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CASTING INFO

 

Hello and thank you for your interest in The Morgan-Wixson Theatre's Inaugural New Works Festival! The Festival features 7 plays over 5 weekends. It is volunteer run and produced, so there will be no pay, and will also be free to attend. Every participant must be able to show proof of vaccination.

 

Open call auditions will take place at

Morgan-Wixson Theatre,  2627 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA

on

Saturday August 21st from 12-4pm

&

Sunday August 22nd from 5-9pm

Please Complete Audition Form Before Attending:


Choose Sides Here:

Self-Tape Option

If you are not able to attend the in-person audition dates please create a self-taped audition of your chosen sides as an unlisted youtube link and fill out the audition form. There will be a place on the form to attach your link. These must be received by 9pm Sunday August 22nd.
Callbacks will be in person.

 

Breakdowns:

In reference to the character descriptions that follow—most characters we encounter currently are on the binary and are written with he/him or she/her pronouns and you will see that in the following descriptions. But however limiting the descriptions are, our casting seeks to be as inclusive as possible and we invite gender non-conforming, gender-fluid, transgender and non-binary actors to submit for the roles they most identify with.

 

We will also list race/ethnicity when specific to the character but are otherwise seeking all races and ethnicities.

 

In addition, we will list disability when specific to a character, but are otherwise seeking actors with disabilities as well as non-disabled actors for all roles.

 

Please let us know if you have any questions, concerns, or if there are any accommodations we can provide.

 

Each play’s individual rehearsal and performance dates are listed below. However, a director may wish to add rehearsals prior to these dates, either virtually or at a different location. Please provide all conflicts accordingly.

 

 

Pretender by M.J. Kang

Rehearsal Dates: 09/08/2021-09/23/2021

Performance Dates: 09/24/2021-9/25/2021

 

Storyline:

The Korean-American host of a streaming talk show wants to interview a famous "Korean" star, but their research shows she is genetically white. The story deals with yellowface, cancel culture, and the inequities Asian Americans face, asking big questions: What really constitutes identity? Who decides where to draw the line on cultural and racial appropriation as a selfless or selfish act? What are the consequences of our actions for personal gain or a greater good? Pretender explores these questions through the multi generational lenses of the lives, challenges and successes of several Korean American women.

 

Roles:

 

[SOO-JIN]

30 to 40 years old, to play Korean-American female. Soo-Jin has a show Conversations with Soo-Jin (on social media). She is determined to uncover the truth about Casey, stubborn and proud, verbalizes ideas strongly felt and receiving more traction today from newer voices in cultural competence and advocacy.

 

[ANITA]

45 to 55 years old, to play Korean-American female. A producer by trade, Anita is direct, calm, achieving. Had to make compromises about her own sense of self and identity to achieve success (ie Americanizing her name). Aware that those who follow her with more agency stand on her shoulders. Experiences a genuine arc of admiration for and loyalty to Casey (and the unfulfilled aspirations that she can meet) that gradually and painfully turn.

 

[CHARLIE]

22 to 30 years old, to play half Korean-American Mixed Ethnicity female. The other half of Charlie's ethnicity is undefined. Charlie is Anita’s daughter, protégée to Soo-Jin. She is a PA and researcher collaborating with Soo-Jin. She is hard working, clever, self aware, has a sense of humor.

This actor also plays the Tattoo artist, personal assistant and radio voice roles in the play.

 

[CASEY]

40 to 55 years old, female, Asian-passing white, or white-passing Asian. Since the play is about her pretending to have Korean heritage, her appearance needs to have enough ambiguity to make this believable. Casey is an actor, influencer, power broker, artist. She’s the top of a certain kind of success hierarchy, an object of admiration and respect by Anita, a representation of obstacles to Soo-Jin. Charming, savvy, powerful and successful, confident, strategic, authentically committed to believing in the validity of her thoughts and actions. (Has a following, fame and power like a Taylor Swift but ends up with issues like a Michelle Latimer). She dresses and applies make up mirroring Korean traditions, employs and creates empowerment and opportunities for women of Korean heritage, has made real strides on behalf of what she sees as her community, digs deep to learn about her potential allies and adversaries to build loyalty or avert problems, she’s wily, strategic, generous, confident, but not without vulnerability.

 

All My Exes Walk Into A Bar by Elke Thoms

Rehearsal Dates: 9/5/2021-9/7/2021, 9/25/2021-9/30/2021

Performance Dates: 10/01/2021-10/2/2021

 

Storyline:

A young woman’s exes gather in a bar to select her next romantic partner.

