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Archive for April, 2012

AUDITION NOTICE

CALENDAR GIRLS

A Comedy by Tim Firth

Director: Wendy Goddard

Audition Dates: Sunday 24 June at 14:30 and Wednesday 27 June at 19:30

Venue: The Hok, Campground Road, Claremont (under the bridge, next to Pick ‘n Pay)

Production dates: 9 – 24 November 2012

Rehearsals: from Tuesday 21 August.

SYNOPSIS

When Annie’s husband John dies of leukaemia, she and best friend Chris decide to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital waiting room. They manage to persuade four fellow WI members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer, Lawrence.
The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Yorkshire Dales. The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-found fame.
Based on the true story of eleven WI members who posed nude for a calendar to raise money for the Leukaemia Research Fund, Calendar Girls is the fastest selling play in British theatre history.

CHARACTERS
Chris* – 40s – 60s (Medium-Large part + 330 lines)

You want Chris at your party. She will talk to people she doesn’t know, find things to say to fill silences and generate laughter. Part of this is because Chris is at home in crowds, holding court, being the centre of attention. Without Chris in her life, Annie would be better behaved, her life less fun. The two of them are like naughty schoolgirls. Ideal car – who cares, as long as it’s a cabriolet. Ideal holiday – Algarve.

Annie* – 40s – 60s (Medium part + 230 lines)

Annie will join in mischief but is at heart more conformist and less confrontational than Chris. After Chris has put a waiter’s back up in the restaurant, Annie will go in and pour calm. The mischievousness Chris elicits saves Annie from being a saint. She has enough edge to be interesting, and enough salt not to be too sweet. Ideal car – who cares, as long as it’s reliable. Ideal holiday – walking in English countryside.
Together these two are greater than the sum of their parts. They would be lesser humans had they not met each other. Each is spiritual mustard to the other’s meat.
Cora* – 30s–40s (Medium part + 200 lines)

Cora’s past is the most eclectic, her horizons broadened by having gone to college. This caused a tectonic shift with her more parochial parents. She came back to them pregnant and tail-between-legs, but Cora has too much native resilience to be downtrodden. She is the joker in the pack, but never plays the fool. Her wit is deadpan. It raises laughter in others, but rarely in herself. Her relationship with her daughter is more akin to that between Chris and Annie. Cora doesn’t need to sing like a diva but must be able to sing well enough to start the show with Jerusalem and sing the snatches of other songs required. The piano keyboard can be marked up to enable her to play basic chords should she not be a player. Ideal car – who cares, as long as the sound system is loud. Ideal holiday – New York.
Jessie* – late 60s-70s (Small-Medium part + 150 lines)

Get on the right side of Jessie as a teacher and she’ll be the teacher you remember for life. Get on the wrong side and you will regret every waking hour. A lover of life, Jessie doesn’t bother with cosmetics – her elixir of life is bravery. Jessie goes on roller-coasters. Her husband has been with her a long time and is rarely surprised by her actions. Jessie bothers about grammar and will correct stallholders regarding their abuse of the apostrophe “s”. Ideal car – strange-looking European thing which is no longer manufactured. Ideal holiday – walking in Switzerland or Angkor Wat.

Celia* – 35-50 (Small-Medium part + 160 lines)

The fact that Celia is in the WI is the greatest justification of its existence. A woman more at home in a department store than a church hall, she may be slightly younger than Chris or the same age, but she always feels like she’s drifted in from another world. Which she has. She is particularly enamoured of Jessie, and despite the fact Jessie has very little time for most Celias of this world, there is a rebelliousness in Celia to which Jessie responds. It’s what sets Celia apart from the vapid materialism of her peer group and made her defect. Ideal car – Porsche, which she has. Ideal holiday – Maldives, where she often goes.

Ruth* – mid-30s–late 40s (Small-Medium part + 160 lines)

Ruth’s journey is from the false self-confidence of the emotionally abused to the genuine self-confidence of the woman happy in her own skin. Ruth is eager to please but not a rag doll, and despite being Marie’s right-hand woman she is desperate to be the cartilage in the spine of the WI and keep everyone happy. She has spine herself – if she was too wet, no one would want her around. But they do, and they feel protective of her because they sense there is something better in Ruth than her life is letting out They are proved right. Ideal car – at the start, whatever Eddie wants; at the end, whatever she wants. Ideal holiday – at the start wherever Eddie is, at the end wherever he isn’t.

