Music Makers (radio): The Rum Story of Ali Baba

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started24th Sep 1980
ended3rd Dec 1980
last rptNov 1982
3 school years
duration20 mins
subject 🎶MusicMusic
age rangeAge 10-12Age 9-11 & Age 11-13
languageenIn English
Music Makers (radio)HierarchyPrevious.gifPrevious unit: The Everlasting Soldier Next unit: The Choir Outing HierarchyNext.gif

The Rum Story of Ali Baba is a unit of the BBC schools radio series Music Makers from the 1980s, covering music for primary and secondary school pupils.

A comic, musical re-telling of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves.

Ali Baba is charged by the Sultan with marrying off his terribly ugly daughters, for the reward of marrying the beautiful daughter with whom he has fallen in love. He finds his way into a robbers' cave and tricks their Cleaning Genie into letting him steal some treasure, which he uses to try to bribe people into marrying the daughters. The robbers seek revenge on Ali Baba by hiding in large oil jars which are dispatched first to his home and then to the Sultan's palace.

The programmes also have features on "music in eastern countries", including both East Asia and Eastern Europe.


  • Sultan's Song
  • Mirage
  • Secret Song
  • Misunderstandings
  • Robbers' Revenge
  • Vizier's Song
  • What a Way to End a Story!


Radio Times listing, 1980
  • Autumn 1980
  • Autumn 1982


Written by R. D. Ward
Music by Peter Hutchings
Producer Peter Hutchings


Pupils' pamphlet

Pupils' pamphlet (black & white scan)

A 28 page pupils' pamphlet illustrated by Peter Clark, with words and music to all of the songs, cartoons telling the basic story, and photographs referred to in the magazine elements of the broadcasts.

Teachers' notes

Teachers' notes

Teachers' notes containing a basic description of the broadcast and piano music for the songs.

Acting script

Extract from the acting script

A script of the production adapted for performance in schools, available free to schools from the producer during the term of broadcast.

Melodic instrument parts

Melodic instrument parts cover

Accompaniments to all of the songs for tuned percussion instruments, also available free to schools from the producer during the term of broadcast.


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