Auditions for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”

ASGwebPageArt2inA Midsummer Night’s Dream  Directed by Tanya Lazar
Monday, March 13, 7 pm, Upper Hall
Tuesday, March 14, 7 pm, Lower Hall
Call-backs Thursday, March 17th, Upper Hall, 7:30 pm

There are 9 performances: June 9-11, 15-18 and 22-24.
Sunday, June 18, is a 2 pm performance with call at 12:30 pm.
All other performances are at 7:30; call is at 6 pm.
Performances are outdoors in the Field Theater adjacent to the Arden Green. If raining, the performance is moved indoors to the Gild Hall.

All parts are open and teens are welcome to audition for adult parts.

• Audition scenes are available for reading as soon as we open the doors, around 6:45.
• Auditions for all actors begin at 7:30 by scene readings from the play.

You only need to attend one night of auditions: either Monday or Tuesday. If you wish to attend both nights, you are welcome to do so, but you will only be heard on one night unless time permits. Call-backs are held on Thursday, March 17, and actors will be contacted if we need you to return for call-backs. If you are not asked to return for call-backs, this does NOT mean you didn’t get a part. It just means we have a clear enough idea of who you are and what you can do so we don’t need to see you again.

Rehearsals start Monday, April 3, with a full read-through. After that, rehearsals are held 3 times a week, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Of course, the week before the show opens, we are rehearsing daily. For specific dates, please see the Audition Form. Rehearsal dates are on the back.

We start our rehearsals in the Gild Hall and move to our outdoor location in May as soon as weather permits. Except when the weather forces us indoors, this is an outdoor show. You will be performing (and rehearsing) in a beautiful, wooded setting that includes insects and doesn’t include air-conditioning. Rehearsal evenings may be cool; performance evenings may be hot and sticky. But our performances also include special effects lighting from real fireflies.

Advice & Encouragement for Newcomers

Shakespeare enthusiasts of all levels of experience and inexperience are welcome to audition. We have some of the friendliest, most un-intimidating auditions you will ever find. Here is some additional advice for first-time auditioners:

Maybe you haven’t been on stage since high school and you’re now… well some people put an age range on their audition form, showing the ages they might be suitable for, say: 30s-50s. Maybe you are a recent college graduate looking for a challenging and fun way to spend your evenings unrelated to your day job. Whatever your situation, you can be assured that the Arden Shakespeare Gild will help you through the sometimes scary process of auditions.

Here’s how it works:

1) Know the play. We are doing A Midsummer Night’s Dream this year. Read the play or a synopsis. Watch a film version. Familiarize yourself with the characters. If you are totally unfamiliar with the play, it will show. If you come to auditions with a knowledge of the play and its characters, you will feel more comfortable, and you will have more fun.

2) Arrive at the Gild Hall between 7 and 7:30 and sign in. On Monday, March 13, we are upstairs; on Tuesday, we’re downstairs. Get an audition form from one of our friendly “greeters,” pull up a chair and fill it out.

Read the note about optional audition monologues above.

3) Side 1 of the Audition Form
Print clearly. Especially your name, phone and email address. If you are auditioning for specific roles and only those roles, indicate that on the audition form. Otherwise you will be considered for all parts. The director may have different ideas about a part than you do. Or, your audition may cause a director to view a part differently, so stay open to possibilities.

4) Side 2 of the Audition Form
This is a calendar showing rehearsal dates and times. Please bring your personal calendar to the audition and fill in side 2 of the Audition Form with any conflicts you have: the rehearsals you cannot attend or the times you are not available. Having conflicts will not eliminate you from the show, although the number of conflicts may affect the part(s) you are offered.

5) Return the audition form to the greeter, along with your headshot and resumé, if you have one.

6) Read the Audition “Sides”
“Sides” are small scripts of just a short scene. These are the scripts we will use for the actual auditions. If there are words in the sides that you don’t know how to pronounce, ask someone. Reading the scene with other actors will be a lot more enjoyable if you are not stumbling over the words.

7) Don’t be late. Auditions start at 7:30. The producer will introduce the director and the audition committee and start the auditions. We will call you to read a scene with other actors. We may switch parts and read the same scene over again. Assembling a cast is like putting together a puzzle, and we’re never sure of the final picture until all the pieces are in place. Casting one role will affect the actors we cast for other roles. So don’t worry about what the audition committee is thinking; they often don’t know themselves until everything falls into place. Just speak up so we can hear you.

This is a chance to read with other actors and bring Shakespeare’s words to life. Have fun with it!

You may have heard this: “There are no small parts, only small actors.” Of course, we believe this creed, but… yeah, yeah. We all know there are indeed small parts. They consist of a line or two in a single scene. In the Arden Shakespeare Gild, sometimes a single actor plays multiple roles, but even without multiple roles, the small parts are memorable for the audience and fun for the actor. “Minor” characters often get “major” costumes and enjoy all the perks and camaraderie without pages of lines to memorize. So, why feel disappointed?

Sewing costumes, sprucing up the outdoor stage, selling tickets… all jobs, big or small, are important to our production. We also have activities throughout the year for Shakespeare lovers, including monthly readings. Newcomers of all levels of experience and inexperience are welcome at the Arden Shakespeare Gild.