Newtown Arts Company

The Taming of the Shrew Auditions

Newtown Arts Company is pleased to announce auditions for its October production of Shakespeare's THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, directed by George Hartpence and Carol Thompson, and produced by Nancy Pickering and Marcia Wittmann.

The rich, young Lucentio arrives in the Italian city of Padua to attend university, but is immediately entranced by the beautiful Bianca. But there are complications: Bianca already has two suitors and her father has declared that no one can woo her until her older sister, the ill-tempered, mean-spirited Katherine, weds. While Bianca's suitors find creative ways to spend time with her, enter Petruchio, a brash young man determined to marry a wealthy woman -- whatever her temperament. Petruchio's campaign to "tame" Katherine ensues and by the conclusion of the play, there are three sets of newlyweds. A lighthearted romantic comedy by the most influential writer in all of English literature celebrates the quick wit and fiery spirit of its heroine.


Saturday, June 2, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Bucks Learning Cooperative, 315 West Maple Avenue, Langhorne, PA 19047

Monday, June 4, 7 to 9 p.m. at Crossing Community Church, 80 Lower Silver Lake Road, Newtown, PA 18940

Callbacks by invitation Saturday, June 9, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Crossing Community Church,   80 Lower Silver Lake Road, Newtown, PA 18940

REQUIREMENTS: Casting actors age 18 and above for this nonpaid, non-Equity production. Auditions will consist of readings from the script (sides will be available prior to auditions) and a prepared 1-2 minute Shakespearean monologue from any play (preferred, but not mandatory). Appointments preferred, but walk-ins will be accepted. Please bring your headshot, resumé (optional), and Audition Form (see website) complete with your conflicts.


Age indications are suggestions only

We won’t be doing the Christopher Sly Introduction or Conclusion of the play,

Petruchio (male) 30’s – 40’s Son of Antonio, a resident of Verona, and intent on finding a wife, Petruchio arrives in Padua ready to take any woman so long as enough money is involved. Katharina's dowry is all that matters to him at the outset, but her cleverness and "shrewishness" seem to excite him genuinely.

Lucentio (male) 20’s - 30’s The ostensible romantic lead of the play. Lucentio proves more conventional than his more outspoken and vivacious friend, Petruchio. Both men are well-off, but it is Lucentio who can claim a father "of incomparable wealth"; he hails from Pisa and has come to Padua to pursue his education. His purely academic goals fall to pieces, however, when he sees Bianca. For the rest of the play, Lucentio single-mindedly pursues her.

Katharina/Kate (female) 20’s – 30’s The "shrew." When she first appears, Katharina lashes out at Hortensio and Gremio, shocking one spectator - Tranio - and delighting the others. She is consistently clever, strong-willed and vibrant, an attractive contrast to her sister Bianca. When she seems finally subjugated at the play's end, Shakespeare subtly suggests that she may yet have the upper hand.

Bianca (female) 20’s – 30’s Bianca is the younger daughter of Baptista Minola. She has the opposite personality of her sister being sweet, as she shows no tendency to anger and violence.  As such there are suitors who want to be her husband, her father wants Kate to be married first.

Baptista Minola (male) 50+ A wealthy gentleman of Padua, father of Katharina and Bianca. He outspokenly prefers his more well-behaved daughter and has no compunction about referring to Katharina as "the veriest shrew of all."

Tranio (male) 20’s - 30’s Lucentio's principal attendant. He assumes Lucentio's identity in order to help him win Bianca's heart, and by doing so suggests that all that separates a master from his servant is language and dress.

Hortensio (male) 30’s – 40’s One of Bianca's suitors. Pompous and foolish. Though posited at the outset as a significant rival, he soon enough takes Tranio's bait and runs off to marry a wealthy widow.

Gremio (male)  50+ An old, foolish suitor of the young and beautiful Bianca. He is the only one of the various suitors in the play who winds up with nothing at the end.

Grumio (male) 30’s – 50’s Petruchio's servant. He often speaks his mind, playfully twisting words around, but he is very clearly a servant. He never gets the chance to play the master as Tranio does. Instead, both Petruchio and Katharina beat and ridicule him mercilessly.

Vincentio (male) 50+ Lucentio's wealthy father.

Biondello  (male or female pants role) 20’s Another servant of Lucentio's.

A Widow (female) 30+ Hastily courted and wed by Hortensio, the widow is rich, and therefore does not remain unmarried for long.

Curtis (male) Another of Petruchio's servants.

A Pedant  (male) 50+ From Mantua. When Petruchio tricks him into believing that all Mantuans are condemned to die, he disguises himself as Vincentio.

A Tailor  (male or female) Insulted by Petruchio.  A dress maker. Also commissioned by Grumio for Petruchio. Instructed to make a dress for Katharine.

A Haberdasher (male or female) Insulted by Petruchio. A hat maker. Commissioned by Grumio for Petruchio to make a hat for Katherine after she and Petruchio are married.

Nathaniel/Nathania, Philip/Philipa, Joseph/Josepha, Nicholas/Nicola, Peter/Petra  (male or female)Servants, likewise insulted by Petruchio.

PERFORMANCES: October 18 to 24, 2018 (no performance Monday, October 22), at Newtown Theatre, 120 N State Street, Newtown, PA 18940.

For more information, visit our website.

For questions, email [email protected] or call 215-860-7058.

Created by:   Eric Raymond
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