After two years of delayed or canceled shows, zoom auditions and virtual casting, Musical Theater West will hold the first live, in-person auditions of their new season the week of May 10 for their upcoming production of Grease. Auditions and rehearsals will be held at the MTW Rehearsal Room: 4350 E 7th Street, Long Beach, CA 90804. Performances will be held at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center: 6200 E Atherton St, Long Beach, CA 90815.
Long Beach, California is consistently hailed as one of the most culturally diverse cities in the United States, and Musical Theater West strives to reflect this diversity in all of its productions. This will be especially true for Grease, in which the cast will represent a typical Long Beach high school. Performers of any gender identity, age, religion, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, language, physical ability or diverse viewpoint are welcome and encouraged to audition.
All roles are open in the cast of 20, and all actors will be paid. Both union and non-union talent will be considered. MTW is particularly looking for young and energetic talent. A full list of character descriptions is posted on the MTW website and at the end of this article.
MTW is operating under the direction of the AEA Memorandum of Understanding regarding the reopening process from the COVID-19 pandemic. All company members must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at the start of the rehearsal process. Proof of vaccination will be required.
One of the world’s most popular musicals, this highly-anticipated production of Grease will be helmed by Snehal Desai, who joins the fresh-off crew from the critically acclaimed production of East West Players’ Assassins at the David Henry Hwang. Los Angeles Theater. Musical direction will be provided by Jan Roper, whose musical América Tropical won the Raise Your Voice award for diversity and inclusion. Rounding out the team is multi-talented choreographer Corey Wright, who currently directs and choreographs Pippin at UCLA.
Snehal Desai is the production artistic director of East West Players, the nation’s oldest and largest Asian-American theater company. He has staged plays everywhere from The Old Globe in San Diego to Boom Arts in Portland, Oregon to The Old Vic in London, and he has worked in more than a dozen theaters in New York. Recent projects include Assassins, Mamma Mia, Allegiance’s first post-Broadway production with George Takei, The Who’s Tommy, Free Outgoing and A Nice Indian Boy. Desai serves on the board of the Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists (Caata), the National Alliance for Musical Theater (NAMT), and the Theater Communications Group (TCG). Among the various positions he has held, Desai has served as resident director of the Emory Theater, participated in the Lincoln Center Directors Lab, and was a literary researcher at the Royal Shakespeare Company in London. A Soros Fellow and Tanne Award recipient, Desai was in the inaugural class of Theater Communications Group’s (TCG) “Spark” leadership program and the first recipient of the Drama League Classical Directing Fellowship where he was in residence at The Old Globe in San Diego. Snehal is on the faculty of USC’s Artistic Leadership Graduate Program. He is a graduate of Emory University (BA) and Yale University (Direction MFA).
Jan Roper is a composer and musical director. After many years as a singer/performer, she launched her theatrical career with the large-scale production of her own original rock opera, Jerusalem AD Another original work, City of Light, was chosen for the ASCAP Stephen workshop Schwartz (2016) and the sheNYC Festival (2017), where it won the top score. Her latest work, The Path to Catherine, had its critically acclaimed world premiere at the Brick House Theater in NoHo in Spring 2022, where it ran for 6 weeks. Another new work in development, América Tropical, won the 2020 Raise Your Voice Award for Diversity and Inclusion and recently had a staged reading produced by McCoy Rigby Entertainment at La Mirada Theater. Jan remains busy as an accompanist and teacher at the AMDA College of the Performing Arts, and music director in the local LA theater and cabaret community. She won the LA Scenie Award for best musical director of the 2019-2020 season.
Corey Wright’s artistic world is tied to one thing: storytelling. From Louisiana to New York to Los Angeles, Corey worked with the Verdon-Fosse Estate on a reconstruction project that began in 2012. His original choreography for Chicago at the Moonlight Amphitheater earned him a Craig Noel nomination. Corey also served as assistant choreographer on a Chicago production with Plan B Entertainment. Other choreography credits include: Pippin, “Conan O’Brien”, “General Hospital” and Within (a virtual reality company.) As a former Broadway Connection teacher, he had the opportunity to share his love of dancing and storytelling with students from across the United States
Book, music and lyrics by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey
Directed by Snehal Desai
Musical direction by Jan Roper
Choreographed by Corey Wright
Women’s Identification Dance Call (ECC): Tuesday, May 10 at 9 a.m.
Male Identification Dance Call (ECC): Tuesday, May 10 at 11 a.m.
Artists who do not identify with either gender are welcome to attend the dance call of their choice.
Main Hearings (EPA): Tuesday, May 10, 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. (Capital actors and other actors are encouraged to attend!)
Agent appointments and reminders: May 12 and 13, 2022
First rehearsal: Tuesday, June 21, 2022
Preview: Friday, July 8, 2022
Opening: Saturday, July 9, 2022
Closing: Sunday July 24, 2022
Auditions and rehearsals will take place at the MTW Rehearsal Room: 4350 E 7th Street, Long Beach, CA 90804.
