Circle Readings – open to all.
Semi-Staged PerformancesCommissioned Performances for writers – are cast to suit the play as far as possible, for the benefit of the writer rather than the actor members.
There are several conflicting criteria when considering who to cast:
We perform to an audience who pay (admittedly not a fortune) to come, so the standard of acting and reading should be as high as possible. These two skills do not always coincide; there are many accomplished actors who are not good readers.
The actors should match the specifications of the characters as far as possible, certainly at least in terms of gender and relative age.
We want all our actor members to have a chance of performing, but we also want to reward members who turn up as audience to support their colleagues on the occasions they haven't been cast.In order to distribute parts fairly among members, we maintain an informal queueing system:
You are more likely to be cast if you give us some details in your membership profile, and have participated in some circle readings; plays often make the journey from circle reading to semi-staged performance and have been known to take actors with them.
We will ask you to take part in a performance by ringing you, so make sure we have your current number. If we can't speak to you directly, we will leave a message asking your availability or offering you a part. Unless the message explicitly says otherwise, the offer of a part is yours for 24 hours. This gives you a reasonable opportunity to respond, while not creating a bottleneck in the casting process if you don't get back. Of course, if you get back to us after 24 hours we might not have contacted someone else, but you never know...
The normal arrangement is to rehearse on the Sunday afternoon before the performance, between 12.00 and 6.00 (lunch provided). You are also expected to arrive early on the day of performance (at least an hour before) for final rehearsal.
When you have accepted a part, you'll be provided with a script. To keep costs down, you will be usually sent a script by email, and receive a printed copy at the rehearsal. If you want to print the script yourself before the rehearsal, let us know in good time and we'll pay you what it would have cost to print it ourselves. Please bring marker pens, pencil etc. to the rehearsal. We endeavour to format the scripts for ease of reading: large print, no page turns in the middle of a speech etc.
If you have to pull out, let us know immediately. We will endeavour to find a replacement, but if there is little time you may be expected to help. If you have been sent a printed script, the onus is on you to get it to the replacement actor.
For information on how to be eligible for casting please contact us
See information on the venues currently used for performance and rehearsal please click here.
Normally our performances are preceded with just one rehearsal, on the previous Sunday between 12 and 6. Occasionally this may be varied and, again occasionally, a director may request more than one rehearsal.
All this information will be told to the actor prior to their accepting the role and the acceptance is of all relevant dates and times.