Monday, July 9, 2018

Auditions: 'Italian Funerals and Other Festive Occasions' at Center Playhouse,

Center Players Dessert Theater will hold auditions for John Miranda’s “Italian Funerals and Other Festive Occasions” at Center Playhouse, 35 South St, in downtown Freehold, NJ. It will be directed by Ray Parnese.

Audition Dates: Sun. July 29th @7pm and Mon. July 30th @7pm

Possible Callbacks: Tues. July 31st @7pm

Performance Dates: October 19 - November 11

Performances Fridays and Saturdays at 8PM and Sundays at 2PM

Synopsis: Faced with the loss of his mother to dementia, John clings to memories to postpone present family issues. He views his life as though it is a great opera. This dramatic comedy will find answers to the present in the past. Come join John on his journey from a young boy, with a vivid imagination, to an adult with serious decisions ahead. The time period ranges from the late 1930s to the 1980s. 

Character  Descriptions:

JOHN  (45-50)   The son of Italian parents.  A high school teacher.   He is intelligent, passionate, with a quick sense of humor that masks a life of tragedy.  Opera is his escape and a metaphor for his life.
LITTLE  JOHNNY  (10-12)   Young John.  Adorable, enigmatic, sensitive boy with a vivid imagination. Very close to his parents.   Able to sing is a plus.  He is the “baby” of the family.
BRIGIDA  (50-55)  John’s older sister. Possesses true dignity, and charm.  Giving and dedicated to her family, she carries her burden selflessly.  A deep emotional well that breaks only under extraordinary circumstances.
MAMA  (90, range 40-90)  John’s mother. Appears delicate and frail but possesses a surprising resilience, toughness and humor.   Takes on a youthful physicality during her senile episodes to the past.  Holds an undying love for husband and family.  Loves opera.
DAD  (40’s)   John’s father.  A simple, decent and honest man.  Warm and lovable.   His home, work and family are everything to him.
ANDREA  (late 20’s)  John’s neice, Brigida’s daughter.  An independent, restless and lost soul. Tough exterior masks her acute vulnerability.  Is able to carry a tune.
UNCLE  DOM  (late 40’s)  Italian also.  Little Johnny’s uncle on his Dad’s side.  Full of life.  Lives life as if each day was his last. A family man who adores his nephew.  Has a dark side, from a life of crime, which is seldom seen.
AUNT  MARY  (late 40’s)   Italian.  A perfect  match for her husband, Dom.  Flamboyant and competitive for Little Johnny’s affection.   Loves family and jewelry, in that order.  Enjoys the best that life has to offer.
GRANDMOTHER (95-100)   Sicilian.  Little Johnny’s grandmother on Dad’s side.  Always wears black.  Dominating matriarch.  Feared by most, especially by Little Johnny.  A ‘strega’ (Witch), known for her cures and curses.  Speaks very little English.
ROSALIE  (30-40)  Next door neighbor.  Close friend to the family.  Nervous , religious, and superstitious. She is always invited to weddings, funerals and other festive occasions because of her sweet singing voice.
FATTY TOWNSEND (35-40)  Irish.  Chief of Police.  A big man, with an imposing presence.  Tough or charming, depending upon what the occasion calls for.  A chameleon who takes no crap from anyone.  A trusted friend and confident to Dad.
BIG MAN ON HESTER STREET  (60’s-70)  Italian.  A Mafia Don, whose  sole focus up to now has been to accumulate power.  A barracuda.  He has cultivated a taste for the finer things in life. Fearing death, he is obsessed with his after life and is strangely sympathetic.
CONTACT  INFORMATION:   Any questions please contact  Ray  Parnese (Director)  at 908-612-9139   or


AUDITION MATERIAL: Sides from the play will be provided.
PLEASE BRING: Resume and headshot if available

Center Players Dessert Theater was founded in 1996 and gained status as a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization and sought to establish a permanent presence in historic downtown Freehold. After performing at various locations around town, the group leased a storefront property at 35 South Street.

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