SURREY — I keep thinking about that National Endowment for the Arts Report #59 that I told you about last week, the one that found only 20 per cent of the population attends performing arts events. When we did attend, it was most likely to see family or friends and enjoy a social experience as well. Community theatre — it used to be called “amateur” back in the day — offers just the right mix of social mixing and participating with friends and family.
Let’s see if we can’t bump up that performance-event percentage, and get involved with community theatre. I know many of our schools have very fine drama programs, and that many of the graduates have not dusted off their acting skills learned since graduating. Well, take the time to get out there and audition for something. Auditions are fun, a learning experience, a social interaction, and are always surprising. Never know what might happen.
Be prepared for any audition. This is like a job interview. Put together a one-page resumé of your experience and training, add a head shot — c’mon, you take selfies all the time, don’t you? — research the play you want to audition for, get an idea of the club producing the play and pay attention to rehearsal dates.
Beach House Theatre, a non-profit theatre company, is casting for Larry Shue’s “The Foreigner.” Auditions will be held on Sunday, April 3 between the hours of 4 and 8 p.m. Callbacks will be Sunday, May 1 at 4 p.m. Beach House Theatre started with Shakespeare and now, after several extremely successful summers in tents set up at Crescent Beach, this very clever artistic team is branching out with this contemporary play.
“The Foreigner” requires a cast of five male and two female non-equity actors aged 19 or older.
Auditions will be held in the dining hall at Alexandra Neighbourhood House (2916 McBride Ave., Surrey). To setup an audition, or for more information, email email@example.com. For an audition, select your preferred time between 4 and 8 p.m; a confirmation email will be sent with your audition time.
Elsewhere, White Rock Players is holding auditions for “The Odd Couple” — and presenting both male and female versions in repertory. Susanne de Pencier is director for the female version and Pat McDermott is directing the male version, from June 8 to July 2. Audition dates are Sunday March 20 (1 to 5 p.m.) and Tuesday March 22 (7 to 10 p.m.) at Coast Capital Playhouse, 1532 Johnston Rd., White Rock. Needed are eight men and eight women — two men who can do Spanish accents and two women with English accents. To book an audition, send your headshot and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
One more: Auditions are on Sunday, March 13 (12:30 p.m. start) and Monday, March 14 (7:30 p.m.) for the casting of Bard in the Valley’s 2016 production of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew,” directed by Darcy J. Knopp. No appointment is necessary for auditions, at Douglas Park Recreation Centre. You will be asked to do a cold read from the script, and some will be asked to read for specific roles. Bring along a printed headshot and resumé, and be prepared to sing an unaccompanied pop song (no longer than one minute) of your choice. This is a non-equity production, so everyone is welcome. For more information, contact producer Diane Gendron at email@example.com.
If you aren’t going to audition, or be part of these productions in any way, then you have the time to be part of the audience. These venues — a park, a beach and an indoor theatre — are close by, so you won’t have to travel far. It’ll feel like a holiday.