The College of the Canyons theatre department will hold auditions this month for three upcoming fall productions. More than 50 actors ranging from ages 16 to 60 are needed for a variety of roles in the upcoming productions “Urinetown,” “reasons to be pretty” and “The Importance of Being Earnest.”
“We are offering students and community members the chance to audition for roles in two of the best performing arts pieces to hit the stage in recent years, along with a classic comedy that continues to enthrall audiences with its wit and charm,” said Paul Wickline, chair of the COC theatre department.
Auditions for all three productions will be held at 7 p.m. August 27-28, in the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (PAC) Black Box Theatre. A preliminary audition for “Urinetown” will also be held at noon Saturday, Aug. 25.
Written by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, the satirical comedy musical “Urinetown” is set in a Gotham-like city where the use of private toilets is banned due to a severe water shortage caused by a 20-year drought. The college’s production of this Tony Award-winning musical about greed, corruption and love will be directed by Whitney Rydbeck, a Pasadena City College theatre professor and guest director.
America’s obsession with beauty is explored in “reasons to be pretty” by Neil LaBute, the hopelessly romantic play which focuses on the relationships of four friends and their search for fulfillment. The production is being directed by COC theatre instructor Susan Hinshaw.
Poking fun at Victorian manners, Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” has delighted audiences worldwide since its debut in 1895. Valencia High School drama director and COC theatre instructor Stephen Whelan will direct the college’s production of this classic play.
Those auditioning for “Urinetown” are asked to prepare 16 to 32 bars from a musical theatre song. Audition material should be 90 seconds to three minutes in length, and should be accompanied by sheet music in the correct key. No CD accompaniment or singing unaccompanied will be allowed.
Actors auditioning for “reasons to be pretty” and “The Importance of Being Earnest” may prepare two contrasting pieces (one period and one contemporary piece) of no more than three minutes in length or may audition with either a period comedic or contemporary piece.
Those auditioning only for “reasons to be pretty” should prepare a contemporary monologue of no more than two minutes. Those auditioning only for “The Importance of Being Earnest” should prepare a comedic monologue of no more than two minutes. The monologue should be a period piece.
Anything pre-20th century that demonstrates the actor’s ability to handle heightened language is preferred. If actors don’t have a monologue prepared for either production, they will be asked to do a cold reading from the script.
All those cast will be required to register in a section of the COC course Theatre 190: Theatre Production and/or Music 116: Performance Ensembles for Music Theatre, depending upon the production in which they are cast.
For more information about these upcoming audition dates, or to view a full description of the characters, please contact Paul Wickline at (661) 362-3152 or visit the COC theatre department’s website at www.canyons.edu/departments/theatre.