Our OAP production for this year will be “Picnic” by William Inge. A full audition packet will be available on Dec. 1st. For now, here is a character breakdown (please keep in mind that a cutting is not complete and some minor characters may not remain in the final OAP script):
Helen Potts (~50+) An older widow lady who lives next door to the Owens’, she lives with her aged, invalid mother. Helen was impulsive as a girl, she eloped at a young age with a man not dissimilar to Hal, and her mother immediately annulled the marriage. Mrs. Potts in name only, she has remained kindhearted and jovial, and willingly takes in Hal, allowing him to do a few hours of work in return for a large breakfast. She has a history of taking in drifters and ‘riff-raff’. Perhaps because she recognizes the man she loved for too brief a time, Helen becomes Hal’s champion. She is often on the sidelines, observing events, preferring to bask in the comings and goings of youth then to sit alone on her porch.
Millie Owens (16) A girl of sixteen, constantly in the shadow of her older, more beautiful sister, she has responded by embracing life as a tomboy. Although she would never admit it, perhaps she would like to occasionally be thought of as the pretty one. She has had a crush on Alan for years but never admitted it. Although she often antagonizes Madge, it comes from a place of sisterly love, and there must be a very genuine loving relationship between the two girls. Millie is smart, confident, scrappy, and never afraid of a fight, she also has a talent for art. Does not like being called a ‘goon’.
Madge Owens (18) A ravishing yet restrained eighteen year-old beauty. She has spent her entire life being constantly complimented on her looks and feels inhuman because of it. She longs to leave her hometown and go someplace new with someone special. Underneath her beauty and docility she is desperate to be more than just a pretty face. Falls for Hal partly because he treats her as a person and not an object, and she sees him as an escape from her current lot in life. She knows going off with him may be a bad idea, but it is an escape, and it is something. Although she often fights with Millie, she really does love her and is very proud of her accomplishments. Some dancing skills a plus.
Flo Owens (40-60) A widow lady, Millie and Madge are her daughters. She rents out a room in her house to Rosemary Sydney. Hal reminds her of her deceased deadbeat husband incarnate and she desperately wants more for Madge. She has been down the road that Madge is going down, and she knows where it will lead, as she went down the same road years ago and as a result was left to raise her two children by herself. Above all things she is a survivor who loves her daughters more than life itself, and she is desperate for her children to have a better life than her own.
Rosemary Sydney (~30-45) A schoolteacher. She puts up a façade as an independent woman who neither needs nor wants a man in her life, but underneath that harsh and bawdy exterior she needs love as much or more than most. She at first sees Hal as vulgar and distasteful, but soon realizes that he represents the life that is passing her by, which spurs her breakdown late in the play. May suffer from depression, and she knows it. Some dancing skills a plus.
Irma Kronkite (~35-50) A schoolteacher. She and Rosemary are old friends. Takes Christine under her wing and takes on the role of mentor. A very smart woman, Christine is pursuing her master’s degree in teaching in addition to her job at the school. Although she takes her responsibilities seriously, she also has a wild side that makes no apologies for.
Christine Schoenwalder (~25-40) A new schoolteacher, she is taking Mabel Freemount’s place as the teacher of Feminine Hygiene. She is new to town and hasn’t settled in yet, and her natural eagerness clashes with her need to please others and fit in.
Hal Carter (~25) A former football star and now something of a drifter, Hal is described as ‘an exceedingly handsome youth’. In spite of this, looks are nowhere near as important as personality. Hal must be raw and charismatic, he is the catalyst for the events of the play, so there should be something different about him, in other words, he has ‘IT’. He is a braggart, but has done almost everything he boasts about. While on the surface he is cocky and worldly, underneath that he is a troubled young man with a difficult past who envies the stability he sees in others, specifically Alan’s family and professional life. Hal sees something in Madge that others do not, and he treats her as an equal, not an object. Must be comfortable shirtless, and some dancing skills are a plus.
Bomber Gutzel (14-18) A paperboy. Bomber is a young highschool boy who does his best to appear older and wiser than his years. He is infatuated with Madge, and constantly attempts to get her to go on a date with him. He hopes that chipping in for a hotrod (which he gets every Friday night) will be the key to Madge’s desire. Possibly annoying, but definitely harmless and likable.
Alan Seymour (~25) Madge’s boyfriend, an old college roommate and fraternity brother of Hal’s. Alan comes from a successful family and is well on his way to a career in the family business. He is deeply in love with Madge, but feels unworthy of her beauty and as a result he often treats her as a fragile object of affection instead of a human being. The two of them have been going steady all summer, and the consensus assumption is that marriage is in the near future. Alan is leaving to go back to college not for himself, but because his father insists. Although they have not seen each other in over a year, he and Hal pick up right where they left off. In spite of the comfort and stability in his life, Alan is jealous of Hal’s freedom and inhibitions, and he likes to live vicariously through Hal’s exploits.
Howard Bevans (40-60) Rosemary’s longtime beau, a forty-two year old salesman who runs a store full of ‘notions, novelties, and school supplies. Ever so slightly flamboyant, Howard is man who wears shirtsleeves and a panama hat, smokes cigars, and is not above sneaking a full bottle of whiskey to a family picnic, in short, he loves a good time. Whereas Rosemary is desperate for security, Howard is perfectly content with the status quo. He loves Rosemary, but sees no reason to change a good thing. Takes an instant liking to Hal. While he worries about his reputation, he still believes in living life to the fullest and helping others to do the same, as long as there is no dancing involved.
Auditions will be held as follows:
First Round – MONOLOGUES – you will perform One dramatic monologue running 1-2 minutes in length from the play of your choice. I suggest choosing a piece that is similar to the voice of the character you are most interested in the play.
Students in 1A Theatre II and 3A Theatre Production will audition with their monologues during their class period on December 9th.
Students in 2B Theatre III/IV and 4B Theatre II will audition with their monologues during their class period on Dec. 10th
Students in Theatre I or any other students wishing to audition will need to make an appointment with me to audition with their monologue on Dec. 8, 9 or 10 between 8:15 and 8:50 in the morning.
Second Round- CALLBACKS/COLD READINGS – a call back list will be posted at the end of the day on Friday, Dec. 11. Sides will be provided for you to prepare over the weekend. Call backs will be held on the mornings of Dec. 14, 15, 16 & 17 from 8:15 – 8:50am. I plan to post the company list at the end of the day on Friday, Dec. 18th and scripts will be available for the company to take home and begin working on over the holiday break.
Please come and see Mrs. Howe if you have any questions.