Nash Theatre RADIO PLAYS
directed by Gary Kliger
We are casting for two radio plays to be performed on the one evening:
The iconic Sunset Boulevard & the one-act thriller Sorry Wrong Number
The radio play format, for those who don’t know, is one where the actors read their scripts as if going out live to a radio audience and in front of a studio audience and the sound effects are performed live in the studio and provide a lot of enjoyment and atmosphere for our audiences.
Sunset Boulevard hardly needs any introduction, from the classic film with Gloria Swanson and William Holden, to the hugely successful musical adaptation.
The challenge: While learning the lines for the roles is not necessary, my intention is that these roles are fully realised and performed for each audience, so absolute ease and familiarity is needed in order not to make it at all a stilted ‘reading’.
The radio plays are great fun for the casts who are involved with them.
Preparation: No learned piece; we will be conducting readings from the script and American accents are vital, so come prepared to really give that a go.
Date: Saturday December 9th
Time: Morning Session 10am –1pm Afternoon Session 2pm – 4pm
Sunday December 10th Morning 10am – 1pm
Possible call backs on the evening of Monday December 11th
Place: The Play Shed
The Play Shed is next to the car park behind Merthyr Road Uniting Church, 52 Merthyr Rd New Farm. Access is via the path next to the church or via Amity Street
Season: February 23 – March 17
To register interest please email firstname.lastname@example.org stating your name & contact details including a mobile phone number & whether you are attending the morning or the afternoon session on Saturday or the Sunday morning session.
Copies of the scripts can be emailed to you on request when you have registered.
CHARACTERS REQUIRED FOR SORRY WRONG NUMBER;
1. ‘The Man in Black’ sets up the story for the ‘listening’ audience; male age open; supporting role;
2. An announcer/ presenter for LUX Theatre, who introduces the show that is being presented and takes part in the commercials that are a part of the whole presentation; a slick, ‘radio voice’ type of performance required here; male; age open; could double up with a character in the story
3. Woman; lead role, she overhears a conversation in which two men are plotting someone’s death and she comes to realise that she may be the intended victim. She tries to get someone, anyone, to believe her; age open, requires an imperious tone at the start leading towards hysteria later in the piece.
4. The voice at the end can be someone already cast.
CHARACTERS REQUIRED FOR SUNSET BOULEVARD:
1. An announcer; same comments as for Sorry Wrong Number.
2. The Host; sets the scene for the radio audience, strikes the dramatic tone needed to introduce the story and the ‘Stars’ of the show to the radio audience; male; age open; could double up with a character in the story;
3. Libby Collins Hollywood Reporter; takes part in the commercial segments of the show format, style is like any gushing entertainment industry reporter along with the commercial style of presenter; female; age open; could double up with a character in the story;
4. Irene Martin Intermission Guest, dealing with the commercials that are in place between Acts of the radio show; female; age open; could possibly double up with one of the characters;
5. Joe Gillis, main role in the story: desperate to sell a screenplay, ANY screenplay, to a studio, down to his last dime, being chased by debt collectors, makes a fateful turn into a driveway while being pursued by the debt collectors with life changing consequences. Hard bitten, cynical, desperate, on his last chance to make a go of writing for the screen, sees an opportunity he’ll regret when offered a ‘position’ with Norma Desmond to clean up the screenplay she’s been hawking around the studios; male; age open.
6. Norma Desmond, main role in the story; faded silent era star, who has been shunted aside when the ‘talkies’ came in; lives in a fantasy that she’ll be recalled to her former glory days because she’s never been forgotten and it’s a certainty that she’ll have her name up in lights once again. Lives in a delusional state, protected by Max from reality, falls in ‘love’ with Joe Gillis, when he ends up at her house and engages his assistance with the script that’s going to get her back to the top of the heap. Her fall from the heights has damaged her irreparably and the conclusion to which it leads her is predictable and still shocking. Female: It is mentioned that she is 50-something in age but the attitude, the self-delusion, the self-belief is what is important to achieve;
7. Betty Schaefer; works at the studio , is engaged to Artie Green, becomes involved with Joe; substantial support role; the attraction between her and Joe has to be obvious and understandable; female; age open but she should be able to be ‘partnered’ with Joe in an understandable way;
8. Max, who is Norma’s first husband, now her faithful and utterly protective servant and confidante. Male: Should be in the proximity of age of Norma, should have an ‘air of mystery’ about him, a slightly European accent will be helpful; substantial support role;
9. Sheldrake, studio head, no-nonsense, powerful, Gillis desperate to impress him; age appropriate to someone with some power in the Hollywood system; male; age open; supporting role;
10. Artie Green, friend of Joe, engaged to Betty; male; age something similar to Joe; support role.
11. Young Guard, Old Guard, Lieutenant of Police, Captain of Police, Detectives, all various people in minor support roles.
Type of production
Company Name and Suburb
New Farm Nash Theatre Inc