USC Upstate to Hold Auditions for “Our Town”

August 4, 2010 at 10:06 am

The Shoestring Players at the University of South Carolina Upstate will hold open auditions for the production of Thorton Wilder’s Our Town, a classic American play about life, love and death in a small rural New Hampshire town, on Monday, August 23 at 7:00 p.m. in the Humanities and Performing Arts Center Theatre. Our Town will be performed September 30, October 1 and October 2 at 8:00 p.m. and on October 3 at 3:00 p.m. in the theatre. Director and theatre professor Rich Robinson says that there will be a cast of 30 required, with ten parts for children, four of which for ages 10 and 11.
     Set in Grover’s Corners, New Hampshire – a small, rural, out-of-the-way fictional town during the years between 1901 to 1913 – Our Town has become one of the most popularly produced plays of the twentieth century. Awarded the Pulitzer Prize, Our Town has echoes of Greek drama with a focus on the continuing cycle of life and humankind’s comprehension of eternity. The main character is the stage manager, the character who narrates the play and talks directly to the audience. This is the character who is the voice of the writer and the character who gives the audience the background and history of Grover’s Corners.
     The central values of the play—Christian morality, community, the family, appreciation of everyday pleasures—are traditional, while the methods of presenting these values on stage are radically innovative. With no scenery, few props, mimed actions and dramatis persona who fluidly travel in and out of the action of the play, Our Town is full of experimental techniques that allow the audience to focus on the characters themselves rather than on their location and how they related to objects that surrounded them. Thornton Wilder artfully manipulates time and place and relates the here-and-now-of a small, New England village to the timeless concerns of all humankind.
     For additional information about auditions or showtimes for Our Town, contact Rich Robinson at rrobinson@uscupstate.edu or call (864) 503-5621.