Players Theatre of Southern Oaks

Calendar Girls AUDITIONS

CALENDAR GIRLS is COMING to The Savannah Center, June 2023

Players Theatre of Southern Oaks

Calendar Girls: Audition Information

ADVANCE READINGS:

October 11, 2022, 6:00pm at Aviary Recreation Center

We do not have advanced scripts to share, but for those interested, we shall have scripts available for candidates to read, copy, practice-read with friends. If interested, please attend this OPTIONAL SESSION on October 11, 2022 at Aviary Recreation Center.

Open Auditions (Villagers ONLY)

Tuesday, October 18, 2022 6:00pm at Aviary Recreation Center

Saturday, October 22, 2022 TBA (time/place)

Tuesday, October 25, 2022 6:00pm at Aviary Recreation Center

(Aviary Recreation Center is South of 44, on Morse 

Calendar Girls – Synopsis

Set in Yorkshire England, when Annie’s husband John dies of leukemia, she and best friend Chris resolve to raise money for better seating in the local hospital waiting room. They manage to persuade fellow Women’s Institute (WI) members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer. The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Yorkshire Dales. The calendar is a success, the calendar raises millions, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-found fame.

 

The play is based on the true story of eleven WI members who posed nude for a calendar to raise money for the Leukemia Research Fund.

 

Rehearsal Schedule:

Rehearsals begin Tuesday February 7 at 5:30pm at Aviary Recreation Center

Rehearsals are scheduled for every Tuesday at Aviary Recreation Center with additional dates every week TBA

 

Production Schedule:

Tech/Load In Sunday, June 18, 2023 at The Savannah Center

Full Dress/Tech Monday, June 19, 2023 at The Savannah Center

1st/2nd Performances:

Tuesday, June 20, 2023 at The Savannah Center; time TBA

3rd/4th Performances:

Wednesday, June 21, 2023 at The Savannah Center; time TBA

 

Character Sketches:

CHRIS: Plays 50/60s Chris is the life of the party. She will talk to people she doesn’t know, fill any awkward silences and generate laughter. Chris is at home in a crowd because she loves holding court and being the centre of attention. Without Chris in her life, Annie would be better behaved, but she wouldn’t have as much fun. When they are together they are like naughty schoolgirls.

ANNIE: Plays 50s/60s Annie will join in mischief, but is at heart, more conformist and less confrontational than Chris. After Chris has put a waiter’s back up in the restaurant, Annie will go in and make things right. The mischievousness Chris elicits saves Annie from being a saint. She has enough edge to be interesting, and enough salt not to be too sweet.

CORA: Plays late 50s/early 60s Cora’s past is the most eclectic. Her horizons broadened when she went to college. This caused a tectonic shift with her more parochial parents. She came back to them pregnant and tail-between-the-legs, but Cora has too much native resilience to be downtrodden. She is the joker in the pack, but never plays the fool. Her wit is deadpan. It raises laughter in others, but rarely in herself. Her relationship with her daughter is more akin to that between Chris and Annie. Cora doesn’t need to sing like a diva, but must be able to sing well enough to start the show with the classic English song, Jerusalem, and sing the snatches of other songs as required. The piano keyboard can be marked up to enable her to play basic chords should she not be a pianist.

JESSE Plays late 60s/70s Get on the right side of Jessie as a teacher and she’ll be the teacher you remember for life. Get on the wrong side and you will regret every waking hour. A lover of life, Jessie doesn’t bother with cosmetics – her elixir of life is bravery. Jessie goes on rollercoasters. Her husband has been with her a long time and is rarely surprised by her actions. Jessie bothers about grammar and will correct stallholders regarding their abuse of the apostrophe.

CELIA Plays late 30s/40s The fact that Celia is in the WI is the greatest justification of its existence. As a “trophy wife” she is more at home in a department store than a church hall, she may be slightly younger than Chris or the same age, but she always feels like she’s drifted in from another world. She is particularly enamored of Jessie, and despite the fact Jessie has very little time for most. Celias of this world, there is a rebelliousness in Celia to which Jessie responds. It is what sets Celia apart from the vapid materialism of her peer group and what makes her defect to the WI.

RUTH Plays 40s/50s Ruth’s journey is from the false self-confidence of the emotionally abused to the genuine self-confidence of the woman, happy in her own skin. Ruth is eager to please, but not a rag doll, and despite being Marie’s right hand woman, she is desperate to be one of the cartilage in the spine of the WI and keep everyone happy. She has spine herself. If she was too wet, no one would want her around, but they do, and they feel protective of her because they sense there is something better in Ruth than her life is letting out. They are proved right. The Rabbit costume should be a cocktail of good intentions and not enough time.

MARIE Plays 40s/50s Marie has gradually built the current “Marie” around herself over the years as a defense mechanism. She went to her Oz, Cheshire, and found Oz didn’t want her. She came back scorched. The WI is a trophy to her, which justifies her entire existence. There is a lingering part of Marie that would love to be on that calendar.

