Bell Road Barn Players will be holding
open auditions for our Summer 2023 shows
“The Bad Seed”
by Maxwell Anderson
Directed by Melissa Trierweiler
Performing June 9-18
“Pride & Prejudice”
Adapted by Kate Hamill
Directed by Hephzibah Dutt
Performing July 21-30
Auditions will be held on the campus of Park University
at the Theatre in Alumni Hall on the following dates:
Sunday, April 2nd , from 1-6 pm
Monday, April 3rd, from 6:30-9:30pm
8700 NW River Park Drive, Parkville, MO 64152
Sign-Up for Auditions Here
Actors of all ages, ethnicities and experience are encouraged to attend.
Auditions will consist of cold readings from the scripts.
Prepared monologues are not required but will be heard if available.
AUDITIONS WILL BE BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.
ALL ROLES are available.
Approximately 9-12 to roles available for male and female actors each and one child actress.
Tech and backstage roles also available.
About the Shows
THE BAD SEED
ABOUT THE PLAY:
Set in a small Southern town where Colonel and Christine Penmark live with their daughter, Rhoda. Little Rhoda Penmark is the evil queen of the story. On the surface she is sweet, charming, full of old-fashioned graces, loved by her parents, admired by all her elders. But Rhoda’s mother has an uneasy feeling about her. When one of Rhoda’s schoolmates is mysteriously drowned at a picnic, Mrs. Penmark is alarmed. For the boy who was drowned was the one who had won the penmanship medal that Rhoda felt she deserved.
Content Advisory: Please be aware that this show explores dark themes such as murder, death, and suicide.
*** Content Advisory for young actors auditioning for “Rhoda” ***
Rhoda is a leading role and would be a terrific and fun acting challenge for a young actor, especially if they like to play villainous characters! However, it is important to be aware that the play itself explores dark themes. As the description suggests, it is revealed in the play that Rhoda Penmark has killed her classmate as well as others. At the end of the show Rhoda’s mother, fearing what people would do to Rhoda if they found out the truth, unsuccessfully attempts to take Rhoda’s life before ultimately taking her own. All of the violence that is discussed happens offstage and will be approached delicately. I have worked extensively with child actors of all ages in a directing and teaching capacity. My top priority as a director will be creating a safe, nurturing, and fun rehearsal experience for whoever is cast as Rhoda! I am happy to discuss any questions or concerns with parents and guardians throughout the process of auditions and subsequent rehearsals. -Melissa Trierweiler (Director)
CHARACTER BREAKDOWN (7 Men, 4 Women, 1 Female Child/Preteen)
RHODA PENMARK (Female-identifying child/preteen. Ages around 9-14 considered.) On the surface Rhoda is “sweet, charming, full of old-fashioned graces, loved by her parents, admired by all her elders.” However, there is something dark about Rhoda which leads her to manipulate those around her and take drastic, even deadly, actions to get what she wants. (Note: Piano experience is a plus, but not a requirement.)
COL. KENNETH PENMARK (Male-identifying. 30s-40s) A military officer who is devoted to his wife and adores his daughter. His work means he’s away from home a lot leaving him unaware of Rhoda’s dark side.
CHRISTINE PENMARK (Female-identifying. Late 20s-40s) A “gentle, gracious woman, quite obviously dedicated to being a good wife and wonderful mother. The kind of woman whose life is given meaning by the affection she gives and receives.” She grows increasingly more uneasy and distressed as she learns of Rhoda’s actions and uncovers family secrets about herself.
MONICA BREEDLOVE (Female-identifying. 40s-70s) A widow described as “intelligent, voluble, and perhaps overly friendly.” She is a friend and neighbor to the Penmarks and loves to spoil Rhoda. A gossipy know-it-all, she doesn’t often filter what she says.
EMORY WAGES (Male-identifying. 40s-70s) Monica’s younger brother. Also friendly, though quieter and more reserved than Monica. Monica makes a remark that Emory may be a closeted gay man, though it is not confirmed.
LEROY (Male-identifying. 30s-60s) The Groundskeeper of the building the Penmark’s live in. He is very resentful towards the rich people he works for. He is suspicious and confrontational towards Rhoda from the beginning and can see her for what she is.
MISS FERN (Female-identifying. 20s-60s) The head of Rhoda’s aristocratic school. Prim and intelligent, but while she is well-spoken she is “a timid and undistinguished” person. She expresses her concerns over Rhoda to Christine and ultimately asks that Rhoda not return to her school.
REGINALD TASKER (Male-identifying. 40s-70s) An author of detective stories and considers himself an expert on crime history and there gruesome details. A friend to Monica and Emory.
MRS. DAIGLE (Female-identifying. 30s-50s) The mother of Rhoda’s classmate Claude who died under mysterious circumstances at the school picnic. She spends most of the show intoxicated and distraught over the loss of her son. She is suspicious of Rhoda and confronts Christine about it.
MR. DAIGLE (Male-identifying. 30s-50s) Mrs. Daigle’s husband. He is also devastated over losing Claude but is embarrassed over Mrs. Daigle’s methods of confrontation.
MESSENGER (Any age or gender) A messenger who brings news to the Penmark’s home.
RICHARD BRAVO (Male-identifying. 50s-70s) Christine’s father and a mystery writer. Can be stern but loves his daughter. Reveals to Christine that he is not actually her birth father, as well as the secretive circumstances under which he came to adopt her.
Pride & Prejudice
ABOUT THE PLAY
Pride and Prejudice is a full-length romantic comedy adapted for the stage by Kate Hamill. While it is based on the beloved novel by Jane Austen, this playful, irreverent adaptation gives the story we know and love an unconventional updating. In Regency England, love is a serious game, and the Bennet sisters are playing for keeps. But when marriage is a must for women, how will they be able to tell if they’ve won? This clever comedy offers a decidedly progressive take on the trials of Lizzy, Mr. Darcy, and the whole Bennet clan, with a few dance breaks thrown in for good measure.
Character Breakdown(3 female, 3 males, 2 of either gender is the minimum casting requirements.)
Some actors will play multiple roles; the doubling is part of the humor of the script.
Actors playing Lizzy and Mr. Darcy are the only ones that will never double up.
JANE – The eldest Bennet daughter. Beautiful, idealistic. Always does the right thing.
LIZZY – The second Bennet daughter. Clever, spirited, sharp-tongued when angry. Gets klutzy when flustered. Scared of marriage
LADY CATHERINE — Part-Caesar, part drill-sergeant. A force to be reckoned with.
MRS. BENNET – The Bennet matriarch. Obsessed with getting her daughters married. Also a hypochondriac.
MR. DARCY – Too proper for his own good. Awkward in social situations.
WICKHAM– Handsome and charming; doesn’t care for anyone but himself…but you won’t know it until it’s too late.
MR. COLLINS – The original Mansplainer, obsessively grateful to Lady Catherine.
Roles that could possibly double up with another, and might be cast regardless of gender of the original character.
MISS DeBOURGH — Allergic to the sun and social company
MISS BINGLEY — Thinks too highly of herself
MR. BINGLEY — Darcy’s good friend. Loyal. Loves the world. And the world loves him.
MARY — The third Bennet sister. Goth, dramatic.
CHARLOTTE LUCAS — Lizzy’s friend. Practical, humorous.
MR. BENNET – The Bennet patriarch. Escapist. Absurdist. Enjoy antagonizing
Servants – Unwitting witnesses and confidants