The show is opened by The Cat in the Hat, the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. He invites the audience
to explore with their imaginations, and see what kind of "thinks" are lurking there (Oh, the Thinks You Can Think).
Further setting up the scene, the Cat leads the audience into the world of Seuss (Our Story Begins).
The first stop is the Jungle of Nool, where Horton the elephant is enjoying a typical day until he hears a tiny cry for help
coming from a speck of dust. (Horton Hears a Who) He decides that there must be a person living on that dust, and vows
to protect it, placing it on a clover for safekeeping. But the other jungle animals hear nothing, and are less than convinced
of Horton's sanity for talking to invisible people (Biggest Blame Fool).
But Horton really does hear something, and with the help of a magnifying glass, the Cat shows that something
to the audience. A whole new world opens up, a world full of tiny people called Whos (Here on Who). The Mayor and his
wife explain the problems of living on a speck of dust, but they have more personal problems as well. Their young son, JoJo,
is always in trouble for his crazy imagination. They go to a parent-teacher interview, leaving JoJo at home, where he is promptly
joined by the Cat in the Hat and his helpers (A Day for the Cat in the Hat).
Unimpressed with what they've heard, Mr. and Mrs. Mayor send JoJo to his bath, with the admonition "Couldn't
you try thinking just a bit less dear?" But once in the tub, JoJo imagines a link between him and the sea, and is joined by
magical fish and other creatures (McElligott's Pool/It's Possible). Meanwhile, his parents agonize over what to do
with their son's uncontrollable thinks (How to Raise a Child).
They finally hit upon an answer, and the next morning, JoJo is sent off to military school, under the
direction of General Genghis Khan Schmitz (The Military). But the rigid rules and strict discipline of the military
are not for JoJo, and he uses his imagination to escape from everything around him. Back in the Jungle of Nool, Horton is
also alone, thinking, away from all those who are calling him crazy. The two lonely thinkers connect with each other, and
an instant friendship is born (Alone in the Universe).
There is, however, one person in the jungle who doesn't believe Horton's insane, and that's his next-door
neighbour, Gertrude McFuzz. She realizes how caring and kind Horton has always been, and wants to get closer to him, but,
as she says, "Who'd notice a bird with a one-feather tail?" (The One Feather Tail of Miss Gertrude McFuzz) Enter Mayzie
Bird, another resident of the jungle, with the most beautiful tail Gertrude has ever seen. She's nearly out of her mind with
jealousy, but Mayzie explains how she got her tail, and how Gertrude can get one too - with a little help from the doctor
(Amazing Mayzie). Gertrude doesn't need to be told twice. She runs to the doctor and takes as many of the magic pills
as she can swallow (Amazing Gertrude).
Among the many in the jungle who are convinced Horton is crazy, few are nastier than the Wickersham Brothers
(Monkey Around), who manage to snatch the clover, with all the Whos on it, away from Horton, and lead him on a wild
chase through the jungle (Chasing the Whos). They give the clover to Vlad Vladikoff, a mighty bird, who carries it
far away and drops it in a huge field of clovers - all of them identical to the one with the Whos.
Things aren't looking so good for Horton or the Whos, as the Cat in the Hat shows up to remind us (How
Lucky You Are). The message? That things can always get worse!
Horton begins his agonizing search through the clovers. He is so absorbed in his search that he doesn't
even see Gertrude, who has followed him to show off her brand-new tail, in the hopes of winning his affection (Notice Me,
Horton). Discouraged, she leaves. While still looking through the clovers, Horton comes across Mayzie, who is up in a
tree, sitting on a nest. She convinces the already time-pressed elephant to give her a break by sitting on her egg for the
afternoon (How Lucky You Are - Reprise). Against his better judgement, Horton agrees, and Mayzie takes off. But the
afternoon stretches into night, and then a week, then a month. And then during the cold winter months, Horton encounters the
worst danger of all - hunters!
Well, what would an Act One closer be without some suspense? The Cat obviously feels the same way, as
he leaves the audience hanging for intermission (Act One Finale).
After ensuring that the intermission was pleasant, the Cat welcomes everyone back to the story (Entr'acte/
Our Story Resumes). The hunters, rather than killing Horton, have hit upon a better idea. Why not make some money off
the crazy elephant sitting on an egg in a tree? And so they take him far away where he is sold at auction (Egg, Nest and
Tree). The buyer? The Circus McGurkus, full of strange and rare animals. Horton becomes a headliner, but wishes
he could get back to the Whos (How Lucky You Are - Reprise).
Back on Who, the bruised and battered Whos have managed to re-build their city enough for the Grinch's
annual recital of his Christmas story (The Whos' Christmas Pageant). The Mayor and his wife are feeling lonely without
JoJo though, who is off at the front in the fierce Butter Battle (A Message from the Front). Finally, JoJo has had
enough. There's no reason for fighting, so he throws down his sword and sets off, only to walk right into enemy fire!
The Circus continues on its road trip, making a stop in Palm Beach, favourite vacation spot of the fickle
Mayzie (Mayzie in Palm Beach). She heads to the circus for a diversion, and comes face to face with Horton, still sitting
on her egg in her nest. Horton is thrilled to see her, thinking he can finally return back to the Jungle and the Whos. But
Mayzie has realized she's just not ready for the responsibility of the egg, and leaves it in Horton's hands. Disappointed,
but still not beaten, Horton comforts the egg. He is joined by Mr. and Mrs. Mayor, who are devestated by the news of their
son's fate (Solla Sollew).
But, never fear! JoJo has escaped the blast, and is trying to find his way home. Hopelessly lost, he decides
to simply trust his instincts (Havin' a Hunch). Before long, he sees the familiar buildings of home, and his overjoyed
parents welcome him with open arms.
Another unexpected visitor shows up to visit Horton at the Circus - Gertrude McFuzz! Did you forget about
her? "It's okay, everyone does," she rationalizes. But when she explains to Horton everything that she's gone through to find
him, he finally realizes just how amazing she is (All For You). And, most amazing of all, she's managed to find his
clover as well, reuniting Horton and his Whos.
But Gertrude isn't as alone as she thinks she is. Several of the other jungle animals have followed her,
intent on taking Horton back to the Jungle of Nool to stand trail, for criminal insanity. Despite his protestations, he is
found guilty, and the clover is to be boiled in hot oil (The People Versus Horton the Elephant).
Desperate, Horton implores the citizens of Who to make themselves heard. They yell as loud as they can,
but still Horton is the only one that hears. Finally, JoJo, the smallest of them all, comes out with a wild and wonderful
word that nobody has ever heard before. All the jungle animals hear it, and are astounded. JoJo has saved Who, and proved
that Horton is not crazy.
But there is still one egg left to hatch - Mayzie's, of course! Horton's long incubation duty is finally
over, and a beautiful new creature is born - an elephant bird! He and Gertrude vow to take care of it together (Alone in
the Universe - Reprise).
So, the story is over. Or is it? Well, as the Cat asks, what do *you* think? (Finale/ Oh The Thinks
You Can Think)