By Kent R. Brown. Based on the book Gooney Bird Greene by Lois Lowry.
Cast: 24 actors: 7m., 9w. +8 actors; or 18 to 20 actors: 6 to 7m., 12 to 13w.; or 6 actors: 2 to 3m., 3 to 4w.; or 5 actors: 2m. 3w. Summer has come to a crashing halt in the little town of Watertower. The kids don't want to be back in school; they are listless and bored. Suddenly, the classroom door bursts open and there, wearing pajamas and cowboy boots, stands red-headed Gooney Bird Greene! "Hi! My name is Gooney Bird Greene—that's like the color with a silent 'e' on the end and I like to be smack in the middle of everything!" The class is never the same again. Gooney Bird speaks with confidence and dresses in outrageous outfits including Capri pants, blue knee socks, high-topped basketball sneakers, and elbow-length black gloves. But most wondrous of all, she casts herself as the hero in the most improbable, outlandish stories: how she arrived from China on a flying carpet, how she got a lovely pair of diamond earrings at the local palace, how she directed a symphony orchestra while driving through the center of town, and how her beloved cat, Catman, was consumed by a cow! Are these stories really true? Of course they are because, as Gooney Bird proudly proclaims, she only tells "absolutely true stories!" In blending funny and memorable characters with colorful details and her distinctive flair for suspense, Gooney Bird awakens the students' dormant imaginations. They come to realize their lives are as unique as Gooney Bird's and that they, too, can cast themselves as the heroes in their own true tales of discovery and adventure. Area staging. Approximate Running Time: 60 minutes.