Marie – 40s–60s (Small-Medium part + 150 lines)

Marie has gradually built the current ‘Marie’ around herself over the years as a defence mechanism. She went to her Oz, Cheshire, and found Oz didn’t want her. She came back scorched. The WI is a trophy to her, which justifies her entire existence. There is a lingering part of Marie that would love to be on that calendar. Ideal car – something German and well-valeted. Ideal holiday – a quasi-academic tour of somewhere in Persia advertised in a Sunday Supplement which she could then interminably bang on about

John (Annie’s husband) – 40s-60s (Small part + 60 lines)

John is a human sunflower. Not a saint. Not a hero. Just the kind of man you’d want in your car when crossing America. When he dies it feels like someone somewhere turned a light off.

Rod – (Chris’s husband) – 40s-60s (Small part + 40 lines)

You have to be a certain kind of guy to stick with Chris and Rod loves it. He can give back what he gets, and has a deadpan humour that has always made Chris laugh. He drinks a lot but never so much as to have a problem. He would work every hour to make his shop a success. And John was his mate, even though the relationship was originally channelled through their wives.

Lawrence – 20s–30s (Small part + 60 lines)

Hesitant without being nerdy, Lawrence is a shy young man with enough wit to make a joke and enough spirit to turn up at the WI hall in the first place. When he arranges the shots he is close to female nudity but sees only the photo.

Lady Cravenshire – 50s – 70s (Cameo + 15 lines)

Lady Cravenshire really doesn’t mean to be so patronising. But the WI girls seem from another world. The world of her estate workers. Dress: when she makes an entrance, she must make an entrance. Largely white or cream to outplay the others, with a bigger hat than Marie. She is not a tweed-wearer. She must glide in like a galleon.

Elaine – 20’s (Cameo + 20 lines)

Elaine really doesn’t mean to be so patronising. But Jessie seems from another world. The world of her gran.

Liam – 20’s-30s (Cameo + 30 lines)

Liam would like to be directing other things than photo-shoots for washing powders. He’s not so unprofessional as to let it show, but we can sense a slight weariness at having to deal with these women. There’s a resigned patience to his actions and each smile he makes we feel is professional. For Liam, this photo-shoot is a job. And not the job he wanted.

Brenda Hulse – 30s to 70s (Cameo + 20 lines)

A small cameo comedy role. A visiting speaker to the WI who is less than inspiring on the subject of broccoli. She is a naive lady who knits her own clothes, votes for the Green Party & loves all country pursuits. Very gushing about a rival WI.

*Characters who take part in the calendar photo shoot within the play. The action of this sequence is choreographed so that their modesty is preserved but actresses considering auditioning for these roles should bear this in mind.

A NOTE ON NUDITY

Contrary to belief, there is no nudity directly on show to the audience. As the playwright, Tim Firth says, “As in the best tradition of Vaudevillian fan dances, the art of the play’s nudity lies in what is withheld. The choreography of this sequence is best described as ‘fabulous concealment’. Should we see anything we oughtn’t, the whole scene will deflate like a soufflé on which the oven door has been opened too quickly. “

ACCENTS

The women of the real calendar in truth came from many parts of the country. Actors should resist the pressure to perform any kind of Yorkshire pyrotechnics. Nothing compromises the truth of comedy like a slavish attention to vowel-sounds and dipthongs. It will become a pebble in the shoe.

If you can flatten the “a” so that giraffe no longer rhymes with scarf then that will be more than sufficient; but even that should not be championed over the intrinsic rhythm of the line. People travel. Communities are now gloriously multi-instrumental. Accents from Glasgow to Gonubie can make the same part their own.

SIZE OF PART

Even though the number of lines doesn’t seem to be daunting, most of the ‘girls’ are on stage most of the time, so will need to attend all the rehearsals. Fine ensemble playing is essential for the success of the production

For more information, a copy of the script, or if you’d like to be part of the backstage crew of this wonderful team, please contact Wendy on 083 414 7003 or wendygoddard@xsinet.co.za.

