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(The scene opens up with an opening of the sky. The camera pans moves to a orphanage.)

Felicie Lebras: Bye-bye, orphanage! Slowly! Almost there! (laugh)

Greasy Guard: Stop!

Felicie: (whimpers)

Victor François Xavier: (sighs)

Felicie: Shhh!

Victor: Ha! (sighs)

Greasy Guard: Where is Felicie?

Victor: Uh, sir, I don't know.

Greasy Guard: What are you looking at, you idiot?

Felicie: Whoa!

Victor: (gasps)

Greasy Guard: (grumbles) Go get Felicie!

Victor: You know, I'm having a little bit of trouble knowing which direction...

Greasy Guard: NOW!

Victor: Ugh!

[Victor walked on the stairs whistling]

(bell rings)

Victor: Ouch! Ah! (whistles)

Felicie: Victor! Can you help me?

Victor: Ha!

Felicie: Stop! Stop doing your grumpy face!

Victor: I'm not, I'm just a little bit hurt that you were... (sighs) ..I don't know, escaping without ME!

Felicie: Escaping? Me? No, I was just looking at the spectacular view!

Victor: Because, you know, you wouldn't last more than five minutes out there without me.

Felicie: Ha! Ha! [Felicie throw the plate to victor]

Victor: (grunts) Don't start! You know how this ends.

Felicie: We arrived at the same time, and we'll escape at the same time. I promise!

Victor: OK! (grunts)

Felicie: (laughs) Hey, Victor! Hiyah! [Felicie throw the plate to victor]

Victor: (grunts) Oh, no! Here we go!

Felicie: Whoo! Whoo! (laughs)

Victor: (grunts)

Felicie: Whoo!

Greasy Guard: (growls)

Felicie: Whoo-hoo!

[Felicie accidentally throw the plate to the head Greasy Guard]

Greasy Guard: (groans)

[rooster crows]

Mother Superior: This is the last time!

Victor: We're sorry!

Felicie: We're sorry, and...

Mother Superior: Tut-tut-tut! Let them go! You, go to your room.

Victor: Thank you! Thank you, Mother Superior.

Mother Superior: Enough. Go to your room.

Victor: And may I just say that you are looking very...

Mother Superior: Enough.

Victor: ...superior today.

Mother Superior: Enough!

Victor: OK!

Mother Superior: Felicie, I know you have this dream of being a dancer. We all know it!

Felicie: But I...

Mother Superior: Tut-tut-tut! All the world has a dream. But get this into your head - dreams are not reality. Dreams are buried because life is hard, brutal and without pity.

Felicie: But...

Mother Superior: Tut-tut-tut! Agreed?

Felicie: Agreed.

Victor: A dance school in Paris, little lady, the Opera de Paris, full of dancers and dance!

Felicie: Where did you find this?

Victor: I have my sources. OK? Enough!

Felicie: Can I see it again?

Victor: No.

Felicie: Please!

Victor: No, but if you escape with me tonight, you have my word. I will take you to this dance school, and you will become the greatest dancer, and I will become the greatest inventor ever!

Felicie: Do you have a plan?

Victor: A brilliant plan! A plan worthy of my total, utter, unquestionable genius.

Felicie: Let me see.

Victor: After we escape.

Felicie: Now!

Victor: No!

Felicie: Now!

Victor: I said after.

Felicie: Now!

Victor: After!

Felicie: Now!

Victor: After!

Felicie/Victor: Ow!

(bell rings)

Felicie: A dance school in Paris.

(child snores softly)

Felicie: (pants) [Dreaming about the music box] (gasps)

(music box plays gentle tune)

Felicie: Hmm. (sighs)

(footsteps approach)

(chicken clucks)

Victor: Shhh! It's me! Come on!

Felicie: Oh, my! Is a chicken part of your brilliant plan?

Victor: Affirmative!

Felicie: Great!

(shoes squeak)

(chicken clucks)

Victor: Aaah!

Greasy Guard: (grumbles)

Victor: I'm taking this pitiful deserter to Mother Superior.

Greasy Guard: OK, Sister. Hmm... Hmm?

(chicken clucks)

Victor: Ahh! Emergency! Emergency! Activate Plan B!

Felicie: This way!

Victor: Activate Plan B!

Felicie: That was your best ever plan?

Victor: You are so critical!

Felicie: And you're a terrible escaper!

Victor: 'Escaper' is not a word!

(bell rings)

Victor: Ow! God, not again!

Greasy Guard: Get back down here! Open this door!

Felicie: (whimpers)

Victor: For the last three months, I have been studying chickens. I know how they eat.

Greasy Guard: Open this door!

Victor: I know how they walk. I know how they lay an egg. There is nothing about a chicken that I do not know!

Chicken: (chicken clucks)

Victor: Ta-da! I call them chicken wings!

Chicken: (clucks)

Felicie: Chickens don't fly!

Victor: But they have wings. They must fly. You fly, don't you? Fly!

Chicken: (chicken squawks)

Victor: Uh-oh!

Greasy Guard: I'm going to... Grrr! Come here, you rascals!

Victor: Goodbye!

Greasy Guard: What?

Victor: Let's go!

Felicie: (shrieks)

Felicie/Victor: (screams)

Victor: Cock-a-doodle-doo!

Greasy Guard: (grunts and yelps)

Victor: One day, everyone will travel like this!

(train horn toots)

Felicie/Victor: (screams)

Victor: Ow!

Felicie: My music box! Victor! He's behind you!

Greasy Guard: I've got my eye on you! You're not going anywhere!

Felicie: (shrieks) Aaah! Oh no!

Victor: (screams) (yelps)

Felicie: Hang on!

Victor: (groans)

Felicie: Thanks! Victor, watch out!

Greasy Guard: Yeah! Ha-ha! Now I've got you! I see you! (distorted roaring)

(tyres screech)

Felicie: This way! Let's go!

(train horn toots)

Felicie/Victor: (pant)

Victor: Wait!

Felicie: Oh! Oh, no!

Greasy Guard: Yah!

Felicie: Grab on! Grab on!

Victor: Oh! Let me go!

