That'll Learn Ya!

Book By: Eddie McPherson
Play #: 8351
Pages: 52 pgs
Cast: 2 m, 2 w, 10 flexible, optional washboard band and townspeople

The little Western town of Possum Trot has been under a gypsy spell for two hundred years, a spell that turned the whole village into nincompoops who are so clueless they sweep with the wrong end of a broom and put themselves in jail. They've never been smart enough to progress with the rest of the world. Seymour Justice, the guilty gypsy's great-grandson (seven generations later), wants to break the spell once and for all. His perseverance pays off when he and his best friend, Edmund, finally stumble upon the lost village. The secret to breaking the spell is buried in a metal box somewhere in the town. So the search is on and Seymour and his buddy seek the citizens' assistance—such as it is! If the spell isn't broken by midnight, not only will the town remain in the dark cave of ignorance, but Seymour and Edmund will become nincompoops too, and consigned to remain in Possum Trot for the rest of their lives. Silly situations, one-liners and sight gags galore are all rolled into one funny misadventure. Approximately 85 minutes.

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Productions

SETON HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
CINCINNATI, OH 11/22/2019
SUNNYSIDE CHRISTIAN HIGH SCHOO 2 Performance(s)
SUNNYSIDE, WA 4/26/2019
OUR LADY OF PEACE 2 Performance(s)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN 11/9/2018
WESTSIDE CATHOLIC SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
EVANSVILLE, IN 4/12/2018
FAMILY YOUTH COMMUNITY CONNECT 4 Performance(s)
ALBERTVILLE , MN 10/26/2017
CAROLINE COUNTY RECREATION P 2 Performance(s)
DENTON, MD 8/4/2017
HAYLOFT THEATER 5 Performance(s)
ASHLEY, ND 7/19/2016
GOESSEL HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
GOESSEL, KS 11/13/2015
AUGUSTA HIGH SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
AUGUSTA, WI 4/30/2015
AUGUSTA HIGH SCHOOL 4 Performance(s)
AUGUSTA, WI 4/20/2015
BURKE SCHOOL DISTRICT 1 Performance(s)
BURKE, SD 3/28/2015
DYER COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
NEWBERN, TN 4/24/2014
RIVER VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
MOHAVE VALLEY, AZ 4/22/2014
NORTH PIKE HIGH SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
SUMMIT, MS 2/13/2014
AMBASSADOR THEATRE 1 Performance(s)
SAN ANTONIO, TX 11/9/2013
AMBASSADOR THEATRE 1 Performance(s)
SAN ANTONIO, TX 11/8/2013
YORK CENTRAL SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
RETSOF, NY 3/15/2013
COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
GROTON, MA 2/10/2013
COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL, GROTON 3 Performance(s)
GROTON, MA 2/8/2013
FOOTHILLS THEATER 3 Performance(s)
SUMAS, WA 11/30/2012
SIBLEY EAST SR HIGH ARLINGTON 2 Performance(s)
ARLINGTON, MN 10/15/2012
MAZAMA HIGH SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
KLAMATH FALLS, OR 4/27/2012
MULLAN HIGH SCHOOL DRAMA 2 Performance(s)
MULLAN, ID 4/20/2012
FLORENCE SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
FLORENCE, SD 4/15/2012
ELIDA HIGH SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
ELIDA, NM 3/15/2012
NORTH VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL 4 Performance(s)
GRANTS PASS, OR 11/4/2011
EAST CLARENDON HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
TURBEVILLE, SC 5/14/2011
NORTHWESTERN HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
MELLETTE, SD 4/15/2011
SOUTH PAGE SCHOOLS 1 Performance(s)
COLLEGE SPRINGS, IA 2/15/2011
FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH 1 Performance(s)
HUNTINGDON, TN 2/12/2011
WESTBROOK WALNUT GROVE HIGH SC 4 Performance(s)
WESTBROOK, MN 11/12/2010
SUNNYSIDE CHRISTIAN HIGH SCHOO 2 Performance(s)
SUNNYSIDE, WA 11/5/2010
NORTH MONTGOMERY HIGH SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
CRAWFORDSVILLE, IN 10/28/2010
HARRISBURG MIDDLE SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
HARRISBURG, MO 10/14/2010
HAGERMAN HIGH SCHOOL DRAMA 1 Performance(s)
HAGERMAN, ID 5/29/2010
HARRISONVILLE MIDDLE SCHOOL 3 Performance(s)
HARRISONVILLE, MO 4/22/2010
MOUND CITY R-2 SCHOOL DISTRICT 2 Performance(s)
MOUND CITY, MO 3/26/2010
WEST HANCOCK HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
BRITT , IA 10/30/2009
LEOLA PUBLIC SCHOOL 1 Performance(s)
LEOLA, SD 3/20/2009
HAUSER HIGH SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
HOPE, IN 11/7/2008
SEELEY LAKE ELEMENTARY 2 Performance(s)
SEELEY LAKE, MT 5/22/2008
NORTH POWDER SCHOOL DISTRICT 2 Performance(s)
NORTH POWDER, OR 5/9/2008
COVINGTON DRAMA CLUB 1 Performance(s)
COVINGTON, IN 5/3/2008
OUR LADY OF PEACE SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN 4/18/2008
INDIAN VALLEY MIDDLE SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
REEDSVILLE, PA 4/17/2008
ORLEANS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 2 Performance(s)
ORLEANS, IN 4/16/2008
NORTH OF THE GULLY DRAMA CLUB 1 Performance(s)
MAIDSTONE, SK 3/20/2008
NORTH OF THE GULLY DRAMA CLUB 3 Performance(s)
MAIDSTONE, SK 3/16/2008

Behind The Scenes

PLAYWRIGHT EDDIE MCPHERSON

TALKS ABOUT "THAT'LL LEARN YA!"

 

Q.: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS PLAY?

A.: My students. Last year I gave my drama students an assignment: Come up with a sketch with stereotypical characters. One group came up with the stereotypical cowboy sketch with the sheriff, the outlaw, etc. That sketch remained in the back of my mind until I wrote this play which is chock-full of tremendously stereotypical characters.

 

Q.: WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PART OR LINE IN THE PLAY? WHY?

A.: I like the gypsy scene where Seymour and Edmund are performing a "sideshow" in order to prove to the residents that they come from a gypsy family. Ah ya ya ya!

 

Q.: WHERE DID THE CHARACTERS COME FROM? ARE THEY BASED ON PEOPLE YOU KNOW?

A.: From every Western movie I've seen, every Western book I've read and every Western T.V. show I've watched. If you put all these into a can, shake it up and pour it out, you'd have this play.

 

Q.: WHAT DID YOU TRY TO ACHIEVE WITH THIS PLAY?

A.: This little lesson: Get an education! Just kidding (well, sort of). There's just something funny about an actor in a cowboy hat, saying "Y'all." By forming the washboard band, it gave students who were more talented in the singing department to shine as well.

 

Q.: DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE TO ADD?

A.: Producing this show was lots of fun for me. It gave many of my first-time students a chance to shine on stage and just as many seasoned actors to really let their hair down and have fun without too much sweat. I think this is a perfect piece for actors and/or directors who are just getting their feet wet in the theatre world. I really hope you enjoy producing this show.