ON STAGE: Some of the cast of Ballina Players' latest production, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.
ON STAGE: Some of the cast of Ballina Players' latest production, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.

Player's latest musical opens this week

SET in rural USA in the 1970s, Ballina Players production of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas is lively, colourful and funny.

The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas is a musical, with a book by Texas author Larry L. King and Peter Masterson and music and lyrics by Carol Hall.

It is based on a story by King that was inspired by the real-life Chicken Ranch in La Grange, Texas.

It is the late 1970s, and a brothel has been operating outside of the fictional town of Gilbert, Texas, for more than a century.

It is under the proprietorship of Miss Mona Stangley, having been left to her by the original owner.

While taking care of her girls, she is also on good terms with the local sheriff, Ed Earl Dodd.

When crusading television reporter Melvin P. Thorpe (based on real-life Houston news personality Marvin Zindler) decides to make the illegal activity an issue, political ramifications cause the place to be closed down.

One of the most entertaining features is the behaviour of the politicians over the controversial local institution, the Chicken Ranch and calls for its closure.

Both the local Senator and the Governor react hypocritically.

For politic's sake, Senator Wingwoah (Trevor Stone) denounces the Chicken Ranch as a disgrace.

Soon afterwards he is calling it a "fine institution" and taking his victorious football team there for a promised night out - a long tradition of his. It is obvious that he is no stranger to the Chicken Ranch and that he is proud and pleased to give his team this treat.

Moral crusader Melvin P. Thorpe (Dylan Wheeler) is out to get the Chicken Ranch.

A real brothel named the Chicken Ranch operated near La Grange, Texas for 68 years and was the inspiration for the musical.

  • At the Players Theatre from November 18 to December 4, Thursdays to Saturdays 8pm, Sundays 2pm. Book online at ballinaplayers.com.au or at Windrose Travel, 6686 6566 (a booking fee applies).

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