 

Roles:

 

[BEN]

20 to 30 years old, male. Naomi's ex-boyfriend, intelligent, straight-off-the-vineyard preppy.

 

[JAMIE]

20 to 30 years old, male. Naomi's summer fling after she broke up with Ben. The opposite of Ben, Cool, pretty boy. Professional living statue. Jaime will be smoking (fake cigarettes) on stage.

 

[LIAM]

20 to 30 years old, male, 6'3" Naomi's first love. Outdoorsy, probably a counselor at your kid’s summer camp.

 

[MEGAN]

20 to 30 years old, female. Naomi's first girlfriend. Bakery owner. Doesn't take shit, loves a good book club.

 

An Evening Repast by Bushra Burney

Rehearsal Dates: 09/19/2021-09/30/2021

Performance Dates: 10/01/2021-10/2/2021

 

Storyline:

A casual meet-the-new-married-couple dinner takes some very intense turns that also refreshingly work themselves out in ways that are authentic to real friendships and relationships. This is no small feat -- navigating truths about generations of historic conflict and the paths of contemporary love, friendship and artistic fulfilment in the sunny hills of Northern California. A ‘dinner party play’ that defies stereotypes about how close friendships can rupture over learning painful truths about each other. Mature, banter filled, lively friendships frame a lot of historical information that dispels myths about seeing South Asian people as a monolith.

 

Roles:

 

[SAADIA]

30 to 40 years old, American Muslim Woman of Pakistani Descent, Born and raised in California. Married to Senad, best friends with Laxmi, but despite the bond, the two women are not ‘huggers’. An aspiring playwright whose struggles illustrate the problems faced by emerging writers from underrepresented populations. She works in sales and marketing and hates it because she’s an introvert. She got married, it seems, VERY quickly. Her friends want to meet him and get the scoop…that’s the purpose of the dinner. She can be prickly and self conscious but also is very dear and real in her friendships and in standing up for herself, her history and trying to define her place in the friendship when she was the ‘third wheel’ to Laxmi and Rajiv.

 

[LAXMI]

30 to 40 years old, American Hindu Woman of Indian descent. Born and raised in California. Married to Rajiv, best friends with Saadia. She’s more the ‘busy professional’ and definitely more of a Type A personality and despite their close bond, the women are NOT ‘huggers’. Despite a lot of the surface glibness and ‘control freak’ sort of behaviors, she also has a deeply felt spiritual point of view.

 

[RAJIV]

30 to 40 years old, Hindu Man of Indian (Bengali) descent (Born in Canada, came to California for a job)

Married to Laxmi. Somewhat dorky and goofy, refers to Seanad as "what’s his name” but he develops in the course of the evening. He is an equal but respectful partner to Laxmi. Some of the comedy about being traditional or not revolves around him. He is also a proxy for the audience’s lack of familiarity with Bosnians. Also there’s sober Rajiv and the "I gotta open a beer NOW" Rajiv.

 

[SENAD]

30 to 45 years old, Muslim man of Bosnian descent, Born in Sarajevo. Married to Saadia. They are just married and he is new to this friend group, meeting the best friends for the first time. Came to California as a refugee in the early 90s due to the war and siege in Sarajevo and has been living in California ever since. He’s quiet and patient and this gathering is hardest for him, the outsider and the awkward silences that play around him as he doesn’t force being gregarious are a source of humor. In his arc, he is a proxy for the audience’s entry point to understanding Partition and the difference in cultural and political/religious modern histories that each dinner guest represents. As the conflict and coincidences unfold that are steeped in painful geopolitical history, he is ultimately a source of perspective as someone who’s actually lived through terrible trauma, as opposed to hearing about it generationally. He provides a sort of natural wisdom and heal ing point of view that elevates the drama into a more modern, forward-moving interaction.

Wears his heart on his sleeve, the courtship was brief but he is very much in love with Saadia and he speaks for the first time to his bride at this dinner about what transpired in Bosnia.

 

 

The Addict’s Love Letter to His Prayerbook by Cris Eli Blak

Rehearsal Dates: 9/26/2021-10/7/2021

Performance Dates: 10/08/2021-10/9/2021

 

Storyline:

A deep and prolonged journey to self awareness and faith on the really difficult path out of addiction as a young man, once a promising student and writer, tries to come to terms with his past and find reconciliation with what's left of his family. They know his presence can only trigger pain for everyone -- and yet somehow -- out of trauma and mistrust and under a constant, real cloud of uncertainty love and hope and recovery might prevail.

