SYNOPSIS

In a musical and modernised adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, the tale of West Side Story finds its setting in the streets of 1950s New York. A bitter and tireless rivalry has formed between two gangs, the New York Jets and the Puerto Rican Sharks, who are both looking to assert the upper west side as their territory. Their rivalry grows further complicated by a star-crossed romance between Tony and Maria who belong to opposing sides. In amongst the gang’s conflict, the two must consider what is most important: their loyalty to their families and where they’ve come from, or their love for one another. 

 

AUDITION DATES

Friday 12th February: 7 - 9pm

Saturday 13th February:  9 - 11am/12 - 2pm & 2.30-4.30pm

Sunday 14th February: 11.00am - 1pm & 1.30 - 3.30pm

 

Auditions will be held at the Riverbank Centre, Reyburn House Lane, Whangarei

AUDITION BOOKINGS

You can book your audition by phoning Monica 021 848353

 

You will be auditioning before a panel consisting of the Director, Musical Director, Choreographer, Vocal Coach, and a Committee Representative from Whangarei Theatre Company. You will be required to attend a 2 hour block although your audition may not take that long. Please be prepared for the possibility of a call back during the following weekend. Getting a call back does not guarantee a role. Likewise, you may be cast even if you are not called back.

PREPARATION FOR AUDITION 

Audition songs (approximately two minutes or less) need to be a musical theatre piece that is a similar style to Westside Story, that shows off your vocal range. Some examples are given here:

Falling in Love with Love - Boys of Syracuse 

Till There Was You - The Music Man 

There's Gotta Be Something Better Than This - Sweet Charity 

Better - Little Woman 

On the Street Where You Live - My Fair lady 

All I Need is the Girl - Gypsy 

Luck be a Lady - Guys and Dolls 

There is nothing like a Dame - South Pacific

 

It is OK if you choose your own theatre style song but if you need it played for you on the day you will have to bring sheet music with you.

You can audition using a backing track on a USB or on your phone, but we will also have an accompanist to play for you should you require. On the day, please arrive at least 10 minutes prior to your audition time, already warmed up. If you are auditioning for a principal character, you may be asked to do a reading for your character. 

Choreography is a defining aspect of the West Side Story musical. Because of this, you will be required to demonstrate your ability to move on stage. You will be guided by the choreographer for this. Please wear comfortable clothing suitable for this.

Reading will be required if auditioning specific roles. There is an expectation that the correct accents will be used when reading. Ivan Borodin and Luis Guzman on YouTube give some great lessons on Boston and Puerta Rican accents. Check them out.

Some supporting roles are non-singing roles and you will of course not be required to sing if auditioning specifically for one of these. You will be required to read and perhaps move on stage.

All readings and/or song music required for auditions can be emailed to you after booking your audition time.

Please note that should you be looking to view West Side Story to see what it is like we are not doing the movie version. You will need to look at stage versions.

 

REHEARSAL DATES 

Rehearsals begin on Saturday March 13th with a two-day intensive. The rehearsals schedule is currently being finalised but rehearsals will be held 2 or 3 nights per week and Sundays (mornings and afternoons) at Riverbank Centre. You are also expected to attend all dress & tech rehearsals in the week leading up to Opening Night and Pack Out on August 1st. 

 

PRODUCTION EXPECTATIONS 

Your participation in this production requires your undivided commitment in order to ensure a production of the highest possible quality. If cast, you cannot commit to any other production during the rehearsal period and production season. You should not audition if you are unable to commit to the rehearsal and production schedule. If you have any other commitments (personal or work) that may impact on your ability to attend rehearsals, you must provide full relevant details in your audition application. Not all performers will be required at all rehearsals, and rehearsals will be scheduled as carefully as possible to make the best use of your time. 

CASTING ANNOUNCEMENT 

Performers will be notified by email or phone of the outcome of their audition as soon as possible following casting. All cast and crew are considered to be goodwill ambassadors for Whangarei Theatre company and for the show, and we expect all cast and crew to meet that responsibility both in person and online. There will be a closed group Facebook page which cast and crew are encouraged to join and actively participate in. 

