Upcoming auditions

The Book of Will Auditions March 5 & 6

The Butler Little Theatre is seeking to cast ten actors (seven men, three women, flexible) for its fourth production this season, Lauren Gunderson’s The Book of Will. Auditions are Sunday, March 5, and Monday, March 6, commencing at 7:00 p.m. at the theatre, One Howard Street, Butler, PA. Readings will include selected scenes from the script. 

The story: Without William Shakespeare, we wouldn’t have literary masterpieces like Romeo and Juliet. But without Henry Condell and John Heminges, we would have lost half of Shakespeare’s plays forever! After the death of their friend and mentor, the two actors are determined to compile the First Folio and preserve the words that shaped their lives. They’ll have to borrow, beg, and band together to get it done. Amidst the noise and color of Elizabethan London, The Book of Will finds an unforgettable true story of love, loss, and laughter. It sheds new light on a man you may think you know.

The Production: The Book of Will runs Friday, May 5, through Saturday, May 13. Jud Stewart is the director. Jud has directed many BLT shows, most recently 2015’s revival of Steel Magnolias. He recently appeared on the BLT stage last December in the hilariously successful adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

Cast of Characters

Roles for 7 men, 3 women

Henry Condell: 40, feisty, hopeful friend and actor in the King’s Men 

John Heminges: 50, reasonable friend and financial manager of the King’s Men; owner of the Globe Tap House; a good man, a gentleman, if serious. 

Richard Burbage: 50s, seasoned lion of the stage, famous across England, loud and proud (doubles as William Jaggard and Horatio) 

William Jaggard: Successful if shady publisher of books, plays, and playbills. He is confident in his ability to get what he wants. Very experienced, very connected, willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. An ass.

Elizabeth Condell: 40, Henry’s wife, savvy and fun (doubles as Emilia Bassano Lanier, Fruit Seller, and Marcellus)

Emilia Bassano Lanier: 50, fiery Italian feminist and poet, independent woman, lover of life and Shakespeare

Rebecca Heminges: 50, John’s wife, a good wife. Strong, busy with their grocery business, a woman who has weathered much but loves her husband and sons and God (doubles as Anne Hathaway Shakespeare)

Anne Hathaway Shakespeare: 60, Shakespeare’s now ailing wife. Strong-willed, a classy lady, a survivor.

Ralph Crane: Humble scrivener of the King’s Men. Quick, sure, quiet (doubles as Barman, Compositor, and Francisco)

Alice Heminges: 35, John’s daughter and alewife, knows everyone and hangs with the boys (doubles as Susannah Shakespeare) 

Susannah Shakespeare: 30, good girl and daughter of Shakespeare

Ed Knight: “Stage manager” for the King’s Men, self-serious & particular (doubles as Isaac Jaggard)

Isaac Jaggard:William’s son, will inherit the business. Sensitive, an artist at heart.

Marcus: 20, printer’s apprentice at the Jaggard print shop, nosy but honest (doubles as Boy Hamlet, Crier, and Bernardo)

Ben Jonson: Poet laureate of England, friend/rival of Shakespeare. Amazing drunk. A bear of a man. Surprisingly weepy. (doubles as Barman and Sir Edward Dering)