The Underground Theatre
Auditions for Spring Comedy, Harvey:
7 – 9 p.m.
Monday, January 6, and Thursday, January 9, 2014
The Underground Theatre announces auditions for the Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy Harvey, to play March 20-29, 2014, in UUCA’s cozy downstairs space. Directed by Dante Santacroce and starring Bob Winstead, the story revolves around a charming eccentric, Elwood P. Dowd, who claims a tall, invisible rabbit as his best friend. There are ten roles open for audition: five men and five women who comprise Elwood’s family, friends, and the staff of a psychiatric sanitarium called Chumley’s Rest.
The five men:
Dr. William B. Chumley (late 50s): an esteemed psychiatrist and head of the sanitarium.
Judge Omar Gaffney (60s): an old family friend of the Dowds and the family’s lawyer.
Dr. Lyman Sanderson (30s), a young and highly qualified psychiatrist, hand-picked by Dr. Chumley.
Duane Wilson (30s): the “muscle” of Chumley’s sanitarium, a devoted orderly responsible for handling difficult patients.
E. J. Lofgren (any age): a cab driver. In his only scene near the end of the play, his monologue is crucial.
The five women:
Veta Louise Simmons (50s): Elwood’s younger sister, very concerned about fitting into society and intent on landing a suitable husband for her daughter Myrtle Mae.
Myrtle Mae Simmons (20s): Veta’s daughter and Elwood P. Dowd’s niece, intent on landing a husband for herself.
Ethel Chauvenet (60s): an old friend of the family and member of the town’s social circle.
Betty Chumley (50s): Dr. Chumley’s kind and talkative wife. (Can be a scene stealer.)
Ruth Kelly (late 20s-early 30s): a pretty young nurse who appears to have some sort of love/hate relationship with Dr. Sanderson.
Rehearsal Schedule: Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7-9 p.m. January 13 – March 18
Performance Schedule: Thursdays through Saturdays, March 20 – 29, at 8:10 p.m.
Additional information: Please contact Laura Yamashita
at email@example.com or 404-320-7034.
About UUCA’s Underground Theatre
Now in its 44th and final season, The Underground is Atlanta’s oldest avocational theatre. Under the direction of Underground founder Dante Santacroce, the theatre presents significant comedies and dramas which enlighten as they entertain. These outstanding plays are performed twice a year, in fall and spring, for two weekends only, Thursdays through Saturdays. The theatre’s cozy underground venue, sporting just under 100 seats, creates an intimate setting for highly accessible performances of quality plays—usually revivals of Broadway’s “golden oldies.” Recent exceptions have been David Auburn’s Proof, winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award for Best Play, Edward Albee’s modern classic A Delicate Balance, and acclaimed contemporary writer A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters. Harvey The Underground’s 85th and final production.
A grand celebration of the Theatre and its founders will be thrown on Friday evening, April 11, and they will also be honored during UUCA’s April 13 services.
About Underground Director Dante Santacroce
Dante Santacroce is the founder and director of The Underground Theatre. In addition to occasional appearances in Underground plays, he has performed with the Academy Theatre, Theatre Atlanta and DramaTech, where his interest in theatre began. Mr. Santacroce last performed with The Underground in the 2006 hit production of Sidney Kingsley’s Detective Story. When not directing or acting, he is a consultant architect who enjoys sculpting in clay and limestone and sketching in pen and ink.
Underground Theatre History
Just four years after the opening of the UUCA building on Cliff Valley Way, then Senior Minister Eugene Pickett approached Mary Nell and Dante Santacroce about starting a theatre in the church. Dante agreed to direct the first play, the Clifford Odets classic, Waiting for Lefty. Because the only available space for the theatre was below ground level, Mary Nell suggested it be called “The Underground Theatre.” Fred Dixon constructed the light board, using four household dimmers at a total cost of under $45. With that magical box, a few par 150 lights, miles of extension cords and some nervous would-be-actors, the first show was born. As the last scene closed on opening night, the thunderous applause assured Dante that the show was a success.
Now, after more than forty years of producing provocative, entertaining plays in the church’s intimate downstairs space, Dante is presenting his 85th Underground show. Every show has been a challenge. With a little help, Dante himself has selected every script, cast every show, directed nearly every show, built the sets, hung the lights, recorded the sound and sold the tickets, giving all of the net proceeds to UUCA for a 43-year total of well over $100,000.
Applause to Dante and everyone who has helped make The Underground a lasting success: the actors, stage managers, technicians, set and prop donors, salespeople, refreshment servers, spaghetti supper chefs, ministers, and office staff, and especially those who have supported the theatre over so many years.
Volunteering for The Underground Theatre
To work on the crew, please contact Laura Yamashita at LauraYama@aol.com or 404-320-7034.