You Can't Take It With You - Memorial Opera House

When & Where

Monday, July 17 and Tuesday, July 18, 2017, at 7:00 pm

Memorial Opera House
104 Indiana Avenue
Valparaiso, IN 46383

Performance Dates

September 15 – October 1, 2017

Synopsis

At first, the Sycamores seem mad, but it is not long before we realize that if they are mad, the rest of the world is madder. Tony, attractive young son of the Kirbys, falls in love with Alice Sycamore and brings his parents to dine at the Sycamore home on a wrong evening. The shock sustained by the Kirbys, who are invited to eat cheap food, shows Alice that marriage with Tony is out of the question. Meantime, Tony, who knows the Sycamores are right and his own people wrong, will not give her up. No mention has as yet been made of the strange activities of certain members of the household engaged in the manufacture of fireworks; nor of the printing press set up in the parlor; nor of Grandpa’s interview with the tax collector when he tells him he doesn’t believe in the income tax.

Casting Requirements

We are seeking 7 Women and 9 Men to fill out the cast. Actors should be prepared for cold readings for the following characters:

Penelope Sycamore (Early to Mid 50s): Usually goes by Penny. Mother of Essie and Alice, wife of Paul and daughter of Martin. A loving and caring mother and wife, Penny is as eccentric as the other members of her family. Penny was an enthusiastic painter but gave up this hobby for writing when a typewriter was delivered to the house by mistake eight years earlier. Charmingly blunt, she causes some embarrassment during the Kirby’s visit, first by calling Mrs. Kirby’s beloved spiritualism “a fake” and then by proposing a word association game and asking what everyone associates with the words “sex”, “bathroom,” and “lust.” Penny’s enjoyment of life and direct speech are in marked contrast to Mrs. Kirby’s seeming discontent and reserved acceptance of social conventions.

Essie Carmichael (Mid 20s – early 30s): Wife of Ed, daughter of Penny and Paul, Grandaughter of Martin, sister of Alice.  She is childish. As a hobby, she makes candy that Ed sells. Essie dreams of being a ballerina. She has spent eight years studying with Boris Kolenkhov but is a terrible dancer. She dances her way through the play, improvising her steps to her husband Ed’s xylophone music. Like the other Sycamores, Eddie is both happily absorbed in tasks which amuse her and wholly undisturbed by the eccentricities of her family.

Rheba (Ageless): The maid and cook to the Sycamore family. She is treated almost like a part of the family. She is dating Donald. In the words of Mrs. Sycamore “The two of them are really cute together.”

Alice Sycamore (Early to Mid 20s): Alice is Penny and Paul’s attractive younger daughter. The twenty-two-year-old Alice has, according to the stage directions “escaped the tinge of mild insanity” the pervades her relatives, but her “devotion and love for them are plainly apparent.” She falls in love with Tony Kirby. She works for Kirby and Company and is rather embarrassed by the eccentricities of her family when she has Tony and his parents at her house.

Gay Wellington (most likely played over 40): Described in the stage directions as “an actress, nymphomaniac, and a terrible souse,” comes to the Sycamore house to discuss a script with Penny but then passes out on the couch. She occasionally awakens, usually just in time to contribute to the chaos that erupts following the Kirby’s unexpected visit.

Miriam Kirby (Mid 50s – Early 60s): Wife of Mr. Kirby, mother of Tony. She is an extremely prim and proper woman the conservative female equivalent of her businessman husband. She, too, is shocked by the unconventional Vanderhof-Sycamores, Her hobby is spiritualism and she is affronted when Penny says it is “a fake”. She seems to reveal she is dissatisfied with her marriage when in a word game she associates “honeymoon” with “dull” and almost admits that Mr. Kirby talks about Wall Street even during sex.

The Grand Duchess Olga Katrina (Mid 40s – Mid 50s): She was one of the Grand Duchesses of Russia before the Revolution. Since then she has been forced to flee to America where she has found work as a waitress in Childs’ Restaurant. The rest of her family has had a similar fate, such as her Uncle Sergei, The Grand Duke, who is now an elevator man. She loves to cook

Grandpa – Martin Vanderhof (Early – Mid 70s): Father of Penny, Grandfather to Alice and Essie. Head of the Household. He is an eccentric but wise and happy older man who has never paid his income tax because he doesn’t believe in it, as he feels that the government wouldn’t know what to do with the money if he paid. One day thirty-five years ago he gave up his successful business career, since, as he explains to Mr. Kohlenkhov, it struck him that he “wasn’t having any fun,” so he “just relaxed” and has “been a happy man ever since.” He now has “time enough for everything” and, as he tells Mr. Kirby, he no longer has “six hours of things I have to do every day before I get one hour to do what I like in.” He goes to circuses, commencements, throws darts and collects stamps. He provides the philosophical center of the play, explaining the folly of seeking material wealth at the expense of personal fulfillment, and asking only, as he says while saying grace before dinner, that their family be allowed “to go along and be happy in their own sort of way.”

