The Story 

The play starts off with a girl crying due to the thunder claps so the village decides to tell her a story to stop her crying. So they tell her the story of Ti Moune,the peasant girl who falls in love with the aristocrat, Daniel. One day, the water god Agwe sent a flood that destroyed the villages but the gods saved Ti Moune by placing her high in a tree above the water. The village people took her in and adopted her. When she grows up she prays that the gods make her like the aristocrats. Four gods are watching over the village (Asaka, Agwe, Papae Ge and Erzullie) and they laugh at her at first. But then they make a bet to see which is stronger: love (Erzullie) or death (Papa Ge). One night the gods crash Daniel’s car and it is Ti Moune who finds him and nurtures him while he is dying. Papa Ge comes to take his life but Ti Moune offers her own life instead so Papa Ge leaves and Daniel stays alive. As she cares for him Ti Moune begins to fall in love with him. His family comes to take him back, and a devastated Ti Moune sets out to find him. She meets Asaka (Mother Earth) on her journey and she helps her along the way. When she gets to his side of the island, she sneaks into his house and confesses her love to him. Erzullie then gives them the power of the human heart and Daniel falls in love with her too. It is discovered however that Daniel already has a fiance and says they cannot get married so he has betrayed her. Paps Ge comes back to take Ti Moune’s life but offers her the chance to save her life by killing Daniel. She takes a knife to his room but cannot kill him, however once discovered Daniel throws her out. Daniel and Andrea go ahead and get married and Ti Moune goes to the water and Agwe allows her to drown peacefully. Asaka then takes her body and makes it a tree connecting her once again with the earth.

Actors

Genres Represented

Once On This Island had many genres represented in it. The most notable ones were: blues, soul (Part of Us)

, funk, r&b (The Human Heart)

, and classical music

Instrumentation

In this musical, there was a lot of emphasis on drums such as congas, djembe, and shakers. There was also use of an orchestra for the more classical pieces.

Educated Opinion

I believe that this musical is important for people of color to watch because it tells a tale of love and forgiveness. These are two things that the black community needs to work on within itself. It is hard for us to show love because we are not loved by the world surrounding us. It it hard for us to forgive because have always been wronged and shorted in some way. But this story of Ti Moune and the gods reminds us that these are two elements that, if we could master, would make us so much more powerful.