Felicie: Let him go!

All: (grunt)

Victor: Let me go, stinky! Oh!

Greasy Guard: (screams) (growls)

Victor: (sighs) That went well, no?

Felicie: (laughs) You're unbelievable.

Victor: I know.

Felicie: Victor, we actually did it!

Victor: Yes, we actually did!

(BOING!)

Felicie: Oh.

Victor: I can fix this. But I should say that seeing as this is the one thing that was in your crib when you were left outside the orphanage, you should take a teeny-tiny, eensy-weensy little bit more care of it. Fixed! Don't thank me! And tomorrow, chérie, Paris... ..will be ours.

(screeching)

Felicie/Victor: (grunt)

Victor: Good morning, sunshine!

Felicie: Eww! When's the last time you brushed your teeth?

Man: Start with this one.

Felicie: (gasps)

Victor: Whoa!

Felicie/Victor: (grunt)

Man: (whistles)

(horse neighs)

Felicie/Victor: Ugh!

Felicie: I can't see where we are.

Victor: Relax! We're in Paris! Aaah!

Felicie: Quiet! We're going to get caught! Not another noise out of you.

Victor: [farts] That wasn't me!

Felicie: (sniffs and groans)

Victor: Wow! It's incredible!

Felicie: Paris is amazing. (sighs) So, where's the dance school?

Victor: Relax, Felicie! Enjoy Paris. Breathe it in. Hi there! Love your moustache, monsieur! Ah, yes, Paris! City of romance. City of dreams. City of fame and fortune!  City of lamp posts. City of pigeons. Did I say romance?

Felicie: Yes, you did. Now, where's the dance school?

Victor: Uh, I don't know.

Felicie: Don't worry. We're a team. We'll find it together.

Victor: Ugh!

Felicie: Do you think it was stupid to come to Paris?

Victor: Don't say that! We should never give up on our dreams.

(pigeon coos)

Victor: (grunts)

Felicie: We're kids! We're all alone. Was I really crazy to think I could be a dancer? What do you think?

Victor: (screams)

Felicie: Victor? I said... Victor?

Victor: I'm OK!

Felicie: Come back!

Victor: I can't swim! Meet me on this bridge at this time tomorrow. No matter how dangerous it is, I will return!

Felicie: Victor! Come back! Don't leave! Please.

(Felicie walking to the opera)

Felicie: (sighs) Huh? (gasps) (pants) (gasps)

Janitor: (grumbles)

Felicie: Aaah!

Janitor: What have you come here to do, huh? You came here to steal, didn't you? Answer me! You're a thief!

Felicie: I wasn't stealing! I was looking at the dancer!

Janitor: Liar! Empty your pockets!

Felicie: Get off me!

Janitor: Oh, yeah?

Odette: Leave her alone.

Janitor: She came here to steal!

Felicie: I didn't! I really didn't!

Odette: Think this through. If you hurt her, then you will have to explain how she got here in the first place, and aren't you supposed to be taking care of the building? Do you really want to take the fall for this?

Felicie: (pants)

Janitor: (grumbles)

Odette: Clear off.

Felicie: Wait!

Odette: Go. Get out of here.

[Felicie look Odette walking, then follow her]

Odette: I have nothing to steal!

Felicie: I-I can't sp... I can't speak! I just wanted to say thank you for saving me!

Odette: You've said it. Have a nice life.

Felicie: (coughs) Excuse me, but who was that dancer on stage?

Odette: Rosita Mauri, top dancer at the Opera.

Felicie: Wow! And what she did - that crazy jumpy thing, what was that? Are you a dancer too?

Odette: I'm a cleaner, and you are an irritation. Go away. (scoffs)

Felicie: But you're the first person to show me any kindness in this city. I've been separated from my best friend. I have nowhere to go, and I'm an orphan.

Odette: Nice try, but I hate kids, especially orphans. Go find another idiot.

Felicie: (gasps)

Regine Le Haut: The stairs, Odette. The stairs are a disgrace. I have guests tomorrow afternoon, and I want my building looking worthy top to bottom.

Odette: I understand, ma'am.

Regine: If you understand, why are you entering your rooms?

Odette: (grunts) (sighs) (gasps)

Felicie: Let me help you!

Odette: Get out of here!

Felicie: You need me. I can clean. In fact, 'Squeaky Clean' is my middle name. I'm young. My legs work. Yours don't. Uh, it's gonna feel so much easier with me helping.

Odette: (sighs)

Felicie: (sighs)

Odette: Are you coming?

Felicie: Whoa! That's a lot of stairs. Are you the caretaker?

Odette: Yes. And you can stay with me until you get on your feet, on one condition - no more questions.

Felicie: How long can I stay?

Odette: Ugh. That was a question.

Felicie: By the way, who was that witch?

Odette: Regine Le Haut. She owns this building. And she eats ginger orphans with ponytails. Now, clean!

Felicie: (laughs)

Odette: (growls)

Felicie: Huh? How long have you worked here? Do you have a nickname?

Odette: Wanna know mine?

Felicie: Will I have my own bed? What's your favourite soup? Do you snore? Are you a morning person? What's your favourite fruit? What do you have for breakfast? I love baguette and jam. I escaped from the orphanage to become a pupil at the Opera.

Odette: Did you?

Felicie: You work there, so you must know people. Could you help me?

Odette: Don't hold your breath.

Felicie: What that étoile did yesterday, oh, it was so magical. I love dancing. Do you love dancing?

Odette: (sighs)

Felicie: Is that because you've got a limp?

Regine: Get up.

Odette: Yes, ma'am.

Regine: Who is this?

Odette: No-one. She helps.

Regine: You feed it out of your wages.

Odette: Yes, ma'am.

Regine: I want you to air and press the linen. Now! Hmm...

Felicie: (whimpers)

Regine: It's not clean.

Felicie: (gasps)

Regine: (chuckles)

Felicie: (sighs) Huh? Whoa! Whoa! Oh! Oh! Whoa! Hello!

Camille Le Haut: Servants are supposed to knock. Who are YOU?

Felicie: (groans and chuckles) I'm Felicie. I work with Odette. I clean. (sings) Da-da-da-dum! OK! I'm done. 'Bye now!