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Claremont Chat

Claremont Dramatic Society Newsletter
12 Eden Road, Claremont, 7708

Tel: 021 671 2888 Cell: 083 414 7003
email: claremontdramatic@gmail.com

http://www.claremontdramatic.wordpress.com

April 2012 – Number 109
________________________________________

Hello everyone!

Here’s hoping you didn’t get too damp over Easter, and that the upcoming long weekend is a bit drier. Not taking any bets though…

Clifford Graham has unfortunately resigned from the committee, so I am your interim scribe. Thank you Clifford for your lovely chatty newsletters and hard work over the last year or so. Our newest member, Alex Lategan, who worked backstage during ‘Marvin’s Room’ has very kindly agreed to fill Clifford’s shoes – thank you Alex, and welcome!

Members’ Evening

A quick reminder that our members’ evening is this Friday, 20 April at 7:30 for 8:00 pm.

Anton Schafer (who made his debut for CDS as Mickey Mouse in ‘Marvin’s Room’), and Shannon Correia (who portrayed a very impressive Ophelia at our Shakespeare Monologues evening last year) willl play Geraldine Aron’s Bar and Ger, with direction by Bruce Sanderson.

The second half of the evening will be a comedy sketch called ‘Cricket and Football’, written by Liam Cundill and performed by Liam Cundill and Nigel Sweet.

Please give Pam Burger a ring on 021 657 5700 (w) or 082 488 0442; or email her on pamb@masterparts.com to let her know if will be joining us for another great evening’s entertainment and grub.

Call for Directors

Another reminder: If you would like to direct for Claremont Dramatic Society next year – now’s your chance to apply. Please let Anthony know (anthonylister@mailbox.co.za) if you’re interested, and he will send you an application form, which you will need to complete and return to him by 20 May.

Subscriptions

And yet another reminder: Thank you to those who responded to our last plea, and a nudge to those who didn’t…

R40 for members, R30 for students and pensioners
R60 for couples, R45 for student and pensioner couples.

We will gladly relieve you of your subs on Friday.

Awards Evening

You may have seen the article about CDS which appeared in the Tatler on 12 April, which included a photo of our 2011 prize winners. Congratulations again to you all, and especially to Adrian Kettle who was awarded honorary Life Membership; Clifford Graham, who was awarded for Outstanding Service to the Society; and Elza-lynne Kruger, who was awarded for Production Support for ‘Brief Lives’.

Audition

‘Calendar Girls’: Sunday 24 June, 2:30pm and Wednesday 27 June, 7:30pm. Production dates 9-24 November. Full audition notice below.

Hok news

A big thank you to Barrie Howard for buying his wife, Jin, a new fridge and freezer. As he no longer had space for his bar fridge, he very kindly donated it to the Hok. Now we can have ice in our drinks…just in time for winter! We will be giving it a test run on Friday at our members’ evening.

News from Other Societies

Audition
MADS will be staging Nick Hall’s “Eat Your Heart Out”, to be directed by Tom Byrne, in the Masque Theatre Foyer, as a dinner theatre show (a first for the Masque and for MADS), from 14 to 18 August 2012, as part of the Masque Festival. The audition will be held at 11 am on Saturday May 5 at The Rendezvous (Old Zandvlei Bowling Club), 57 Promenade Road, Muizenberg. The play is set in New York City, with each scene taking place in a different restaurant. Generic American accents will be required but are not necessary for the audition. Cast required is four women (ages 20 to 60) and five men (ages 20 to 60). Charlie (the lead) is a waiter, in his late twenties/early thirties, trying to be an actor. Enquiries to Tom on tom1949sa@gmail.com or 071 871 0451.

Benefit Performance
Constantiaberg Theatre Players will be putting on an extra show of “Move Over Mrs Markham” on Sunday 6 May at 15:00 for Walter Hodges, a long time member of that Society and avid theatre lover. Wally will be retiring from theatre and the Masque, and as a thank you for all his hard work and passionate support over the years, we would like to thank him in the best way we know how. This is a show that can easily be seen twice – you’ll be laughing so hard the first time, you’ll miss half of it – so please make an effort to attend this performance, catch up with fellow thespians and give Wal the send-off he deserves. The bar will be open for this performance.

