Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Actors needed for staged reading in Pittsfield

Looking for 9 female actors to participate in a staged reading of AS IT IS IN HEAVEN, by Arlene Hutton, in Pittsfield, MA on Friday July 8. The play is described as:

“A moving portrayal of upheaval caused when the utopian existence of an 1830's Shaker community is threatened by the arrival of 'newcomers' claiming to see angels.”

This play includes acappella Shaker songs, though not all of the roles require strong singers. There is no pay for the reading. A few rehearsals will be required during the month of June. This may become a full production in next year’s summer theatre season.

If interested, please send a resume and photo to erinmcbrideafrica@yahoo.com.

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Character Breakdown:

Izzy – The youngest of this group of Shakers. Not yet old enough to sign the covenant. Has been raised by the Shakers since she was 3. Knows little of the outside world. Na├»ve, sheltered. Curious.

Hannah – The leader of the group. Needs to be able to show maturity and leadership. A delicate balance of sternness and compassion. Genuinely wants to lead the sisters towards a virtuous life.

Polly – Recently joined the Shakers. Was sent to work in a brothel as a young woman. Has a dark quality to her, eyes that have seen a lot and hold secrets. Has a gift for drawing. Sings a solo and leads a song in rounds.

Jane – Recently joined the Shakers. Has buried every child she ever gave birth to. Came to the Shakers with her husband when they saw no other options. Spends her nights crying. Maternal. Wounded.

Fanny – Recently joined the Shakers. Has a rebellious spirit and possibly a complicated history of abuse and hardship. Claims to see angels. Is the catalyst to the trouble that spreads like wildfire. Doesn’t play by the rules – makes up her own.

Betsy – Has been with the Shakers a long time. Has a fun and friendly manner. Understands that faith is an individually discovered thing and believes the intentions and the effort are what matters. Secretly desires a little more fun and artistic expression. Harmonizes in a song with Peggy in secret.

Rachel – Has been with the Shakers a long time. Lives and works like a true believer. It is clear and simple to her and seems effortless. Wants to be an example to guide the others. Is shocked when called upon to make a testimony of her faith – would never expect it to be questioned.

Peggy – Has been with the Shakers for a long time. Wants tasks done right, not in a lazy manner. Things should be done plain and simple, without unnecessary embellishment. Sings quite a lot. Secretly harmonizes with Betsy.