Camille: Wait, little rat! You were spying, weren't you?

Felicie: I don't think so.

Camille: Yes, you were. You were admiring the most wonderful dancer you've ever seen. Isn't that so, little rat?

Felicie: You're not THE most wonderful dancer. Yesterday I saw...

Camille: Don't be insolent!

Felicie: Are you a ballet dancer?

Camille: I will be. Mother and I are waiting for the letter that admits me to the Opera. I am SO talented! Plus the director dines in my mom's restaurant, and he loves the prime rib. (pants) So this time next year, I shall be a famous ballerina.

Felicie: Ballerina! Me too!

Camille: (laughs) Reality check, little rat! You're nothing. I'm a star! You're just orbiting around me.

(CLICK!)

Camille: What's that? Have you stolen something from me?

Felicie: No.

Camille: Show me! What is it?

Felicie: It's mine, and it's precious.

Camille: Oh! (chuckles)

(music box plays sweet tune)

Camille: I'm sure. Fetch!

Felicie: No! (gasps)

Camille: Oops!

Felicie: Oh! Oh!

Camille: (laugh)

Postman: A letter for Madame Regine Le Haut and Mademoiselle Camille from the Opera. Hmm! Handmade paper! Embossed! Blue ink!

Felicie: (grunts)

Postman: Oh, how rude! Children today have no manners!

Felicie: (sighs)

(girls giggle)

Janitor: Give me that! (grunts) You are not Camille Le Haut!

Felicie: Of course I am.

Janitor: No, you're not! This time I call the police!

Felicie: Police? Police? Why? No!

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: (sings operatically) La la la la... What's going on here?

Janitor: Um, she says she's Camille Le Haut.

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Hmm... Are you Camille Le Haut?

Felicie: Uh... yes?

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Hmm... (laughs) She IS Camille Le Haut! (laughs) Return to your post, my friend.

Janitor: Alright, please yourselves.

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Welcome, Miss Le Haut! Charmed! [kiss felicie's hand]

Felicie: Charmed!

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: I am Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil, director of the Opera. You are here because your mother serves the best prime rib in Paris. Oh! I hope you dance as well.

Felicie: Of course.

(bell rings)

Felicie: (yelps and groans)

Louis Merante: You're not a dancer, are you?

Felicie: Yes, I am!

Merante: Who would've thought? Return to your class!

Felicie: OK!

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Oh, greatest ballet master of all time! Oh, most talented choreographer in the universe and beyond! He is handsome! He is elegant! He is strong! He is powerful! He is the man!

Merante: You want something from me?

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: How did you know? Yes! I have enrolled Camille Le Haut in your class.

Merante: (groans) Thank you.

Felicie: Hi! Hello! OK. Super. I'm Felicie!

Nora: Felicie?

Felicie: Uh, no, no, no! No, sorry. I'm f-friendly, ever so friendly. And my name is Camille.

Nora: OK. I'm Nora, but everyone calls me Nora. That's the name that goes with my face. (laughs) Hey, you should warm up!

Felicie: Warm up?

Dora: Oh, my! That is crazy! I'm guessing you're new, my darling.

Felicie: You can tell that because...

(girls whimper)

Felicie: (gasps) Who is that?

Dora: You are joking, right? It's Louis Merante, ballet master, world-famous choreographer, the man who performed the most fouettés ever in a single solo.

Felicie: Fou-whats?

Dora: Turns. Really difficult turns.

Nora: Eighteen in total, and right after, he vomited!

Merante: Silence, mam'selle!  First position!

Felicie: Uh...

Merante: Second!

Felicie: What?

Merante: Third!

Felicie: Uh...

Merante: Fourth, and rest in fifth!

Felicie: Huh? Oh!

Merante: Today is an important day. I've gathered all the coryphées together  to audition for the part of Clara in 'The Nutcracker', which will debut on Christmas Eve and star Rosita Mauri.

Dora: Rosita? Rosita Mauri? Oh, I don't believe it!

Merante: (clear throat) So every girl in this room has a chance to dance in my new ballet, except you. You've all worked hard, except you! You are here because of talent and guts.

Felicie: Except me.

Merante: Exactly! Starting tomorrow, we'll have an audition. One of you will be eliminated each day. So, tomorrow, little rich girl, no matter what strings you pulled to get here, that will be you!

Felicie: But my mother serves the best prime rib in Paris!

Merante: I am a vegetarian.

Felicie: (gulps)

[Felicie waiting victor in the bridge]

Felicie: First, second. Second. No, second, third. Third? Third? Third, fourth.

Victor: (pants)

Felicie: Fifth? Fifth. First. Second.

Victor: Hello!

Felicie: Third. Third?

Victor: Bonjour! (chuckles)

Felicie: Fifth, sixth.

Victor: How are you?

Felicie: There is no sixth.

Victor: Well, I'm happy to see you too.

Felicie: Oh, Victor!

Victor: Hello! I have so many things to tell you!

Felicie: Me too.

Victor: (sighs) Wow! This time, it's really broken.

Felicie: Can you do something?

Victor: Don't worry, I've got it. I am the winner of our little bet.

Felicie: (chuckles) What bet?

Victor: You know, the one about who gets their dream first. I am going to be an inventor!

Felicie: Really?

Victor: You're just jealous that, in 24 hours, I've got a job with the man who is building that!

Felicie: Did you bump your head when you fell in the boat?

Victor: Nope! Yesterday, after you got separated, I just took a quiet walk around the streets of Paris. It was all good, totally good. I was really not scared at all. I met some charming locals who helped me find my way. And you will never believe this, but then I stumbled on a Breton bar and I got a big, warm and friendly welcome. They welcomed me like a brother, a son, a nephew! And then I met this super guy called Mathurin. We talked, we laughed, we danced together, and then my new best buddy and I decided to head home to his place. And you are never, ever going to believe this but he works in the atelier of Gustave Eiffel, the nicest, best and most magnetic inventor in the whole world! I am going to be the most famous engineer's right-hand man. Oh, and I've gone back to square one with my chicken wings. I am now working on combining air velocity with fibrous catchment systems. I'm trying a kite.

