Open Auditions For An Inspector Calls

 

Kentwood Players will hold open auditions for J.B. Priestley's suspenseful drama An Inspector Calls on Saturday, July 22 from 10am to 1pm, and Sunday, July 23 from 7pm to 10pm at the Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90045. Callbacks will take place by invitation only on Monday, July 24 from 7pm to 10pm. This is a non-equity, all-volunteer production directed by James Rice and produced by Marty S. Feldman and Lyndsay Palmer for Kentwood Players with rights secured from Dramatists Play Service.

Performance dates are Friday, September 15 through Saturday, October 7, on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00pm, and Sundays at 2:00pm. Saturday matinees at 2:00pm will be added on September 23 and continue through the rest of the run. Auditions and performances take place at the Westchester Playhouse, located at 8301 Hindry Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90045.

A classic of mid-20th century theater, the Hitchcockian suspense drama An Inspector Calls centers on the Birling Family – Arthur, Sylvia, Sheila, and Eric - who live in a comfortable home in the fictional town of Brumley, "an industrial city in the north Midlands." The family is visited by a man calling himself Inspector Goole, who interrogates the family about the suicide of a young working-class woman in her mid-twenties, Eva Smith. During his questioning, all members of the family are lightly or deeply implicated in the girl's undoing, including Sheila's fiancé Gerald Croft. What begins as a parlor drama with polite banter quickly becomes acid and hateful. Everyone is not who they seem to be, including the inspector, thanks to a Twilight Zone-inspired plot twist.

All roles are open and available to anyone regardless of race, ethnicity, or gender. Age or appearance of age is only a factor as it applies to relationships in the play. An English dialect is required for the production, and auditioners should be able to demonstrate the dialect or their ability to learn one. Those auditioning and production team members must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Masks are recommended but not required at the Westchester Playhouse.

Please read An Inspector Calls before auditioning to become familiar with the characters. Initial auditions will consist of sides from the play that will be provided. No appointments are necessary to audition; just arrive to allow time to sign-in and complete paperwork during scheduled audition times. Please bring a current headshot and resume as well as your calendar as a rehearsal schedule will be posted and you will be asked to note any conflicts. For more information and sides in advance, please send an email to inspector@kentwoodplayers.org.

Cast Breakdown

Arthur Birling 50-59 The patriarch of the Birling family. Arthur is a "rather portentous" man "in his fifties" who owns a profitable manufacturing company. His business success allows the Birlings to live in upper-middle-class comfort. He describes himself with pride as a "hard-headed businessman. Dominant, arrogant, self-centered, and morally blind, his stubbornness is shown when refusing responsibility for Eva's death; he fired her in order to quell dissent among his workforce and keep labor costs low.

Sybil Birling 45-55 The matriarch of the Birling family, "a rather cold woman" of about fifty, is Arthur's wife. As the leader of a charitable organization, she assumes a social and moral superiority over Inspector Goole, whose questioning style she frequently refers to as "impertinent" and "offensive." She refuses to accept responsibility for the death of Eva Smith, and seems more concerned with maintaining the family's reputation, even going so far as to lie and deny that she recognizes the girl's picture.

Sheila Birling 25-30 Sheila Birling is the daughter of Arthur and Sybil Birling and the older sister of Eric. Sheila begins as a naive and self-centered young woman, quick to apologize. It is clear she is keen to behave well. She also refers to her father using the childish term "Daddy."

Eric Birling 20-25 Eric Birling is the son of Arthur and Sybil Birling and the younger brother of Sheila. Eric is presented as a "Jack the Lad" character with a drinking habit, which led to forcing himself on Eva and getting her pregnant. He is distanced from the rest of the family and feels he cannot talk to them about his problems.

Gerald Croft 30-35 Fiancé to Sheila and son of another prominent manufacturing family. Gerald is from a more socially-elevated family, and Arthur worries that Gerald's parents believe he is making a "poor match" in marrying Sheila. Although the Inspector criticizes Gerald's affair with Eva, the Inspector notes that Gerald is perhaps the least culpable, and most morally upright, of all the characters.

Inspector Goole 40-55 A representative of the local police force given a "duty" to investigate Eva Smith/Daisy Renton's suicide. The Inspector asks all the Birlings, and Gerald, questions about Eva/Daisy. It seems the Inspector knows the answer to everything he asks, but wants the family to admit to various instances of wrongdoing. There is no solid explanation why the Inspector would have come to the house, or how he could have known so much about Eva/Daisy and the Birlings. Or if, in fact, he is really an Inspector.

Edna Age Open The Birlings' maid. Edna mostly sets the scenes in which the family eats and talks. She is not, like the Birlings, of the upper-middle class, but instead makes money by virtue of her labor. Edna is a constant presence and becomes the audience of the drama.

Those auditioning can take the Metro K Line to Kentwood to the Westchester/Veterans stop, just a short one block walk from the Westchester Playhouse. Those who drive, please note the small lot next to the Westchester Playhouse is reserved for disabled patrons only. Free street parking is available on 83rd Street and in the adjoining neighborhood. Do not park on our block of Hindry or in the RYDER parking spaces (on 83rd across Hindry from the theater) as cars parked there will be towed away. Please read all traffic and parking signs carefully.

For more information about Kentwood Players including our current production, upcoming auditions and shows, please visit the Kentwood Players website at http://www.kentwoodplayers.org. You can also find Kentwood Players information on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Another way to learn more about Kentwood Players and our members is to attend in-person Kentwood Players membership meetings, which are free to the public and usually held on the third Wednesday of each month at 7:30 pm at the Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Ave., Los Angeles 90045. Upcoming meetings on Wednesday, June 21 and July 26. Come on down and find out more about our 73 years old and going strong community theater group and how you can get involved as one of our volunteers!

Kentwood Players is a non-profit theatre group dedicated to enriching, educating, and entertaining our community through the transformative power of live theatre while creating an environment for inspiring human potential. As a 501C3 organization, donations to Kentwood Players in any amount are always greatly appreciated and are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

 

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