Auditions for the Providence Players production of Is He Dead? Will Be Held March 11th and 13th With Call Backs on March 14th.
Adapted By David Ives Based on the play by Mark Twain
Directed by Beth Hughes-Brown and Produced by Smitty Connolly
A hilarious comedy that focuses on the real-life painter, Jean-Francois Millet. Though brilliant, he is in dept to a ruthless moneylender, and can’t sell a painting to save his life (literally). His cohort of bohemian friends convince him to stage his own death to help boost sales. Authored by Twain in 1898, this play was recently discovered by Twain scholar Shelley Fisher Fishkin and adapted for today’s stage by one of America’s premier comedy playwrights, David Ives.
Four Women – Seven Men – (With Some Flexibility Possible) All Roles Open
The Providence Players of Fairfax is a non-profit community theater troupe. All participation is on a volunteer, non-compensated basis.
Audition Process: Please prepare a 2-3 minute comedic monologue. This is strongly encouraged, but not required. A joke or funny song is also fine. Auditions will also consist of cold readings from the script. No roles are pre-cast.
Accents: The show will require accents of various sorts, including French, English, German and Irish. If your accent isn’t ready at audition time, that’s fine. We’ll work on it.
Membership: The Providence Players of Fairfax is a membership organization. Membership is not required to audition. If cast, actors in addition to production team members, will be asked to become members of the Providence Players ($10) for the season (if they are not already).
Performance Dates And Times
Thursday, Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m.
May 31, June 1, 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, 15
Sunday Matinees 2:00 p.m. June 2 & 9
Monday March 11, 7-9:30pm
Wednesday March 13, 7-9:30pm
Call-Backs Thursday March 14 7-9:30pm
The James Lee Community Center (“Urbanites Room”)
2855 Annandale Road
Falls Church, VA 22042
(Look For Signs to Audition Room)
Brief Descriptions of Characters for Is He Dead?
Jean-François Millet/Daisy Tillou: (Principal) Jean-Francois is an extremely gifted starving artist, who must fake his death, a device concocted by his three best friends, in order to “have value” as a painter. However, he must be around to paint enough paintings to make him rich and pay off debts of his friends. He must go into disguise as his twin sister, Daisy, the widow Tillou. Wackiness ensues as people fall in love with Daisy, and also try to expose her as a fraud. Age: Script says “young.” Negotiable.
Bastien André: (Principal) The villain! All the artists are in debt to this so-called “patron” and art dealer. He threatens that unless Marie (Jean-Francois’ girlfriend) marries him, her father will be crushed by the debt he owes him, as well as the money Jean-Francois owes him. But he is surprised when he meets Daisy and struck with a bolt of love for her. Age: Negotiable.
Papa Leroux: (Principal) Father to both Marie and Cecile, and dear friend to Jean-Francois. Sadly, in terrible debt to the villain, Bastien Andre and may have to marry his oldest daughter off to him, in order to forgive the debt, but she is in love with Millet. Falls in love with Daisy too! Age: Older than Marie & Cecile.
Agamemnon Buckner (“Chicago”) (Principal): Millet’s best friend and devoted student; a painter as well. He cooks up the plot to “kill off” Millet, in order to keep the paintings coming, with Dutchy and O’Shaughnessy. In love with Cecile, a total prankster and clown. Age: Negotiable.
Marie Leroux (Principal): In love with Millet, and daughter to Papa Leroux. Totally trusting and sweet, she refuses to marry Bastien Andre even though it would forgive her father’s debt, because she is so devoted to Millet. Age: Younger than Papa. Negotiable.
Hans von Bismarck(“Dutchy”) (Principal): Devoted friend and student of Millet’s, and fellow creator of the plot to keep Millet painting while impersonating Daisy, the Widow Tillou. Loves to eat stinky cheese. Age: Negotiable. German accent
CecileLeroux (Principal): Daughter and sister to Papa and Marie. In love with “Chicago.” Suspects something is not right between Daisy andChicago and goes into disguise herself as an inspector to route out the truth. Age: Younger than Papa. Negotiable.
PhelimO’Shaughnessy (Principal): Devoted friend and student of Millet’s and fellow plotter of the scheme. Funny and matter of fact, does a lot of the running around to whip up the rumor about Millet’s death. Age: Negotiable. Irish accent
Roles below may be doubled. Several of these parts are frequently played by the same actor. In fact, one actor was nominated for a Tony Award for playing 4 of these roles. Very funny and challenging.
Madame Caron (Supporting): Devoted friend and neighbor of Millet. Crushed when they learn of his “illness” and a bit mystified by his sister Daisy. Very sassy and funny. Age: Negotiable. Has the hots for Papa Leroux
Madame Bathilde (Supporting): Devoted friend and neighbor of Millet. Crushed when they learn of his “illness” and a bit mystified by his sister Daisy. Very sassy and funny. Age: Negotiable. Has the hots for Papa Leroux
Basil Thorpe (Supporting): A rich English merchant. Considers himself very knowledgeable about art, but he’s not. Age: Negotiable.
Claude Riviere (Supporting): A reporter from Le Figaro. Age: Negotiable
Charlie, a gorgeous flunky (Supporting) Takes off his disguise to reveal that he’s a French Police Inspector. Age: Negotiable
Sultan of Turkey (Cameo)
King of France (Cameo)
Emperor of Russia (Cameo)