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AUDITIONS FOR NUNSENSE (article first published : 2004-08-20)

Very Very Big Productions has brought Durban audiences the award-winning shows Strapless, Drinks on Me and last year’s huge festive season hit, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat has announced that they have secured the performance rights of Dan Goggin’s multi-award winning musical Nunsense.

This irreverent and hilarious spoof, about to burst upon startled South African theatre-goers' gaze at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre from December 3 to 31, is geared to appeal to audiences of all religious leanings.

Nunsense, the 'habit-forming' musical staged by the Little Sisters of Hoboken, is now the longest running off-Broadway show in history with the exception of The Fantasticks. It has been translated into ten different languages and is currently playing in over 300 theatres around the world. It has just completed its 20th Anniversary All Star Tour of the US!

The musical romp is about the misadventures of five nuns from the Order of the Little Sisters of Hoboken and their attempt to put on a talent show to raise money. Nunsense revels in its own zaniness, but it is a zaniness rooted in affection, not mean-spiritedness.

Nunsense won four 1986 Outer Critics' Circle Awards including Best Off-Broadway Musical. Musical numbers include Nunsense is Habit Forming, Growing Up Catholic, Tackle That Temptation with a Time Step, Holier Than Thou, We've Got to Clean Out the Freezer and Turn Up The Spotlight. It is irreverent but never sacrilegious, and chockfull of good-natured fun and gentle spoofing!

The all-new production will have a talented production and technical team led by Charmaine Weir-Smith as director, with choreography by David Gouldie, design by Greg King. Evan Roberts will be Musical Director and Michael Broderick as Lighting Designer.

The cast of Nunsense consists of five women: Novice Sister Leo does her ballet numbers whenever she can. Sister Robert Anne, a street-wise Brooklyn type, provides some impersonations and a winning music hall routine. And of course there's Sister Mary Amnesia whose sweet, befuddled smile is right in the Stan Laurel tradition. The mother superior, Sister Mary Regina has all the gruff aplomb of Oliver Hardy, and equally monumental is her right-hand nun and mistress of the novices, Sister Mary Hubert.

Auditions for Nunsense will be held at Fantastic Flying Fish Dance Company’s studios in Mayville on August 29 from 10h00. Auditionees are requested to also be available on Monday afternoon in case they are required to attend a call-back audition.

Ladies wanting to audition for Nunsense need to call 031 209 0142 to book an audition place on August 29. All those auditioning need to prepare a song of their choice which shows off their vocal range and must bring either sheet music or backing track as accompaniment. A pianist will be provided. They will be given something to read at the audition.

All auditionees will also be required to do a movement audition and should bring comfortable clothes in which they can move easily. If they have had some previous training in tap of pointe work, they should bring the relevant shoes with them. Previous professional experience is a prerequisite for anyone wanting to audition and some form of dance training will be of benefit.

The successful performers will be required to be available from November 8 for rehearsals. Performances commence on December 3 and run until December 31, 2004.




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