Felicie: Wow! I made progress too!

Victor: Really?

Felicie: I'm a dancer. Yes! Yes! A student at the Opera. And soon I'm going to be an étoile at the Opera de Paris.

Victor: You, a dancer at the Opera? OK, and may I know how you came to be at the Opera?

Felicie: By the door, I saw some lights and...

Victor: Liar!

Felicie: OK! It's Camille Le Haut, the one who broke my music box.

Victor: Liar!

Felicie: She wanted to apologise.

Victor: Liar!

Felicie: Let me finish.

Victor: Liar, liar...

Felicie: She gave me the letter that allowed her into the Opera.

Victor: When you're lying, your nose shivers.

Felicie: You're exhausting!

Victor: (chuckles)

Felicie: I stole her identity.

Victor: What? You stole it? Are you insane?

(wind blows)

Victor: Whoa! Whoa! Uh-oh! Whoa!

Felicie: Victor!

Victor: (screams and grunts)

Felicie: Victor! Victor!

Victor: Whoa!

Felicie: Victor! Come back! Don't leave!

Victor: I'LL BE BACK!

Felicie: Again?

[Felicie in opera]

Felicie: Oh! Yeah! Whoo!

Merante: And to finish, the splits.

Felicie: (grunts)

Merante: Hmm?

(CRACK!)

Felicie: (chuckles)

Merante: Now rise.

Felicie: (grunts)

Merante: The class is over, and the person who's leaving us today is you. You have the energy of a bullet, but the lightness of a depressed elephant. Pack your trunk!

Girl: (clear throat) (groans)

Merante: Rise, please, mam'selle.

Girl: But I like it here!

Merante: Rise now!

Girl: (grunts) I'm stuck!

Merante: Get her out of here.

Felicie: Didn't you say one person per class?

Merante: Very well. Until the next audition. Then it really will be bye-bye.

Felicie: Merante hates me.

Dora: Don't say that. That's just his way.

Nora: No, she's right. He hates you. If he could, he'd smash your kneecaps with his cane.

Felicie: Oh, I have no chance.

Dora: There's always a chance.

Nora: Not always. This might be one of those times there's no chance at all.

Felicie: But I really wanna stay here.

Dora: Then you have 12 hours to work really hard, listen, push yourself and then work some more.

Felicie: (gasps)

Rudolph: (grunts)

Felicie: Who is that?

Dora: Rudi from the top boys class. Holder of the Best Cheekbones at the Opera award.

Nora: I love him! He's so blond and shiny. (giggles). (whispers) Oh, wow!

Dora: (purrs)

Rudolph: (laugh)

Dora/Nora: (giggles)

Rudolph: Ooh! You are new, yes?

Felicie: Yes.

Dora: She's Camille.

Nora: She has two eyes.

Rudolph: Ha! You have spirit, Camille, but your dancing sucks.

Dora: (grunts) It's mine!

Felicie: Who does he think he is?

Rudolph: Until we meet again, Minoushka!

Felicie: Only in your dreams.

Odette: Felicie?

Felicie: (gasps)

Odette: What are you doing here?

Felicie: I can explain!

Odette: There is nothing to explain.

Felicie: Wait! Wait!

(door opens and closes)

Felicie: (sighs) Whoa!

[Odette slice the carrot]

Felicie: I'm sorry! Triple sorry. If there was a bigger word for 'sorry', I'd say it.

Odette: I let you into my life, and you lied to me. I don't like lies. I could lose my job because of you.

Felicie: I get it. I messed up. But you don't understand. Since I can remember, I've wanted to dance. And when I saw Rosita Mauri and she did those amazing moves, I knew that's what I wanted to be. I knew my dream could come true! I know it's hard to understand. You hate dancing. But I just want you to know I'm truly sorry.

[Regine comes]

Felicie: (gasps)

Regine: Any mail?

Felicie: (sighs)

Odette: There is no mail.

Regine: As soon as there is, fetch it.

Odette: Can you dance?

Felicie: Yes. At least, I think I can.

Odette: Training starts at 5:am tomorrow.

Felicie: Are you a teacher?

Odette: Do you have another option?

Felicie: 5:am?

[Dreaming about the music box]

(bell rings)

Felicie: (gasps)

Odette: Time to train! Jump and ring the bell!

Felicie: Why?

Odette: Just do it.

Felicie: You don't want me to dance?

Odette: No talking. Jump and ring the bell!

Felicie: (grunts)

Odette: Again.

Felicie: You said we were going to train.

Odette: This is it! Again!

Felicie: Hmm! Ha!

Odette: Felicie, you lack precision and finesse. You have little or no sense of rhythm. You're without balance, grace and charm.

Felicie: Come on! You can't tell all that from one jump, can you? You can.

Odette: On the good side, you have the energy of a bullet, but you also have the lightness of a depressed elephant.

Felicie: Hey! Merante used exactly the same phrase!

Odette: After 10 years of cleaning, you pick stuff up. OK, now jump up, ring this bell, land and do not splash the water.

Felicie: But that's impossible.

Odette: I thought it was your dream to dance.

Felicie: (exhales sharply) OK! Come on! Get lost. Get lost! Shoo! Shoo! (grunts)

(bell rings)

Merante: You!

Felicie: (sighs)

Merante: That was not merely bad, it was a catastrophe wrapped in a disaster with a side order of bad. Ta-ta!

Felicie: (sighs)

Rudolph: (chuckles) You, me, up.

Felicie: It's incredible!

Rudolph: (laugh)

Felicie: (screams)

Rudolph: Last time we met, I was so very rude. Let me introduce myself. I am Rudolph Dimitriev Stanislaw Artiem Rankovsky... ..the Third.

Felicie: Big choice of names there.

Rudolph: Don't worry. Everyone finds it hard at first. But you and I are unique, and we do not follow silly rules, yes?

Felicie: (laugh) How is that pick-up line working out for you?

Rudolph: It is no line. I say it only to you, Camille. Just to you.

Felicie: (gasps)

Rudolph: Et hop!

