Audition & Show Information Packet
Disney's The Lion King has captivated the imagination of audiences around the world! Come join us as we bring the African savannah to life with Simba, Rafiki and an unforgettable cast of characters as they journey from Pride Rock to the jungle... and back again, in this inspiring, coming-of-age tale.
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 savannah of Africa to life with you all!
Your Directors, Amanda & Kate
For Students in Grades 6-10
(5th graders may be allowed to participate with special permission. Please email the studio about this. RhythmsPerformingArts@gmail.com)
New Parent Informational Meeting: Tuesday, February 26, 5:00pm -5:15pm
Parent informational meeting is required for new students. Returning families do not need to attend.
Auditions: Tuesday, February 26, last name A-K - 3:30-5:00, last name K-Z - 5:00-6:30
Callbacks: Friday, March 1, 4:00pm - 6:00pm or Saturday March 2, 10:00 - 2:00pm (you will only need to come for a 30 minute time slot for callbacks)
MANDATORY PARENT MEETING: Saturday, March 9th, 1:30-2:00
EVERY student, returning or new, must have one parent attend this mandatory meeting on Saturday, March 9th, 1:30 - 2:00pm. It is IMPERATIVE that a parent attend so we can give you all the important info you need! If a parent does not attend this meeting, their child will be dropped from the show, unless prior arrangements have been made.
Regular Rehearsals: March 5 - June 11
Tuesdays: 3:30 - 6:30pm
IMPORTANT: After casting, we will be breaking down the Tuesday rehearsal schedule. Actors will NOT have rehearsal the entire Tuesday time, 3:30 - 6:30pm, but instead will rehearse for either an hour or an hour and a half (the same schedule on a weekly basis) based on their casting. Some of the roles like Simba may be required to attend the whole time.
Saturday schedules vary on a weekly basis. A detailed schedule will be handed out at the mandatory parent meeting once the show is cast. It is important that you continue to check it and your e-mail and groupMe app for changes. It’s vital that students try to be at every rehearsal. Actors who miss learning a group number, may not get to be in it!
We will NOT have rehearsal on:
Saturday, April 6th-13th (Spring Break)
Saturday, April 27th (Broadway Company Festival)
Saturday, May 18th (Rhythms Mega Show Day)
Saturday, June 1st (Rhythms Dance Recital)
Sunday, April 28th 1-4pm
Dress Rehearsals/Tech Week: June 15-20
Tech week rehearsals are currently scheduled as follows:
Saturday, June 15th: 12pm-6pm (AT NTC)
Monday, June 17th: 3:45 - 7:30pm (AT NTC)
Tuesday, June 18th: 3:45 - 7:30pm (AT NTC)
Wednesday, June 19th: 3:45 - 7:30pm (AT NTC)
Thursday, June 20th: 3:45 - 7:30pm (AT NTC)
Tech week rehearsals are MANDATORY - there can be no conflicts with these rehearsal dates.
Performances: June 21 - June 30 at Novato Theater Company
We are planning 8 performances of Lion King.
Friday, June 21st 7:00pm
Saturday, June 22nd 1:00pm
Saturday, June 22nd 7:00pm
Sunday, June 18th 1:00pm
Thursday, June 27th 7:00pm
Friday, June 28th 7:00pm
Saturday, June 29th 7:00pm
Sunday, June 30th 1:00pm
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.
Strike and Cast Party
After the final Sunday performance the cast will have a 45 minute strike to help pack and clean the theater. Then they will all get to stay for the cast party at 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.) and 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 at our required parent meeting and 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 BEFORE our first rehearsal. (It is free in the app store). Then we will add you to our conversation and you will receive an invite on your phone. On the app you have the power to turn off notifications so it won’t drive you nuts. Plus, we will put the parents into a separate group 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. We require using the app to stay in the know! We usually are able to respond faster to these group texts than emails or phone calls.
The Lion King Production costs $525. Your Rhythms account will be charged $175 on March 1, April 1, and May 1. You can pay by check, cash or credit card. We recommend entering your credit card in your studio account and enrolling in auto-pay. 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 September 5.
Your Production Fee includes your script and show t-shirt. Most of your costume will also be included, though we will ask each actor to provide some basic parts of their costume.
We offer a number of discounts to help with the price of the show.
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 Lion King, 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 $525 Production Fee. (This does not include musical or Company Classes).
Multiple Musical Discount: For those students who participate in Lion King as well as either We Are Monsters, 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 don’t think your discount has been applied.
Most of your costume will also be provided, though we will ask each actor to provide some basic parts of their costume as well as jazz shoes - more specifics about costumes at the required parent meeting.
What will the audition be like?
We will start off with a quick dance and vocal warm-up. Then we will review the audition dance and perform it in small groups. Then each person will get a chance to go up one at a time and perform one song and two monologues of their choice (from the options in the audition folder). We may give you some feedback and ask you to do your scene one more time.
What are callbacks?
Callbacks are a chance for us to have actors try a couple specific parts that we think they would be good at. Everyone will get a callback. We will email you after auditions and let you know which parts you are called back for and give you some additional music or scenes to rehearse.
What if I get nervous?
Auditioning is always nerve-racking. Just remember it’s okay to make mistakes or forget what you’re saying. We want you to succeed and are rooting for you to do your best, so let us know if you’re nervous so we can help you through it! We HIGHLY encourage everyone to audition - even if they are nervous. It is your first chance to get to know your fellow cast members. It is also very hard for us to cast someone in a fun part when we haven’t seen them in auditions.