Masque Theatre News

Bookings
After many years of dedicated service, Mav Magnin has retired from the booking office and we wish her all the best. Aubrey Hindle has taken over this post, and will be on site at the Masque Theatre Mondays to Fridays from 10:00 to 16:00 to take telephone, e-mail (bookings@masquetheatre.co.za) and cash bookings. Same telephone number as before: 021 7881898.

Fundraiser
Saturday 26 May in the Masque Theatre foyer. A mere R30 will secure you an evening of 80s fun and frolic, starting at 20:00! Dress up (or not), arrive 19:30ish and prepare to dance the night away to the likes of Queen, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Big Country, Eddie Grant, and U2. All proceeds will go towards the upkeep of our beloved theatre, so make sure you bring all your friends along! We hope that our “further-afield” societies will also join in the fun. Pay at the door on the night and bring money for the cash bar!

Short Film

Stephen Moser is a second year film student, taking a directing major at CityVarsity School of Media and Creative Arts. He is looking for a number of actors, mixed gender and ages, to act in a short film he is directing on the 28th and 29th of April. If anyone is interested please contact Stephen (stvmsr@gmail.com) and he will forward more information and details on characters.

Dates to Diarise:

12-28 April: ‘Line’ by Israel Horowitz. Directed by Yvonne Copley for Sugar Daddy Productions, at the Little Theatre. More info here: http://www.fullcirclemag.co.za/events/now-and-coming/line-by-israel-horovitz

13-21 April: ‘The Winslow Boy’ by Terence Rattigan. Directed by Aubrey Hindle for FHDS. Masque Theatre bookings 021 788 1898

18-21 April: “Preeoudly Seeouff Affriken” devised and directed by David Bolton and Kyla Thorburn, for Live Acts in Association with Cape Town G & S Society. Milnerton High School Auditorium. Bookings: lance.kotze@gmail.com

20 April: CDS Members evening – 7:30 for 8:00 pm

4-12 May: ‘Move Over Mrs Markham’ by Ray Cooney and John Chapman. Directed by
Wesley Figaji for Constantiaberg Theatre Players. Masque Theatre bookings 021 788 1898

5 May: Audition – ‘Eat Your Heart Out’

6 May: Benefit performance of ‘Move over Mrs Markham’ for Walter Hodges

18-26 May: ‘Second Time Around’by Derek Benfield, directed by Gordon Molloy, for Milnerton Players, at the Milnerton Playhouse. Bookings: http://www.milnerton players.com or 082 267 1061.

20 May: Deadline for applications for directors for CDS 2013 productions

20 May: Masque AGM. 18:30, at the Theatre

26 May: 80’s party – Masque fundraiser

24 and 27 June: Audition – Calendar Girls

20 – 28 July: The Odd Couple (female version)

On the lighter side

During the run of ‘Marvin’s Room’ we had a visitor from Rodentia in the Green Room. A rather large rat slipped through the security gate and ambled through the green room, dressing room and onto the stage. Fortunately this was before the show started. The reaction of the cast and crew was remarkably relaxed, and after a bit of encouragement from a piece of Xanita board (that product’s versatility knows no bounds), Rattus rattus slipped back out the way he came in.

Then, while installing our new fridge (thank you for cleaning the Hok, Sheila!), I noticed that a mouse had taken up residence in one of our kitchen cupboards. Apart from being partial to our candles, Mus musculus took a particular liking to our teabags (he didn’t like rooibos). Unfortunately he only took a few nibbles out of every teabag, so loose tea was strewn all over the place – blending well with the sugar spilled from the well-nibbled sugar packet. So, on Friday, please be on the lookout for a well-fed, possibly diabetic, rodent.

That’s all for now – see you at the theatre!

Wendy

AUDITION NOTICE

CALENDAR GIRLS

A Comedy by Tim Firth

Director: Wendy Goddard

Audition Dates: Sunday 24 June at 14:30 and Wednesday 27 June at 19:30
Venue: The Hok, Campground Road, Claremont (under the bridge, next to Pick ‘n Pay)

Production dates: 9 – 24 November 2012

Rehearsals: from Tuesday 21 August.