Contemporary, dramatic, poetic, gritty, heartfelt.

 

Roles:

[JAXON]

27 to 36 years old, POC (Latino, Afro-Latino, African-American & Asian) male. Former brother in law to Samaria, Uncle to Bianca

Recovering opioid addict and convict. Lived a tough life but very street-smart where he was raised.

Intelligent, eloquent, once a promising writer. Knows the desperation of addiction, believes in brutal honesty as part of his recovery while not seeing his self destructive path.

 

[SAMARIA]

30 to 40 years old, Black, Latina or Afro-Latina female female. Former sister in law to Jaxon, Mother to Bianca.

Part time cleaner, part time stripper, former medical student.

Fierce yet wounded, burdened by her past choices, wise in seeing the destructive path Jaxon is on in his zeal for ‘truth’, VERY wary about potential harm of establishing a relationship with her brother in law, also generous and hopeful.

 

[FATHER PRICE]

35 to 50 years old, male. Friend of Samaria, develops a bond with Jaxon

Priest. Former gangbanger turned his life around for better. Also former Alcoholic.

Does not try to be ‘white savior” as he is a man with his own troubled past…but he does feel a sense of agency to offer counsel and a form of expression to Jaxon.

 

[PENELOPE]

45 to 57 years old, Black, Afro-Latina, Latina female. Jaxon’s addiction counselor.

Firm, intelligent, disciplined, carries a burden on her shoulders of personal family experience with addiction. She's, very vocal and stern.

 

[BIANCA]

18+ to play 16 year old Black, Afro-Latina, Latina Female.

Samaria’s daughter, niece to Jaxon

High school student .

Book smart, street smart. Still a child, not as tough as she seems.

 

A Tangled Affair by John Bolen

Rehearsal Dates: 10/01/2021-10/14/2021

Performance Dates: 10/15/2021-10/16/2021

 

Storyline:

Two neighbors meet for the first time and become romantically involved amidst the threats from his art dealer collecting the latest painting and the elderly neighbor threatening violence at every turn.

A sweet, modern romance but also a surprisingly gripping look at family, trust, mental health, ownership of one's feelings and art.

This comedy will need actors who are experienced in physical comedy and have great timing!

 

Roles:

 

[DANTE NUNN]

18 to 35 years old, male. Neighbor to Nona and Birdie, artist represented by Armand.

A tortured artist, he has background issues with mental health struggles. Being outside makes him extremely anxious. Has been in the building a short time, does not care about money or fame, obsesses on his work that he becomes very attached to for reasons pertaining to his psychological challenges. Leads something of a double life due to Armand’s protection and management of him.

Creative, terrified, inexperienced in love, honorable, struggling with mental health, unconcerned with wealth and trappings of success.

Actor must be adept at physical comedy and have great timing.

 

[NONA STARK]

18 to 35 years old, female. Lives in Venice CA in an old apt building, lives across the hall from Dante. Is a neighbor and is friends with Birdie. Currently a waitress, finds satisfaction in this job, has tried a number of other things on path to finding herself. Impulsive, passionate, stubborn, possessive, caring, searching. Being alone makes her anxious and she tries to avoid being alone in her apartment.

Actor must be adept at physical comedy and have great timing.

 

[BIRDIE FRIED]

65 to 80 years old, female. Lives in Venice CA in an old apt building, lives across the hall from Dante. Is a neighbor and is friends with Nona. Classic Venice free spirit, politically angry, retains her spark, once modeled for Picasso and lived la vie Boheme back in the day, uses the perception of her being unhinged to her advantage when protecting her turf or her friends

Has a history, strongly felt left leaning opinions, fierce, funny and quirky, maternal in her own way, wry.

Actor must be adept at physical comedy and have great timing!

 

[ARMAND FITZHUGH]

40 to 60 years old, male. The art dealer. Self appointed guardian and protector of Dante and his work.

Dedicated and scrupulous steward of Dante’s work and well being, but mistrustful of others who try to get too close to Dante, very class conscious.

 

Beheading Columbus by Diana Burbano

Rehearsal Dates: 10/10/2021-10/21/2021

Performance Dates: 10/22/2021-10/23/2021

 

Storyline:

 

Roles: