revolting Children

Curriculum Connection

  • Language Arts
  • Fine Arts
  • Social Studies
  • Math
  • Technology of the 1980's
  • Library Science



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