SYNOPSIS
When Annie’s husband John dies of leukaemia, she and best friend Chris decide to raise money for a new settee in the local hospital waiting room. They manage to persuade four fellow WI members to pose nude with them for an “alternative” calendar, with a little help from hospital porter and amateur photographer, Lawrence.
The news of the women’s charitable venture spreads like wildfire, and hordes of press soon descend on the small village of Knapeley in the Yorkshire Dales. The calendar is a success, but Chris and Annie’s friendship is put to the test under the strain of their new-found fame.
Based on the true story of eleven WI members who posed nude for a calendar to raise money for the Leukaemia Research Fund, Calendar Girls is the fastest selling play in British theatre history.

CHARACTERS

Chris* – 40s – 60s (Medium-Large part + 330 lines)

You want Chris at your party. She will talk to people she doesn’t know, find things to say to fill silences and generate laughter. Part of this is because Chris is at home in crowds, holding court, being the centre of attention. Without Chris in her life, Annie would be better behaved, her life less fun. The two of them are like naughty schoolgirls. Ideal car – who cares, as long as it’s a cabriolet. Ideal holiday – Algarve.

Annie* – 40s – 60s (Medium part + 230 lines)

Annie will join in mischief but is at heart more conformist and less confrontational than Chris. After Chris has put a waiter’s back up in the restaurant, Annie will go in and pour calm. The mischievousness Chris elicits saves Annie from being a saint. She has enough edge to be interesting, and enough salt not to be too sweet. Ideal car – who cares, as long as it’s reliable. Ideal holiday – walking in English countryside.

Together these two are greater than the sum of their parts. They would be lesser humans had they not met each other. Each is spiritual mustard to the other’s meat.

Cora* – 30s–40s (Medium part + 200 lines)

Cora’s past is the most eclectic, her horizons broadened by having gone to college. This caused a tectonic shift with her more parochial parents. She came back to them pregnant and tail-between-legs, but Cora has too much native resilience to be downtrodden. She is the joker in the pack, but never plays the fool. Her wit is deadpan. It raises laughter in others, but rarely in herself. Her relationship with her daughter is more akin to that between Chris and Annie. Cora doesn’t need to sing like a diva but must be able to sing well enough to start the show with Jerusalem and sing the snatches of other songs required. The piano keyboard can be marked up to enable her to play basic chords should she not be a player. Ideal car – who cares, as long as the sound system is loud. Ideal holiday – New York.

Jessie* – late 60s-70s (Small-Medium part + 150 lines)

Get on the right side of Jessie as a teacher and she’ll be the teacher you remember for life. Get on the wrong side and you will regret every waking hour. A lover of life, Jessie doesn’t bother with cosmetics – her elixir of life is bravery. Jessie goes on roller-coasters. Her husband has been with her a long time and is rarely surprised by her actions. Jessie bothers about grammar and will correct stallholders regarding their abuse of the apostrophe “s”. Ideal car – strange-looking European thing which is no longer manufactured. Ideal holiday – walking in Switzerland or Angkor Wat.

Celia* – 35-50 (Small-Medium part + 160 lines)

The fact that Celia is in the WI is the greatest justification of its existence. A woman more at home in a department store than a church hall, she may be slightly younger than Chris or the same age, but she always feels like she’s drifted in from another world. Which she has. She is particularly enamoured of Jessie, and despite the fact Jessie has very little time for most Celias of this world, there is a rebelliousness in Celia to which Jessie responds. It’s what sets Celia apart from the vapid materialism of her peer group and made her defect. Ideal car – Porsche, which she has. Ideal holiday – Maldives, where she often goes.

Ruth* – mid-30s–late 40s (Small-Medium part + 160 lines)

Ruth’s journey is from the false self-confidence of the emotionally abused to the genuine self-confidence of the woman happy in her own skin. Ruth is eager to please but not a rag doll, and despite being Marie’s right-hand woman she is desperate to be the cartilage in the spine of the WI and keep everyone happy. She has spine herself – if she was too wet, no one would want her around. But they do, and they feel protective of her because they sense there is something better in Ruth than her life is letting out They are proved right. Ideal car – at the start, whatever Eddie wants; at the end, whatever she wants. Ideal holiday – at the start wherever Eddie is, at the end wherever he isn’t.

