Christmas Carol Auditions

The beloved holiday tradition is returning to the Swamp Meadow stage for 2015! Don’t miss your chance to join in the spirit of the season while creating friendships and memories to last a lifetime!

Parts available for all ages and experience levels, so come on out!

Auditions for A Christmas Carol will be held at the Woody Lowden Recreation Center at 16 Howard Hill Rd in Foster on Thursday, August 27 and Saturday, August 29. Please come on Thursday if you can. Doors will open at 6:30pm and close at 8:00pm and folks will be taken on a first come, first served basis. The Saturday date is for those who can’t make it Thursday as well as any callbacks that are needed. On Saturday the doors open at 11:30am and close at 1:00pm.

Auditions will consist entirely of readings from the text, so there is no need for prepared pieces. This production is a new adaptation from the original text and will be directed by Chris Brostrup-Jensen. Performances will be on the first three weekends of December 2015. Any questions about auditions or the production in general can be directed to Chris at Come join us for a great holiday tradition!

Character list

Ebenezer Scrooge: male, 50s-60s — Scrooge is a man governed by fear. Fear of pain, fear of loss, fear of vulnerability. He hides from these fears behind a wall of wealth and detachment from other people, seeking to turn his loneliness and insecurity into virtues. Of course, most of this is unconscious until the Ghosts force him to confront it. He makes his living as a “private equity manager”, aka a “vulture capitalist”. Rather than seeking to build (risk) anything of his own, he breaks up and scavenges the pieces of other people’s businesses (and lives), while keeping himself physically and emotionally separate from them. Above all, this part requires the willingness to explore, experience and share on stage a very wide range of emotions. Current era

Marley’s Ghost: male, 40s-50s — The Ghost has suffered for seven years, realizing among other things the lost opportunity for friendship he had with Scrooge. He now wants desperately to save Scrooge from the same fate, both for the sake of the friendship they could have had and for himself, as a break from the unrelenting torture of being unable to help anyone in any way. Will need to be able to wear some modest weight of chain and be willing to emote rather fiercely on stage.

Barbara Cratchit: female, 30s — Scrooge’s personal assistant, she is scrabbling to hold her family together and keep food on the table. But her heart is strong and good, and she refuses to buy into Scrooge’s despair. Current era.

Phoebe: female, 20s — Scrooge’s niece, the daughter of his deceased sister. She is a very upbeat, sunny person, much like her mother was. She very much wants Scrooge to be a larger part of her life; he represents a connection to her mother. But she lost her mother young and doesn’t realize that it is her very similarity to Liz that makes it so hard for Scrooge to be around her. She is married and should be comfortable snuggling a little on stage. Current era.

Fred: male, 20s — Phoebe’s husband. Topper is a friend, but also dating his sister, so a little weird. Part of playful, fun Christmas gathering. Some modest snuggling. Current.

Jillian: female, 20s — Fred’s sister. Dating Topper; trying to decide if he’s a “keeper”. Part of playful, fun Christmas gathering. Some very modest snuggling. Current.

Topper: male, 20s — Fred’s friend. Dating Jillian; realizes that he’s “on probation” and that this party is important. Part of playful, fun Christmas gathering. Some very modest snuggling. Current.

Spirit of Christmas Past: male(?), 16-50 — Frosty the Snowman, complete with positive attitude and (hopefully) rolling shoes. His job is to get Scrooge to recognize the effects of his youthful loneliness and deprivation on his current fears, and to remind him of a child’s joy in Christmas.

Spirit of Christmas Present: male, 50s+ — Our modern Santa Claus, ideally with white beard and Ho-ho-ho. Generally jolly, but a bit obsessed with presents. He seeks to open Scrooge’s heart to recognize the deprivation, loneliness and fear of others around him, and what this gives them in common with him. Also the personal value to be gained from opening up and sharing with others.

Spirit of Christmas Future: either, 30-60 — A soulless salesman/woman, a corporate shark, for whom Christmas is all about profit/loss statements and moving “merch” — nothing more. Regards Scrooge as an admirable “soul-mate”; this, in fact, is the “death” he/she represents for Scrooge — a spiritual death and loss of self. Gender/age ambiguity a plus, but not necessary.

Narrator: either, any adult — Generally jovial and friendly; the audience’s friend and guide, and sympathetic to all the characters. Relatively few, but fairly long speeches.

Solicitor 1: either, 18-50 — A “starry-eyed idealist” who deeply cares about every cause he/she gets involved with. Current day.

Solicitor 2: either, 30+ — a professional fundraiser; a “sales activist” who takes pride in raising money for the cause, whatever cause it happens to be today. Current day.

Carol Chorus: either, <18(?) — This group will be put together separately by Meryn

Child Scrooge: boy, 8-12 — Nonspeaking part, but does interact with imaginary characters from books; lonely dreamer type. 1960s era.

Teen Scrooge: male, 13-17 — a fearful, insecure teen, overwhelmed by his sense of responsibility for his orphaned younger sister, Lizzie. More 1970s.

Liz/Lizzie: girl, 6-10 — Having lost her parents, she is fiercely attached to her older brother “Eb” and puts all her faith in him, completely unaware of the burden this places on him. She is not a physically strong child, and eventually dies very young. 1970s.

Fezziwig: male, 30s-40s — 1980s, so big tie/lapels. Gold chain? A businessman with whom Scrooge serves an internship during business school. He’s a good businessman, but also a warmhearted person and committed family man. He represents the balanced, happy life that Scrooge ultimately comes to believe he can never have. Also makes a brief appearance, thirty years older, in a dark suicide scene.

