HONK!…The Story you thought you knew...
...a musical retelling of "The Ugly
Duckling," the fairy tale by Danish author Hans Christian
Andersen first published on 11 November 1843. Spring has come to the duckyard. Drake, the Mallard Duck, and his long suffering partner, Ida, await the birth of a new brood, but the clutch seems to contain one inordinately large egg this year. Sure enough, it cracks open to reveal an ugly chick nothing like his siblings, who makes a strange honk sound. Ida warms to him, though, and takes him out for the first swim on the lake, finding him to be a
prodigious swimmer. However, the other farmyard fowl ridicule him, driving him into the eager arms of the Tom Cat, who invites him back to the "Kitty Kat Snack Shack" for lunch. Ugly escapes by luck, but with night falling he becomes lost. The concerned Ida insists that Drake and the others launch a search. The next day, Ugly finds himself on open marshland in the middle of a duck shoot. He is taken under the wing of Greylag, a pompous military goose, his well-meaning wife Dot, and a comical troup of geese. Though the Cat appears and again tries subterfuge to get a hold of Ugly, his plans are once again thwarted. Meanwhile, Ida has left Drake in charge of the nest, and has gone in search of her missing boy. Ugly finds a small cottage, home to a domesticated hen named Lowbutt and her feline companion, Queenie. The Cat appears yet again, but distracted by Queenie's charms he once again allows Ugly to escape. Back at the
duckyard, Drake is learning valuable parenting skills, even as Ida's search becomes more frantic. With the onset of freezing winter, Ugly's prospects are bleak but meeting a beautiful young swan named Penny begins to give him hope. Declining her invitation to join the swan family's migration,Ugly resumes his journey to find his mother. Befriended by an ebullient bullfrog and his froglets, Ugly is cheered considerably, until he is caught in a hunter's net. Rescued by the ever resourceful Cat, who is still hoping to dine on the growing bird, both are soon caught in a raging blizzard, and frozen into snow creatures. With the onset of spring, the swans and Ida arrive just in the nick of time, paving the way for a triumphant trip to the farmyard.