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Tori Amos The Light Princess

press release / synopsis / recording sessions

Once upon a time, the Queen of Lagobel died. Princess Althea tried to follow her mother to heaven by lifting her feet and floating...

Once upon a time, the Queen of Sealand died. As his mother went to heaven, Prince Digby's laughter followed her...

From then, Digby never smiled and was known as the Solemn Prince. Althea never cried, had no gravity, and was known as the Light Princess.

Royal Princess swallow your sighs, rise above their sorrow and lies. Althea, go where there's no woe. Up in the skies where no one cries.

The Light Princess Synopsis


In the gold-rich desert kingdom of Lagobel, the death of the Queen causes the Light Princess Althea to float to the safety of the air, where she never cries. In the watery kingdom of Sealand, the death of the Queen causes the Solemn Prince Digby to never smile. The two kingdoms are troubled by grudges, and a Wilderness divides them (Prologue: Once Upon a Time).

Althea's brother is assassinated and to the people's horror she becomes heir to the throne. With Lagobel in chaos, King Ignacio of Sealand commands his son Digby to declare war (My Own Land), but Althea is determined to stay airborne with her fantasy of a loving family (My Fairy-Story). In truth, Althea's father King Darius has kept her locked in the Tower for ten years, and when he tries to force her to defend the kingdom and accept her role as future queen, she escapes the palace with her friend, the orphan Piper (Queen Material).

Out in the world, Althea learns of a secret Lake in the Wilderness, fed from Sealand's rivers, that is the source of Lagobel's water. Digby's army annihilates the Lagobellans (Sealand Supremacy) but when they encounter Althea, Digby's falcon Zephyrus flies her to safety. Digby finds her at the secret Lake (Zephyrus Call) and is so taken by her that his solemnity begins to lift (Levity). They fall in love (Althea). Falconer of Sealand and Serjeant-at-Arms of Lagobel see them kiss, and the Lagobellans are so outraged (Scandal) that King Darius decides he must get an heir he can trust, and offers his daughter's hand to the first man who can bring her to ground (The Gauntlet). Althea is blissfully unaware (Better Than Good).

Althea's suitors are repellent, though one of them, Mr Grey, says all she needs to gain gravity is love. Althea tries to tell her father of the secret Lake, but he won't listen, and when she says their family is over, he decides on his own fix (The Solution). In Sealand, Digby's heart soars (Highness in the Sky) but King Ignacio destroys any hope he has of seeing Althea again by forcing him to marry Lady Delphine (Proverbs). King Darius presents Althea, grounded, to his people, and announces her engagement to Mr Grey (Let the Bells Ring). Piper searches for Althea (God, the Horror) and discovers King Darius has got her down by means of horrific iron braces.

Piper makes her face the awfulness of her plight, but Althea still can't cry (No H2O). Digby escapes his tyrannical father (Zephyrus Call Reprise & Althea Reprise). Althea tries to drown herself in the secret Lake (Darkest Hour) but when she enters the water she finds it gives her gravity (After Darkest Hour). Digby arrives to see Althea out of the air, swimming, and for the first time in his life, he feels light.


Althea and Digby find happiness in their Lake and promise to stay forever (Amphibiava). Falconer and Serjeant-at-Arms admit to the Kings their knowledge of the Lake, and King Darius sends Piper to retrieve Althea while King Ignacio sends Llewellyn to retrieve Digby. King Ignacio gleans that the Lake is watered by Sealand and that he can send Lagobel into drought via a dam (Tinkle, Drizzle, Bubble and Gush).

Althea's passion for the Lake becomes an obsession (Nothing More Than This, Part One) and Digby begins to see that like the air it's a place of safety. He suggests she doesn't have true gravity, they argue, and Althea chooses the Lake over love. Llewellyn arrives. As Althea hides under water, Digby tells his brother she is dead. Althea is on her own, maniacally attached to her water (Part Two: Queen of the Lake). King Ignacio's plan takes hold: the Lake drains. Without water, Althea rises again, thirsty and spiritless. Piper arrives and takes her home as drought hits Lagobel (Drought).

For King Darius, all that matters is Althea's wedding to Mr Grey so she can produce a true heir. Piper confronts the King over his deeds and the Physician reveals the ailing Althea is pregnant (The Whistleblower). King Darius regrets all he has done (My Little Girl's Smile). Digby gives in to his destiny (Bitter Fate), but Falconer knows he truly loves Althea, so she sends Zephyrus to Lagobel with a pouch of water from the Lake to save her. When Zephyrus arrives, Piper sends a letter back to Sealand. Althea revives with Falconer's water and Llewelyn reads the letter: it tells of Althea's condition (The Wedding).

Digby's love for Althea sends him to the dam to destroy it as Althea heads through the Wilderness to save Lagobel (Crash in the Universe). As the wall of the dam collapses, Digby is shot by his father and falls into the surging water. It fills Althea's Lake. She floats above it, desperate for it above all things, but can't get to it as she is still light. When she realizes Digby has sacrificed himself, she feels the force of love, finally cries, and the weight of her tears brings her down (Tears).

Digby is only wounded, and they reconcile: gravity for her, levity for him, love and family for them both. (Gravity). Piper and Llewelyn fall in love, as do Falconer and Serjeant-at-Arms. The Kings die (Epilogue: Once Upon a Time) and Althea becomes Queen by the Lake in the Wilderness that unites the kingdoms (Coronation).

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