The Brooke Hills Playhouse will hold auditions for the first three shows of its 48th summer season on Saturday, April 6, at the Brooke County Arts Council’s downtown Wellsburg location, at 636 Charles St., according to Julia Barnhart of Wellsburg, president of the Arts Council, which is the Playhouse’s parent organization. The 48th season sponsor is Municipal Mutual Insurance.
Auditions will begin at 10 a.m. for Ken Ludwig’s classic comedy, “Lend Me a Tenor,” followed at 11:30 a.m. by the Flip Kobler-Cindy Marcus romantic comedy, “Ghost of a Chance,” and concluding at 1 p.m. with auditions for the ABBA musical comedy, “Mama Mia!” with book by Cindy Johnson and music and lyrics by Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson.
“Lend Me a Tenor” is set during a 1934 Cleveland Grand Opera production featuring the temperamental Italian tenor Tito Morelli in the lead role. A series of hilarious mishaps and misunderstandings put the performance, the opera company and Tito’s marriage in mortal danger before the inevitable happy ending.
The script, recently revised by Ludwig, has roles for four women and four men. Although the play is not a musical, some actors will be required to sing parts of the operatic arias “La Donna e Mobile,” Largo Al Factotum,” “Dio, che nell’alma infondere” and “Da Quell di che t’incontran.” The show will open the Playhouse season the weekends of May 24-26 and May 31-June 2.
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“Ghost of a Chance,” which will take to the stage June 14-16 and 21-23. is named for “Chance,” Bethany’s deceased first husband, who still haunts the mountain cabin where he died in a hunting accident. Bethany brings her new fiancé, Floyd, and Floyd’s mother, Verna, to the cabin, and Chance is not happy, making that clear to Bethany, the only one who can see him as he attempts to break up the new couple. The script has roles for three males and three females.
“Mama Mia!” takes place during a 24-hour period in the summer of 1999 on the fictional Greek island of Kalokairi, where bride-to-be Sophie dreams of having her father give her away at her upcoming wedding.
The only problem is that Sophie’s mother, the free-spirited Donna, refuses to identify Sophie’s father, so Sophie narrows down the list to three likely suspects, and invites all three men to the wedding. “Mama Mia” will be presented the weekends of July 5-7 and 12-14.
Actors auditioning for “Lend Me a Tenor” and “Ghost of a Chance” will be required to read excerpts from the play selected by the director. For “Mama Mia!” actors must prepare up to 32 bars of a song of their choice, providing sheet music for the accompanist. They also will be called on to read a monologue, which can be found on the Playhouse’s FaceBook page or, if they prefer, do a “cold” reading at auditions.
Anyone unable to audition for the first three productions on April 6 should contact the Playhouse at 304- 737-3344 by Friday, April 5, to make other arrangements.