Jesse Gall

Behind The Scenes With Dolly Parton: The Teleprompter, The Sequins, The Shoes

In Dolly Stories, Humor on June 8, 2011 at 3:35 pm

I had the pleasure of sitting in on a rehearsal at Dollywood featuring the one and only Ms. Dolly Parton herself. She looked exactly like what I thought she would look like except shorter. She was wearing some black pants and a tight black blouse, both of which had gold sequins sewed up, down, and across them. Her hair had more weight than she did, and her four-inch heels brought her up to about 5’5. The woman is small. I mean, in some ways she’s very large (hehe), but for the most part she’s the tiniest.

I think anyone who meets Dolly would tell you that she’s nothing but lighthearted. She jokes about absolutely everything. Her clothers, her boobs, her shoes, everything. Engaged in small talk, one of the directors of Dollywood Entertainment said something like Well it’s never easy to walk in someone else shoes! So naturally, Dolly lifts her toothpick leg into the air, teetering on her remaining limb, while raising her four inch heel to the face of the director and laughing “Ha! Just try walkin’ a mile in these shoes!”

See, Dolly Parton thinks Dolly Parton is the funniest. I mean, she’s right, so I don’t think it’s snobbish at all. She follows every one of her own jokes with a hearty laugh and a huge smile. She might be the happiest person I’ve ever seen.

Something else to know about Dolly. She doesn’t know the words to any of her songs. And she admits it. While waiting on her teleprompter to be fixed (her teleprompter by the way is a 12-foot movie screen), she walked backstage to talk to some of her chorus singers, specifically the four children who sing in her chorus.

“Well hey there! Do you know your part today? What you’re singing? I bet you do! I don’t know my part and I wrote the damn thing!”

Everyone laughed, Dolly laughed the loudest.

“I mean if I don’t have my teleprompter I’m hopeless. I mean back at the beginning of my career I could remember the songs but as you get older and your mind, you know, and they’re just so many songs! I need my teleprompter.”

She knows who she is and she doesn’t care. I mean why should she? She’s royalty in these parts. She’s given this town an economy and thousands of people jobs. She’s just one of those good people. The type you don’t meet often enough. It was a joy.

Until the end, the Mended Blend.

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