Director: Julie Cumbo
Read through: Tuesday 7th March 7:30
Sunday 19th March at 2pm
Tuesday 21st March at 7.30
Begin May 3rd and will be mostly Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays and with some Sundays towards the end of the schedule
ABOUT THE PLAY
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Tennessee Williams’s 1947 play “A Streetcar Named Desire” is the tale of a catastrophic confrontation between fantasy and reality, between romance and physical passion, and between the old plantation world of the deep south and the industrialised modern age. These opposites are embodied in the characters of Blanche DuBois and Stanley Kowalski.
The play takes place in New Orleans immediately after the Second World War in the Kowalskis’ apartment in a poor but vibrant, multicultural neighbourhood: the sound of jazz is never far away and the heat is oppressive. Fading southern belle, Blanche DuBois, arrives to stay with her sister Stella in a crowded, boisterous corner of the city, where her delusions of grandeur bring her into conflict with Stella’s crude, blue collar, brutish husband Stanley Kowalski. Blanche takes long baths, criticises the squalor of the apartment, and irritates Stanley. His friends come to the apartment to play poker and Blanche meets Mitch, prompting an immediate mutual attraction. Eventually Blanche and Stanley’s violent collision course causes Blanche’s fragile sense of identity to crumble, threatening to destroy her sanity and her one chance of happiness.
Tennessee Williams’s steamy and shocking landmark drama, recreated in 1951 as the classic film starring Marlon Brando, is one of the most influential plays of the twentieth century, acknowledged as one of the greatest ever American plays.
Accents – American accents are needed but they need not be strong southern drawls: the New Orleans accent is not very different from a New York one. Blanche’s southern belle accent is genteel, but Stella’s is less noticeable because of her years living in New Orleans. Pablo and the Mexican woman should have Spanish accents.
Audition pieces: 1) Page 16, Blanche’s monologue. 2) Top Page 63 to mid-65, with Mitch.
Audition pieces: 1) Page 20-22, with Stanley. 2) Mid-page 44 – top 46, with Blanche.
Audition pieces:- 1) Page 20-22, with Stella. 2) Bottom page 70 to bottom 71, with Stella.
Audition pieces: 1) Top Page 63 to mid-65, with Blanche. 2) Page 84, with Blanche.
Audition piece: Page 8 to mid- page 9, with Blanche.
Pablo – 30s/40s. Another of Stanley’s poker buddies, Pablo is Hispanic, as is his accent, and so emphasises the cultural diversity of the neighbourhood.
Audition piece: Mitch, Stanley, Pablo and Steve – Page 31 – 32
Audition piece: Page 59-60, with Blanche.
A Nurse – any age. She accompanies the doctor to collect Blanche and take her to an institution. She has a severe manner.
Audition piece: The doctor and the nurse – “strange man” and “strange woman” – page 101 – 102