The Debutante Ball

( 2 )

Overview

This stunning comic drama, set in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, begins the morning of Teddy Parker's debutante ball, that archetypal phenomenon in Southern culture known as a maiden's "coming out." Teddy's mother, the beautiful and formidable Jen Parker Turner, has willed this event into being. Ostracized from polite society ever since she was accused and - under much speculation of gossip - acquitted of the murder of her wealthy husband, Jen has been looking to Teddy's coming-out gala to revive her and her family's ...
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Overview

This stunning comic drama, set in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, begins the morning of Teddy Parker's debutante ball, that archetypal phenomenon in Southern culture known as a maiden's "coming out." Teddy's mother, the beautiful and formidable Jen Parker Turner, has willed this event into being. Ostracized from polite society ever since she was accused and - under much speculation of gossip - acquitted of the murder of her wealthy husband, Jen has been looking to Teddy's coming-out gala to revive her and her family's reputation. As the play unfolds, various secrets emerge: an unwanted pregnancy, an illicit romance, self mutilation, mendacity and murder. Polite facades crumble and ugly truths twist and polka across the ballroom floor. This is a play about the price of secrets and the power that love and lovelessness hold over our lives.
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Editorial Reviews

USA Today
...THE DEBUTANTE BALL is the blackest of the Mississippi-born playwright's comedies and probably her best.
The Register
THE DEBUTANTE BALL...is also blessed with Henley's striking gifts for outrageous theatricality, off-the-wall dialogue and sharply observed character.
L.A. Herald Examiner
What is special about [Henley] as a writer—the sudden bursts of simple emotion, the capturing of joy wrapped up in calamity and the comic obsessions with grotesquerie and bodily functions...is abundantly evident.
Library Journal
While ``dysfunctional family'' has become a recent buzz phrase, Southern writers have historically used the hidden tragedies of family life as a fertile source for story material. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Henley ( Crimes of the Heart , Viking, 1982) continues the tradition in this two-act play. Arrangements for Teddy's debutante coming-of-age event are complicated by her mother's conviction for her father's murder. Her mother's desperation to rejoin society and Teddy's secrets add up to a volatile combination. Full-color artwork by Lynn Green Root enhances the text. Large drama collections should consider adding this to their repertory.-- J. Sara Paulk, Concord P.L., N.H.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822215837
  • Publisher: Dramatists Play Service, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/1/1997
  • Pages: 59
  • Sales rank: 1,354,979

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2012

    Very quirky and entertaining

    I really like this play. It was funny, eccentric and entertaining. A must read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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