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Much Ado About Nothing
15 May, 2016 @ 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm
About the Show:
A military battle has just ended. The heroes return. A group of such set out on their next conquest. To be married to the best on offer!! Now it is a skirmish of competing desires! A battle of wits! A war of the sexes!
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE CHARACTERS “BEATRICE” AND “BENEDICK” HAVE BEEN BEEN CAST.
ALSO NOTE THAT THE MINOR ROLES MAY BE DOUBLED WITH MAJOR ROLES OR OTHER MINOR ROLES.
Don Pedro, Prince of Arragon (Male, 30-50’s): Don Pedro is the kind prince of Arragon who arrives in Messina after battle to stay with his friend, Leonato, for a month. He is single and assists in matching-up both Claudio and Hero and Beatrice and Benedick. He proposes to Beatrice, only to be turned down. He also witnesses Hero’s supposed unmaiden-like behavior and defends Claudio in his disgracing of Hero. He is found innocent at the end of the play and is one of the only single men remaining. His brother is Don John the Bastard.
Leonato (Male/ Female, 50-60’s) Governor of Messina and the father of Hero. He is a kind man and old friend of Don Pedro. He happily gives his daughter Hero to Claudio in marriage, and is so angry at her disgrace that he wishes her dead. He plans to avenge her disgrace and sets Claudio up to marry her again at the end of the play.
Don John, the Bastard (Male, 30-50’s) : the illegitimate brother of Don Pedro and villain of this comedy. He craves mischief and plans to destroy the lives of the people in Messina. He employs his comrade, Borachio, to pretend to be with Hero, when he is actually with Margaret, so that the prince and Claudio can see. He flees Messina after Claudio disgraces Hero and is later caught by the sexton.
Claudio (Male, 20-30’s): A young aristocrat in the prince’s command who falls in love with Hero. He is charming but very jealous and allows the prince to woo her and get her father’s blessing for him. When he thinks he sees Hero with Borachio, he erupts and disgraces Hero at their wedding. When he believes Hero is dead, he mourns her and when he realizes that she was wronged, he places an epitaph on her grave and promises to marry her cousin. He and Hero marry in the final scene of the play.
Benedick (Male, late 30’s-40’s) Benedick is a witty, confirmed bachelor in Don Pedro’s company. He is friends with Claudio and Pedro and cannot understand why anyone would want to marry. He carries on a witty and insulting relationship with Beatrice, who he eventually falls in love with. He promises Beatrice that he will challenge Claudio to fight in Hero’s honor and eventually declares his love for Beatrice. By the end of the play, he cannot understand why one would not want to marry.
Beatrice: (Female, late 30’s-40’s) Beatrice is the witty, strong-willed niece of Leonato and cousin of Hero. She carries on an insulting witty tournament of words with Benedick, with whom she later falls in love. She is hurt when Hero is wronged in public and makes Benedick challenge Claudio. Although she is also a confirmed bachelor, she plans to marry Benedick by the end of the play.
Hero (Female, late teen-20’s): Gentle and virtuous daughter of Leonato and pivotal role in the play. She is in love with Claudio and framed by Don John. At her wedding, Claudio shames her by saying she is unfaithful. She feigns her death and watches as Messina mourns. When her name is cleared she marries Claudio.
Antonio (Male/ Female, 50 +): Leonato’s older brother and the uncle to Hero. He is generally seen as a jolly old man. However, when Hero is shamed and disgraced, it is Antonio who vents his anger very loudly. He pretends to have a carbon copy daughter of Hero, to whom Claudio will marry in the final scene of the play.
Borachio (Male, 20’s thru 40’s): “Borachio” means “drunkard” in Italian and is a larger than life character. He is one of John the Bastard’s comrades. He is the man who pretends to be “speaking” with Hero at her window, when instead he is with Margaret. John pays him one thousand ducats to do the dirty deed. Borachio later confesses to Dogberry and the sexton of his crimes.
Conrade (Male/ Female, 20’s thru 40’s): Borachio’s sneering friend who is also captured by the night watchmen. He insists on being treated as a gentleman and calls Dogberry an ass.
Verges: (Male/ Female, 50+) Dogberry’s offsider and foil. He is always at his side and assists in examining the criminals. Dogberry constantly puts him down, for he feels that Verges is inferior to him. He is also an officer of the prince.
Ursula: (Female, 40+) One of Hero’s waiting gentlewomen. She assists Hero in setting Beatrice up with Benedick. She also flirts with Antonio at the party in the beginning of the play. Ursula is the messenger who breaks the good news to Beatrice and Benedick that Hero’s name is cleared and that John the Bastard is the culprit behind all the villainy.
Margaret: (Female, 20’s-30’s) Margaret is another one of Hero’s waiting gentlewomen. She is young and quick-witted. Unknowingly, she helps in Don John’s plot against everyone in Messina by speaking with Borachio outside Hero’s window. When Hero is accused of infidelity, it is really Margaret who has been unmaiden-like.
Friar Francis (Male/ Female, 40+) A kindly and paternal monk/ priest presiding over the wedding ceremony between Hero and Claudio. When Claudio disgraces her, he believes Hero to be innocent and tries to convince everyone that she is belied. He comes up with the plan to feign Hero’s death until all matters have been cleared, and proceed with a new wedding in the near future.
Balthazar (Male/ Female, any age) Must be a good singer but ability to accompany themselves on guitar or piano etc would be a bonus!) Balthazar is the play’s musician with some spoken text. (S)He lends music to the prince’s company in Messina.
Sexton: (Male. Female, 40+) The sexton helps in examining Borachio and Conrade in jail. He shows Dogberry how to take care of the criminals and also brings word of the occurrences at the infamous wedding ceremony. He looks down upon Dogberry and eventually captures Don John.
Messengers: Throughout the play, several messengers come onstage and off to report important events to the characters.
Watchmen: Dogberry employs 3 night watchmen/women to keep an eye on the happenings of Messina during this very joyous wedding time. They capture Borachio and Conrade on word of Borachio’s affair with Margaret and the framing of Hero.
· Auditions will be in solo spots (please book a timeslot) throughout the day and call backs may be arranged to read with another actor on the day or at a later date.
· Please prepare a short monologue from any Shakespeare play of only 1-2minutes duration.
· Alternatively, instead of a monologue you can prepare a Sonnet from Shakespeare’s Sonnets, his collection of short poems as a moved reading, widely available online and in bookshops.
· The director(s) may also ask you to provide a cold reading of a scene from Much Ado About Nothing in addition to your prepared piece.
· You are welcome to bring a CV of previous theatre experience if you wish but this is optional. Theatre experience is preferred but not essential.
· You will also need to provide your contact details and availability times and dates to the audition and a photo of you (taken by us on the day) may be required solely for audition purposes.
· We are also looking for musicians and singers so please let us know/ bring your instrument to play unaccompanied and give us a freestyle performance!
Commence the week of 22ND May 2016
Rehearsals will be based on people’s availability. Not every person will be needed for every rehearsal, to begin with, but cast will be need to be overall available for : Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday nights and Saturday afternoons. These days and times may/will change when ARENAarts’ production of AWAY is clear of the LC Theatre from 26th June.
Show: MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
Author: William Shakespeare
Venue: LC Theatre, 60 Cleaver Tce, BELMONT
Theatre Company: ARENAarts
Show Dates: 4TH , 5TH , 6TH , 11TH, 12TH, 13TH , 18TH , 19TH & 20TH AUGUST @ 8pm, 7th & 14th AUGUST @ 2pm
Director: Jo Lamont
Please contact email@example.com to arrange an audition time.