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Auditions for “Little Women, The Broadway Musical”

October 6th, 2019

Wheaton Drama, Inc. will hold auditions for Little Women, The Broadway Musical on Sunday, November 3rd and Monday, November 4th at 7pm. Callbacks (if needed): Tuesday, November 5th, 7pm. All auditions will be held at 112 N Wolf Road Northlake, IL 60164. NOTE – This is NOT Wheaton Drama. Auditions are being held off site for this production. The show runs January 17th – February 9th, 2020.

Little Women, The Broadway Musical is a heartwarming look at the lives of the four March sisters as they grow up and find their own voices against the backdrop of the Civil War. Full of hope and adventure, memorable songs, humor and heartbreak, the show (and beloved book) is based loosely on Louisa May Alcott’s life.

Audition slots are available by appointment only. Director Krystyn Wells would like to see a 30 second – 1 minute story or “elevator” pitch about a favorite thing (book, play, TV show, recipe, vacation). Please also prepare 16-32 measures of musical theatre style in appropriate key; please provide copy as an accompanist will be provided.  Please no a cappella or recordings. You may be asked for additional singing for range placement.

To request an audition time or to ask questions: please write to the show’s email: LittleWomenMusicalWDI2020@gmail.com and indicate preference for Sunday or Monday, as well as preference for earlier or later in the evening. We will do our best to accommodate your requests. Audition forms can be downloaded by clicking the link below:

Download audition forms here. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1W5Y5oSB7_FrSMb-is8jqxT9lsYThOigwNGg2UFX7yAg/edit?usp=sharing

Available roles:
Jo March – Our protagonist who stands up for everything she believes in. Passionate, adventurous and brave. (Vocal Range E3-A5 (Belt/Mix), Age Range 18-23)

Professor Bhaer – A German Professor who exemplifies proper manners. He is a boarder in Mrs. Kirk’s boarding house. (Vocal Range G2-F#4 (Baritone), Age Range 25-45)

Amy March – The youngest March sister, impulsive, energetic, and striving for a more sophisticated life. (Vocal Range Cb4-Gb5 (Soprano/Mix), Age Range 14-18)

Meg March – The world-weary, yet hopeful, oldest sister who yearns for a great life. (Vocal Range A#3-Gb5 (Soprano), Age Range 20-25)

Beth March – The second youngest sister who tragically dies of Scarlet Fever. Peace-maker, giving and optimistic. (Vocal Range A3-G5 (Soprano), Age Range 16-21) 

Marmee March – The girls’ mother. She is the strong backbone of the family, courageous in spite of difficulties. (Vocal Range Eb3-Eb5 (Mezzo Soprano), Age Range 45-55) 

Mr. Laurence – Laurie’s grandfather who lives next door. Slightly crotchety. (Vocal Range D3-E4 (Baritone), Age Range 55-70) 

Laurie Laurence – The bright-eyed-boy-next-door with considerable charm. (Vocal Range Bb2-Bb4 (Tenor), Age Range 18-23) 

Aunt March – A formidable, over-bearing matron and great-aunt to the March sisters. (Vocal Range E3-F5 (Soprano), Age Range 35-60) 

Mr. John Brooke – Laurie’s tutor and a rather stiff man; shows very little emotion until he falls in love with Meg. (Vocal Range C#3 – F#4 (Bari-Tenor), Age Range 25-35) 

Mrs. Kirk – The woman who runs the New York boarding house where Jo lives. Slight Irish accent. (Vocal Range D4-G4 (Soprano), Age Range 45-60) 

Weekly Volcano Press Characters –  (Troll, Clarissa, Rodrigo II, Knight, Rodrigo, Hag, Braxton) – May be cast as separate roles within the ensemble or double cast with Amy, Meg, Beth, Mr. Laurence, Laurie, Aunt March and John Brooke (Various Vocal Ranges, Age Range 14+) 

Ensemble – Dancers at the ball, ice skaters, beachcombers, hags, trolls and monks. (Various vocal ranges, Age Range 14+) 

