'We want to share the music and story': Fringe show about Dolly Parton packs in crowds
Andrea House and Gianna Read-Skelton have been working 9 to 5 p.m. for the past few months getting a show ready for its Edmonton Fringe debut. "Coat of Many Colours" pays tribute to Dolly Parton, an artist special to the pair.
“We’re fans and we want to share her music and her story,” said Andrea House, who also recently played Edmonton’s Folk Music Festival.
The production explores the life and music of Parton, who charted 25 Number 1 songs.
“When you think of the country queen, you always think of Dolly, for sure,” said Read-Skelton.
The duo not only sings a lot of Parton’s hits with a live band, but also tells stories of the singer’s life. Parton grew up poor before becoming one of the most successful artists in music after overcoming a number of obstacles along the way.
“It’s a story of triumph where a woman who didn’t really know if she was good enough really became who I think is probably the most iconic and important female songwriter of all time,” said House.
House says she hopes the show will have people see Parton for more than her glamorous image, including her trademark blonde hair.
“When people look at her they think it’s just about the outside and that’s not true at all. It’s the opposite,” said House.
"Coat of Many Colours" also highlights the humorous side of Parton.
“She has a lot of great sayings, and one of the ones is, 'It takes a lot of money to make me look this cheap,'" said House.
“And when people called her a dumb blonde, she was like, 'I don’t really care that much because I know I’m not dumb and I know I’m not a blonde,'" said Read-Skelton.
The pair hope people leave the show with a greater appreciation of Parton's contribution to music and, of course, an hour listening to her hit songs.
“We love her so much that we’re singing it all,” said House.
And they’re along in loving Parton. "Coat of Many Colours" is playing at the CKUA space during the Fringe Festival and all the shows during the Fringe are sold out.