Will everyone be in the play?
Yes! Everyone who is signed up by auditions gets to be in the musical. We do have a limit of students we can allow to participate, so be sure to get registered at https://app.thestudiodirector.com/rhythmsperformingarts/portal.jsp
Will there be double or triple casting?
Double casting is when two different actors are cast in the same role. They share performances so one actor will play the part in half the shows and the other actor plays the exact same part in the other half of performances. We will double or triple cast some roles and will decide which roles to double or triple cast after auditions.
Do I have to memorize my audition scene?
If you want to memorize your scene, that’s great! But it’s totally okay if you have your script in your hand during your audition.
What are you looking for?
Speak loudly and clearly. Act out the part with your body. Make a choice about your character – for example if you think Zazu has a squeaky voice or Pumbaa has a funny walk, try it during your scene. Have fun and be confident! The more fun you bring to each character, the more excited your directors will be!
How do I get ready for auditions?
Practice your scene. Read it with your parents, your friends, your dog and by yourself. Look up any words you don’t understand. Practice the song of your choice.
How do you know which roles I want to play?
On your audition form you can indicate which characters you are most interested in. Even if you don’t read for all of the characters, Kate and Amanda will know which parts you like.
Will I get to play a part I like?
Everyone will get a part that has lots to do. The more parts you put down on your paper, the better the chance you’ll get to play something you requested. You may get a part that you don’t even know about. Amanda and Kate sometimes write in roles for students who we think need to be featured in a special way and don’t fit into one of the other roles. So, give your part a chance! We can’t all play the title character.
By opening night, you will LOVE your character and be so excited to play the part. We try our best to make each part special and fun.
The character that I want to play doesn’t have a monologue listed. What should I do?
We’ll only see a few scenes at auditions. Pick one or more of these ones to perform, and you’ll also have a chance to tell Kate and Amanda what other characters you’d like to play.
When will I find out what part I got?
We will email you by Monday, March 4th to tell you what part you will be playing.
What if I have another question?
Feel free to email Kate and Amanda at RhythmsPerformingArts@gmail.com
Everyone will get to be a villager of storytellers with central characters emerging from this essential group. Some villagers will play many roles in the story, from animals of the Pridelands (such as giraffes, elephants, lionesses, etc.).
A wise madrill who acts as healer of the Pridelands and guides Simba on his journey home. The Rafiki narrators - five aspects of one character - are the five leading villagers who become the story's narrators. They are key to the storytelling, and should be played by confident performers who are able to enunciate and project, with an air of mystery!
The strong, honorable, and wise lion who leads the Pridelands. Mufasa should command respect onstage and also show tenderness with his son, Simba.
A featured lioness, Mufasa's mate, and Simba's mother. Must be maternal and kind.
The anxious yet loyal assistant to Mufasa who is always busy trying to do his duty.
The antagonist of the show, overcome with jealousy of his brother, Mufasa, and nephew, Simba. Cold-hearted and wickedly intelligent, he will stop at nothing to become king of the Pridelands. Scar must bring out this villain's dark side while handling Scar's sarcastic sense of humor.
The protagonist of the story, is an adventurous and endearing cub who can't wait to be king of the Pridelands. Simba is playful, energetic, and naive, but after his father Mufasa's death, Simba struggles with shame and his destiny.
Grows from a cub to lion in "Hakuna Matata." Older Simba has more complex moments as he reunites with Nala, mourns his father, and returns to confront Scar, so Simba must be a mature and responsible actor.
A courageous lion and Young Simba's best friend. She is not afraid to speak her mind. Nala must be a strong female performer who can portray this confident cub.
Grows from a cub to a lioness before she confronts Scar. She must be able to sing sweetly and be very charismatic.
A slick yet childish hyena who works for Scar. He would be the leader of the group if hyenas weren't so lazy. Banzai is outgoing and confident and portrays nastiness and gruffness.
One of Scar's hyenas who plot to take over the Pridelands. She is the sassy one of the trio and is always looking out for herself. She must be able to laugh loudly and long, as well as be menacing to Young Simba and Young Nala.
The third member of Scar's trio of lackeys. He has a loud, cackling laugh that is his only form of communication. Ed must laugh unabashedly and communicate through physicality and facial expressions rather than words.
An outcast meerkat who lives in the jungle with Pumbaa. He is afraid of his own shadow, but pretends to be the confident, relaxed leader of the duo. Timon is one of the funniest characters in the show and must have great comic timing.
A kindhearted, sensitive warthog who enjoys his simple life of grubs and relaxation. Pumbaa should be loveable and a loyal friend to Timon and Simba with deadpan humor.
AUDITION SONGS & SCENES
For audition songs and scenes go to:
WHAT TO DO BEFORE AUDITIONS:
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 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 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 pre-cast. 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.
MUSICAL THEATER DANCE WORKSHOP
Special Dance Workshop for kids who love musicals and want to get better at dance!
We will start with the basics that will prepare you for future musical auditions and shows.
March 6 - May 18
With an optional performance at the end
Musical Theater Jazz: Wednesdays 5:30-6:15
Musical Theater Tap: Thursdays 6:30-7:15
Take one style for $100 or both for $150!