AUDITION NOTICE: A Bunch of Amateurs

WT is committed to being a diverse and open organisation. Auditions are open to anyone, regardless of background or experience, and we particularly welcome those who have been traditionally under-represented in theatre.


Synopsis

Jefferson Steel is an arrogant, fading, Hollywood action hero with a recent run of flops to his name. No longer as young or attractive as he thinks he is, he desperately needs a boost to his career. His agent receives an appeal from a theatre company in England who want to invite a famous name to play King Lear in their next production. They are in deep financial straits and only this, they believe, will generate the income to save their theatre.

So he reluctantly arrives in Stratford to begin rehearsals. Except that it isn’t the Stratford-Upon-Avon he was expecting but Stratford St John – a tiny village in the middle of nowhere. And it certainly isn’t the RSC but a bunch of amateurs, with all the petty rivalries and jealousies that one might expect.

About the show

I have directed quite a few comedies over the years and particularly enjoy working on those with a bit more depth than at first might be obvious. This play certainly has plenty of laughs but also occasions where we can contrast the comedy with something a little more serious. As one of the writers has said – ‘It’s a piece about the redemptive power of theatre.’ Best of all, it gives the chance to work on a small part of one of Shakespeare’s greatest plays and perform it so well that our audience is left stunned!

There are 7 main characters but also an opportunity for 3 or 4 others (gender or age not specific) to be involved in several of the scenes. The script mentions a backstage crew and some journalists who have several lines in a couple of scenes. There is also an occasion where an actor attends a rehearsal via Zoom on a laptop that gets moved around the room. I would expect these members of the cast to join the rehearsals for the final 4 weeks before performance.

We will be rehearsing throughout July and August but I am assuming that some people might have holidays booked so will be as accommodating as possible.

Parts

  • Jefferson Steel – A fading Hollywood star. Middle aged.
  • Dorothy Nettle – The director of the play and all-round good egg. Middle aged.
  • Jessica Steel – American daughter of Jefferson. 20s.
  • Nigel Dewbury – Pompous leading actor in the group. Believes he should be playing Lear. Middle aged.
  • Mary Plunkett – Runs the B&B where Jefferson is staying. Enthusiastic member of the group. Middle aged.
  • Denis Dobbins – Mr Fixit in the village and technician in the group. Not the cleverest of people. Any age.
  • Lauren Bell – Trophy wife of sponsor. Into fitness. Much wiser than she might appear. 20s – 40s

Auditions

I’ll be very flexible re: ages of cast but the relationships between the characters have to be believable and not appear creepy!

Read-through is on Tuesday 10th May at 7.45pm.

Auditions on Thursday 12th at 7.45pm and Sunday 15th May at 3pm. All held at the theatre.

Performance dates are 7th – 17th September 2022.

Auditions will be informal and take the form of reading sections of the play in pairs or groups. Please let me know if you are interested but won’t be available to audition!

Martin Kempton
Director
mktvld@gmail.com