‘Tis true, summer has barely begun, but just in time for Summer Solstice, comes the auditions for the first production in Alumnae Theatre Company’s 2016/17 season, This by Melissa James Gibson. The production will be directed by Rebecca Ballarin, who directed a staged reading of Kristen Shepherd’s play Curved in Alumnae’s New Ideas Festival back in March. She has also directed new works for InspiraTO, New Voices (Ryerson), the Edmonton Fringe, and U of T Drama Fest, and is the co-creator and director of Toronto-based drag queen Pearle Harbour. Rebecca “likes to explore the complexities and contradictions that define the human experience”.
Canadian-born/New York-based playwright Melissa James Gibson is also a prolific TV writer – for the popular Netflix series House of Cards, and the award-winning series The Americans. Her play This is described as an “un-romantic comedy”. It opened off-Broadway in 2009, and had its Canadian premiere in 2011.
By Melissa James Gibson
Directed by Rebecca Ballarin
Performance dates: Sept 16 – Oct 1, 2016
“…why are you sitting in the almost dark?’
‘It’s the human condition Jane in case you haven’t noticed’…”
A raw, unapologetic glimpse into the lives of five friends approaching middle-age and grappling with where they’ve found themselves and what could, or should, come next. Absurd and honest, Gibson’s script sits on the edge between comedic and deeply painful, revealing the grit underneath the surface of her characters and their relationships, and lying bare the imperfections and insecurities that make them (and us) human.
Jane – (F) Caucasian, 38 years old. Widowed one year ago, mother to a nine-year-old daughter, poet and teacher, met Marrell, Tom, and Alan in college; she is struggling with how to grieve, and how to reconcile how she is perceived by her friends and how she sees herself and her actions.
Marrell – (F) African-American, 38 years old. Married to Tom, new mother, jazz singer/songwriter, met Jane, Tom and Alan in college; particular, a Type-A personality, she idealizes Jane’s past marriage and has mixed feelings about her own. *Please note that actors auditioning for this role must be able to sing. Ability to play piano is an asset.*
Tom – (M) Caucasian, early 40s. Married to Marrell, new father, woodworker/craftsman with a “close-but-never-a-cigar business”, worked at the college that Jane, Marrell, and Alan attended; impulsive, laidback, stubborn, he is grasping at straws.
Alan – (M) Caucasian, Jewish, 40. A mnemonist, met Jane, Marrell and Tom in college; astute, blunt, and cynical – the most outwardly self-aware of the friend group, he feels stuck and wants more.
Jean-Pierre – (M) French (France), late 30s, performers of any ethnicity are encouraged to audition. An acquaintance of Marrell’s, a ‘doctor without borders’ who is in America for a brief stint before returning to work in Africa; progressive, worldly, alluring. *Please note that this role will require a French (France) accent.*
AUDITION DATES & TIMES
Mon June 20; Wed June 22; Thu June 23 (2-5pm and 6-9pm)
CALLBACKS: Saturday, June 25 (1 – 5pm)
To request an audition, please send your headshot and resume to ATCauditions@gmail.com by Sunday, June 19.
Please indicate whether you are a member of Alumnae Theatre Company. All members will be seen. Those selected to audition will be contacted.
Rehearsals will be evenings and weekends beginning in July
Alumnae Theatre Company encourages diversity in its membership and casting.
Please note this is a non-union and non-paying engagement.