Moonlight and Magnolias Cast Announced

September 18th, 2019

Director Doug Long is proud to announce the cast of Wheaton Drama’s, Moonlight and Magnolias. This fast-paced comedy by Ron Hutchinson is (loosely) based on real events and recreate the finalization of the 1939 screenplay for Gone with The Wind. The cast is three men and one woman, featuring producer David O. Selznick, screenwriter Ben Hecht, and director Victor Fleming, supported throughout by Selznicks’s intrepid assistant, Miss Poppenghul. The roles will be portrayed by:

Ben Hecht – Sean Stephen Thomas
David O. Selznick – Christopher Williams
Victor Fleming – Geoffrey Maher
Miss Poppenghul – Sande Ogren
 
The production staff includes:
Director – Doug Long
Assistant Director – Tom Walker
Stage Manager – Amy Johnson
Set Design – Don Dumper
Costume Design – Marcia Steinbrecher
Lighting design – Jim Van De Velde
Sound Designer – Jim Quan
Production Manager – Mike Boyna  

Moonlight and Magnolias runs November 15 through December 8, at Wheaton Drama’s Playhouse 111, 111 N. Hale Street in Wheaton, IL. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30p, and Sunday at 3:00p. There is no show on Thanksgiving, November 24. Tickets can be order online, or by calling the Wheaton Drama box office at 630-260-1820.

 

Wheaton Drama’s “The Addams Family” actress breaking new ground

September 6th, 2019

By: Elena Dansdill, September 2, 2019

After 88 years of providing theatre and arts for the community, Wheaton Drama is taking a step to open their doors to another group. Gretchen Gannon is the first deaf actor to work on a show at Wheaton Drama, and she’s blowing past everyone’s expectations. After deciding to return to theatre after a hiatus of almost 10 years, Gretchen realized many of the deaf theatres she previously worked at had folded, and auditioned for Wheaton Drama for the first time, landing an ensemble role in The Addams Family – A New Musical, playing September 13th – October 6th at Wheaton Drama’s Playhouse 111.

Gretchen Gannon plays an ancestor in The Addams Family – A New Musical

“Without the gracious forward thinking of Wheaton Drama to make their theatre accessible to the Deaf Community, none of this would be possible,” Gretchen said in an interview, “For example, hiring Sign Language Interpreters for rehearsals and performances.  The interpreter keeps me in the “Family” business at all times with whatever is going on at that moment.” Additionally, she says that technology like Facebook, which wasn’t around when she began doing theatre, has helped her by giving her a way to watch rehearsal videos over to nail down each step.

Gretchen’s interpreter, Patti Shore Kaden, is just as excited to be working on this show, stating that it’s an honor for both of them to be working for a theatre that’s never been accessible before. “Gretchen brings depth and creativity to this theatre,” said Patti, who’s worked for 30 years as an interpreter.  “People who come to the show will see this and be part of the magic.” Gretchen certainly does have a bit of magic that every actor needs. At rehearsal, Gretchen is the one high fiving and laughing with all the cast members, bringing out the best in them all. She says people have always seen her as an entertainer, making them smile and relax, and that’s what draws her to theatre.

Gretchen Gannon (center), rehearses a dance routine with the “ancestor” ensemble

            Besides casting their first deaf actor, Wheaton Drama is also offering an interpreter at four different performances of The Addams Family for  deaf and hard of hearing audiences. This is a huge step towards making Wheaton Drama more accessible, and one that needs to happen more often in community theatres, according to Gretchen. In some productions that perhaps offer one interpreted performance, Gretchen points out that only offering one show with an interpreter just doesn’t work and “lessens the opportunity for all people to see the show. The more options, the better,” she says.

