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Theatre Wit will be holding auditions for the world premiere of Household Spirits by Mia McCullogh, Directed by Eileen Tull.
SYNOPSIS: New step-siblings Eric and Rox are reluctantly spending their first holiday together in Eric's childhood home. The only thing this high school junior and college sophomore have in common is that they're both half Jewish, but since Eric's schizophrenic Jewish mom committed suicide in the house when he was a child and Rox's Jewish dad is in prison, both kids are a bit ambivalent about that side of their heritage.
Rox's mother, Evelyn, is hoping this is the one and only Christmas she'll have to spend in this creepy old colonial. Evelyn doesn't like the doors that don't latch, or the housekeeper who feels more at home than she does, or the way the whole place makes her husband melancholy. Melancholy doesn't quite cover it lately though, because Eric's dad is in the early days of recovery from alcoholism, and his daily meetings and "complete self-absorption" have pushed his new wife to the edge of her patience. Even the ghost of Eric's dead mother doesn't know what to do with her widower. Not that the schizophrenic spirit does much besides knit, provoke the housekeeper, and second guess her suicide by playing out all the other ways she could have done herself in.
When Evelyn brings home a life-size rag doll-a pre-WWII piece of her ex-husband's family history-something about it cracks everyone open. Even Erik's dead mother is both threatened and intrigued to have anther presence in the house. The doll becomes the catalyst for the holiday week's traumatic events. She serves as a hiding place, a source of solace, a means for a dead mother to talk to her son, a sexual surrogate, and both a keeper and revealer of family secrets.
This play is a very dark comedy about mental illness, alcoholism, and household spirits.
A note on casting: Our team believes in the importance of authentic storytelling. Because of this, we want to prioritize the casting of Jewish actors in Jewish roles within this play.
CLARA: The ghost. 30-50. Ashkenazi Jew or Sephardic Jew. Acerbic and dark. Has no filter, but does it matter? No one can hear her anyway. Still suffers from schizophrenia even though she's dead. Knits.
ANGELA: The housekeeper late 50s-60s. Italian American. Has a NY Bronx/Queens accent. Warm and diplomatic, but doesn't take shit from people.
ERIK: 17; sullen, acerbic teenager; Half WASP/half Ashkenazi or Sephardic Jew. Son of Clara and Philip, though Angela has been his surrogate mother since he was 3 or 4. Desperately wants out of this well-to-do, elitist suburb. (will be casting an actor 18+)
PHILIP: [CAST; still need U/S] late 40s-50s.Erik's father, entertainment lawyer.
ROX: 20, Mixed race or white/ half Ashkenazi Jew. Sophomore in college. Smart, confident, and also has the facade of a vacuous sorority girl. Rarely lets her guard down.
EVELYN: 50s, theatrical agent. Any race. Not necessarily from money, but very accustomed to money and its privileges. Mother of Rox, the second wife, newly living in the house of the previous wife, Clara, the ghost. Put together on the outside, complete mess on the inside.
LEO: 50s/60s, recently out of prison for white collar crime. Ashkenzai Jew. Shifty, but charismatic. Rox's father, Evelyn's ex-husband.
Pay: Equity/non-Equity principal characters: $430/week; Understudies: $430/week through press previews, $300 each performance week + $50/performance up to $450/week
Audition Dates: Saturday, June 10th, 10AM-4PM + Sunday, June 11th, 9AM-2PM
Audition Location: Sat. June 10th at Theater Wit + Sun. June 11th at Berger Park
Auditions will consist of sides from the script. Please prepare the sides for the character you would like to be considered for.
Sides and Script can be found here