Felicie: (yelps) (screams)

Rudolph: Minoushka!

Felicie: (screams)

Rudolph: Uh, are you alright, Camille?

Felicie: Yep! I'm OK!

[Talk to victor]

Felicie: There's this boy, Rudolph, who, it turns out, is a real Russian prince with a castle and peacocks and cheekbones! And he took me on the roof of the Opera, and he was looking at me like this. Then like this. And then once like this.

Victor: Wait! Uh, a boy? What type of boy? Peacocks? What type of cheekbones? And Rudolph?

Felicie: He's a friend. He says I'm gonna be everything I wanna be.

Victor: I say that too!

Felicie: But he's deep as well.

Victor: Deep? (laughs) Yeah, well, I have these. Ta-da!

Felicie: Whoo-hoo. Doors.

Victor: Yes, the doors to the atelier of my new boss, engineer, genius. If you saw what was behind these doors, I would have to kill you. Ahh!

Felicie: Looks like you're gonna have to kill me, then! (laughs) Oh la la! What's that?

Victor: The Statue of Puberty, soon to go to America! But it is a super secret, so you did not see it, OK?

Felicie: OK.

Victor: So, here's my office, the home of big ideas and genius. For example, here we see the plans for chicken wings version 3. Oh! Aaah! Ahem! At the moment, my boss and I are working on several, uh, important... (chuckles) ..inventions. He, uh, he... (grunts) He calls me his ideas man.

Felicie: Do you know how to use all this stuff?

Victor: Uh, not yet, but I... I have a chair! Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!

Felicie: Ha!

Mathurin: Oh, hey, Victor!

Victor: He's the cleaner. (whispers) He's two sandwiches short of a picnic.

Felicie: Oh...

Mathurin: (grunts) So the pencils all need sharpening, and the boss wants us to polish his boots for tomorrow.

Victor: (chuckles)

Felicie: So, your big boss calls you his ideas man, huh?

Victor: Well, uh, he... he has the ideas, and I think they're great. But it's a start!

Felicie: Hey, Victor, you were right for once. Dreams can come true!

Victor: Oh! Oh! Oh no! (yelps) (laughs and groans)

Odette: First position, second, third, fourth, fifth. These five positions form the basis of everything. First position, second, third, fourth, fifth. Now you jump. First position, second, third, fourth, fifth. And pose and smile!

Felicie: (whimpers)

Odette: It's when you're tired that you start to progress.

Felicie: (pants) You were a dancer, weren't you?

Odette: (chukles) No more questions.

Felicie: (screams)

Odette: Again!

Felicie: (whimpers)

Odette: Oh, to reach, you might need to stand on your pointes. Feel the balance. Oh!

Your toes must be as flexible as willow and hard as a rock.

Felicie: (snores softly)

Odette: (grunts)

Felicie: (yelps) First position!

Odette: Uh-uh-uh! No hands allowed.

Felicie: What?

Odette: Try this way.

Felicie: Oh! Stop! Stop! Oh! (rasps) You were a dancer, weren't you?

Odette: Of course I was a dancer, Sherlock Holmes.

Felicie: (shrieks)

Odette: To pirouette, you must become the mistress of your dizziness. Stare at a spot, and don't ever lose it. OK, now come to me, and don't spill the water.

Felicie: (shrieks) Whoa! (whimpers and grunts)

Odette: Cheers!

Felicie: Cheers!

Merante: Try to introduce your left foot to your right foot. See if they can get along one day.

There's a bright future for you as a candle seller.

Rudolph: (laugh)

Merante: First position! Second! Third! Fourth, and rest in fifth. Thank you, mam'selles.

Felicie: (pants)

Odette: That was... better!

Felicie: Thanks! I'm ready to do that crazy, jumpy thing.

Odette: (laughs) And I'm the Empress Josephine.

Felicie: I am!

Odette: Of course you are, but there's a difference between being ready and being ready to do it well. That's why we train every day.

Felicie: That's all we've been doing!

Odette: And then you'll be ready when you can answer the question, "Why do you dance?"

Felicie: I've answered it! It's my dream! (grunts)

[Felicie do it jumping Le Grand Jeté]

Odette: (gasps)

Felicie: Oh! Oh! Ow! Ow!

Odette: Oh! By the way, that crazy jumpy thing is called le grand jeté, and you're not ready.

Victor: Are you doing dance or kung-fu? (laughs)

Felicie: You are SO funny. This is Victor. We escaped from the orphanage together.

Victor: Hello! I am loving your apron.

[Victor kissing Odette's hand]

Odette: (groans) It seems that you are going out tonight.

Victor: Yep!

Odette: Bring her back late and you will be six inches smaller.

Victor: Of course, of course, of course! It's a quiet, sober, quiet, sober thing.

(people laugh and chatter)

Felicie: Breton music?

Victor: Whoa!

Felicie/Victor: (cheer)

Victor: Whoa! Excuse me!

Felicie: Whoo!

Felicie/Victor: (whoop and laugh)

Felicie: I love it here!

Victor: Whoo!

Felicie: Let's party!

Victor: Did you say you loved me or the bar?

Man: Yeah!

Felicie: Whoo!

Man: Whoa!

Victor: (laugh) Wow!

Felicie: Whoo!

(patrons gasp)

Victor: That's my girlfriend!

Man: You're a lucky guy!

Felicie: (whoops)

Victor: Oh, wow! (grunts)

Felicie: Oh! Oh! (gasps)

Merante: I hope that tomorrow you act with a little more dignity.

Felicie: (whimpers)

Merante: Anyway, tonight was... a good performance.

Felicie: Thank you, sir.

[After tfrom the bars]

Felicie: Whoo!

Victor: Whoo-hoo! (laughs) I have no idea why you're happy, but it is great! (laughs) Whoo!

Felicie/Victor: (laugh and pant)

Felicie: Well, I'd better go in. I've got my audition tomorrow.

Victor: Of course! Sleep well. And I... I...

Felicie: What?

Victor: I think you're, uh... I think you're great.

Felicie: Thanks.

[Victor trying to kissing Felicie]

Felicie: What are you doing?

