by John Van Druten. Directed by Stephen Brasher.
Audition Dates : Sunday 28th, Tuesday 30th and Wednesday 31st August
Performance dates and venue :
Evenings at 7.30 : Wednesday 16th – Saturday 19th and Tuesday 22nd – Saturday 26th November
Matinées at 3.00 : Saturdays 19th and 26th November
to be performed at the Tower Theatre, Stoke Newington
Audition dates and times :
Auditions will take place on Sunday 28th August from 2.00, Tuesday 30th August from 7.30 and Wednesday 31st August from 7.30 at the Tower Theatre.
Recall auditions may be convened and will be by invite from the director only.
If you are unable to make the audition dates shown or if you have any questions about the auditions/play, please contact the Director, Stephen Brasher. Auditions are for Tower Theatre Company Members only.
If you would like to join the Company, please click here for more information.
The Director writes:
These days John Van Druten is remembered for writing I am a Camera (the play adaption that became the film Cabaret), and possibly for Bell, Book and Candle the comedy witchcraft play which was made into a film starring James Stewart, and was one of the inspirations for the tv series Bewitched. He was British (of Dutch descent) and one of the most popular playwrights of the 1930s and 40s, moving permanently to America in 1940. He came to prominence with Young Woodley (1928) a tale of forbidden love between a school headmaster’s wife and one of his pupils which was condemned as immoral by the Bishop of London and briefly banned. His subsequent plays also have a subtle air of licence which was unusual for the time, and all of his plays contain very strong roles for women. He chose to have most of his shows directed by a woman, Auriol Lee, one of the first women to do this on a regular basis in the West End. Written in 1931, London Wall is a comedy/drama set in the offices of a London solicitors office on the eponymous City Road. In an age when formality started to slip away the play shows how the staff of Messrs Walker, Windemere & Co are coping with the opposite sex. The play was unseen in London between its 1931 debut and the 2013/14 revival at the Finborough/ St James Theatres, and received universally good reviews in both eras.
Playing ages are a guideline
Birkinshaw: (late teens). The office boy who buys the biscuits and deals with the post, but most importantly operates the switchboard and therefore knows everybody else’s business…
Mr Brewer: ( 30s/40s): Brewer is what we would call these days the “office wolf”, always on the look out for women who will be unable to resist him, which to his mind is pretty much all of them. He isn’t a pantomime villain though.
Pat Milligan: (late teens). The ‘heroine’ of the piece, Pat is the newest recruit to the office of Walker, Windemere and Co, trying to get by on thirty shillings a week and cooking her dinner on a single gas ring in Stamford Hill.She looks forward to a trip to the Lyons corner House as a special treat and has a especial passion for the theatre (we love her already). Hec Hammond has sort of become her boyfriend, but Brewer is lurking next to the filing cabinet.
Miss Bufton: (20s) Quite different from Pat, Bufton, in her own words “slops around with men” generally has a good time, including too many cocktails at lunchtime and would regard a Lyons Corner House as quite dull. Play is much more important than work as far as she is concerned, but she is fun and kind-hearted.
Miss Janus: (30s). Like Miss Hooper, Miss Janus has reached a life crisis , restricted by elderly parents and kept at arm’s length by her Dutch pilot lover, who almost certainly has a girl in every aerodrome. Takes a shine to Pat, and definitely does not like Mr Brewer…
Miss Hooper: (late 20s, 30s) Like Miss Janus, unmarried in her thirties and hoping for her lover to divorce his wife. A stalwart of the office she doesn’t have quite the devotion to it and its staff that Miss Janus does. Less of a romantic, more of a realist.
Hec Hammond: (late teens/early twenties). Works for the shipping firm downstairs from Walker, Windemere and has a dream of writing great novels and moving to Paris. Very keen on Pat, but short on cash and infirm of purpose, is in danger of being left behind with only a law textbook for company.
Mr Walker: (60s). The senior partner of the firm, who the office staff are slightly afraid of – but he is a benevolent, patrician man who has navigated the move to a female dominated workplace more successfully than he himself might admit.
Miss Willesden: (60s). One of the firm’s more demanding clients, always commuting up from the South Coast wanting to see one of the partners, forever changing her will and starting hopeless law suits. Derided by Brewer and slightly scary to Pat, but much more than a standard ‘mad old lady’.
All rehearsals will be at the Tower Theatre, three or four times a week, including one weekend rehearsal.
Cast and crew will be required for the get-in, technical and dress rehearsals will be on Sunday 13th , Monday 14th and Tuesday 15th November.
Director : Stephen Brasher
Set Design : Phillip Ley
Costume Design : Sheila Burbidge, Peter Westbury
Lighting Design : Samuel Littley
Stage Manager : David east
Assistant Director : Katherine Kennet
Lighting Operator : Jonathan Ringshall
Sound Operator : Kaushal Ginige
Fight and Movement Co-ordinator : Richard Kirby