Cowgirl Up (Part Three)

By Norm Robins

Here is part three of this delightful digital podcast of a wonderful theatrical performance from Canada written by Canadian playwright Anna Chatterton.

This is a collaborative effort of the CBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and Alberta Theater Projects. The world premiere was just getting ready to go into rehearsal when the current virus hit, and the performing arts world shut down.

Fallon Taylor of Collinsville, Texas, slips and falls with her horse in the barrel racing event during the Calgary Stampede rodeo in Calgary, Alberta, Canada July 8, 2016. (Photo by Todd Korol/Reuters)

Cassidy is set for day 3 of the CFR. Being new to winning she loses her discipline at the end of day 2 and goes out to party leaving her horse Starbright alone and out in the cold. She parties hard. She returns early in the morning having fallen asleep with her one-night stand cowboy Jed. She is hung over and Starbright is suffering from an evening of neglect at her hands. Starbright has a swollen leg.

What to do? Luckily, she has her three cowgirl goddesses looking over her. She is convinced she can nurse Starbright back into shape for the day 3 run. The goddesses are skeptical.

The cowgirl goddesses focus on winning and only on winning. They show Cassidy a selection of new horses she can win with, but she sticks to her guns. The only horse she can ride is Starbright. It is a triumph of hope over wisdom, of loyalty over logic. It is touching.

And ride Starbright she does. But can she win with a compromised mount? Yes, she can. Yes, she does. But after the win Starbright falls and can’t get up. The announcer sends the kids out for cotton candy while the drama plays out. They call in the vet. Starbright will never compete again. Cassidy learns that winning isn’t everything. It isn’t the only thing. Perhaps compared to a cowgirl’s love of her horse it is nothing.

Or is it? Listen to this beautifully written, beautifully acted play, and you will find out.

It can be heard at:

You will be surprised, probably even delighted. It is a great coming-of-age story with an equally great ending.

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