AUDITION NOTICE

SEASON THREE, 2018

OTHER DESERT CITIES
by Jon Robin Baitz

Directed by George Werther

16 Aug to 01 Sept 2018
Evenings at 8pm, Matinees at 2.15pm

SYNOPSIS
A Pulitzer prize-nominated modern play, set over one day, namely Christmas Eve 2004, in the affluent family Californian-desert home of Lyman and Polly Wyeth in Palm Springs. It is three years post 9/11 and soon after the Iraq war. They are conservative Republicans, he a former Hollywood actor and politician and she a former screenwriter and smart, society woman. Included in this family gathering are their son Trip, a bright and funny TV producer, and their daughter Brooke, a cynical leftist based in New York, as well as Silda, Polly’s chaotic and alcoholic sister.

Brooke is about to publish a book based on the family, focussing on her dead brother Henry, a misfit who joined the army, went off the rails and was involved in a terrible event, and then apparently took his own life – events that brought enormous guilt, shame and anger to the family. As the family members read the book, underlying tensions and anger emerge over the planned publication. Ultimately painful family secrets are exposed, revealing that all is not what it seems.

Mixed with the emotional drama of this play is much humour and wit. Each of the five characters is complex and skilfully drawn. The play requires experienced and sensitive actors prepared to inhabit these wonderful characters, and to work in a true ensemble.

CHARACTERS

Californian/middle American accents are required.

LYMAN, 60-70: Attractive, rugged, ever the actor. A friend of Ronald Reagan – and of a similar ilk. A former Hollywood Western actor and Republican politician. A “man’s man” in his time. He is desperate to hold the family together – and attempts to do so, until he cannot.

POLLY, 50s to 60s: Elegant, forthright, smart, society woman – tough and cannot forgive weakness – appears insensitive to her children. Strong antagonism between her and daughter Brooke – but eventually a hint of underlying love.

BROOKE, 30s: Attractive, dry, edgy leftist writer with mood swings, cynical of parents’ conservatism, self-centred, puts art before life, glorifies her dead brother Henry. Has affinity with her aunt Silda.

TRIP, 20s to 30s: Bright, funny, smart TV producer. Lightens up things, tries to be reasonable. Plays a sort of intermediary role between Brooke and her parents.

SILDA, 60s to 70s: Chaotic, alcoholic and recovering druggie, disinhibited, leftist ideologue, identifies with her niece Brooke. Volatile, challenging but caring relationship with sister Polly, on whom she depends.

AUDITION DETAILS
Auditions by appointment only
Sunday 20 May at BTC theatre from 7pm
Monday 21 May BTC theatre from 7pm

An electronic copy of the script will be provided, together with a list of sections to be read at audition for each character. Please also provide a theatre resume and head shot prior to the audition. No roles have been pre-cast.

ENQUIRIES
For enquiries and to book an audition time please contact the Director, George Werther on 0402 222 090 or george.werther@rch.org.au.

Information for prospective auditionees:
It is highly desirable that anyone wishing to audition should know the play well enough to be able to describe the “story”.

Rehearsals will be 7.30–10pm on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and 2pm–5pm Sundays. Actors need to be able to commit unconditionally not only for an entire performance season but also for all scheduled rehearsals at which their attendance is required.