Paul Sycamore  (Late 50s – Early 60s): Father of Essie and Alice, husband of Penny, Son-in-law of Martin. He is a tinkerer who makes fireworks in the basement with the help of his assistant Mr. De Pinna. Quiet, charming and mild-mannered, he never loses his composure, even when the fireworks he makes in the basement unexpectedly explode. Like his wife and father-in-law, Paul possesses what the stage directions call “a kind and youthful air.”

Mr. De Pinna (Middle Aged): Described in the stage directions as a “bald-headed little man with a serious manner,” the middle-aged Mr. De Pinna arrived at the Vanderhof residence eight years ago to deliver ice and ended up moving in. He shows how open and accepting the Vanderhof-Sycamore family can be: everyone is obviously welcome in this house. Mr. De Pinna has clearly taken to this family’s way of life. He helps Paul make firecrackers, poses in Roman costume for Penny’s painting of a discus thrower, and remains undisturbed by the chaotic household.

Ed Carmichael (Early – Mid 30s): Stage directions describe him as “a nondescript young man” in his thirties. Loyal and devoted husband of Essie. He is a xylophone player and distributes Essie’s candies. Ed is an amateur printer who prints anything that sounds good to him such as some of the writings of the revolutionary Russian Communist Leon Trotsky: “God Is the State; the State Is God.” He also prints up dinner menus for his family. He is mistakenly a person of interest to the FBI who fancies him an insurrectionist attempting to undermine the United States Government.

Donald (Ageless): Boyfriend to Rheba, who serves as volunteer handyman and errand runner for the Sycamores. He is on welfare.

Wilbur C. Henderson (40 – 60): An employee of the IRS, he comes to collect the tax money owed by Grandpa; and can’t understand why the latter won’t pay income tax.

Tony Kirby (Mid – Late 20s): The stage directions tell us he is a “very nice young man” who has recently attended Yale and Cambridge. He has fallen in love with Alice Sycamore and wants to marry her. Tony is a Vice President or Kirby & Co., his father’s business. He purposely brings his parents to the Vanderhof-Sycamore house on a wrong night, because, as he says to his father, “I wanted you to see a real family as the really were. A family that loved and understood each other.” Determined to do something that he wants to do, Tony rejects his father’s business and embraces the Vanderhof philosophy of seeking happiness over wealth.

Boris Kolenkhov (Mid 40s – Mid 50s): A Russian who escaped to America shortly before the Russian Revolution. He is very concerned with world politics, and the deterioration of his homeland. He is the ballet instructor of Essie, aware that she is untalented at dancing, and ever the opportunist, he keeps working with her, conveniently, at meal times. He is opinionated and often loudly declares that something “stinks”! He has a wrestling match with Mr. Kirby.

Anthony P. Kirby (Mid 50s – Early 60s): Husband of Mrs. Kirby, father of Tony. He is a very proper man who is president of Kirby & Co., a successful Wall Street businessman, and secretly despises his job. He is a traditional authority figure who represents the conventional worldview the Vanderhof-Sycamores reject. Conservative and repressed, he has perpetual indigestion and tells his wife he thinks “lust is not a human emotion.” He is initially shocked by Alice’s family and says Grandpa Vanderhof’s idea of doing only what makes you happy is “a very dangerous philosophy…it’s un-American.” His hobby is raising expensive orchids. He is also a member of the Harvard Society, the Union Club, the National Geographic Society, and the Racquet Club. He lives life “the right way” and is miserable for it. He undergoes the most major transformation in the play.

How to Eat Like A Child - Chicago Street Theatre

by Delia Ephron, John Forster, Judith Kahan
directed by Kathleen Erny & Lisa Formosa-Parmigiano

When & Where

Tuesday, June 20 – 6 to 9 pm

Performance Dates

August 25, 26 & 27, September 1, 2, 3, 8 & 9.

Casting Requirements

Ages 5-17. Please fill out the Audition Form and come prepared to sing 24 bars from a song of your choice. Please bring the sheet music. An accompanist will be provided. If you do not have sheet music, you may sing a simple song, acapella. Cold readings from the script will be handed out at the auditions. Rehearsals will be 2-3 afternoons a week in July and full days in August, before school begins, when we will hold Tech Rehearsals in the early evening (5:30-8:30 pm). Production dates are August 25, 26 & 27, September 1, 2, 3 8 & 9. For a full description and sample songs, please visit How to Eat Like A Child.

 

Hair - Chicago Street Theatre

Director’s name – Bob Cooley

When & Where

July 24 & 25th at 7:00pm

 Chicago Street Theater

Performance Dates

October

Synopsis

The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical is a product of the hippie counterculture and sexual revolution of the late 1960s; several of its songs became anthems of the anti-Vietnam War peace movement. Hair tells the story of the “tribe”, a group of politically active, long-haired hippies of the “Age of Aquarius” living a bohemian life in New York City and fighting against conscription into the Vietnam War. Claude, his good friend Berger, their roommate Sheila and their friends struggle to balance their young lives, loves, and the sexual revolution with their rebellion against the war and their conservative parents and society. Ultimately, Claude must decide whether to resist the draft as his friends have done, or to succumb to the pressures of his parents (and conservative America) to serve in Vietnam, compromising his pacifist principles and risking his life.

 

Casting Requirements:

Casting is open to performers 18 and up. A youthful appearance is essential except where noted. Please prepare a monologue not to exceed 150 words (you may use one of those provided on their website – http://www.chicagostreet.org/auditions/ – or bring one of your own) and a vocal selection not to exceed 32 bars. Bring your sheet music, an accompanist will be provided. There will also be a dance evaluation.

Principle characters:

  • Claude Hooper Bukowski – Gentle and beautiful, Claude is conflicted about burning his draft card and avoiding conscription. Songs include “Manchester”, “Where Do I Go?”, and “I Got Life”.
  • George Berger – Brash, magnetic, and aggressively irreverent, Berger is the de-facto leader of the hippy “tribe”. Songs include “My Donna” and “Going Down”
  • Sheila Franklin – Sheila, 2nd semester NYU, is a sometimes over-bearing student militant and organizer. Songs include “Easy to Be Hard” and “Good Morning Starshine”.
  • Hud – Hud is a militant “black power” advocate. He will try to intimidate you by getting in your face about race in America. Songs include “Colored Spade” and “Abie Baby”.
  • Jeanie – Jeanie, incredibly sweet, understands Claude better than anyone. She is a wise, passionate, creative woman, who is pregnant with the tribe’s baby. Songs include “Air”.
  • Neil “Woof” Donovan – Woof is distinctly bi-sexual and has a thing for Mick Jagger (and probably Berger). Woof’s songs include “Sodomy”.
  • Crissy – Crissy is a sweet young hippy. Her songs include “Frank Mills”.
  • Dionne – Dionne is sassy and lots of fun. She adds some soulful backup parts to many of the songs. Dionne is featured on “Ain’t Got No”, “Eyes, Look Your Last”, “Dead End”, “Abie Baby”, “Air”, “Walking in Space”, “White Boys”, and “3-5-0-0”.

The Tribe – We could call the Tribe “the chorus”, but that would not be an adequate description of their responsibilities. There are 43 numbers in “Hair”. The Tribe sings 10 of these themselves, and is featured on 21 of the others. And they dance on almost every one of these. That’s 31 songs featuring the Tribe singing and dancing. They almost never leave the stage. They are singers, dancers, and actors, and each tribesman has the opportunity to create their own unique character. We are looking to cast 10-12 tribe members, equal number men and women. Racial/ethnic diversity will be very important.

Earth Mother – This is what I’m calling the vocalist who will sing “Aquarius” and “What a Piece of Work is Man” (a duet). A hippie role for a more experienced female performer. This actress will probably double as Claude’s Mom.

There are 3-4 roles for more mature men. A character called “Margaret Meade”, who sings the song “My Conviction” in drag, could be a cameo, or be performed by one of the men that appear as various authority figures (high school dean, military generals, dad).