            “The opportunity to make the show accessible was made possible in part by Gretchen’s talent and tenacity, the leadership of the production team for Addams Family, headed by director Dan Hitzemann, and by generous donations,” says Wheaton Drama president, Julie Kanturek. “Honestly, we didn’t set out to create a show inclusive for more audiences, but Gretchen blew the socks off our production team; they knew we had to have her, and we knew we needed to figure out how to make it happen.”  Creating a show with inclusivity involves hiring an interpreter for the rehearsals, and two interpreters for each performance to bring the show to life through sign language, costs the theatre hadn’t originally considered when budgeting the show. “Thankfully, before we’d even decided as a board to hire interpreters for four performances, we had the commitment of an anonymous donor to help make it happen. Since then, we reached out to Representative Terra Costa Howard, who has also generously agreed to help. The support of our community, both inside and outside our theater, is what is really special about this production. And it means Wheaton Drama is becoming even more accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing community – and to anyone who loves theatre.”

            The Addams Family – A New Musical opens at Wheaton Drama on Friday the 13th of September through October 6th, with performances on Fridays at 7:30 pm, Saturdays at 2 pm and 7:30 pm, and Sundays at 3pm. Four performances of The Addams Family will be ASL (American Sign Language) interpreted for the deaf and hard of hearing: Saturday 9/14 at 2 pm, Sunday 9/22 at 3 pm, Sunday 9/29 at 3 pm, and Saturday 10/5 at 7:30 pm. For tickets and more information, visit www.wheatondrama.org.

Auditions for “Moonlight and Magnolias”

August 16th, 2019

Wheaton Drama, Inc. (WDI) will hold auditions for Ron Hutchinson’s Moonlight and Magnolias on Sunday, September 15 and Monday September 16 starting at 7pm. Callbacks: Tuesday, September 17, also at 7pm. All at WDI’s Playhouse 111 (111 N Hale, Wheaton, Il 60172). Show runs November 15 – December 8, 2019.

(Loosely) Based on real events, this fast-paced comedy recreates the finalization of the 1939 screenplay for Gone with The Wind. The cast is three men and one woman, featuring producer David O. Selznick, screenwriter Ben Hecht, and director Victor Fleming, supported throughout by Selznicks’s intrepid assistant, Miss Poppenghul.

Five-minute audition slots are available by appointment only. For initial auditions, Director Doug Long would like to see 1-minute monologues, preferably memorized. Callbacks will feature scene work in various combinations of characters. Headshots are helpful – we can take pics at auditions if necessary.

To request an audition time or to ask questions, please write to the show’s email: wdimam2019@gmail.com and indicate a Sunday/Monday and/or early/late preference. We will do our best to accommodate your requests. No auditions will be scheduled after 9:45pm. Audition forms can be downloaded by clicking the link below:

Download Audition Forms Here (Word doc).

Available roles:

Ages are stage ages, not necessarily your age

  • David O. Selznick, 37 – Large man with a large personality. Controlling, enthusiastic film producer obsessing over his biggest project, Gone with the Wind.
  • Ben Hecht, 46 – Wise-cracking screenwriter, probably smaller than Selznick and Fleming. Dry wit, Midwestern, militant for Jewish causes. Brought in by Selznick to overhaul the screenplay for Gone with the Wind.
  • Victor Fleming, 50 –Tall, handsome, and robust, known as a “man’s director.” Pulled off The Wizard of Oz at MGM to direct Gone with the Wind for Selznick.
  • Miss Poppenghul – Could be 30s-60s. Selznick’s efficient and loyal secretary, probably the element that keeps her boss from breaking down. She has learned to hear his incessant questions not as condescension but as the paranoia that they reflect. 

Merry Mad Mid-Mod Cast Announced

August 6th, 2019

Wheaton Drama is thrilled to announce the cast for its December holiday show, “Merry Mad Mid-Mod”. Thanks to all who auditioned!

Garrett Ard
Erin Creighton
Lisa Dawn Curran
Andy Dameron
Ben Dooley
Don Gingold
Mackenzie Grattan
Craig Gustafson
Mary Hefferman
Rod Kelly
Steven Krage
Jim Martin
Heather Miller
Julie Rodgers-Baker
Katy Smith
SarahAnn Sutter
Pam Turlow
Claire Yearman

The production will run December 13th through 15th. Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 PM, Sunday matinee at 3:00 PM. Tickets are available on the Wheaton Drama website: www.wheatondrama.org

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