JOHN Plays 50s/60s John is a human sunflower, not a saint, not a hero, just the kind of man you’d want in your car when crossing America. When he dies, it feels like someone, somewhere, turned out the lights.

ROD Plays 50s/60s You have to be a certain kind of guy to stick with Chris, and Rod loves being that guy. He can give back what he gets and has a deadpan humor, which has always made Chris laugh. He drinks a lot but never so much as to have a problem. He would work every hour to make his shop a success and John was his mate, even though the relationship was originally channelled through the wives.

LAWRENCE Plays 30s/40s (Will double as LIAM) Hesitant without being nerdy, Lawrence is a shy young man with enough wit to make a joke and enough spirit to turn up at the WI hall in the first place. When he arranges the shots, he is close to female nudity, but sees only the photo.

LADY CRAVENSHIRE Plays 60s/70s, Lady Cravenshire really doesn’t mean to be so patronizing, but the WI girls seem4 from another world, the world of her estate workers. Dress: when she makes an entrance, she must make an entrance. She wears largely white or cream to outplay the others, with a bigger hat than Marie. She is not a tweed wearer. She must glide in like a galleon.

ELAINE Plays 30s/40s, Elaine really doesn’t mean to be so patronizing, but Jessie seems from another world, the world of her gran. She wears clinical whites. You feel as if you could cut yourself on that dress.

LIAM  (Will Double as LAWRENCE) Plays 30/50s, Liam would like to be directing other things than photo shoots for washing powders. He’s not so unprofessional as to let it show, but we can sense a slight weariness at having to deal with these women. There’s a resigned patience to his actions and each smile he makes we feel is professional. For Liam, this photo shoot is a job, and not the job he wanted.

BRENDA HULSE Plays 40s/50s Brenda is a woman committed to tedious subjects. In the previous year she spoke to the group on “The History of the Tea Towel”. This year it is “The Fascinating World of Broccoli”. She soldiers on seriously while her audience dissolves sniggering. Brenda is a bore.

LADIES ENSEMBLE We shall cast an additional 6-8 non-speaking ladies to fill scenes in the show and assist with the nude calendar shots.

[Age ranges for characters are merely a guide, not absolute]

A Word About Nudity

As you may know, this play involves nudity on the part of Chris, Annie, Cora, Jessie, Celia and Ruth. Please do not let this put you off. The nudity is very quick, not at all salacious and the audience will not see anything they shouldn’t. Everything important is artfully concealed by props and all handled in the best possible taste.

Our Calendar

As a marketing tool to promote the play and for authenticity (Life Imitating Art) we have planned to produce a “nude calendar” of our own involving the successful candidates. A portion of proceeds from the sale of the calendar will go towards The Leukemia Foundation. There will be several individual and several group shots involving a “Calendar Girl” participating in activities as presented in the play, for example: gardening, cooking, hobby activity, baking, putting on make-up, car repair, reading a book, watching TV, knitting, cleaning house, playing a musical instrument, singing Christmas Carols.

Successful candidates for Chris, Annie, Cora, Jessie, Celia, and Ruth will be required to participate in the photo shoot and fill six months of the calendar. Five additional ladies drawn from other speaking roles/ensemble members in cast will be selected for the photo shoot and calendar for the other five months of the calendar. The “Calendar Girl” for the 12th month (December-Christmas shot) will include a group-shot of the entire cast as scripted plus the ladies ensemble.

AUDITION MATERIALS/ADDITION INFORMATION:

You will read (cold-read) selections from the script.

Accents? The show takes place in England. Americans are notorious for “creating/copying” accents based on their favorite characters in films. While our ears are not as sensitive to the dozens and dozens of English regional variations as UK citizens are, Brits can identify locales of legit English accents just as quickly as spotting American would-bes. Let’s just say, for this art, our art, “correct” English accents are less important than sincere acting.

If you want to “try” an accent, go for it. If not, that’s okay too. The important thing about speaking onstage is that our audiences can hear and understand your words… and that is the goal we’ll aim for!

There is some group-singing in the show. The singing applied in the show is more like “singing in church” NOT “singing in a church choir”. As such, everyone will participate in a small-group sing of “Happy Birthday”. One character, Cora, however, will sing a solo and having a suitable-pleasant singing voice would be ideal.

To prepare for the show, to get a “feeling” of the show, storyline, characters, and requirements/expectations, we suggest you watch Calendar Girls starring Mirren Mirren (available on PRIME for $3.99 rental) OR check-out video from local library OR you may find video clips of the movie/trailer on YouTube.

 

We hope to see you at auditions!

 

Best Regards,

Dave Saxe

David Newell

Players Theatre

np-Calendar-Girls-Logo-web.jpg