Director’s Notes

This will be a difficult show to mount and rehearse. The Tribe has dance and vocal responsibilities on so many numbers that rehearsal attendance will be of primary importance. Auditions are being held 11 weeks prior to opening to allow for flexibility and time to assimilate the large amount of material.  We can work with scheduling conflicts if we know about them in advance, but multiple additions to your conflict schedule after casting will present a serious problem. Please come to auditions with a complete list of your weekday evening and weekend conflicts for the dates July 31st through Oct 12th (opening night is October 13th). Again, we will work to accommodate conflicts to get the best talent on the stage, but conflicts after the fact are detrimental to the quality of the show, and particularly to the efforts of your cast mates.

About nudity: While it is not mentioned in the script, most theater buffs know that Hair usually features a nude scene at the end of Act One, after Claude sings “Where Do I Go.” Most of the principals involved in mounting the original production concede that it was mostly a publicity stunt, but it has nonetheless become a standard part of the show. Although we are not sure yet exactly how we are going to stage the end of Act One, I want to assure all prospective auditioners that nudity on your part will never be required. You will not be asked at auditions if you if you are willing to do a nude scene. If the production team decides some form of discreetly lit and very brief nudity would add to the show, and if the group of performers as a whole decides they are in favor of that, it will still be individually strictly voluntary. A comfortable, safe, and supportive environment is essential for this show, and we will do everything necessary to provide one.

Contact for More Information

Visit their website at: http://www.chicagostreet.org/auditions/

For information about auditions, scheduling, or with any other questions or concerns, please email the director Bob Cooley (bcool4biz@gmail.com)

 

The Primary English Class - 4th Street Theater

Director’s name – Rob Hunt

When & Where

July 1st at 2:00pm

June 2nd at 6:00pm

4th Street Theater

125 N 4th Street

Chesterton, IN

Performance Dates

November 3 thru 19th, 2017.

 

Synopsis

The setting is a classroom where an eager young teacher is about to tackle her first assignment—teaching basic English to a group of new citizens, not one of whom speaks the same language as another. Included are an excitable Italian, an over-eager Frenchman, a near-sighted German, an elderly Chinese woman and a Japanese girl. The one thing that they manage to convey to each other is that their respective names all mean “wastebasket,” but struggle as she will, the teacher, Debbie, is hard-pressed to bring them beyond this point of communication. Fortunately the voice of an offstage translator enables the audience to understand what those onstage cannot comprehend, but this does not help the sorely pressed Debbie, whose frustration is increased by her fear of a mugger lurking outside the door. Rigid and pedagogical at first, she becomes more frantic and desperate as her lack of success with her charges mounts, and the wonderfully funny misunderstandings multiply, until, at last, all self-control (and sanity) vanish into total, and totally hilarious, panic.
An hilarious comedy of true originality. “…a gem of an idea…a soufflé with a clever recipe and a taste you will not forget in a hurry.” —NY Times. “Wonderfully funny, gloriously observant…” —NY Magazine. “…the playwright has erected a comic Tower of Babel that has the audience in stitches.” —The Hollywood Reporter. “…a tour de force of stunning originality.” —Village Voice.

 

Casting Requirements:

Smiednik – a polish man
Patumiera – an Italian man
Lapubelle – a french man
Mulleimer – a German man
Pong – a Chinese woman
Kuzukago – a Japanese woman
Wastba – an American woman
male translator
female translator

 

Materials to Prepare

Reading from the script.

Director’s Notes

 

Rehearsals will start in September

Contact for More Information

Robert Hill (director)
773-817-5325

 

Mark of Cain by Peter Colley - Beatniks

Director’s name – Rip and Bonnie Johnson

When & Where

August 13th 2017    5:00 – 6:30pm
August 14th 2017    7:00 – 8:30pm
Beatniks
418/420 Conkey St.
Hammond, IN 46324

Performance Dates

Three weekends!!
Oct 20, 27, 28 &; Nov 3, 4 at 8pm
Oct 22, 29 & Nov 5 at 2pm

Synopsis

Story of a man and his new bride returning to the family home, where a horrible tragedy took place many years ago.
And some different, yet interesting, caretakers of the property, a doctor, his twin brother and…..
strange things begin to happen as the mystery unfolds.
Creating the question, who had actually committed the heinous act?
Packed with intrigue, effects and surprising results in true Colley style!

 

Casting requirements

2 men…………middle age?  (one plays a double role – twins)
2 women………middle age?
1 woman………older age

 

Materials to Prepare

None – read from script

Director’s Notes

This play has lots of action.
The ages will depend on actors who come out.
Fight scenes and more

 

Contact – for more information

Rip or Bonnie Johnson……….219-852-0848