KCC Theatre- 2014/2015
‘Pirates of Penzance’ Auditions Extended!
A second round of auditions for Pirates are this Friday (1/23) at 6pm! Be there on time and plan to stay until 9. Bring a prepared piece of music of your choosing with printed sheet music for our accompanist. We are looking for singers and actors ages 15 and up (community members welcome)! Below are some notes going into auditions. Be familiar with this stuff when you show up for auditions and if you have time, do a quick YouTube search for “Pirates of Penzance” (aim for staged versions instead of movie versions) and see what you’re getting into! Not everyone cast will be required to attend every night at first, but you should have most of your weekday evenings free; especially Fridays from 6-9pm. If you have any questions, email director Brad Poer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PIRATES OF PENZANCE AUDITION NOTES
First things first, this show is an operetta, which means EVERYONE has to sing and sing well! The music itself will be the biggest challenge in producing this show. Everyone cast will need to spend a good deal of time practicing outside of rehearsal to get the precision right for performance- but if we all put in the work, it will be worth it in the slack-jawed awe on the faces of our audiences!
Secondly, this show is a COMEDY! Keep in mind that we are going for an over-the-top, Looney Tunes feel to the show itself- lots of slapstick, inside jokes, double-takes and choreographed moments, but dancing experience is NOT necessary. We will create and adjust choreography to the overall capabilities of each role and group as needed. The music comes first, the funny comes second! Now, for the characters…
Frederic (tenor): Frederic is a pirate apprentice who’s apprenticeship is almost complete as the show starts. Being a slave to his sense of morality and duty, he doesn’t want to remain a pirate any longer. He has a huge amount of solo work and will be required to do physical stuff onstage, too (sword fights, some dancing, etc).
Mabel (soprano): Youngest daughter of general Stanley, she is Frederic’s love interest and the romantic center of the show. She is light and airy, but not stupid and can be willful and powerful when she needs to be. Mabel has extensive solos and very difficult musical passages to sing but must always be able to maintain a sense of character at the same time.
Major General Stanley (comic baritone): The Major General must possess excellent comic timing and amazing vocal clarity and articulation. His solos are built around the use of ‘patter’, extremely fast and precise lyrics (a master rapper of his day, if you will). He hides his cleverness beneath a facade of being a little old, frail and forgetful when in truth he’s easily the most intelligent character onstage at any given moment.
The Pirate King (bass/baritone): A largely unsuccessful commander, the pirate king, although a flamboyant braggart, is too tender-hearted to do what pirates are supposed to do (namely, he’s a sucker for anyone who claims to be an orphan, being one himself). He will need to be physical and larger than life with use of swordplay, some dancing, etc. The Pirate King also has several iconic songs that he leads.
Samuel (baritone): Pirate King’s right-hand man; has a solo or two.
Ruth (alto): A maid to the pirates, she’s been the one who’s taken care of Frederic for most of his time with the crew. She has a couple of key solo songs with Frederic and the Pirate King.
Captain of the Police (baritone/bass): Good natured, bumbling and skittish, the captain and his men are called upon by Mabel and her family to entrap and arrest the pirates. The Captain is a character based in physical comedy. While dance experience is not necessary, a definite willingness to look silly and fearlessly look fearful is a must.
The Pirates (6-10): Um, they’re PIRATES! This mob of characters will all be created through amplifying and warping the personalities of the actors placed in the roles. We may be casting cross-dressed female actors as male pirates or may have a couple of straight-up female pirates as well. Powerful voices and bold physical choices are needed from the pirates.
The Cops (6-10): The cops are basically reflections of the Captain. Very cartoon-y and silly, the cops must have tight physical control and be willing to go all out in the name of comedy. They sing several songs in unison and harmony with the Captain and with the there cast groups. We are open to casting female actors as cops- but any woman cast in the role may be subject to wearing a mustache as there were no female police in Victorian England.
The Daughters (6-10): The daughters do not need to actually look like they are related (in some versions of the show they care called ‘wards’ instead of daughters). We will be casting a fairly broad net age-wise for the daughters. They will sometimes be choreographed to move as a unit in sync but will sometimes be allowed to express each characters individuality as well. They are all versions of the classic Victorian feminine ideal, so a bit of historical research and control of posture, mannerisms and gesture will be needed in addition to clear, bright voices and comic timing.