Audition & Show Information Packet 

ABBA's hits tell the hilarious story of a young woman's search for her birth father. This sunny and funny tale unfolds on a Greek island paradise. On the eve of her wedding, a daughter's quest to discover the identity of her father brings three men from her mother's past back to the island they last visited 20 years ago.

The story-telling magic of ABBA's timeless songs propels this enchanting tale of love, laughter and friendship, creating an unforgettable show. A large cast, non-stop laughs and explosive dance numbers combine to make Mamma Mia! a guaranteed smash hit for any theatre. A mother. A daughter. Three possible dads. And a trip down the aisle you'll never forget!

This packet provides all the information you need to know to decide if you would like to be a part of this exciting production.

Thanks for reading and we look forward to bringing this exciting Broadway hit musical to life with you all! 

 

Sincerely,

 

Your Directors, Amanda & Kate

RhythmsPerformingArts@gmail.com


Ages

This musical is for students in grades 9th - 12th.  However, 8th graders may participate IF they are also enrolled in our Spring production of Aladdin.

Important Dates

 

Auditions: Tuesday, December 10, 3:30-6:30pm,

last name A-J 3:30-5:00

last name K-Z 5:00-6:30

Callbacks:  Tues., December 17, 3:30-6:30pm, (you will be called for a portion of this time)

 

MANDATORY PARENT MEETING:   January 7th, 6:00-6:30pm

EVERY student must have one parent attend this mandatory meeting on Tuesday, January 7th from 6:00-6:30pm.  It is IMPERATIVE that a parent attend so we can give you all the important info you need!

Regular Rehearsals:  January 7th - April 8th

 

We are trying to work out the best possible schedule for our students and are looking at a number of possibilities.  

In the audition form you will fill out information about your regular availability.  It is IMPERATIVE you do this accurately and completely.   We will look over everyone’s schedule and come up with the rehearsal schedule before callbacks so that the most people can participate.

 

Dress Rehearsals/Tech Week:  April 9-15 (note this includes days during NUSD Spring Break)

Tech week rehearsals are currently scheduled as follows.  Beginning Thursday, April 9, rehearsals will be held at NTC (Novato Theater Company), 5420 Nave Drive.

             Thursday, April 9th: 4:00pm-7:30pm

        Friday, April 10th: 4:00pm-7:30pm

Saturday, April 11th: TBD, be available all day

Sunday, April 12th: NO REHEARSAL

Monday, April 13th: 4:00pm-7:30pm

             Tuesday, April 14th: 4:00pm-7:30pm

             Wednesday, April 15th: 4:00pm-7:30pm

Tech week rehearsals are MANDATORY - there can be no conflicts with these rehearsal dates.  

Performances: April 16th - 19th at Novato Theater Company

We are planning 6 performances of Mamma Mia.  However, we may need to change this based on the number of students enrolled.  Here is the most probable scenario for showtimes:  

             Thursday, April 16th: 7:00pm        

Friday, April 17th: 7:00pm

             Saturday, April 18th:  1:30pm

             Saturday, April 18th:  7:00pm        

Sunday, April 19th:  1:30pm

Sunday, April 19th:  6:00pm

All shows are MANDATORY and students may not miss them for any reason except illness or family emergency.  Students will be called between 1.5-2 hours before showtime for each performance.  

 

Cast Party

We will have a cast party in between the shows on Sunday, April 19th.  Plan on having your child stay at the theater in between shows to enjoy pizza & cake!

Strike

After the final Sunday performance the cast will have a 45 minute strike to help pack and clean the theater.  

Parent Volunteer Requirement

There are many things to do to put together a show, and therefore we ask for a parent volunteer from each family to fulfill two volunteer positions. However if this is not convenient for you, you have the option to pay the opt out fee of $40. Certain positions require expertise in a field (set, costumes, etc.) but most just require your time (backstage parent supervision, etc).  Most jobs will require about 2 hours of work. If you LOVE volunteering or have a special skill that might be helpful, please email us.

 

We will have the volunteer list ready in January at that time you can choose your position or pay the opt-out fee.  

Email and Texting Communication

It is very important that we can communicate quickly with parents and students.  We send out fairly frequent emails with calendar updates and other reminders.  

We also use a group text app called GroupMe.  We ask that students and parents download this app and join the groups BEFORE our first rehearsal.  (It is free in the app store).  

