by Robert Askins
Directed by Kevin Nessman
Sunday, September 10 @6:30pm
and Tuesday, September 12 @7:00pm
Callbacks (if necessary) the following week
December 1-16, 2023
(Fridays & Saturdays at 8 PM, Sundays at 3 PM)
Acme Theater, Maynard's own community theater, is pleased to announce open auditions for its second mainstage show of the 2023-24 season The Squirrels written by Robert Askins, directed by Kevin Nessman.
The Squirrels is hilarious, allegorical, and an observant reflection of our own society of haves and have nots. All is not well in the heart of the tree. Sciurus, the patriarch of a family of gray squirrels, has collected enough nuts to last ten winters. When a group of starving fox squirrels begs him to share his hoard of food, animosity erupts into a ferocious war that threatens to tear apart his world and his family. Imagine if Shakespeare or Tolstoy wrote about squirrels and you get the picture.
The play begins with Carol, the leader of the fox squirrels, and Chordata, Sciurus’ daughter, begging Sciurus to share some of his nuts with the fox squirrels in the branches. Proud, Sciurus demands to know why the fruits of his own labor should be shared with the lazy fox squirrels who had ample opportunity to find nuts for themselves. When he learns that Carol is a self-made squirrel like himself, he begins to reconsider. But he needs time to think, unbeknownst to all but Mammalia, his memory has been fading, and he cannot seem to recall where he put his horde of nuts.
Enter Sciuridae, a stranger, a gray squirrel with a gift for sowing discord. He stumbles upon a loving scene between Carol and Chordata and uses this information to turn Sciurus against the fox squirrels. Mammalia argues for Sciurus to reconsider and attempts to banish Sciuridae. Unbeknownst to her, Rodentia, Sciurus’ adopted fox squirrel daughter, has been spying on Mammalia, whom Rodentia wants to replace as matriarch, and informs Sciuridae that Mammalia has been secretly feeding the fox squirrels. He uses this information to overthrow Sciurus as leader of the gray squirrels, in hopes of taking the horde for himself.
A war ensues with each character’s life irrevocably changed as a result.
Auditions will be held at Acme Theater (61 Summer Street, Maynard, MA).
Sunday, September 10 @ 6:30pm
Tuesday, September 12 @ 7:00pm
If needed, callbacks will be held the following week (based on availability)
Parking is available on the street in front of the theater and in the parking lot behind the theater. The main entrance to the theater is in the front of the building to the right of the blue Acme Theater banner.
Auditions are open and will consist of reading sides from the script. No appointment is necessary. We encourage auditioners to be familiar with the play prior to auditions. To request audition sides, please email director Kevin Nessman (firstname.lastname@example.org).
December 1-16, 2023
(Fridays & Saturdays at 8 PM, Sundays at 3 PM)\
Tech Date: November 19th (the Sunday before Thanksgiving weekend)
You must be available for all performance dates and tech week (11/27-12/1) to be considered for casting.
Age ranges are not included, but characters will be cast appropriately in consideration of their relationships. A note on costuming: all squirrel characters will wear squirrel tails, ears, and special gloves. Carol wears an eye patch for much of the play as he violently loses an eye in the first act (oh, the squirrelmanity!)
Scientist - An arrogant and pedantic lecturer, the scientist is well versed in all things squirrel. They interrupt the action to provide context and commentary. (Role may be combined with Sciuridae or Ensemble)
Sciurus - Patriarch of the gray squirrels. Aged and venerable, set in his ways, kindly, but suspicious of outsiders. Capable of fierce combat to protect his nuts and his family, but well past his prime. Confused at times and easily manipulated by the devious. He is losing his memory and may not remember where exactly he stored all his nuts.
Chordata - Loving daughter to Sciurus, and an ally to Carol and the Fox Squirrels who live in the branches. She tries to convince her father to share his nuts before it is too late, but her relationship with Carol drives a wedge between her and her father.
Rodentia - A fox squirrel and adopted daughter to Sciurus. Ambitious and cunning, she is willing to use any means at her disposal, including her own body, to secure her survival in the oncoming tempest. Contemptuous of Chordata and Mammalia and the easy life they have always known, Rodentia will manipulate and betray until she gets the life she has always dreamed of for herself.
Mammalia - Wise and sarcastic wife to Sciurus. She tries to keep the peace by compensating for Sciurus’ increasing dotage while secretly helping the Fox squirrels behind his back.
Carol - A strong, proud, heroic figure among the Fox Squirrels, Carol wants to keep the peace, but his squirrels are starving, and only his love for Chordata keeps him from unleashing a war that even he cannot stop.
Sciuridae - A newcomer to the tree. A cunning and immoral agent of chaos, who will manipulate the animosity between the gray and fox squirrels until he has secured all of the nuts for his own.
Ensemble - two to four additional squirrels, both fox and gray, take part in the action. They have few lines, but are involved in fight scenes and interact with the action as well as help with quick set changes.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Acme Theater holds open auditions. For information on our casting policy, please see "View Our Casting Policy" below.