Mrs. Fezziwig: female, 30s-40s — Happy, devoted “boomer” wife. This is the 1980s, so either “big hair” or slightly behind-the-times ’70s look. Tends to view her husband’s interns as “extra kids” and tries to support/include them.

Young Scrooge: male, 20s — 1980s clothes/hair. As a young man, Scrooge loses two crucial relationships, either of which might have saved him. The first is with Mr Fezziwig, the other is with his fiancée, Belle. In these scenes he is torn between fear and hope, with the ultimate triumph of the former setting him irreversibly onto the path to where he is today.

Belle: female, 18-30 — Young Scrooge’s fiancée. 1980s clothes/hair. She has had to watch Scrooge’s fears and insecurity grow over time and begin to consume him. She tries to hold a mirror up to him, risking her own happiness to try to pull him off his dark path, but ultimately fails.

Dick Wilkins: male, 20s — Young Scrooge’s fellow intern at Fezziwig’s business. He sees the grinder Scrooge puts Belle through and ultimately steps in to comfort her when her efforts to save her engagement fail.

Mr Cratchit: male, 30s-40s — Bob is a veteran of the Middle East wars. He is proud of his service, but has developed symptoms of “Gulf War Syndrome”, including a mysterious neurological condition which has severely weakened his legs. He may be on crutches or a wheelchair. Between his lack of mobility and extended bouts of various kinds of debility, he can’t get or keep any kind of regular work, leaving the family heavily dependent on his wife’s meager salary. He is by nature a happy, optimistic person, and he is trying very hard to remain positive and an active, supportive husband and father, but the long battle is taking its toll on him both mentally and physically.

Martha: female, 15-18 — Eldest Cratchit child. Serious, studious and hard-working. Sees herself as “acting mom” to the younger kids, especially since Dad’s health is erratic.

Peter: male, 12-15 — Second-eldest Cratchit child. Tends to hyperactivity, admires his dad a lot and is considering entering the service. Not big on school, or anything boring.

Belinda: female, 10-13 — Third Cratchit child, a classic “pleaser” and attention-seeker. Tends to follow Peter around and resents Martha’s attempts to exert authority.

Tiny Tim: either, 7-10 — Youngest Cratchit child. Suffers from severe, progressive respiratory problems, apparently environmental in nature, presumably due to exposure to some sort of toxics. Coughs frequently and has a weak voice. Very perceptive and sweet-natured, with an odd sort of wisdom beyond his/her years. Beloved and precious to all the other family members.

Ignorance: boy, 6-9 — This is a non-speaking part for a boy who would like to act angry and fierce. Must be fairly small.

Fear: girl, 6-9 — This is a non-speaking part for a girl who would like to act scared and sad. Big, soulful eyes a plus! J Must be fairly small.

Three Businesspeople: either, 30+ — These three former competitors/colleagues of Scrooge’s discuss the sad circumstances of his (future/possible) death rather dismissively in a conversation he overhears. Need to be able to pull off “power” business attire comfortably.

Turner: either, 40+ — Scrooge’s “cleaner”, who collects and transports equipment and other “movable goods” from the businesses Scrooge scavenges. He comes to an outright criminal fence named “Old Joe”, looking to sell a bunch of scavenged goods that he had on hand when Scrooge died, on the assumption that no one will care enough about Scrooge’s death to even investigate.

Old Joe: male, 60+ — Criminal fence to whom Turner comes with scavenged goods after Scrooge dies. He is very cold and harsh, and serves to emphasize how close to outright criminality a large part of Scrooge’s life’s work actually came.

Andrew: male, 20s-30s — Tech start-up geek in whose business Scrooge had invested before he died. Scrooge’s death comes as a great relief to him, buying him time to finagle a way to buy the firm’s interest out. He sees Scrooge’s death entirely as an opportunity, a convenience, because Scrooge is not really even a person to him, just a source of cash.

Caroline: female, 20s-30s — Andrew’s partner and fellow geek. While very worried about the business, she is initially taken aback at Andrew’s callousness regarding Scrooge. But Scrooge’s own lack of humanity and connection makes her grip on her scruples fairly light, and she is won over to sharing Andrew’s pleasure in the turn of events.

Turk: male, 15-20 — Young punk type Scrooge hails from his window Christmas morning. He is an enterprising young hoodlum with potential, which Scrooge recognizes and cultivates. Think Jesse Pinkman from “Breaking Bad” season 1.

Ensemble Parts:

Members of the Ensemble will get multiple parts, with the number depending on the turnout and individual inclination/interest. The exact number and nature of Ensemble parts may fluctuate as the production progresses and we find out what works well and what doesn’t on stage.

Spectral voices 1-4: either, adult — Offstage voices, spooky and sad. These are other ghosts, like Marley, now suffering because of their inability to help the living.

Children 1-4: either/both, roughly 8-12 — Regular kids, 1960s-era, knew Scrooge as a child.

Miss Oliver: female, 25+ — Teen Scrooge and Lizzie’s state social worker. Very 1970s. She means well, but is very constrained by rules and prevailing norms.

Fezziwig daughters: (three) female, 6-12 — Part of the Ensemble for the Fezziwig Party scene. They are very happy girls, and popular with Fezziwig’s workers.

Shop workers: either, any adult — Mostly blue collar or clerical folks, enjoying a break from work, with free, good food and a chance to kick back and maybe dance a little, ’80s style.

Crowd scene with Santa: either, any — This will most likely involve all of the Ensemble players.

Migrant workers: either, any — Mixed group, all ages, probably multiple families or parts of families. No lines, but will sing part of a Spanish Christmas song.