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Audition Notice -- The Best Man

By Gore Vidal

Directed by Joe Feldman

 Auditions: General auditions by appointment only. Please contact Joe Feldman at joe.s.feldman@gmail.com or phone 505-897-3915 for an appointment and further information. Saturday, July 16, 1:00 PM-4:00 PM and Sunday, July 17, 6:00 PM-9:00 PM. Please prepare a 1-2 minute monologue of your choice, and bring a headshot and resume with you. Callbacks will be held on Monday, July 18 from 6:00 PM-9:00 PM and will consist of cold readings from the script. All general auditions and callbacks will be held at the Adobe Theater, 9813 4th St. NW, Albuquerque 87114. For a list of character descriptions and a play synopsis, please go to www.adobetheater.org.

Performances: Sept 30th – Oct 23rd, inc. Thursday Oct 13th.

Play Synopsis:

The Best Man is a razor-sharp political thriller. Incisively written by Gore Vidal and set amid a vicious battle between two candidates for their party’s presidential nomination, the play offers a variety of startling and unique characters, and many surprising plot twists.

Cast: 5 Male, 3 female, and and a 4-5 member ensemble who will take on numerous male and female roles. Age range:20s-60s.

Character descriptions:

WILLIAM RUSSELL - A strong, youthful-looking man of 50. An intellectual. Self-deprecating sense of humor. Serial adulterer and estranged from his wife, ALICE. Seeking his party’s nomination for President. Former Governor of Rhode Island and US Secretary of State.

SENATOR JOE CANTWELL - 40s, with a warm, believable manner. Rose to power by holding bogus hearings on the Mafia, somewhat akin to Joe McCarthy. Plays hardball, vicious back alley politics. Will do or say anything to win. Competing with RUSSELL for the nomination.

ART HOCKSTADER - Ex-President, late 70s. Calls himself “the last of the great hicks”. Raised on a farm. A power broker. Which candidate he backs will likely win the nomination. Dying from inoperable cancer.

ALICE RUSSELL - Wife of WILLAIM RUSSELL. Early 40s, rigid, handsome, slender, gray-haired. A lady of the old American establishment, not quite as diffident and shy as she appears. Long-suffering due to what she calls her husband’s “athleticism” and her “inadequacy”.

MABEL CANTWELL - Wife of JOE CANTWELL. 40, pretty, blond, sensual. Has a drinking problem. Intuitive and brilliant, a perfect partner for her husband. Unlike the RUSSELLS, they are a great team.

DICK JENSEN - Late 40s. Campaign manager for RUSSELL. Intense. Devoted. Apprehensive and wary by nature.

DON BLADES - 40s. Campaign manager for CANTWELL. Intense. Devoted. Apprehensive and wary by nature.

MRS. GAMADGE - 60s. A behind-the-scenes veteran political power broker. Serene in the knowledge that she is “the voice of the American woman”, she is demanding, assertive, and a master manipulator.

ENSEMBLE - This group of 4-5 actors will take on numerous roles, including several pivotal characters with many lines, as well as photographers, reporters, political aides et al. Most important, the ENSEMBLE will be responsible for creating the constantly upward-ratcheting pressure of the environment. They are, literally, the world of the play.

NOTE: The ages of the characters are as described in the play. However, these ages are not absolute and may be somewhat altered as necessary.