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The Goree All-Girl String Band (NYMF)

From 6 critic and 35 member reviews
Members say: Entertaining, Great singing, Ambitious, Delightful, Refreshing

About the show

Part of the New York Musical Festival: The year is 1938 and The Goree All-Girl String Band is the biggest new radio sensation in Texas. They also happen to be convicted criminals. More…

The six band members teach themselves music from behind bars and earn a slot on a prison-based radio program. Through sisterhood, determination, and a little bit of luck, these women work (and play) together to fiddle their way to freedom. Inspired by a true story, 'The Goree All-Girl String Band' is a tale of redemption that features an ensemble of actor-musicians performing a brand-new country score. An official selection of the 2017 New York Musical Festival Next Link Project.

Times Square Chronicles

"One of the most interesting shows to hit NYMF in a long time...The cast, for what they had to do in such a short time, was stellar...Bradley’s book and lyrics are powerful, though the first act could use some tightening...Because this story is so interesting we actually want to know even more about these characters...The delightful country score is soulful with strains of bluegrass...Mark my words this show will have a life beyond NYMF. Catch this if you can!" Full Review


"One of NYMF's best offerings...A sweet story of female friendship, the reclamation of agency, and the healing power of music—themes that in Bradley's book can sometimes drift into the formulaic, but in their unique context and with clear direction by Monroe, remain compelling. It's the story that hooks you, but it's the music that keeps you there...It's all a pretty joyful platform for the cast's musicianship...On the whole, 'Goree' seems to have a bright future ahead." Full Review

Front Row Center

"If Act One is emotionally pent up, Act Two breaks out beyond all expectation...Nine women on stage equates to sweet harmonies aplenty...There is some work to be done. Mozelle needs a first-act number of her own, and the authors need to find a way to bring consequence to the few dark moments that shadow the women. But the first half of the second act arrives fully formed with four consecutive killer numbers...It’s a production that deserves a longer run." Full Review

New York Theater

"A musical so tunefully entertaining that one could make allowances for such an outlandish plot. But we don’t have to: 'Goree' is based on a true story...The misery is played down. The music is what matters...There are faint and feint stabs here and there at character development and complications...Bradley’s book and lyrics play second fiddle to the fiddles...These musical numbers are so damn fun that, while 'Goree' may have its flaws, like the governor of Texas, I pardon them." Full Review


“Successfully couches a message about redemption through music in a consistently funny play…It is ultimately the humanity of these women ‘who've done bad’ that emerges from Bradley's well-plotted book and the fine acting of ‘Goree's’ ensemble…The songs in Act II are stronger than those in the first act…The last few songs are anti-climactic…But the ensemble finale is grand, and the ‘The Goree All-Girl String Band’ ends on a high note." Full Review

The New York Times

"The show is frustrating, though, because for all the lovely vocal harmonies of the prisoners, and for all the sweet sounds of their string instruments (cello, fiddle, bass, banjo, guitar), the songs are largely unmemorable, the lyrics and dialogue larded with clichés. And while this cast is abundantly talented, the characters are so thinly written and the plot so meandering that it’s hard to feel invested." Full Review

Funny, Great singing, Great writing, Entertaining, Masterful

See it if You want to see a very upbeat and wonderful play like Come From Away.

Don't see it if You don't like true stories that have a folksie tune.

Delightful, Enchanting, Great singing, Refreshing, Entertaining

See it if you like a good story with good music and good performances in a small venue.

Don't see it if don't like uplifting, heart felt stories with country (ish) music

Also This show really has it together for an early stage show. I think we w... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great singing, Great acting

See it if You like women singing and acting in harmony, in a true story from the Great Depression

Don't see it if You are prejudiced against convicts and/or women

Excellent cast who all play musical instruments and dance

See it if This new musical has a cast of fantastic actors who are also fantastic musicians. The story is good, everyone gets a solo, a fun evening

Don't see it if You don't like country music or shows like Bright Star. It's not perfect yet, there is some writing that needs a little clarification

Clever, Absorbing, Great singing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if You loce a powerhouse of performers who can act, sing, dance and play instruments. The story and music are wonderful!

Don't see it if I voted this as Best of the NYMF fest among the shoes I saw. Can't think of why you would not go.

Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you enjoy country music and an inspiring plot based on true story of female prison inmates who formed a band.

Don't see it if you do not like country western music.

Also I really enjoyed the wonderful instrumental arrangements and talented ... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining

See it if If you enjoy seeing female driven shows, and amazing live bluegrass music played on stage.

