Long Wharf Theatre to hold Non-Equity Auditions in January for TYA production

Long Wharf Theatre will present the family comedy The Mischief Makers, by Lowell Swortzell, directed by Kristianna Smith, as its annual Next Stage production for young audiences, slated for March 23-25. Non-Equity auditions will be held in January.

This delightful play introduces young audiences to Anansi the Spider from Africa, Reynard the Fox from Europe, and the Native American trickster, Raven. The three rascals share a totem pole, unknowingly brought together by Nyame, the god of the skies. As they argue over who among them is the best trickster, they play out fanciful stories that best demonstrate their finest acts of trickery. In the end, Nyame returns, admitting that he brought them together in the hope that they would reform their behavior; instead he has come to realize the value of their deeds and the laughter they bring to the world.

“What I love about this piece is that it is fun, fantastical, mystical with elements in the characters of both hubris and humility,” said Director of Education Annie DiMartino. “Kids will enjoy the elements of surprise. Just when they think they know what’s coming, when they think they know the characters, some different and exciting thing happens. The characters are larger than life.”

Teachers can also find a lot to mine in this play. “It is a great opportunity for them to explore African, Native American and European folklore with their students in a fun and creative way,” DiMartino said.

“I hope kids can let their imaginations run loose and have fun watching these famous tales come to life on stage,” Smith said.

Long Wharf Theatre is seeking four local, Non-Equity actors for the show. Roles are gender-neutral. The theatre is particularly seeking actors who can play drums, wind or string instruments. Auditions for the show will take place on January 13-14 on Stage II. The audition times are Friday, January 13 from 4 pm to 8 pm and Saturday, Saturday, January 14 from 10 am to 1 pm. Callbacks will take place Saturday, January 15 from 2 to 5 pm.

“We are looking for performers who are comfortable working in an improvisational style, with expertise in storytelling and vocal work,” Smith said. “I like to work in a style that encourages ensemble building and character exploration, creating these characters alongside the actors.”

Auditioners should prepare a one minute, child friendly monologue and 16 bars of a child friendly song to be sung acappella. Each interested actors should sign up for an hour time slot and plan on staying the entire hour in order to participate in a movement workshop. Interested actors should call 203-787-4282 for an appointment.

The play is produced by special arrangement with Dramatic Publishing.

For more information about Long Wharf Theatre, its education programming and the Next Stage program, visit www.longwharf.org.