Hail! Taikonauts

HRWZ016 Hail! Taikonauts

Hail!Taikonauts, a Chinese Fairytale by Dylan Rippon

music: “Vapour”
The year is 2019 and five Taikonauts board their Shenzou spacecraft sitting proudly atop a Supermassive Chang Zheng 5 rocket bound for the Moon. Tsien Wang, Commander, signals the ok and the rocket begins the final ignition sequence.

music: “Arcs”
Takeoff is greeted with great joy throughout China but there is a quiet unease in the Western World. The “Long March” to the Moon has begun. The Taikonauts bide their time in their small craft preparing for the historic mission ahead of them.

music: “Insularum”
As they leave Earth orbit and begin to settle into their strange new life they are troubled by strange dreams. The Moon grows ever larger in the windows and the Taikonauts begin to sense a presence, a feeling, a vibration, a consciousness following them through the void.

music: “Cedars”
Once in lunar orbit the Taikonauts intercept strange radio signals that have bounced back and forth in a cosmic Neverland since 1969. Country music and messages between NASA astronauts and their colleagues on earth reveal a dark secret.

music: “White Space”
They begin to realise that the Americans turned back before landing on the Moon, spooked by a grave sense of doom. The Taikonauts could be the first human visitors to Earth’s mysterious satellite. They become incredibly excited.

music: “Spin”
The craft manoeuvres in space preparing for lunar touchdown.

music: “Red Desert”
Touchdown on the lunar surface and jubilation throughout China. The Moon’s desert is red at last!

music: “Eclipse”
The Taikonauts take their first steps on the Moon.

music: “Metropole”
The Taikonauts begin the next phase of their mission, building the Chinese Lunar Space Station. There is a hive of activity as their new home takes shape. They discover the wreckage of a Russian craft, the crew, the corpse of an Alsatian dog, long since perished but perfectly preserved. The Taikonauts are the first human beings to make it to the Moon and survive.

music: “Tycho”
That night, trying to sleep, once more the Taikonauts are plagued by strange dreams and disturbances. The communications system of the lunar craft goes haywire. Something or someone is outside the craft! Tycho, an angel of the Moon, banished from Earth many millions of years ago greets the Taikonauts.

music: “Oceanus”
Tycho has come to take them to an undiscovered place on the far side of the Moon, the home of the Banished Angels. In their spacesuits the Taikonauts leave their fragile home not knowing what will become of them. They are gathered up by an invisible wind and begin to fly at a tremendous speed across the lunar surface far away from their ship and the promise of a safe return.

music: “Copernicus”
The Taikonauts arrive at the home of the Banished Angles, a place strange and beautiful.

music: “Rays”
A gathering of the Banished Angels demand to know why they have trespassed on the sacred surface of their home. Commander Tsien steps forward to explain but he is struck down by a crushing invisible force. He tries to speak through the unbearable pain. Tsien proposes friendship. Surely the Banished Angels must want to connect once more with life from the blue green garden of Earth.

music: “Aristarchus”
The Banished Angels become angry at the suggestion that they could be so easily charmed and Aristarchus, leader of the Angels, demands that Commander Tsien remove his helmet and sing for them a song to prove his worth and the honour of his words. In return for this his crew will be granted leave to go home safely on the condition they never come back to the Moon. The Taikonauts are shown scenes from their past life, mysterious dreamlike visions of what has happened and what will be.


Commander Tsien knows that in the vacuum of space his song will last for one breath and be heard by no one but to save the lives of his crew he takes his final breath and removes his helmet.

music: “Salvatore”
There are suddenly dazzling lights as if stars are falling onto the surface and their luminosity is exploding all around. There is a wind, unlike anything on earth, a surge, electric and sublime. Tsien begins his song and tears fall from the faces of the Banished Angels, they have at last witnessed love after their long exile.
Tsien is able to sing his song on the surface of the Moon in the endless emptiness of space. The crew are safe and the Banished Angels return them to their ship.

music: “Vallis”
The Taikonauts prepare to leave the Moon knowing that they can never return. Tycho bids them farewell and promises to guide the ship as far as Earth’s orbit.
music: “Atmosphere”
The journey home. The Long March nearly over…

music: “Home”
The Shenzou craft splashes down in the South China Sea – the Taikonauts are home.
“Hail! Taikonauts”