Monday, March 2, 2015

Auditions: ‘The Spitfire Grill’ at Barn Theatre in Montville


The Barn Theatre in Montville, New Jersey continues its 87th Season by holding open auditions on Sunday, March 15 and Monday, March 16 for its upcoming production of "The Spitfire Grill", a musical written by James Valcq (music and book) and Fred Alley (lyrics and book), based on the film by Lee David Zlotoff. The production will be produced by Carla Kendall and directed by Claudia Metz with Musical Direction by Clifford Parrish.
AUDITION DATES: Sunday, March 15 at 6 PM and Monday, March 16 at 7 PM.  Callbacks (by invitation only) will be held on Wednesday, March 18 at 7 PM.

PERFORMANCE DATES: May 15 – June 6 (Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with possible Thursday performances)

Percy Talbott, a young woman just released from prison, is looking to make a fresh start. Based on the description in an old travel brochure that once adorned her jail cell, she chooses the rural town of Gilead, Wisconsin. The local sheriff finds a place for her to work at Hannah’s Spitfire Grill where the town “welcomes” her with suspicion and distrust and she quickly finds that the town itself is in despair. Through an unusual contest, friendships are formed and hope grows, transforming the futures of the characters as they learn to trust one another with their pasts.

4 Women, 3 Men:

PERCY TALBOTT - early to mid-20s.  Strong-minded parolee determined to start over.  Kind but feisty and perhaps a bit rough-edged, her past has given her wisdom and sadness beyond her years. Her accent has a southern Appalachian cadence (she is the only character with an accent). Mezzo, strong folk/country belt to 'D', some head voice required.
HANNAH FERGUSON – late 50s to 70.  The tough-skinned owner of the Spitfire Grill.  A fiery old bird with a short, no-nonsense manner bordering on the bitter. Mezzo/alto chest range.
SHELBY THORPE – early to mid-30s.  Caleb’s meek, but soulful, wife.  She begins to show confidence under Percy’s influence.  A plain, soft-faced creature with a shy, almost ethereal manner. Shimmering folk soprano with strong high belt to 'D'.
EFFY KRAYNECK – 40s to 50s. Gilead’s Postmistress and resident busybody, a nosy and opinionated woman with narrow eyes and a sour tongue. Solid singer in mezzo/alto chest range.  Must be able to carry close harmony.
CALEB THORPE – mid-30s to early 40s. Hannah’s bitter nephew, an out-of-work foreman of the stone quarry.  Fiercely protective of his aunt, he is frustrated as he loses control over most aspects of his life and tends to exert control over his wife.  Solid folk/rock baritone with an edge (Top 'G').
JOE SUTTER – mid-20s to 30s.  The local sheriff and Percy’s parole officer.  A likeable sort with an appealing intensity and a restless nature, eager to leave the town of Gilead for good.  Strong folk tenor to a 'G' (touches an 'A').
THE VISITOR – mid-40s.  An important, central, nonspeaking role requiring very strong acting ability.  An actor with powerful eyes and a very strong sense of his body.  Actors auditioning for this role are asked to prepare a short monologue.

The audition will consist of a vocal audition and readings from the script.  There will be no dance audition.  The music is inspired by rural folk music traditions with tones of bluegrass/country/folk/pop sounds so please prepare a song in the style of the show.  Auditioners are asked to prepare a 32 bar vocal selection that shows their range and to bring their own sheet music for the accompanist. Those familiar with the show’s score are encouraged to audition with a selection from the show (scores will be available at the auditions).  We are looking for individuals to tell a story – and convey emotion -- through song so please let that be your guide even if it is not a traditional Broadway showtune.

Those invited to the callbacks will be taught selections from the score and may be asked to sing harmony with other auditioners.

To read a complete synopsis of the show and hear samples of the music, please visit  Feel free to contact the director with any questions or concerns at

Actors are asked to arrive to sign in within the first hour of the audition start time. All roles are available. Casting is open, and newcomers are especially welcomed. Crew and other volunteers are also needed for the event. If interested, please contact

The Barn Theatre is located at 32 Skyline Drive in Montville, NJ, just minutes off Route 287 (Exit 47). For more information or directions, call 973-334-9320 ext. 5, or visit


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