Victor: Uh, oh, nothing! (laughs) I'm stretching. Yeah, gotta... Ooh, gotta get that one! OK! Yeah, it's best I leave. (chuckles) (mutters) Stupid, stupid, stupid!

Felicie: Hey, Victor!

Victor: Uh-huh?

Felicie: I had the best time.

Victor: Thanks! Goodnight, Felicie. Oh, sorry. Mademoiselle Camille Le Haut.

Felicie: (giggles)

Victor: (laughs) (whistles happily)

Camille: (sobs)

Regine: Wretch! I want her put in prison!

Camille: She stole my life, my honour and my name! I want it back! (sobs)

Regine: (whispers) Too much.

Camille: OK.

Merante: What is your name?

Felicie: (sighs) My name is Felicie Lebras. I come from an orphanage in Brittany. I didn't mean to hurt Camille. I just wanted to be at the Opera and... I'm sorry.

Janitor: Madame...

Regine: You traitor! You knew this! You stabbed me in the back! You are sacked!

Merante: Silence! Alright, like it or lump it, here is my deal. Miss Le Haut, you may enter the coryphée class starting tomorrow. And you will also be in the auditions for the part in 'The Nutcracker'. But I want to be clear, if you sack Madame Odette, I will sack Camille. YOU! You made a terrible start to the classes, and you have lied and cheated to be here.

Felicie: (sighs)

Merante: But you have also shown great promise, and you've worked hard and shown your dedication. You must have a good teacher. So you may also stay in the auditions. If you get the part in 'The Nutcracker' fair and square, you may become a coryphée too.  If you fail to get the part, then you must leave the Opera. Is that clear?

Felicie: Yes.

Merante: Is that also clear to you, madame?

Regine: Clear.

Merante: Then, Felicie Lebras from Brittany, your future at the Opera is in your hands.

Odette/Felicie: (sighs)

Camille: Hmm! What if she's good, Mother?

Regine: Get that part, do you hear me!? I want vengeance. I will have it.

Camille: (yelps)

Merante: She even makes sweeping look graceful.

Felicie: She was a good dancer, wasn't she?

Merante: Not just a good dancer. The best of her generation. And then there was a fire onstage.

[Felicie hugs Odette]

Odette: Oh! What's this for?

Felicie: For everything!

Odette: (sighs) We don't have time for this. We're talking about your future now. You have only one opponent - Camille.

Odette (voice-over): I have seen her. I know her. Her technique is perfect, and she is stronger than she looks.

Camille: (grunts)

Odette (voice-over): She is precise, she is sharp, and losing is not a word in her vocabulary.

Regine: Up, down! Up, down! Up, down! Again! Up, down! Up...

Camille: I'm tired.

Regine: 'Tired' is for losers! Again! I am going to get that part!

Odette (voice-over): If you try to take her down on her turf, you will fail.

Felicie: (pants)

Odette (voice-over): Your diet suffers from eating very little food. Your muscles are like marshmallows. In short, on paper, you're going to get humiliated.

Felicie: (groans) Great pep talk! So, how do I get that part?

Odette: You get the part because you have something she can only dream of - passion!

Odette (voice-over): Build on this. Feel your anger and your pain and your sorrow and your joy, and put it all into your dance. Live the music, feel it. Every note, every sound, every harmony needs to have your body vibrating from the end of your hair to the tips of your toes. And then, and only then, will you take her down.

Merante: Alright! The person leaving us today is...

(tense piano music plays)

Merante: (clears throat)

Camille: Hmm!

Merante: This is the end of the road, Miss Nora.

Nora: What road? Oh, I'm finished. I like you. Beat her.

Camille: (scoffs)

Merante: Camille and Felicie, tomorrow morning at 8:00am, we will know which one of you will have the honour of dancing Clara in 'The Nutcracker' with Rosita. I can only advise you to give everything, ladies.

Camille: You've made lots of progress, dirty, little rat, but tomorrow I am going to be the chosen one.

Felicie: We'll see.

Camille: You can work as hard as you like, you can train 24 hours a day, but you will always be nothing!

Felicie: I am somebody.

Camille: Who exactly? Answer me! Who are you? (scoffs) You're nothing!  Nothing!

Rudolph: She's wrong, you know. You're not alone.

Felicie: What?

Rudolph: (grunts) You have me.

Felicie: (sighs)

Rudolph: And I know exactly what we are going to do. Tonight, to prove our connection, we will embark on a little romantic party. I offer you the Eiffel Tower. I offer you fireworks. Tonight, 7:00pm.

Felicie: I should train.

Rudolph: You don't need to train. You don't need to know who you are. You are unique.

Felicie: Say that again?

Rudolph: Tonight.

Victor: Felicie, it gives me great pleasure to present to you... (scoffs) No!

(music box plays gentle tune)

Victor: (sighs)

Felicie: Victor! I'm in the final audition!

Victor: Wow! Congratulations! I have great news too. My boss finally spoke to me! He said, "Get off my foot, you biological mutation!" (laughs) That's good, right? (blows nose loudly)

Felicie: Ugh! You have no class.

Victor: What, me? No class?

Felicie: Rudi has class.

Victor: Rudi again? What, is he your boyfriend now?

Felicie: No! He and I, we're connected.

Victor: OK, OK. You win! I'll give you class and connectivity-ness. Dinner! You and me. Some knives and forks, napkins. Uh, 7:00pm, north leg of the Eiffel Tower.

(door closes)

Victor: Is that a yes? Yeah. That's a yes.

Odette: Sit! I've got something for you. They were mine. Now they're yours.

Felicie: Wow! Thanks.

Odette: OK, enough talking. Eat, and then we practise for tomorrow.

Felicie: (sighs)

Odette: What?

Felicie: Well, I'm going out with Rudi. He says I'm ready. He says I'm unique.

Odette: Why do you dance?

Felicie: Stop asking me that question!

Odette: When I was a dancer, the night before an audition, I trained and then I rested.

Felicie: Rudi's waiting for me.

Odette: Stay!

Felicie: No! You're not my mom!

Odette: (gasps)

Felicie: I'm sorry. I wasn't thinking.

