An omnipotent voice describes a horrible threat to mankind that has appeared in the unlikeliest of places. Crystal, Ronnette, and Chiffon enter to warn the audience of the perils that await them at the local florist’s (“Little Shop of Horrors”).
The scene opens on Mushnik’s Skid Row Florists shop. At 10 a.m. sharp a crash is heard in the back room. Seymour attempts to assure Mushnik that he hasn’t broken anything. One hour later Audrey, Mushnik’s quirky blonde assistant enters with a black eye. Noticing her new look, Mushnik delicately puts forth the suggestion that perhaps her boyfriend is not a nice guy. Audrey admits that he is right, but rationalizes that you simply don’t meet nice boys in Skid Row. Seymour emerges from the back of the shop with, dropping a tray of nicely potted plants on the floor. As Mushnik scolds Seymour, Audrey attempts to intervene. At the end of his tether, Mushnik chases the “urchins”, Ronnette, Crystal and Chiffon away from his porch. Skid Row is a cesspool but Seymour is resolute that one day he is going to find a way to get outta there (“Downtown [Skid Row]”).
The clock strikes 6 and because the shop had no customers, Mushnik decides that he will close down the flower shop permanently. Seymour protests, and suggests that the shop could increase revenue by moving in a different direction, revealing that he has been tending to a ‘strange and interesting’ plant, Audrey II. Perhaps if they put this unusual specimen on display it would attract more customers. Initially Mushnik objects, but when a customer sees Audrey II through the window, he immediately bursts in to inquire about the ‘strange and interesting’ plant. Seymour, backed by the urchins (Chiffon, Ronnette and Crystal), explains that after hearing a strange other-worldly noise he stumbled upon the plant during a total eclipse and bought it from an old Chinese man (“Da-do”). Impressed by Seymour’s story, he reaches into his wallet and purchases one hundred dollars