Audition Information for 33 Variations

QUICK LINKS:

Date: Monday, January 25th, 3 PM

Location: South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center

A mother coming to terms with her daughter. A composer coming to terms with his genius. And, even though they’re separated by 200 years, these two people share an obsession that might, even for just a moment, make time stand still. Drama, memory and music combine to transport you from present-day New York to nineteenth century Austria in this extraordinary American play about passion, parenthood and the moments of beauty that can transform a life.

Show information

Shows are March 12-14, 2021.

Rehearsals will be most weekdays after school from 3-5 PM. Thorough schedule to follow. Rehearsals begin promptly on Tuesday, January 26th with an informational session and safety seminar.

ALL CAST AND CREW MUST FILL OUT AN APPLICATION (linked above).

Crew Leadership

Available crew leadership positions include Props Master, Construction Chief, Head of Lights, Head of Sound, Wardrobe Assistant(s).

Crew leadership interviews as necessary will be held on Tuesday, January 26th.

CHARACTERS

Dr. Katherine Brandt, F, 50s-60s

A musicologist with a particular interest in Beethoven and the mother of Clara. Recently diagnosed with A.L.S. (Lou Gehrig’s disease). 

Clara Brandt, F, 20s-30s

Katherine’s daughter, with whom she has a somewhat drought relationship. Clara must balance her need to protect and care for her mother with her yearning to explore her own life and desires.

MIke Clark, M, 20s-30s

The nurse who is working with Dr. Brandt in treating her condition, and the eventual love interest of Clara. 

Ludwig Van Beethoven, M, 50-60s

The brilliant and legendary composer, who is writing variations on a waltz created by Diabelli. Often tormented by his own genius, yet thought by many to be past his prime.

Anton DIabelli, M, 30s-40s

The publisher who challenges 50 composers to write a single variation on a simple waltz he wrote. Perhaps thinks a bit too much of himself.

Anton Schindler, M, 20s-30s

Beethoven’s secretary and an effusive and energetic young man. Perhaps exaggerates his friendship with Beethoven to make himself seem more important. 

Dr. Gertrude Ladenberger, 40s-50s

A Beethoven expert in Bonn, Germany who meets Katherine on her research trip. The two become very good friends.

AUDITION MATERIALS

Please select ONE audition monologue. Because this will be an accelerated rehearsal process, we want to see that you can perform memorized in a relatively short amount of time. Therefore, any audition selection you choose must be memorized for your audition.

Women (Select one of the below)

KATHERINE: 

My daughter is… I don’t know how to explain it. She’s like her father. He was a good man, a good father, but he couldn’t stick with anything and got mired in mediocrity. And I’m afraid she’s like him.

First she was a sculptor, then she joined a band, then she was a painter. Now she’s a costume designer, but she’s about to change that too. And it’s the  same with the men in her life.

I fear she’ll never truly be anything. I’m afraid my daughter is mediocre.

CLARA:

Sections in brackets will be read by audition panel

I loved watching my mother up there at the podium. And I loved watching the faces of her students. They were mesmerized. Most kids hate it when their parents work all the time, but I loved it because that’s when she’s at her best. And it kills me that when she looks at me, all she sees is failure.

[MIKE: If that’s all she sees, your mom is blind. Or maybe she didn’t see this.]

Oh no!

[MIKE: Oh, yes. Hedda Gabbler looked sumptuous and elegant in costumes designed by the very talented Ms. Clara Brandt. COngratulations!] 

Thank you very much. My mother is thrilled I got a rave review in the Village Voice.

[MIKE: My parents are proud of me if I leave the house with pants on. What’s the deal?]

I just don’t want to do the same thing for twenty years! I love doing something for a few years, learning about it and moving on. For me, that’s a life better lived.

Men (Select one of the below)

  1. BEETHOVEN:

Here’s something you don’t know; one day my hearing would be bad, and I would be terrified of going completely deaf. The next day it would improve. And my hope would return. Andthen it would get worse again. This back and forth between hope and despair was unbearable. 

And then, after 25 years of this, I became completely deaf. All hope was gone. And iI was so… relieved! I would never hope again. Hoping is the great curse. 

And lo and behold, I was able to create music that would have never been possible had I been in the world of the hearing. The thing I’d feared most had happened, and yet it allowed me to be with my music in the most intimate of ways.

  1. DIABELLI

The following should be performed extremely pompously

An invitation!

To the fifty GREATEST composers in Vienna. 

My dear musicians, I am enclosing in this letter a new waltz of my own making. I composed it but a few days ago, and I wish to invite each of you to compose one variation on my theme. Once I receive your variations, I will publish them all in one handsome volume that I promise will be a beautiful and popular book.

I hope you will find in my waltz a worthy and inspiring theme. And of course, I will compensate each of you for the variations you contribute.

I eagerly await your reply.

Yours sincerely, Anton Diabelli, Music PUblisher of the firm Diabelli, Cappi and COmpany.