Here are the links to our Mamma Mia! groupMe conversations:

Actors Group:

https://groupme.com/join_group/55583700/LOLT2MHP

Parent Group:

https://groupme.com/join_group/55583742/qYXZ79tW

On the app you have the power to turn off notifications if they are too frequent for your tastes.  We have a separate group for the parents from the students so the constant texts from the kids won’t make you crazy!  Don’t worry, the kids chat will still be monitored by the directors!  The app doesn’t give out your phone number to anyone but allows you to communicate with anyone in the group.  It is really crucial that everyone uses the app to stay in the know!  We usually are able to respond faster to these group texts than emails or phone calls.

Production Fee 

The Mamma Mia Production costs $564. Your Production Fee includes your script, show t-shirt, digital video of the performance, and cast party.  Some of your costume will also be included, though we will ask each actor to provide some other parts of their costume (see below) including jazz shoes.  

Your Rhythms account will be charged $188 on February 1st, March 1st, and April 1st.  When you enroll, you will enter your credit card and be enrolled in auto-pay so you will be automatically charged each month and won’t have to worry about when to pay.  Or if you prefer you can pay the total production fee in full by cash or check by the first rehearsal date.   Please email the studio if you choose this option.  Payments later than 5 days will incur a $15 late fee.  We are not able to give refunds.  You may want to pay your first payment at the time of registration but it is not due until February 1st.

 

Family Discount:  If two or more siblings are in a Rhythms musical (including our younger or older shows), we offer $25 off for each child.  

New Friend Discount:  For every NEW FRIEND that a returning actor gets to register for Frozen, the returning actor will get $50 off their performance fee.  (Friends must be new to Rhythms Performing Arts).

Overachiever Discount: For students who are enrolled in 4 or more weekly Rhythms classes, we offer a $75 discount off of your $564 Production Fee.  (This does not include musical or Company Classes).

Multiple Musical Discount: For those students who participate in Mamma Mia! as well as Aladdin, you will receive $100 off their total production fees.

These discounts may not be automatically added to your studio director account.  Please email the studio if you would like a discount applied to your account.

Costumes

For this show, the costumes are modern day.  So we will be asking actors to provide a number of items for their costume and we will provide the rest.  You will likely need jazz shoes.  More information will be given out at the parent meeting.

AUDITIONS

Auditions: Tuesday, December 10, 3:30-6:30pm,

last name A-J 3:30-5:00

last name K-Z 5:00-6:30

What to Prepare:

  1. Please prepare a song from a Broadway Pop musical other than Mamma Mia that best showcases your vocal range and fits the style of character you are interested in auditioning for. Limit your selection to 1 minute — about 32 bars depending on the song (approximately one verse & chorus).  We will provide an accompanist, but you must bring sheet music for them.  Make sure your sheet music is in the correct key and is marked with your cuts.
  2. You will choose one of the monologues provided.  Here is the link:

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1wpG-8QZTOJZXoktn0QV_YZMM7lzWxgUx?usp=sharing

  1. Watch this dance audition tutorial. https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1EJT7pVwv2wOP_WJVvN-oU0RNwPLwoIMP?usp=sharing

There are two versions: an easier general audition dance and a more difficult featured dancer audition dance.  Choose ONE to perform at auditions.  We will review briefly at the audition and then you will perform it in small groups.  Please dress appropriately.

  1. PRIOR to auditions, please fill out your audition form online here:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSewgqqos5V_h8JBwM1UfUfmBUp8iG-9I_zblxEAcAA7kVt_dA/viewform?usp=sf_link

Be sure you fill out the part about your availability accurately.

If you have any questions about sheet music or anything else, please direct them to Amanda at amandamorando@gmail.com

SIGN UP NOW!!!

We ask that if you are interested, you sign up now!  We need to get a minimum of 20 students signed up before auditions to make this musical happen.  Please sign up at:

https://app.thestudiodirector.com/rhythmsperformingarts/portal.sd?page=Login

No payment is due at this time.


CHARACTER BREAKDOWN

Donna Sheridan

Sophie's mother.

Gender: Female

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: A5, Vocal range bottom: E3

Sam Carmichael

Might be Sophie's father.

Gender: Male

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: Ab4, Vocal range bottom: D3

Bill Austin

Might be Sophie's father.

Gender: Male

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: F#4, Vocal range bottom: Bb2

Harry Bright

Might be Sophie's father.

Gender: Male

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: F#4, Vocal range bottom: C#3

Sky

Sophie's fiancé.

Gender: Male

Age: 20 to 30

Vocal range top: D5, Vocal range bottom: Eb3

Tanya

Former Dynamo.