OTHER INFORMATION 

All involved in this production will need to become a financial member of Whangarei Theatre Company and are required to agree and adhere to a code of conduct that covers health and safety, personal well-being, and responsibilities to fellow cast and crew members. 

 

Please direct any queries you may have to Monica Nance   monzadeva@yahoo.co.nz

Character Descriptions

Principal Characters

Tony - Male, late teens — early 20s

Some choreography required

Vocal range: Bb2 - Bb4, Tenor

An older member of the Jets, Tony has a mature and non-violent wisdom that the wider gang lacks. Deeply respected and admired by all Jets.

 

Maria - Female, mid — late teens

Some choreography required

Vocal range: Bb3 - C6, soprano 

A young, excitable woman who has recently arrived in America and the love interest of Tony. While influenced by Anita and Bernardo, she is strongly led by her own heart.

 

Anita - Female, 20s

Strong dance requirements

Vocal range: F3 - D5, alto

Fiery and assertive in nature, Bernardo’s girl and a sister-like confidante to Maria. Despite the unwelcoming Jets, Anita admires the beauty and opportunities that America seems to offer.

 

Bernardo - Male, 20s

Strong dance requirements

Vocal range: Bb2 - Eb4,  baritone 

The charismatic and charming leader of the Sharks gang, older brother to Maria and boyfriend to Anita. Very strong in his presence, shoulders most of the Jets’ hostility.

 

Riff - Male, late teens — early 20s

Strong dance requirements

Vocal range: Bb2 - G4,  tenor

The hot-headed leader of the Jets and close friend of Tony’s. Much like Bernardo, Riff is passionate and confrontational in the gang’s rivalry.

 

Supporting Characters

Chino - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A younger member of the Sharks; loyal follower to leader Bernardo and the supposed future husband of Maria.

 

Anybodys - Female, mid — late teens

Speaking role, choreography required

A tomboyish Jets wannabe and a loyal follower of Tony’s. She attempts to dress and act like a male Jet, but is consistently pushed aside from the action of the gang.

 

Doc - Male, 40s to 60s

Speaking role, no choreography required

The owner of a local store at which Tony works and the Jets hang out; wise and thoughtful in his ways, Doc shares a somewhat paternal relationship with the entire Jets gang.

 

Detective Schrank - Male, 40s to 60s

Speaking role, no choreography required

Detective Schrank is the main “handler” of the gang rivalry. Brash and quick-tempered, Schrank is far from impartial and constantly antagonises the Sharks gang.

 

Officer Krupke - Male, 40s to 60s

Speaking role, no choreography required

A local police officer and assistant to Detective Schrank. While he too is frustrated by the gang conflict, Krupke is constantly mocked by the Jets for his not-so-bright nature.
 

Ensemble Characters

Diesel - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Jets gang member, second-in-command and very loyal to Riff and Tony.

 

Pepe - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Sharks gang member.

 

Action - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Jets gang member.

 

Indio - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Sharks gang member.

 

Graziella - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Jets girl and girlfriend to Diesel.

 

Rosalia - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Sharks girl, girlfriend of Indio and friend of Maria.

 

Velma - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Jets girl and girlfriend to Riff; a smaller role but must be a fierce dance partner to Riff in the gym scene.

 

Consuelo - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Sharks girl and girlfriend to Pepe.

 

Minnie - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Jets girl.

 

Francisca - Female, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A Sharks girl.

 

Additional Ensemble Roles

Jets Swing: A-Rab/Glad Hand - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A male dancer to support the Jets gang when the two gangs face off. This role will involve an

additional cameo as ‘Glad Hand’, the cheerful albeit nerdy host of the gym dance.

Sharks Swing: Luis - Male, late teens — early 20s

Choreography required

A male dancer to support the Sharks gang when the two gangs face off.

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The Riverbank Centre, Reyburn House Lane Whangarei. 
PO Box 692, Whangarei 0140, New Zealand.

PH: +64 9 438 3523 (leave a message) 

Email: enquiries@whangareitheatrecompany.org.nz