Odette: OK. Go, then.

(door opens)

Odette: (sighs)

Rudolph: (laughs)

Felicie: (gasps)

Rudolph: Look at the bird.

Felicie: Um...

Rudolph: No! Look at me. Look at the bird. No! Hmm? Look at me. This is a poem I composed in your honour.

Felicie: Ah, of course, a poem.

Rudolph: "Look at the bird! He flies in the sky. No-one can trap him." (imitates bird chirping) (squawks) Do you like?

Felicie: That's, uh... ..well, original.

Rudolph: I know. Thank you. Come on, Minoushka! Let us go to the very top! To the stars!

Victor: OK, Matty, we practise. Music, please! Classical!

Mathurin: OK, but that's not my musical comfort zone.

(plays badly)

Victor: Oh, stop! Stop, stop, stop! We'll go Breton, but soft and romantic. This will blow her away. She arrives, she giggles. I am looking dark and mysterious. I give her the music box. She's... "Oh! Oh!" Overwhelmed!

Mathurin: Uh, I don't know much about girls. Frankly, they are a mystery to me. But I do know that this one's not coming.

Victor: Young, innocent fool! Of course she will come! (sniffs) I can already smell her perfume.

Mathurin: (sniffs)

(footsteps approach)

Mathurin: (gasps)

Rudolph: Oh, no! Oh, beggars! Ugh! Paris is infested with beggars! Yuck!

Felicie: But...

Rudolph: Don't be afraid.

Felicie: But...

Rudolph: Quiet! Follow me. Have no fear, I have developed a fighting technique based on Cossack dancing.

Felicie: Don't be ridiculous!

Rudolph: (grunts)

Felicie: OK, stop right there! He's my friend!

Rudolph: Oh, is this some kind of joke?

Felicie: No! This is Victor. We grew up together.

Rudolph: Oh, my! This is funny.

Victor: Friends, huh? If we're friends, why are you looking so ashamed?

Felicie: I'm not looking ashamed.

Victor: Oh, yes, you are! I feel sorry for you, Felicie.

Felicie: Oh! You're jealous.

Victor: No! Ever since you started at the Opera, who are you trying to be? Mixing with this big, hairy asparagus? You're so sad.

Rudolph: Whoa, whoa, whoa! I could knock you out with one flick of my tiny finger, but that would make my finger dirty and smelly.

Victor: So, I'm dirty, but at least I don't spend my day in tights!

Felicie: I can't believe this!

Rudolph: She is MY muse.

Victor: Yeah, well, she is my whatever-you-just-said, too, with knobs on, asparagus!

Rudolph/Victor: (grunts)

Felicie: Stop!

Rudolph/Victor: (pants)

Felicie: You're both idiots!

Rudolph: OK. Well, goodbye, then.

Victor: Well, goodbye.

Rudolph: (grunts)

Victor: (groans)

Rudolph: (laughs)

Victor: That is so low! (grunts)

Felicie: (sighs)

(footsteps recede)

(dog barks in distance)

Felicie: (sighs and sniffles) [Dreaming about the music box] (gasps) Oh, no! The audition!

Merante: Hmm...

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: I'm sure this...

Janitor: Watch it!

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: ..production of 'Nutcracker' is going to...

Felicie: Excuse me!

Merante: Hmm...

Man: Hey!

Felicie: (pants)

Regine: Bravo! Bravo!

Rosita Mauri: Thank you, mademoiselle.

Merante (in the heart): The orphan is late.

Regine: It's over.

Merante: (clears throat) Well, as Felicie did not deign to show up for the audition, it is Camille who will dance with Rosi...

Felicie: Wait! Wait! I'm here! Please, please let me dance.

Regine: It's over! Don't you understand?

Merante: Sit down!

Felicie: I-I apologise.

Merante: Did you sleep?

Felicie: (sighs) Not much.

Merante: Did you train yesterday?

Felicie: No.

Merante: Why?

Felicie: (sighs)

Merante: Alright, music!

(piano music plays)

Camille: Hmm!

Felicie: (grunts)

Odette: (gasps)

Merante: Start again.

Regine: She fell! She's eliminated!

Merante: Start again!

(music continues)

Felicie: (grunts)

Regine/Camille: (laugh)

Merante: You remember our deal?

Felicie: (whimpers)

Merante: Camille, you will have the honour of dancing Clara in 'The Nutcracker'.

Regine/Camille: (laugh)

Felicie: (sobs)

Odette: (cries)

Regine: Did you think it would end here, little rat!?

Felicie: No! Let me go! No!

Odette: Oh, no! Please! Please!

Felicie: Odette! No! Odette!

Odette: Felicie!

Regine: You will never see her again. And, of course, you're sacked.

(thunder rumbles)

(seagulls squawk)

Greasy Guard: Stop! (grumbles) Where is Felicie?

Felicie: (clears throat) I'm here.

Greasy Guard: Oh! Well, uh, good.

(children laugh)

(bell tolls)

Greasy Guard: She's lost her spirit.

Mother Superior: Tut-tut-tut! Pull yourself together, you big fool!

Chicken: (clucks)

Felicie: I know. I miss him too.

(children snore)

Felicie (baby): [Dreaming (giggles)]

(crickets chirp)

Greasy Guard: (grumbles)

Felicie: OK, I was escaping, but it's stupid, and you caught me. So, a big sorry to you, and I'll just go back to the dorm.

Greasy Guard: This way, quick!

Felicie: Huh?

Greasy Guard: (chuckles)

Felicie: Whoo! Whoo-hoo! Whoo!

(horn honks)

(birds chirp)

(tyres screech)

(dog barks)

Felicie: Thank you!

Greasy Guard: (chuckles)

Felicie: (grunts)

Greasy Guard: (chuckles) Go now. (sighs)

Felicie: Let me help you.

Odette: (gasps)

Felicie: You need me. I can clean. 'Squeaky Clean' is my middle name. In fact, I need you. I wanna stay with you. I'm so sorry! I really missed you!

Odette: (chuckles) Me too. Come on. Merante has given me a room in the attic. There's a little corner for you. Work starts at 6:00am. One hour for lunch.

