September 1, Start of Ramadan
September 29 - October 1, Rosh Hashanah
September 30, Eid al-Fitr
October 8 - 9, Yom Kippur
Roles to be Cast
(Ages of characters are approximate as of the start of the play)
Olga: 28. Bright and practical schoolteacher, sees herself already as an old maid. Headaches. Mothers the others.
Masha: 23. Smart, dark, ironic, poetic. Unhappily married to Kulygin. Has dreams but doesn't know what to do with them.
Irina: 20. Bright, restless, eager, unsure where to place her focus. (Thesis role already cast: Cynthia Pohlson).
Andrei: 26. The sisters' brother. Had the potential to be an intellectual/scientist, but lost his way. Now plays violin and is gaining weight. (Thesis role already cast: Martin Andrews).
Natasha: 20. Attractive but socially awkward, unsophisticated, desperate local girl. Becomes Andrei's wife, mothers 2 children (one of them Andrei's) and takes over the estate. (Thesis role already cast: Helen Kim).
Kulygin: 25. Ever-cheerful (or tries to be) schoolteacher husband of Masha. Smart/pedantic, but not obnoxious about it. Fastidious and loving.
There are several army officers billeted in town. They regularly come to visit:
Vershinin: (43). Colonel. Intellectual who loves to talk. In a bad marriage, has 2 daughters. Finds love with Masha.
Tuzenbach: (25). 1st Lieutenant in love with Irina (not returned). Eager, friendly, earnest, bright. Plays piano at one point (may be recorded or live).
Chebutykin: (60). Army doctor who's forgotten how to doctor. Haunted by his medical mistakes. Was in love with the sisters' mother, now dotes (inappropriately) on Irina. (Thesis role already cast: Ethan Henry).
Solyony: (30). Captain. Weightlifter. Sees himself as romantic hero, sulks when he's disappointed. Quotes poetry, picks fights, harbors secret love for Irina.
Fedotik: (23). 2nd Lieutenant, photographer and guitarist. Always generous.
Rohde: (23). 2nd Lieutenant, big-voiced, inseparable companion to Fedotik.
There are 2 old servants:
Anfisa: (80). A nanny, brought up the 3 sisters and Andrei. Loving, but not very capable any more. Holding on.
Ferapont: (80). A janitor and go-fer for the County Council. Pretty deaf and not very capable. Holding on.
Some people make momentary appearances:
1 male and 1 female street musician: beggars. (Violin and another stringed instrument, or vocal).
1 orderly who hangs out with Solyony.
1 harried, worried maid in the household (Natasha bosses her around).
There will be "live" music, as well as some composed/recorded. Please note on your audition form if you play piano, violin, or some other stringed instrument. Fedotik does a crazy dance at one point.
One goal will be to find a lively range of tone, from serious to comic, throughout, and often simultaneously. This is a truly great play, of extraordinary honesty and beauty, mixing the serious and the laughable, the big issues of life with the mundane and petty. Amazing characters. We'll keep it in its original time and place, around 1900 in a large Russian home many miles from Moscow. The play covers about 4 years' time in four acts:
Act I: May 5, noon. Living/Dining area.
Act II: January, 8 PM. (Same.)
Act III: Summer, 2:30 AM. Olga and Irina's bedroom.
Act IV: Autumn, noon. Outside the house.