Don't see it if A fun evening of entertainment by some New York best rising stars.

Ambitious, Spirited, Great singing, Fascinating true story, Overstuffed

See it if you like C-W music. GASB has many terrific songs, well performed. True story plot fascinates. Great talent on stage. Better than Bright Star

Don't see it if you dislike ALL musicals, but GASB is special. It needs trimming. Too many solos; loses focus. Big Act II song for lead fizzles.

Also GASB is a wonderful show and this production is stellar. So much talen... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Entertaining, Great singing, Refreshing, Delightful

See it if You like a fact based story with country western music. You enjoy seeing actors & musicians playing dual roles. But some trimming is needed

Don't see it if You dislike a simple set musical, with a Texas/country western flavor. No frothy, fun stuff here.

Great singing, Entertaining, Relevant, Slow

See it if Heartfelt dramatic musical about female inmates at Texas prison farm during the 30's.Great musical pastiche with impressive work from cast

Don't see it if Book need to be fleshed out w/more characterization & pace needs tightening but even still a crowd-pleaser Best of NYMF 2017

Ambitious, Entertaining, Funny

See it if want to see a stage full of women singing their asses off. Like redemption stories.

Don't see it if dislike country music. Are a misogynist.

Entertaining, Great singing, Delightful

See it if You enjoy country music, strong female cast.

Don't see it if You don't like country music, need a strong story line.

Also Singing was great overall but the actress who played Hattie had an ama... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Edgy, Great acting

See it if if you love music and a great story

Don't see it if if you hate people who went to jail

Riveting, Ambitious, Entertaining, Must see, Refreshing

See it if You want to see an incredible true story nearly forgotten by history, played by a multi-talented cast that'll win your hearts.

Don't see it if You don't like country music or can't sympathize with convicts.

Great cast, Toe-tapping music, Great lights, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy "Grand Old Opry" style music. Really enjoyed the singing and dancing but the book let me down.

Don't see it if you want the back story of how the girls got in prison, how they learned to sing/play instruments & formed the band.

Also This was mostly glossed over.... Read more Read less

Great singing, Great staging, Great acting, Great music

See it if you want to see a show with an interesting subject ad some nice music that you don't typically here on Broadway.

Don't see it if you don't like country music or shows with a lot of underdeveloped characters.

Ambitious, Disappointing, Great singing, Relevant, Quirky

See it if You're a fan of country and western or bluegrass music, and enjoy some really great singing.

Don't see it if You're bothered by holes in storylines and plot points that don't really move anything along.

Entertaining, Great singing, Must see, Refreshing, Delightful

See it if You enjoy watching quadruple-threat artists tell a true, fascinating story

Don't see it if You don't like women dominating the stage with their talents

Also Could do without the queer-baiting, thanks. Lyrics & book are bad but ... Read more Read less

Disappointing, Somewhat promising, Charming but cliched, Unnecessarily straight

See it if you like any of the actors (who were all lovely in the production) and enjoy musicals with pretty, but by no means ground-breaking, music

Don't see it if you have an eye/ear for when you're being queer-baited (the two leads had crazy chemistry, but the script all but shouts "no homo!" at you)

Cliched, Ambitious, Great singing, Slow, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy country music and minimalistic sets. This show reminded me of "Once."

Don't see it if You're looking for a fast-paced story line. The book drags throughout and feels a bit corny.

Cute, Amateurish, Has potential, Poor instrument playing

See it if this score has potential as a cute country-like production. Needs good singers and instrumentalists to leave a positive impression.

Don't see it if you can hardly tolerate bad instrument playing and very average singing with some out of tune notes.

Banal, Cliched, Disappointing, Amateurish

See it if you enjoy a show with a problematic book (with tons of cliches), a generic score, and an amateur cast. Poor singing & instrument playing.

Don't see it if you enjoy musicals with a strong book, an interesting score, and highly professional actors.

Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Intelligent, Must see

See it if you like a good story with upbeat music and amazing voices.

Don't see it if idk

Must see, Riveting, Great singing, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if You loved COME FROM AWAY, ONCE, and BANDSTAND.

Don't see it if You are looking for a big musical spectacle.

Enchanting, Delightful, Ambitious, Resonant, Masterful

See it if You like true stories well told in a musical theatre genre by superb actor/musicians. Lyrical and entertaining also moving and powerful.

Don't see it if you don't like musicals that pack a really fun punch.