Academic journal article Southern Cultures

Good Ol' Girls

Academic journal article Southern Cultures

Good Ol' Girls

Article excerpt

Good Ol' Girls A Play from Mojo Productions, in association with Company Carolina and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Department of Communication Studies Performed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 18 March-11 April 1999

We (that is we women) think we know what a good ol' boy is. The definition involves huntin' dogs, Dodge trucks, seersucker suits--chauvinism sunny side up.

But what's a good ol' girl? The new revue of songs and stories adapted by Paul Ferguson from the works of Matraca Berg, Marshall Chapman, Jill McCorkle, and Lee Smith that premiered at the University of North Carolina in March 1999 answers the question fully, delightfully, and surprisingly. A good ol' girl loves her daddy. A good ol' girl knows that big hair and a big heart do not mean a small mind. She'll bring you casseroles and she'll kill you, too. Her

heart is kind, but she speaks her mind. Those of us fortunate enough to have seen it with its original cast left the theater wanting our own tombstones to be chiseled with the words, "She was a good ol' girl."

We left humming the tune to "All I Want Is Everything" (a collaboration by Berg and Chapman), wishing we could sing "I Got a Late Date with the Blues" (Chapman), still a little choked up over "Back When We Were Beautiful" (Berg). At intermission, we made lists of book tides by Lee Smith and jilt McCorkle we hadn't yet read. My list (on the back of a deposit slip) was short since I've read everything they've published except Smith's Oral History, from which Paul Ferguson drew an elderly ol' girl's soliloquy called "My Roy" ("I knew a good thing when I saw it and I jumped right on it. …

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