IS HE DEAD?
Directed by John Atkin
A “new” comedy by Mark Twain.
Auditions will be held in The Kweskin Theatre, 1349 Newfield Avenue, Stamford, CT,
Sunday and Monday, October 29 & 30 – 7:00pm to approximately 10:00pm each night.
Rehearsals will begin November 13. Show runs January 11 – thru 28 in The Dressing Room Theatre with a one week possible extension.
The wildly hilarious “new” farce from the father of American wit, Mark Twain. Jean-Francois Millet, a young painter of genius, is in love with Marie Leroux but in debt to a villainous picture-dealer, Bastien Andre. Andre forecloses on Millet, threatening debtor’s prison unless Marie marries him. Millet realizes the only way he can pay his debts and keep Marie from marrying Andre is to die, as it is only dead painters who achieve fame and fortune. Millet’s plan is flawed from the start – once he’s declared dead he can’t collect on his fortune. The romp is on as he pursues his passion for painting, his fortune and the woman he loves.
Written by Mark Twain in 1898, discovered in 2003 and produced on Broadway in 2007.
Seeking 7 men, 4 women, as follows:
Jean-Francois Millet/Widow Daisy Tillou: 30s-40s, an extremely gifted starving artist, who must fake his death, a device concocted by his three best friends, in order to “have value” as a painter. However, he must be around to paint enough paintings to make him rich and pay off debts of his friends. He must go into disguise as his twin sister, Daisy, the widow Tillou. Wackiness ensues as people fall in love with Daisy, and also try to expose her as a fraud.
Bastien André – Mid 40s+. The villain! All the artists are in debt to this so-called “patron” and art dealer. He threatens that unless Marie (Jean-Francois’ girlfriend) marries him, her father will be crushed by the debt he owes him, as well as the money Jean-Francois owes him. But he is surprised when he meets Daisy and struck with a bolt of love for her.
Agamemnon (“Chicago”) Buckner– Mid 20-30s. Millet’s best friend and devoted student from Chicago; a painter as well. With Dutchy and O’Shaughnessy, he cooks up the plot to “kill off” Millet, in order to keep the paintings coming. In love with Cecile, a total prankster and clown.
Hans (“Dutchy”) Von Bismarck – Mid 20-30s. A young German pupil of Millet, co-creator of the plot. Loves to eat stinky cheese.
Phelim O’Shaughnessy– Mid 20-30s. Irish art pupil and devoted friend of Millet and fellow plotter of the scheme. Funny and matter of fact, does a lot of the running around to whip up the rumor about Millet’s death.
Marie LeRoux – Mid 20-30s. Sweetheart of Millet, totally trusting and sweet, she refuses to marry Bastien Andre even though it would forgive her father’s debt, because she is so devoted to Millet.
Cecile LeRoux/Inspector Lefaux – Mid 20-30s. Sister of Marie, in love with “Chicago.” She suspects something is not right between Daisy and Chicago and goes into disguise herself as an inspector to rout out the truth.
Papa LeRoux – 50s+. Feeble head of LeRoux family and dear friend to Jean-Francois. Sadly, in terrible debt to the villain, Bastien Andre and may have to marry his oldest daughter off to him, in order to forgive the debt, but she is in love with Millet. He falls in love with Daisy too!
Madame Bathilde/Emperor of Russia – 40+. Devoted friend and neighbor of Millet. Crushed when they learn of his “illness” and a bit mystified by his sister Daisy. Very sassy and funny. Has the hots for Papa Leroux
Madame Caron/Sultan of Turkey – 40+. Devoted friend and neighbor of Millet. Crushed when they learn of his “illness” and a bit mystified by his sister Daisy. Very sassy and funny. Has the hots for Papa Leroux
Basil Thorpe/Claude/Charlie/King of France – any age. Basil – A Rich English Merchant. Considers himself very knowledgeable about art, but he’s not. Claude Riviere – a Reporter from ‘LE FIGARO.’ Charlie, the helpful, flamboyant flunkey, who takes off his disguise to reveal that he’s French Police Inspector Monnet. King of France – is, well, the King of France.
BE PREPARED TO PLAY WITH A FRENCH ACCENT IF ASKED.
NEW AUDITION DATES…...
Directed by Gail Yudain
Music Direction by Eric Johnston
Choreography by Karen Casagrande
Auditions will be held in The Kweskin Theatre, 1349 Newfield Avenue, Stamford, CT,
Monday and Tuesday, November 6 & 7- 7:00pm to approximately 10:00pm each night.
Rehearsals will begin November 27. Show runs February 2 thru 24 with two weeks possible extension thru March 10.
