SSP Announces Auditions for Oliver!

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Second Street Players’ Riverfront Theatre in Downtown Milford, DE

Directors Steven Haber and Melissa Brenner are looking for performers from age 8 and up for a variety of roles in this musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist.

In Oliver!, nine-year-old Oliver Twist falls in with a group of street-urchin pickpockets led by Fagin and his troupe of trained pickpockets, including the Artful Dodger. Oliver is caught on his first outing, and his intended victim, Mr. Brownlow, takes pity on him and offers him a home. Fagin’s violent associate, Bill Sykes, schemes along with his girlfriend, Nancy, to get Oliver back into the fold. Nancy needs to balance her loyalty to Bill with her affection from Oliver. From there, we learn the secrets of Oliver’s origin.

The directors request auditionees arrive on time as auditions will take place in groups. Individuals should be prepared to move and have an appropriate song prepared to sing either a capella or with CD accompaniment. Performance dates will be on Fridays through Sundays, July 10 through 26, 2020.

Character Descriptions: (note that age ranges are approximate. Flexibility in casting will be considered):

  • Oliver Twist (Supporting) Male, 9-13: An orphaned workhouse boy. Bright, innocent, clever, and winning. He has a heroic air about him. Extremely loveable and kind-hearted. Must have an unchanged voice and have–or be able to quickly learn–a British accent.
  • Fagin (Supporting) Male, 40+: Devious leader of a children’s band of thieves. Runs a training academy for young pickpockets. Cockney accent. A conniving, sly, con man, yet very personable. He has made a career out of training criminals, obsessed with money. Must have excellent comedic timing and a strong baritone voice.
  • Nancy (Supporting) Female, 20-39: When she was younger, worked for Fagin. Bill Sykes’ lover. She is devoted to him despite their abusive relationship. Takes a liking to Oliver and becomes somewhat of a guardian. Cockney accent. She possesses a drive for life even amongst the darkest circumstances. Pretty, intelligent, longs for a better life. Must have a strong belt to a D.
  • Bill Sykes (Supporting) Male, 30-39: Worked for Fagin as a youth now a feared master criminal. A brutal, harsh, brutish, abusive man that always puts himself first. Cockney accent. Physically imposing and in his prime. Good looking in a rough, weathered sort of way.
  • Artful Dodger (Supporting) Male, 18+: To play 14-17, Cockney accent. Very energetic, highly personable, intelligent and savvy beyond his years. Fagin’s right hand “man.” He is full of life and seems to always be bursting with new ideas and a sense of adventure. A dynamic singer/dancer with youthful energy.
  • Bet (Supporting) Female, 16-20: Nancy’s closest friend who used to work for Fagin but is now a prostitute. High spirited, energetic, down to earth. Cockney accent.
  • Mr. Bumble (Supporting) Male, 35-55: Master of the Workhouse. Cockney accent. A large, pompous and corrupt bureaucrat.
  • Widow Corney (Supporting) Female, 40-59: Mistress of the Workhouse, Cockney accent. Sharp tongued widow. Brazen and corrupt.
  • Mr. Sowerberry/Dr. Grimwig (Supporting/Dual casting) Male, 35+: Mr. Sowerberry: The undertaker. He begrudgingly takes Oliver from Mr. Bumble to work in the funeral home as a coffin follower. He is cold and very insensitive. Cockney accent. Dr Grimwig: A doctor. British (not cockney) accent. Upper class, friend of Mr. Brownlow.
  • Mrs. Sowerberry/Mrs. Bedwin (Supporting/Dual casting) Female, 35+: Mrs. Sowerberry: The undertaker’s wife. More business savvy than her husband. Cockney accent. Mrs. Bedwin: A housekeeper. British (not cockney) accent. Works for Mr. Brownlow. Warm personality.
  • Noah Claypole (Supporting) Male, 16-23: The Sowerberrys’ assistant. A bit creepy. Antagonizes Oliver. Think slimy eel! Cockney accent.
  • Charlotte (Supporting) Female, 16-23: The Sowerberrys’ daughter. A flirtatious, promiscuous young girl who is attracted to Noah Claypole. Has no sympathy for Oliver, very self-consumed. Cockney accent.
  • Mr. Brownlow (Supporting) Male, 50-69: British (not cockney) accent. Oliver’s grandfather. An upper-middle class gentleman. A kind man of wealth and good breeding.
  • Old Sally (Supporting) Female, 40+: Oliver’s nurse at birth. She is kindhearted and has a sense of responsibility for Oliver. Might also understudy the roles of Widow Corney and Mrs. Sowerberry/Mrs. Bedwin.
  • Children of the Workhouse and Fagin’s gang, male/female, ages 10-18: Will all play male kids, but we can use girls dressed appropriately.
  • The Chorus, Ages 18+: The townspeople, etc. Must sing/dance. All Ethnicities

Contact the Director at sc_haber@verizon.net for additional information.

This show is supported, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowments of the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on DelawareScene.com. 

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