Felicie: 6:00am?

Mathurin: I promise, he is not here.

Felicie: Do you know when he's coming back? Please!

Mathurin: Well, actually... Ow!

(objects clatter)

Mathurin: Nope! I don't know that.

Felicie: So... Will you please tell him that I'm sorry? I've been unkind and foolish and silly and stupid.

Victor: And rude.

Felicie: And rude. Tell Victor that he's my best friend ever.

Mathurin: Oh! Uh... That's my other hand. I have three hands, actually.

Felicie: (sighs)

(music box plays gentle tune)

Felicie: Thank you.

Victor: You're welcome. Goodbye, then.

Felicie: 'Bye, Victor.

Mathurin: That wasn't him. He is not here.

Odette: Victor has worked a miracle! Who'd have thought? He just has the look of a total nitwit.

Felicie: He doesn't wanna speak to me ever again.

Odette: He will.

Merante: No, no, no!

Odette: Here we go!

Merante: Stop! As cold as lard! Miss Le Haut, you perform tonight and so far, we have no emotion!

Camille: But I'm doing exactly the steps you told me.

Merante: It's not enough to do the steps. Find some anger or some pain or some love, but find something!

Odette: She lacks this. Tonight will make that clear. OK, I'm going to do the stairs in the lobby. You can finish here.

Felicie: OK.

[Felicie sweep the stage]

Felicie: (sighs)

Camille: (grunts)

Felicie: Leave it. Give it back.

Camille: (chuckles) Silly me! I didn't throw it hard enough the first time.

Felicie: Don't make the same mistake.

Camille: Why are you leaving? Scared of being humiliated?

Felicie: Looks like you need more training. You are nowhere near ready.

Camille: I'm going to show you what a real dancer looks like.

Felicie: Are you sure about that?

Camille: Quiet! Tonight these seats will be full. Paris will be looking at me, adoring me!

Felicie: Or not.

Camille: I already told you! You are nothing. You will always be nothing!

Felicie: Only one way to find out. Right here, right now.

Camille: Hmm!

Nora: Oh, my God! BATTLE!

(students cheer)

Camille: (chuckles)

Felicie: (growls)

(crowd exclaims)

Odette: (whispers) You can do it!

(crowd cheers and applauds)

Camille: (pants)

(crowd gasps)

Felicie: (grunts)

(crowd cheers and applauds)

Merante: Impressive, ladies. But let me ask you both an important question. Why do you dance?

Camille: I dance because... I dance because... because... ..my mother makes me.

Felicie: Because it's always been a part of my life. It was there with my mom when I was a baby, and it's here now, thanks to Odette. It allows me to live, to be myself.

Camille: She should dance.

Merante: That was very honest, Miss Le Haut, and brave. You have a future at the Opera, if you wish it. Felicie, tonight, YOU dance 'The Nutcracker'.

(crowd cheers and applauds)

Camille: Great job.

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Well done, my sweetness!

Janitor: OK. Bravo, bravo.

Auguste Emmanuel Vaucorbeil: Oh, bravo!

Felicie: Yes!

Victor: Voilà! I call them Pigeon Wings!

Mathurin: Wow! Great! But I'm not sure I want to test them.

Victor: Live dangerously, Matty! I promise you they will almost certainly work.

(door creaks)

Mathurin: Oh!

Victor: (gasps)

Mathurin: This is nice!

Victor: Matty, can you give us some privacy?

Mathurin: When?

Victor: Matty, privacy!

Mathurin: Oh, now. OK!

Felicie: I'm dancing tonight at the Opera. I want you to be there.

Victor: Really?

Felicie: Really.

Victor: I like you, Felicie. You make me laugh and cry at the same time. (groans)

Felicie: You're a weirdo!

Regine: Tut-tut-tut! You cannot help him.

Felicie: (gasps)

Regine: First you deceive my daughter. Then you take her identity!

Camille: Mom, stop!

Regine: Now you try and take our honour and our future!? (roars)

Camille: Mother!

Regine: Do you think you can turn my daughter against me and get away with it? Ah! No-one cheats me!

Camille: Mother! You scared her! Stop!

(dancers laugh)

Merante: (sighs) The last time she was this late, it did not end well.

Felicie: (whimpers)

Regine: (grunts)

Felicie: Aaah! (grunts)

Regine: (grunts)

Felicie: (screams)

Victor: Hey, it's Matty and his twin sister! What happened?

Mathurin: There's a big, scary lady chasing your girl up the statue, trying to kill her.

Victor: What?

Mathurin: And, also, I wet myself.

Victor: (groans)

Camille: Come on! Quickly! Save her!

Victor: Matty, the Pigeon Wings!

Regine: (roars)

Felicie: (whimpers) (grunt and squeals)

Victor: (moans)

Felicie: (screams)

Regine: This is the only crown you will touch today, victim of a terrible accident on the night of your debut. You will have something to share with Odette. Both of you used to be dancers.

Victor: Felicie! Let go!

Mathurin: Oh!

Victor: Uh-oh! OK!

Camille: (grunts)

Victor: (screams)

Mathurin: Uh-oh.

Victor: (screams)

Felicie: (whimpers)

Victor: (growls) '(laughs)

Felicie: (screams)

Victor: Felicie! Ha, ha, ha!

Regine: No!

Victor: Whoo! (coos)

Regine: (growls)

Victor: Whoa!

Regine: (screams)

Felicie/Victor: '(laughs)

Regine: No! (growls)

Victor: Whoo! Felicie, don't worry. We'll be on time!

Felicie: Higher! YES!

Victor: We will be on time!

Felicie: In version three,  it might be a good idea to work on some brakes.

Victor: Can't you just say that I've invented something and it worked?

Felicie: I can.

Victor: Then say it!

Felicie: Victor François Xavier the First,  you're a great inventor.

Victor: Thank you.

Odette: You're ready.

Felicie: (sighs)

Merante: Then dance from right here.

Victor: You won the bet. You made your dream come true. (chuckles)

Nora: (growls and barks)

Rosita: Let's set Paris on fire.

Victor: That really is my girlfriend.

THE END