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The Tall Girls - Full Length Play, Drama

The Tall Girls

Meg Miroshnik

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Full Length Play, Drama

1m, 5f

ISBN: 9780573703652

Sometimes basketball is the only way out. Even for a girl. Even in the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.

More Information Below:

Description | Characters | Media | Author | Now Playing | Reviews
: Acting Edition
: Large Print
: Stage Manager

Minimum Fee: $75 per performance


Full Length Play



120 minutes (2 hours)

Time Period - 1930s

Settings Of Play - The tiny town of Poor Prairie during the 1930's Dust Bowl. 


Unit Set/Multiple Settings

Period Costumes


Mild Adult Themes


Adult, Teen (Age 14 - 18)


College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Dinner Theatre, Professional Theatre, Large Stage, Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


Meg Miroshnik is the 2012 recipient of the Whiting Award for Drama

The tiny hamlet of Poor Prairie doesn’t see a lot of folks coming into town, least of all men – they’ve all left to find desperately needed work. So when one gets off the train, everybody talks, especially the high school girls looking for a meal ticket. The marryin’ kind.

But this man is mysterious. He’s from Poor Prairie, but nobody knows where he’s been and his story’s got some…gaps. A few things are clear, though – he’s teaching at the high school, he knows basketball, and most importantly, he has the only inflated basketball in town.

As for that meal ticket? He may just have that after all, if he can get his Poor Prairie girls good enough at basketball to sell a few tickets. And keep ‘em from marryin’ off. And out of fights. And out of the sights of the Committee on Play, Girls Division (it’s the 1930s – when basketball was “dangerous” for girls). And stay ahead of that mysterious past…

Inspired by the flourishing and the decline of high school girls' basketball teams in the 1930s rural Midwest, The Tall Girls asks: who can afford the luxury of play? And what is the cost of childhood? Featuring a stong ensemble of female characters, The Tall Girls examines issues of class and gender amidst the historic 1930s Dust Bowl. 


"A TOUR-DE-FORCE BY THE PLAYWRIGHT...Tall Girls has a more realistic edge, with a bittersweet (emphasis on the bitter) second act that upsets all the outward tropes of the “stand up and cheer” genre." - Arts Atlanta, Read More

"What was so nice about [The Tall Girls] is that it is out of the ordinary, in a genre unique unto itself, and thoroughly entertaining...IT'S TOO GOOD TO RUN FOR JUST THREE WEEKS." - Atlanta Cultural Arts Review, Read More

The Tall Girls
 received its world premiere at the Alliance Theatre in March 2014 in a production directed by Susan V. Booth and dramaturged by Celise Kalke.

The play was developed during a residency at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Playwrights Conference in 2012 (Wendy C. Goldberg, Artistic Director; Preston Whiteway, Executive Director). The workshop was directed by Hayley Finn and dramaturged by Annie MacRae. The play was subsequently developed at La Jolla Playhouse as a part of their inaugural DNA Series in 2013. The workshop was directed by Juliette Carrillo and dramturged by Shirley Fishman.


1m, 5f


Ensemble cast, Non-Traditional casting, Features Teens


Note that, in this play, “tall” is a mental, not physical state of being. Though the characters’ language may have its own eccentric music, the accents are flat and broad (and not Southern).

JEAN - 15 ½, the strong forward. Cool-headed and decisive. A natural strategist. New to the sport.
ALMEDA - 14, the shooting guard. Scrappy, muscular, and temperamental; most likely to intentionally foul.
INEZ - 17, the small forward. Very little natural athletic skill, but a nurturing presence.
LURLENE - 16, the center. Tall and lazy. Unlikely to practice or rebound. A boy-crazy liar.
PUPPY - 18, the point guard. Small—very, very small. A little lady in the making, but a fast, nimble ball handler.
HAUNT JOHNNY - Handsome and much, much older.
  • Theatre Alliance Trailer

  • Yale creative team discusses The Tall Girls

Meg Miroshnik

Meg Miroshnik

Meg Miroshnik's plays include The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls, The Droll {A Stage-Play about the END of Theatre}, The Tall Girls, Old Actress, and an adaptation of the libretto for Shostakovich’s Moscow, Cheryomushki. She is the recipient of a 2012 Whiting Award.Her work has been developed or produced by the La Jolla Playhouse, O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, Center Theatre Group, ... view full profile

Other Meg Miroshnik titles:

Now Playing
James Kuhl 1/30/2017 11:28 AM
Really great play.  Wonderful roles for young women.  I enjoyed it quite a bit.  Challenges would be technical requirements. Calls for actors to play basketball well and to play onstage. Leaves it open for a wild variable in performance, but hey that's live theatre.  Would be very exciting.  If I could give a half stars, this rating  would be a 4.5  .

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