If you’re looking to brush up or break in with tap dancing for this show, classes with choreographer Karen Casagrande also happen to be available at a drop-in rate of just $18 Monday evenings and Saturday mornings. Info available at https://www.curtaincallinc.com/workshop/
NEWSIES Character Breakdown
JACK – Male, 20-35. Passionate and charismatic leader of the Newsies. A street-smart kid with a dark artistic soul right beneath the bluster. Not a blowhard. Tenor.
DAVEY – Male, 20-35. A thinker. Raised in a home as opposed to the other Newsies, Davie is the book-smart counterpoint to the other boys. The voice of reason. Tenor.
LES – Male, 10 -12 years old. The fearless kid brother of Davey. Excited by everything the world has to offer and eager to join in the adventure. Fun is this kid’s middle name. Must sing really well.
CRUTCHIE – Male, 20-35. A slight, sickly boy with a huge heart. He walks with the aid of a crutch due to a bad leg, but that doesn’t hold him back from being right in the middle of any mischief. A real charmer.
RACE – Male/Female, 20-35. Has a penchant for betting. A loudmouth, funny, smart-aleck, self-confident.
ALBERT – Male, 20-35. Rebellious, Genial, charming, prankster, thief, loyal.
SPECS – Male/Female, 20-35. Sweet, nerdy, admiring, eager. Ballet, Athletic, gymnast.
HENRY – Male, 15-20. A bit skeptical about the strike. Skeptical, Wary, Dreamer, foodie.
FINCH – Male/Female, 20-35. streetwise, bold, and is proud to be a Newsie through and through. Impatient. Acrobat, gymnast.
ELMER – Male, 15-20. Laid back, relaxed.
ROMEO – Male, 18-25. Self-important, hapless, aspiring womanizer.
MUSH – Male/Female, 15-20. Projects a tough exterior, on the inside tends to be frightened.
BUTTONS – Male/Female, 15-25. Eccentric, plays the spoons.
SPOT CONLON/SNIPER – Male. As Spot: The leader of the Brooklyn Newsies. Everyone respects him. Although he is small, he is extremely intimidating. As Sniper: Has a keen eye for the customers, and can spot a sale from a block away.
DARCY/NEWSIE – Male, 20’s. Upper-class son of a publisher. Track also covers as Newsie during Act I.
BILL/NEWSIE – Male, 20’s. Son of William Randolph Hearst. Track also covers as Newsie during Act I.
TOMMY BOY/SCAB 1/BROOKLYN NEWSIE – Male.
MIKE/SCAB 2/BROOKLYN NEWSIE – Male.
IKE/SCAB 3/BROOKLYN NEWSIE – Male/Female.
JOJO/BROOKLYN NEWSIE – Male/Female.
KATHERINE PLUMBER – Female, 20-30. The strong willed daughter of Pulitzer. This young lady drips smarts, opinions and confidence. A young Katherine Hepburn or Ellen Page. This damsel needs no prince to save her. Must have a great pop/contemporary musical theater voice with a high belt.
MEDDA – Female, 40s – 60s. A vaudeville star of the Bowery variety. Risque, tough, with a big voice and GREAT comic delivery.
HANNAH/NUN 1 – Pulitzer’s Secretary. Professional at her job but concerned about the treatment of the Newsies. Has New York accent. NUN 1 – Must Sing. Irish accent required.
NUN 2/BOWERY BEAUTY/CUSTOMER/SERVER – Female. Must sing and have good movement.
NUN 3/BOWERY BEAUTY/ SERVER – Female. Must sing and have good movement.
JOSEPH PULITZER – Male, 35 – 50’s. An on point, know it all, politician. A Wealthy, greedy, impatient braggart. Influential. Must sing well.
WIESEL – Male, Adult. Runs the Distribution window for The World. Thuggish, uncompassionate paper distributor.
SNYDER – Male, Adult. Runs The Refuge. His only concern is catching enough boys to keep his government checks coming in. A spidery and sinister man; crook, selfish, mercenary, exploitative, manipulative, cruel, evil, and greedy.
MORRIS DELANCEY – Male. Heavy in charge of keeping peace at The World’s distribution window.
OSCAR DELANCEY – Male. Morris’s equally tough brother.
SEITZ – Male, Adult. Pulitzer’s editor. Must sing.
BUNSEN – Male, Adult. Pulitzer’s bookkeeper. Must sing. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
MR JACOBI – Male Adult. The Deli owner who lets the newsies congregate in his restaurant to scape the hard streets of New York. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
STAGE MANAGER – Male, Adult. Works at Medda’s Vaudeville Theatre. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
ROOSEVELT – Male, Adult. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
MAYOR – Male, Adult. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
NUNZIO – Male, Adult. Pulitzer’s Barber. Also covers other characters. Must be able to transform into each role.
PAGE UPDATED 2/19/17