Auditions set for two one-act student-directed shows


Staff Reports

Two of Jackson County Young Artists’ Theatre’s most experienced actors will serve as student directors for two upcoming shows.

John Ortman and Clare Hauersperger will be under the guidance of Paul Keller and other adult mentors. Ortman will direct Bradley Hayward’s “I Don’t Want to Talk About It,” and Hauersperger will direct Tim Kelly’s adaptation of “The Secret Garden.”

The performances will be Jan. 29, 30 and 31 at Royal Off-the-Square Theatre, 121 W. Walnut St., Brownstown.

Auditions for both shows will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 15 and 16 at the theater. Students ages 10 to 18 may audition. Cross casting will not be allowed.

Students should come prepared to do cold reads. Monologues are welcomed but optional. Those who bring a monologue should keep it under a minute. Also, bring a list of all known conflicts prior to the dates of the show.

All auditions will respect social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Masks must be worn when entering the building and when social distancing is not able to be maintained.

“The Secret Garden” is based on a classic children’s book that follows a young girl’s journey of healing and transformation all caused by the magic of an old forgotten garden. During this journey, she meets some friends along the way.

There are eight characters, ranging from young children to adults of various ages:

Mary Lennox–female lead, 10-year-old girl, spoiled orphan

Colin Craven–male lead, about 10 years old, Mary’s cousin who has spent his whole life bedridden, rather pessimistic

Martha Sowerby–supporting female, 15 to 18 years old, Mary’s friend and maidservant, charmingly frank and levelheaded

Dickon Sowerby–supporting male, 12 to 13, Martha’s younger brother, loves nature, has certain charm

Ben Weatherstaff–supporting male, elderly man, gardener at Misselthwaite Manor (Mary’s new home), comes off rough but is kind

Mrs. Medlock–supporting female, middle-aged, head of servants at Misselthwaite Manor, has a rigid exterior but kind, follows her orders to the tee

Archibald Craven–supporting male, in his 30s, Colin’s estranged father, suffers from a crooked spine and ill health

Additional servant–will be used as an extra servant but also possibly as an offstage voice and maybe the puppeteer

“I Don’t Want to Talk About It” takes a deep dive into the social dilemmas many teens can’t, won’t and don’t want to talk about.

With opportunities for both young men and women in a series of monologues and various scenes, this play has something for everyone to enjoy.

Twelve actors will be cast as multiple characters:

Kyle–frustrated, not popular with his peers

Carley–Rachel’s sister, confused, hurt

Rachel–Carley’s sister, speaks in gibberish

Tessa–fast, energetic, childish

Jake–fed up with himself

Meredith–doesn’t have a strong relationship with her mother

Philip–Maya’s brother, judgmental of his father

Maya–Philip’s sister, judgmental of her mother

Erica–saddened over the actions of her parents

Nick–furious over school rumors

Rayna–extremely nervous, concerned

Brett–student, frustrated with his teacher

Karissa–carefree, easy-going

Cameron–fed up with his physical appearance

Logan–has a twitch

Matt–Taryn’s boyfriend, wants to end things

Taryn–Matt’s girlfriend, only speaks over phone

Rebecca–emotionally exhausted

Emmett–has a serious illness

Brenna–is a victim

Chelsea–at her grandpa’s funeral

Samantha–father’s plane was struck by lightning

Baby–Kyle as a baby

Idea–Jake’s inner thoughts

Therapist–Kyle’s therapist

Mr. Frith–Brett’s teacher

Drive-Thru–a restaurant’s drive-thru

Twitch–Logan’s twitch

Priest–Kyle’s priest

Grandma–Emmett’s grandma

Mom–Samantha’s mom

Dad–Kyle’s dad

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For information, visit or call 812-358-5228.


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