A MONSTER CALLS
Directed by Aliza Moran
Based upon the novel by Patrick Ness
From the original idea of Siobhan Dowd
Devised by the Original Cast
Saturday, December 2 - 3:00-5:00 PM
Sunday, December 3 - 6:30-9:30 PM
CALLBACKS (by invitation only):
Monday, December 4th - 7:00-9:00pm
Theatreworks at the Evergreen, 1705 Poplar Ave.
Needed: 10-12 performers of all genders
The script calls for 10 ensemble members. These ensemble members will play the various roles in Conor's life. The ensemble is an extension of Conor and will be used to create and shape the space.
ALL ROLES ARE AVAILABLE
Auditions will consist of readings from the script. For callbacks, please be prepared to collaborate and move.
All performers are encouraged to audition, regardless of gender, race, sexuality, ability or any physical characteristics.
Production dates: May 3-19, 2024
Rehearsal Dates: Late March or early April 2024.
More info: 901-484-3467
"Stories are wild creatures...When you let them loose, who knows what havoc they will wreak?"
Synopsis: The monster in Conor's backyard is not the one he's been expecting -- the one from the nightmare he's had every night since his mother started her treatments. This monster is ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. It wants the truth.
SIDES (Click on sides to view file):
CONOR (Male-presenting, character Age 13. Performer age late teens to early/mid-twenties)
The protagonist of the play, thirteen-year-old Conor is very responsible for his age, due primarily to the fact that his mother was diagnosed with cancer a year before. Conor is her primary carer because Conor’s mother and father were divorced five years before her diagnosis. Conor exhibits conflicting emotions: he wants the waiting regarding her illness to be over, but he is also desperate for her not to die. (Stage Combat involved)
THE “MONSTER” (Open to all performers)
An ancient giant creature who takes the shape of a yew tree. The monster says that it has been called Herne the Hunter and the Green Man in the past - implying that it is a natural spirit of pagan lore. The monster comes to tell stories to Conor to help him understand that life and human emotions are complex and resist simple answers. Conor tries to deny that anything is wrong and so the Monster rages, but when Conor finally accepts the truth, the monster becomes gentler and more of a parental figure. (Required to be on stilts. No experience with stilts necessary but the ability to learn a plus)
MUM/Ensemble (Female-presenting character age 32-45, Performer age same as character)
Though not stated it is implied that she has terminal cancer. Conor’s mother has lost her hair and wears a scarf, and is going through rounds of treatments, and its complications. She feels increasingly guilty about the responsibility that Conor has been forced to take on in caring for her.
GRANDMA/QUEEN/Ensemble (Female-presenting character Age 55-65, Performer age same as character)
Conor’s maternal grandmother. Conor’s grandmother is cold and somewhat strict, and Conor doesn’t like her very much. Conor’s mother invites Conor’s grandmother to visit to help take care of both of them against his wishes. By the end of the play Conor and his grandmother reconcile. One of the characters in the monster’s first tale, the Queen is the young prince’s step-grandmother. She is a metaphor for the idea that even though Conor doesn’t like his grandmother, she shouldn’t be blamed for his mother’s failing health and should not be the subject of his ire and that she is a complex person and is neither good nor bad.
DAD/PARSON/Ensemble (Male-presenting character Age 35-45. Performer age same as character)
Conor’s Father and the Mum’s ex-husband. They divorced when Conor was seven years old. Dad now lives in America with his new wife and baby. Conor enjoys being with his father and is comforted to have a parental figure to help take care of him and relieve him of some of his responsibility. However, even though it is clear that Conor’s Father has good intentions, he is rather flaky. One of the characters in the monster’s second tale, the Parson preaches against the Apothecary for his use of the old ways to heal people which results in the death of his two daughters. Conor connects this character to his father, who is well-meaning but who often fails to do the right thing until it is too late.
HARRY/PRINCE/Ensemble (Male-presenting character Age 13-17, Performer age late teen-early 30s)
The school bully, who has been targeting Conor ever since Conor learned of his mother’s diagnosis. Harry is often flanked by his cronies, Anton and Sully. Conor confronts Harry in the cafeteria, and beats Harry up demonstrating how isolation can turn even a gentle kid into a violent monster. One of the characters in the monster’s first tale. The prince is the grandson of an ancient king, and his step-grandmother is the evil queen. When the king passes away, the evil queen wants to marry the young prince to retain her throne, and so the young prince runs away with his lover, the farmer’s daughter. (Stage combat involved)
SULLY/PARSON’S DAUGHTER 1/Ensemble (Female-presenting. Character Age 13-17, Performer age late teens-early 30s )
One of Harry’s cronies, who bullies and teases Conor along with Anton.
ANTON/Ensemble (Male-presenting. Character Age 13-17. Performer age late teens-early 30s)
One of Harry’s cronies, who bullies and teases Conor along with Sully.
LILY/PARSON’S DAUGHTER 2/FARMER’S DAUGHTER/Ensemble
(Female-presenting character age 13-19, Performer age late teens-early 30s)
Conor’s best friend and classmate. Conor’s mother and Lily’s mother have been friends for a long time, and Conor and Lily grew up together. She tries to save Conor from being bullied by Harry but is punished for it. This, in turn, makes Lily angry with Conor, which causes Conor to feel even more isolated. She eventually reaches out to him with a note and this is incredibly touching to Conor. The Farmer’s Daughter is the young prince’s lover. They both elope.
MISS GODFREY/NURSE/Ensemble (Female-presenting. Performer age mid 20s-early 40s)
Conor’s head-teacher. Miss Godfrey tries to help Conor and asks if Harry, Anton, and Sully are bullying him.
MR MARL/APOTHECARY/Ensemble (Male-presenting. Performer age mid 30s-60s)
Conor’s English teacher. The Apothecary appears in the monster’s second tale and is described as greedy and very disagreeable. He is a healer and asks the Parson to harvest the yew tree that grows in his parsonage. The parson refuses, and even preaches sermons against the Apothecary. But when the Parson’s daughters fall ill, he begs the Apothecary to cure them.