If you have a soft spot for goofy storylines and curly-cue mustaches, then you will definitely want to check out my old-fashioned western melodrama trilogies.
There are two of them: The Pie Palooza Trilogy and The Cowgirl Cookie Trilogy. Every play features a friendly narrator, follows the adventures of a hero or heroine, includes a good villain or two, and has moments throughout the play in which signs are held up to prompt the audience to applaud, cheer, sigh, boo, or hiss. I realize this all may sound a bit hokey. But you’re going to have to trust me on this. There is nothing more fun than an old-fashioned, western-style, hokey melodrama.
I think what makes a melodrama such a crowd-pleaser is its interactive nature.
There is a relationship that develops between the actors and actresses on stage and the members of the audience. The narrator often talks directly to the audience—guiding them along, filling in details of the plot—as if they were an old friend. The sign holders flash signs like “Hurrah!” or “Boo!” at the audience to encourage them to play a role in the action. Characters on stage note that there’s an audience in the room and point out that they are, indeed, just “puttin’ on a play” for everyone’s entertainment. Everyone’s in on the joke. And as a result, a connection is made between the cast and the crowd in the melodrama that is incredibly fun and engaging.
Every one of the plays within the trilogies can stand alone, but they are at their best when performed in order and kept together. The Pie Palooza Trilogy is in the following order: In a Pickle at the Pie Palooza, A Question of Pie, and All’s Fair in Love and Pie. The order of the Cowgirl Cookie Trilogy is Cowgirl Cookie and the Case of the Missing Chocolate Chips, Cowgirl Cookie and the Mysterious Disappearance of Grandma Sugar, and Cowgirl Cookie and the Ghost of the Grange.
Having a trilogy of plays is advantageous, especially when it comes to middle school.
Most students and their families will move on after three years, and by that time, they will have enjoyed the entire trilogy. If you have an annual event or fundraiser that could benefit from some entertainment, these melodrama trilogies would be a perfect addition. Faithful audience members won’t see the same play but every three years, and new audience members will become hooked on the series!
I have a lot of advice and suggestions on how to transform either one of my western melodrama trilogies into a fundraising event. Check out “Ingredients for your own Pie Palooza” or “Cowgirl Cookie to the Rescue Fundraiser Options” on the Fundraiser Play Ideas page. They are the most fun you will ever have fundraising.
Are you searching for an old-fashioned western comedy melodrama or perhaps a middle school play with cowgirls, a middle school play with cowboys, a middle school play with villains, a middle school play with a sheriff, a middle school play with a narrator, or simply a middle school play with Wild West characters? Then head straight to my Pie Palooza Plays and my Cowgirl Cookie Shows! Both are Wild West style trilogies and fun drama for adolescents. These playscripts for middle school actors are true entertainment.