by Tom Stoppard
Peta Barker's acting credits include Ariel and Caliban (The Tempest), Iago (Othello), Mrs Yajnavalkya
(Valmouth), The Voice of Audrey II - the Plant (The Little Shop of Horrors), Mbongeni (Woza Albert!), Scullery (Road),
Ash (Dealer's Choice), Jack Mullen (The Weir), John (Shining City), Derek (Brighton Beach Scumbags) and
Hoke (Driving Miss Daisy). Directing credits include Blue Remembered Hills, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Burn This, Lysistrata,
The Blue Room, Brimstone and Treacle and The Lieutenant of Inishmore. He has also adapted and directed Russell Hoban's novel Kleinzeit for the stage.
The director writes :
The year is 1809. At Lady Croom's country seat of Sidley Park, Derbyshire, the orderly classicism of the estate grounds are being turned into picturesque romantic chaos. In a Regency room overlooking the work, Septimus Hodge is tutoring Lady Croom's brilliant adolescent daughter Thomasina. Their maths lesson is interrupted by the cuckolded Ezra Chater, a minor poet determined upon satisfaction, after Septimus has been discovered in "carnal embrace" with Chater's wife.
200 years later, in the same room, a biographer/historian, an academic and a mathematician, attempt to unravel the events of 1809, and past meets present in spectacular fashion.
The characters (and suggested playing ages) are :
Thomasina Coverly (13, later 16) : Daughter of Lady Croom, and a precocious genius.
Septimus Hodge (22, later 25) : Tutor to Thomasina.
Jellaby (middle-aged) : Butler to the Croom household.
Ezra Chater (early 30's) : An unsuccessful poetaster.
Richard Noakes (middle-aged) : Lady Croom's gardener.
Lady Croom (middle 30's) : Thomasina's mother, matriarch of the Coverly estate.
Captain Brice, RN (middle 30's) : A sea captain.
Augustus Coverly (15) : Thomasina's brother.
The present day :
Hannah Jarvis (late 30's) : A best-selling biographer/historian author.
Bernard Nightingale (late 30's) : A university don.
Valentine Coverly (25 to 30) : A present-day Coverly.
Chloe Coverly (18) : A present-day Coverly.
Gus Coverly (15) : A present-day Coverly.
Please read the play before auditioning. A copy is available from the Tower Office.