Performances will be held at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center: 6200 E Atherton St, Long Beach, CA 90815
AEA COST (Level 2+, $863/week)
Priority is always given to those with local accommodation
Per AEA requirements, a mask and proof of vaccination will be required to audition (as defined by the CDC, more than 14 calendar days after receiving a final dose of an FDA-cleared or approved vaccine or the World Health Organization).
Actors are encouraged to sing the show for this audition. Material for each character can be found at musical.org/auditions after May 2.
When attending an audition, actors should bring a photo and resume, and be ready to dance!
Dance suits will be available on musical.org/auditions at least one week before the auditions.
This is Rydell High’s senior class of 1959: the duck-tailed “Burger Palace Boys” and their gum-slapping, hip-shaking “Pink Ladies” in bobby sox and pedal pushers, evoking the look and sound of the years 1950 in this frenzied musical comedy. Chief “greaser” Danny Zuko and new (good) girl Sandy Dumbrowski attempt to relive the high romance of their “Summer Nights” as the rest of the gang sings and dances through songs such as “Greased Lightnin'”, “It’s Raining on Prom Night”, “Alone at the Drive-In Movie” reminiscent of music by Buddy Holly, Little Richard and Elvis Presley that became the soundtrack of a generation. An eight-year Broadway run and two subsequent revivals, plus countless school and community productions place Grease among the world’s most popular musicals.
DESCRIPTION OF CHARACTERS
DANNY ZUKO: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, D4-B5)
The chef of the Burger Palace Boys; handsome, strong and confident, with an air of easy-going charm.
SANDY DUMBROWSKI: Female identification, high school student (Range: Soprano, A3-F#5)
New girl in town; sweet, wholesome, naive, cute and innocent.
BETTY RIZZO: female identification, high school student (Range: Alto A3-C5)
Chief of the Ladies Roses; tough, sarcastic and outspoken but vulnerable.
FRENCHY: Female identification, high school student (Range: Alto, A3-D5)
A dreamer; Good-natured but not overly intelligent, she is heavily made up, picky about her appearance, especially her hair. She is looking forward to graduating from high school to become a beautician.
MARTY: female identification, high school teenager (Range Alto, C4-C5)
The “beauty” of the Pink Ladies; pretty and looks older than the other girls, but betrays her real age when she opens her mouth. She tries to be sophisticated.
JAN: female identification, high school student (range: Alto, A3-C5)
Funny, loud, compulsive eater and goofy member of the Pink Ladies. Loud and pushy with girls, but shy with boys.
DOODY: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, D4-A5)
The youngest of the guys; short, boyish and outgoing, with a disarming smile and a hero-worshipping attitude towards other guys. He also plays the guitar.
KENICKIE: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, C4-F5)
The Burger Palace Boys’ second-in-command; tough, tattooed, surly, and avoids any display of gentleness. He has a quirky sense of humor.
SONNY LATIERRI: Male identification, High school student (Tamsion: baritone, G3-A5)
Member of the Burger Palace Boys; funny italian american, he’s a braggart and a drug dealer who thinks he’s a real woman killer
ROGER: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, D4-A5)
The stocky type of boy who does anything for a laugh; a clown who likes to bamboozle people, he is full of mischief and always comes up with half-baked plans and ideas.
VINCE FONTAINE: Male Identifier, High School Student (Range: Together/Flexible Part)
A typical “teenage audience” disc jockey; smooth, selfish and fast. He is also a veteran “Greaser”.
CHA-CHA, aka CHARLENE, DIGREGORIO: female identification, high school teenager (range: Alto, C4-C5)
The best dancer of Ste Bernadette; loudmouth, she wins the dance competition with Danny.
EUGENE FLORCZYK: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, A3-E5)
The valedictorian of the class; physically clumsy, with weak eyes and a high-pitched voice. He’s a typical “apple polisher” – both smug and pompous, but gullible.
JOHNNY CASINO: male identification, high school student (range: tenor, G4-E5)
All-American, rock star “greaser” student at Rydell High, whose real name is Clarence.
MISS LYNCH: female identification, age flexible (range: set/part flexible)
A serious, serious and loud English teacher.
PATTY SIMCOX: female identification, high school teenager (Range: Alto, D4-A4)
A typical cheerleader; attractive, athletic, confident, but can be prone to disconcerting bursts of enthusiasm. She is a bit of a pain and unpopular with the Pink Ladies, and can twirl a stick.
TEEN ANGEL: male identification, flexible age (range: tenor, E4-F5)
Frenchy’s suave and skilful guardian angel, who encourages her to stay in school.
THE PINK LADIES: Together (SATB)
The gang of girls in club jackets, chewing bubble gum and swaying their hips who hang out with the Burger Palace Boys.
THE BURGER PALACE BOYS: Together (SATB)
A bunch of super cool, DA-haired, tough-looking high school drug dealers…or so they think.
RADIO VOICE: male identification, flexible age (Rage: tenor, A3-C5)
A radio voice
For more information on auditions, visit: https://musical.org/auditions/