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Sleeping Beauty: MEDIUM AUDIO


Spotlight - epaper ⋅ Ausgabe 2/2019 vom 23.01.2019

Erinnern Sie sich an das Märchen von Dornröschen? Hier stellen wir Ihnen eine moderne Version vor – zum Schmunzeln und zum Englischlernen. Von DAGMAR TAYLOR


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We all know at least a few fairy tales: Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood or Sleeping Beauty. The structure of these tales is familiar to us. They begin with the phrase “Once upon a time…” and use repetitive language to create drama: “Grandma, what big teeth you have! Grandma, what big ears you have!”

We have rewritten 24 famous fairy tales for the 21st century. Each one includes examples of a specific grammatical structure. This structure is ...

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... explained in the notes at the end, where you will also find related exercises. This month, we present a new version of Sleeping Beauty.

Sleeping Beauty

Once upon a time, a bright-eyed young reporter — recently promoted to royal correspondent — was standing outside the palace, where the wedding of the century was taking place.

“I’m here, among a sea of well-wishers, all waiting to see the newly-weds on the palace balcony,” the reporter, Christopher Rose, excitedly announced to the camera. “Earlier today, Princess Talia — better known as Sleeping Beauty — exchanged vows with Prince Lutgen, the good-looking young prince who woke her from her 100-year sleep with a kiss. The 118-year-old princess looked stunning in a snow-white silk dress, while the 25-year-old prince charmed the crowds in a red King’s Guard uniform. As we wait for the royal couple to kiss for the first time in public, let us remind ourselves of the fascinating story behind this fairy-tale marriage,” gushed Christopher. “Beside me is historian David Thorne. David, thank you so much for joining us this morning.”

“My pleasure,” replied David in a serious tone.

“David, remind us again, if you will, why it was that the princess fell asleep for 100 years. That’s quite a long power nap if you ask me,” said Christopher.

“Well, Christopher, as you know, the king and queen had waited a long time to have a child, so when at last the princess was born, they were delighted, and they held a banquet to celebrate the fact. Back then — more than a century ago — many fairies lived in this land. Sadly, because of the drastic increase in carbon emissions, they are now extinct. Anyway, the king invited the seven fairies who lived in his court, so that each might give the infant princess a gift. But there was an eighth fairy who had been forgotten. She had not been seen for many years, and everyone thought she had died. She was alive, though, and… well, let’s just say she had some mental-health issues. She stormed into the banqueting hall, demanding to be seated.

The servants quickly found a place for her, but the old fairy was still very angry. Towards the end of the festivities, the fairies each presented the baby princess with their gifts.

‘The princess shall be the most beautiful woman in the world,’ said the first fairy.

‘She shall be as sweet-natured as an angel,’ said the second.

‘She shall have a natural grace in all that she does,’ said the third.

‘She shall sing as if nobody’s listening,’ said the fourth.

‘And she shall dance as if nobody’s watching,’ said the fifth.

‘She shall play music like a virtuoso,’ said the sixth.

Suddenly, the old fairy stood up, her eyes flashing. ‘When the princess is 17 years old, she shall prick her finger on a spindle and die,’ she spat.

The guests were horrified, and the queen began to cry.

‘What is a spindle?’ asked the king.

‘It’s a thin pointed thing used for spinning wool into thread,’ explained the fairy, who had not yet given her gift. ‘Your daughter shall not die,’ she continued, gently touching the queen’s arm. ‘The princess shall indeed prick her finger on the spindle — that I cannot change — but she shall not die. She shall fall asleep for 100 years, and so shall all the court. She will open her eyes the moment a prince wakes her with a kiss.’ And with that, the fairies disappeared.

The next day, the king had all the spinning wheels in the kingdom destroyed. But on the princess’s seventeenth birthday, as she danced around the castle, singing to herself, she noticed a half-hidden door. She opened it to find an old woman spinning. The princess had never seen a spinning wheel and asked the old lady how to use it. No sooner had she sat down at the wheel than she pricked her finger on the spindle and fell to the floor. The king and queen, having followed the princess’s sweet voice, found her. Gently, they laid her on her bed, then immediately fell asleep themselves — as did the guards, the servants and the corgis.”

“How come no one tried to wake her?” Christopher asked. “Is modern medicine no match for an old-fashioned curse?”

“The king had left strict instructions with his lawyers that, if the curse came true, no one was to enter the palace for 100 years. He feared that any tampering with the curse might have serious consequences,” explained David as patiently as he could.

“Ah, that makes sense,” said Christopher.

“Thank you, David. You do tell that story marvellously, I must say.”

“You’re very kind,” said David.

“Right. Fast-forward 100 years… Prince Lutgen cuts through the thorny hedge — thwack, thwack! — and wakes Princess Talia with a kiss… Ah, I’m just getting word that the happy couple is stepping out on to the balcony this very moment,” said Christopher. “There they are: Princess Talia and Prince Lutgen… and the king and queen, who I believe are 167 and 159 respectively — and looking very well indeed! The crowd is chanting: ‘Kiss! Kiss!’ Yes, and there it is — the kiss we’ve all been waiting for. The bride looks absolutely radiant for her age, and the groom seems very much in love. They look very happy indeed. And I dare say, they’ll live happily ever after. This has been Christopher Rose for XY NEWS. It’s back to the studio now for the weather.”

Answers

1. The princess shall be the most beautiful woman in the world. She’ll be as sweet-natured as an angel. She’ll have a natural grace in all that she does.
She’ll sing as if nobody’s listening. And she shall dance as if nobody’s watching.
2. I promise that the princess will be the most beautiful woman in the world. …she’ll be as sweet-natured as an angel. …she’ll have a natural grace in all that she does.
…she’ll sing as if nobody’s listening. …she’ll dance as if nobody’s watching.


Illustration: Sami Viljanto