August 22, 2011

HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY TO DFT on August 21, 2011!

Thirty-four years ago August was hot & muggy in Reno, Nevada, the “Biggest Little City in the Word,” tucked among the Truckee meadows in the rain shadow of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range to the West. I was with a troupe of fifteen young actors driving out of Reno in cars and vans – members of the New Shakespeare Company of San Francisco, under the direction of Margaret Roma, formerly a member of Bertolt Brecht’s theatre company in Germany. We were on our way to perform “As You Like It” at Reno’s maximum-security prison. I was nervous about our reception.

The day before, our troupe had roamed downtown Truckee, singing madrigals while in full Shakespearean costume to promote our evening performances on the edge of Lake Tahoe. The response was warm from tourists and townies alike, but how would the inmates of Nevada’s strictest prison system respond to our performance?

They loved it! They cheered when Orlando bested the evil Duke’s wrestler & laughed loudly when Touchstone (Shakespeare’s first philosopher/clown) fell in “lust” with Audrey, the country wench. They responded whole-heartedly to the conflicts between brothers & the foibles to which mistaken love can lead. We were a hit. They loved us in the Nevada badlands.

Thirty-four years later, August has been hot & muggy in Durham, NC, tucked beside the Appalachian Mountain Range on the long Piedmont slope to the Atlantic ocean. And again I’m preparing for a performance of “As You Like It.” This time, however, I’m directing the brilliant, witty, bawdy, irreverent, exciting Shakespearean romantic comedy for our own community theatre, Durham Family Theatre. And I’m eager to meet the talented actors & singers who will help bring the play to life for our audiences.

Auditions for “As You Like It” will be this coming Saturday, August 27, 2011, from noon – 4 pm & Monday, August 29 from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm with possible callbacks on Tuesday evening.

We are looking for actors, singers, clowns, jugglers, stilt-walkers & Spoken Word Artists ages 14 – ADULTS. (2 small roles are available for older elementary aged actors, 11 or 12 years old.)

Auditions will be held at Trinity Avenue Presbyterian Church, corner of N. Gregson Street & Trinity Ave. in the Brightleaf Square area of downtown Durham, NC. (Park in the Gregson Street lot & enter beside the playground) Singers (some will have speaking parts and others will simply sing in the chorus) are asked to bring a 1-minute song to perform acapella; actors may select to perform a 1-minute Shakespearean monologue (not required) before reading from the script. Auditions will be on a 1st come, 1st served basis. Rehearsals will be on Monday – Wednesday evenings and Saturday afternoons until the final week of rehearsals at the end of October. Performances are scheduled for November 4, 5, 11 & 12.

PLAN TO AUDITION THIS WEEKEND and HELP SPREAD THE WORD: Download an audition flier & email it to everyone you know! AYLI Audition Flier

The next adventure begins!

Warmly, Jenny

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