Beverly Theatre Guild Chicago – Stage Production of ‘Present Laughter’
Audition / Call Type: Theater
‘Present Laughter’ is a lighthearted farce that celebrates playwright Noel Coward’s legendary wit and larger-than-life persona. Based on Coward himself, actor Garry Essendine is the star of the London theatrical scene at the height of his fame and adored by legions of admirers–perhaps a little too much.
Fans regularly throw themselves at Garry’s feet, drawn in by his charm and charisma, throwing his household into chaos. In the week before Garry is set to embark on an African tour, he is forced to juggle a besotted young woman with stars in her eyes, an unhinged young playwright obsessed with being in Garry’s presence, his best friend’s wife who is determined to seduce him, his manager, his producer, his secretary, his estranged ex-wife, and an impending mid-life crisis as his birthday looms ever closer.
Roles to be Cast:
Garry Essendine (Lead)
A cigarette-holder-wielding matinee idol slipping reluctantly into middle age; self-dramatizing, self-important, and hopelessly self-infatuated.
Liz Essendine (Lead)
Garry’s (separated) wife; stylish and able to hold her own at a party, alongside (or even in spite of) London’s most celebrated, romantic leading man; not easily shaken, gracious, witty, but when she lets her guard down, full hearted; self-possessed and dignified.
Garry’s secretary, pal, and confidant; hard working and indispensable to Garry, she tries to be a taskmaster, but must instead be a bastion of patience, albeit with varying degrees of success; she’s quite competent and great at managing people, but her stress and the lack of time in a day emerge in a sardonic sense of humor.
An aspiring, experimental playwright who still lives with his parents in Uckfield; his unfulfilled ambition has left him loudly obsessive, quietly jealous, and secretly resentful; human psychology eludes him somewhat, so he’s taken to writing dystopian fantasies; lofty and grandiose, he would love to transform the theater to a world of ideas. Seems gamely unaware of social cues or rules regarding personal hygiene. Develops an annoying hero-worship of Garry.
Henry’s wife; a femme fatale whose appetite for social status is matched only by her other appetites; savvy, coy, yet witty; extremely stylish, she’s aware of her sexual prowess and enjoys leaving others feeling destabilized.
Garry’s recent dalliance; a pretty, gently-bred debutante who grew up absolutely idolizing Garry Essendine; quirky and shrewd; she truly believes she’s meant to be Garry’s muse; a budding social climber, she does not realize that her attempts to be more sophisticated than she is are highly transparent; any touch of innocence about her is balanced by her ambition.
Garry’s producer; shrewd and business savvy; hospitable yet proud; after many years of working with Garry, he appreciates him, but would prefer Garry’s petulance be managed by someone else; he feels he deserves a wife befitting his success, but doesn’t mind indulging a few mistresses on the side.
Garry’s manager; smart but with a romantic streak; deferential to a point, but not without taste and a sense of the theater’s tradition; enjoys being Garry’s artistic sounding board; he’s fallen deeply and obsessively in love with Joanna and is carrying on with her behind Henry’s back.
Female. Any adult age
The chain -smoking Scandinavian housekeeper; unfazed and slow-moving; tackling those chores she sits fit, and in her own time; superstitious and eccentric, she enjoys a seance to commune with the dead in her spare time; the living find her strange, and her conversational skills don’t alleviate this.
Garry’s valet; cockney and cocksure; he’s well-meaning and has found his own rhythm to work, regardless of how others might like to have him do things; his active love life, which he loves to boast about, has him spirited and jaunty.
Daphne’s aristocratic aunt; a model of English propriety; she has helped raise Daphne with the proper values befitting a young woman, but as a patron of the arts, she has indulged Daphne’s hope of being an actress.
City or Location of call: Chicago
Please submit to: email@example.com by 12/05/2023 9:00 PM
General open auditions for the Beverly Theatre Guild’s production of Noel Coward’s ‘Present Laughter’ will be held at:
Baer Theater at Morgan Park Academy, 2153 W. 111th Street, Chicago.
Please arrive to sign in 15 minutes prior to audition time slot. To sign up for an audition time slot, go to: https://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/rnjxn
Please bring headshot and resume, if available.
Auditions will consist of readings from the script. Audition sides will be posted on the Beverly Theatre Guild website (www.beverlytheatreguild.org) prior to auditions. Up to 3-minute prepared comic monologues also welcomed.
This casting notice was posted by: Beverly Theatre Guild Chicago
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