We pride ourselves at Near West Theatre on fun, relaxed, group-oriented auditions that are open to all, regardless of experience. This time, we’re throwing it even wider open than usual and asking you to bring extra skills if you’ve got ’em: musical instruments, unicycling, juggling, mime, clowning, French language — you name it. “Surprise us,” says Artistic Director Bob Navis Jr., who is looking for a diverse and wildly passionate cast of more than 40 people, ages 16 and up, to bring Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris to the stage this May.
It may not be the world’s most frequently performed musical, but Brel has an amazing history in Cleveland, described in our January e-newsletter. As for the material and the man it’s named for, we hope you’ve been following Bob’s delightfully quirky “Brel Chronicles” in this blog. If not, check out Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.
Then, grab a friend and come audition at our temporary winter home, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 1349 W. 78th St., Cleveland. It’s a white wooden church with a picket fence; use the front door on Lake Road, a couple blocks north of Detroit Avenue. Auditions are Tuesday, Feb. 26, Wednesday, Feb. 27, and Thursday, Feb. 28, starting promptly at 7:30 each evening. Pick just one of the nights and arrive at 7:15 to register. [UPDATE: An added open audition will be held Saturday, March 2, at 10:30 a.m. Also, appointments for auditions on other days may by made by calling Director Bob Navis Jr., 216-281-6879.] Rehearsals will start in March. The show will be performed nine times, May 3-19, 2013. Spread the word! Wonder what auditions are like? Here’s footage of Bob talking to people who came to one a year ago. — Hans Holznagel