Marie – 40s–60s (Small-Medium part + 150 lines)

Marie has gradually built the current ‘Marie’ around herself over the years as a defence mechanism. She went to her Oz, Cheshire, and found Oz didn’t want her. She came back scorched. The WI is a trophy to her, which justifies her entire existence. There is a lingering part of Marie that would love to be on that calendar. Ideal car – something German and well-valeted. Ideal holiday – a quasi-academic tour of somewhere in Persia advertised in a Sunday Supplement which she could then interminably bang on about

John (Annie’s husband) – 40s-60s (Small part + 60 lines)

John is a human sunflower. Not a saint. Not a hero. Just the kind of man you’d want in your car when crossing America. When he dies it feels like someone somewhere turned a light off.

Rod – (Chris’s husband) – 40s-60s (Small part + 40 lines)

You have to be a certain kind of guy to stick with Chris and Rod loves it. He can give back what he gets, and has a deadpan humour that has always made Chris laugh. He drinks a lot but never so much as to have a problem. He would work every hour to make his shop a success. And John was his mate, even though the relationship was originally channelled through their wives.

Lawrence – 20s–30s (Small part + 60 lines)

Hesitant without being nerdy, Lawrence is a shy young man with enough wit to make a joke and enough spirit to turn up at the WI hall in the first place. When he arranges the shots he is close to female nudity but sees only the photo.

Lady Cravenshire – 50s – 70s (Cameo + 15 lines)

Lady Cravenshire really doesn’t mean to be so patronising. But the WI girls seem from another world. The world of her estate workers. Dress: when she makes an entrance, she must make an entrance. Largely white or cream to outplay the others, with a bigger hat than Marie. She is not a tweed-wearer. She must glide in like a galleon.

Elaine – 20’s (Cameo + 20 lines)

Elaine really doesn’t mean to be so patronising. But Jessie seems from another world. The world of her gran.

Liam – 20’s-30s (Cameo + 30 lines)

Liam would like to be directing other things than photo-shoots for washing powders. He’s not so unprofessional as to let it show, but we can sense a slight weariness at having to deal with these women. There’s a resigned patience to his actions and each smile he makes we feel is professional. For Liam, this photo-shoot is a job. And not the job he wanted.

Brenda Hulse – 30s to 70s (Cameo + 20 lines)

A small cameo comedy role. A visiting speaker to the WI who is less than inspiring on the subject of broccoli. She is a naive lady who knits her own clothes, votes for the Green Party & loves all country pursuits. Very gushing about a rival WI.
*Characters who take part in the calendar photo shoot within the play. The action of this sequence is choreographed so that their modesty is preserved but actresses considering auditioning for these roles should bear this in mind.

A NOTE ON NUDITY

Contrary to belief, there is no nudity directly on show to the audience. As the playwright, Tim Firth says, “As in the best tradition of Vaudevillian fan dances, the art of the play’s nudity lies in what is withheld. The choreography of this sequence is best described as ‘fabulous concealment’. Should we see anything we oughtn’t, the whole scene will deflate like a soufflé on which the oven door has been opened too quickly. “

ACCENTS

The women of the real calendar in truth came from many parts of the country. Actors should resist the pressure to perform any kind of Yorkshire pyrotechnics. Nothing compromises the truth of comedy like a slavish attention to vowel-sounds and dipthongs. It will become a pebble in the shoe.

If you can flatten the “a” so that giraffe no longer rhymes with scarf then that will be more than sufficient; but even that should not be championed over the intrinsic rhythm of the line. People travel. Communities are now gloriously multi-instrumental. Accents from Glasgow to Gonubie can make the same part their own.

SIZE OF PART

Even though the number of lines doesn’t seem to be daunting, most of the ‘girls’ are on stage most of the time, so will need to attend all the rehearsals. Fine ensemble playing is essential for the success of the production.

For more information, a copy of the script, or if you’d like to be part of the backstage crew of this wonderful team, please contact Wendy on 083 414 7003 or wendygoddard@xsinet.co.za.

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