Gender: Female

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: E5, Vocal range bottom: E3

Rosie

Former Dynamo.

Gender: Female

Age: 40 to 50

Vocal range top: D5, Vocal range bottom: E3

Lisa

Sophie's friend.

Gender: Female

Age: 20 to 25

Vocal range top: Db5, Vocal range bottom: G3

Ali

Sophie's friend.

Gender: Female

Age: 20 to 25

Vocal range top: D5, Vocal range bottom: G3

Pepper

Barman at Taverna

Gender: Male

Age: 20 to 25

Vocal range top: F5, Vocal range bottom: A4

Eddie

Helps Sky with Water-Sports.

Gender: Male

Age: 20 to 25

Chorus

Consists of the Islanders, who work at Donna's, Wedding-Guests.

Gender: Any

OUR PHILOSOPHY

As we get started on a new show of Rhythm & Rhyme Productions, we wanted to review the things that are most important to us as directors and let you all know what we hope your children will get out of being in the show.  

 

The reason we (Amanda and Kate, the directors) love working together is that we have the same philosophy about teaching: to provide a positive and warm environment for students to learn, express, and push themselves forward.  We pride ourselves on giving kids a second place to call home.  We try to be great role models in being kind, caring, and respectful of others.  This is the most important thing to us because when you have those things, we find that we get the most out of the kids artistically as well.  

 

As these kids are getting to know each other better and better, they are becoming very close, which is wonderful.  However, as with any close group, occasionally their closeness can turn into gossip and such.  Social media make gossip even more prevalent and hard to control.  Partly because of this, we have a NO PHONE policy in the rehearsal room (though they can use their phone if needed on breaks).  Unfortunately, we can’t monitor what is happening on their phones at home, and we ask that parents please keep an eye on group conversations about the musical and be sure they are positive and inclusive.  (We monitor the GroupMe with the kids, so please encourage them to have their text conversations through our group chat). Also remind your kids that much of what they hear via social media may not be true or completely accurate.  (Parents of the younger ones are blessed with not having to worry about this for a few more years… enjoy that while you can!)  

 

Here’s a couple other ways you as parents can help us to help us create the environment we want and that you want for your children:  please encourage your kids to build one another up, be inclusive, and be optimistic about the show.  If they do have concerns that come up, please encourage them to discuss it with one of us.  We will help, but only if we know about what is going on.

We are lucky to have amazing helpers that act as student assistant directors.  We always choose high schoolers who are great role models for our actors.  If your child has a problem or concern or need extra help on something from the show, they can also speak to these girls about it.

 

We are looking forward to a fantastic and positive semester with your kids.  Musicals have made such a huge difference in our lives - they have helped us become confident, outgoing, team-oriented, and hard working; they also helped us build lifelong friendships.  We hope that your kids experience those same feelings while participating in our musical.


CASTING

Casting is a difficult process.  Here are some thoughts and guidelines we want to share with you about how we approach casting.

Generally, we see casting as a “matching” of an actor’s abilities and talents to produce the very best show that we can.

We are directing musicals.  The production numbers are the show-stoppers of musicals.  Therefore, the music and dance are the most important elements to us.  The students cast in the chorus represent the largest and most important parts of our shows.  We also work very hard to give every student a special moment in the show, whether it be a featured dance part, a solo, or a funny line to make the audience laugh.  

As to the principal roles, of which there are relatively few in any show, we cast them on the basis of the level of excitement, interest, humor, confidence and just plain stage presence that we see at the audition.  These roles are never precast.  Nor are they “earned” by being in previous shows, taking private lessons, or enrolling in lots of Rhythms classes.  The people who get those principal roles must be able to hold the audience’s interest on their own or the show will die when they are on stage alone.  

We give these roles to the actors who show us what they can do that in the audition.  What we see is what they get.  We cannot rely on prior knowledge or experience with a given actor because there are just too many surprises, particularly with children whose personalities and attitudes change so quickly.  The auditions also show us how prepared an actor will be at coming rehearsals.  By being well prepared for auditions, actors can show us their work ethic as well as their excitement and interest in that particular show they are auditioning for.

Theater and musicals in particular are an ensemble effort.  Everyone is equally involved in the creating and performing of a musical.  Everyone is equally deserving of the credit and praise of a show well done.

It is our job, as the directors, to create the very best show possible and therefore cast who we feel will help create the level of performance that we are after.

We hope these thoughts have given you an idea of how we work, and particularly how we cast.