A Concord Theatricals Company
Directed by Barry Park
Presented by GRADS
at Stirling Theatre, 1st to 16th July 2022.
Terence Rattigan’s sparkling comedy about a group of bright young things attempting to learn French on the Riviera amid myriad distractions, French Without Tears ran for over a thousand performances in the 1930s and remains a delight today. When a group of young men arrives at Professor Maingot’s French school for the summer to cram for the Diplomatic exam, they find their concentration disrupted by the beautiful Diana Lake. Quelle surprise, they have another new language to learn: girls. At first, it seems pretty simple. Kit loves Diana and she loves him. And Bill. Oh, and darling Alan, of course. Then there’s Jack: she’s in love too. Meanwhile, Babe conceals his feelings… Perhaps it’s not so simple after all. French Without Tears was first performed in 1936.
All cast members must be double vaccinated against COVID. Actors could be slightly older than specified. Actors should be available for all rehearsals and performances. This is a non-paid community theatre production.
ROLES TO BE CAST
Casting male 20 – 30, one of several students attending a summer foreign-language school on the French Riviera, in an idyllic existence upper-class students enjoyed in pre-World War II England. He is good-looking in a vacuous way. He joins his friends in romantic frolics that involve the “ladies of the town.” The circle of students, of which he seems to be the leader by virtue of his droll wit, is untouched by the domestic or foreign problems looming on the English horizon.
Casting male 20 – 33, another of the students, is dark, saturnine, and serious. The only student to resist the seductive Diana, he makes it clear that his ideal woman will be able to converse intelligently on various subjects, will possess all the masculine virtues and no feminine vices, should be just attractive enough to be desirable and to remain faithful to him, and will be in love with him. He is interested in becoming a writer despite his parents’ wish that he follow in his father’s footsteps as a diplomat; he thus serves as the author’s surrogate. The play ends with his departure for London, Diana following closely on his heels.
Casting female 20 – 30, Kenneth’s sister, a beautiful seductress who lives up to her mythical name. She joins her brother and his fellow students at the French-language school merely because her parents are in India. She snares males as different as Kit, Commander Rogers, and Brian. Pursuing Alan despite his resistance to her charms, she is a delightful shadow of the Shavian woman who pursues her man until he catches her. Her foil in the romantic intrigue of the play is the more stable Jacqueline Maingot, who, in this happy world, finally convinces Kit that he is not in love with Diana.
Casting female 20 – 30, the attractive daughter of Monsieur Maingot, assists her father in his instructional duties and serves as a complicating factor in the romantic interest of the plot. Straightforward and serious, she confronts the wily Diana, who is bent on making victims of the males. Jacqueline resents Diana, whom Kit prefers. Eventually, Kit comes to his senses and admits his real love for Jacqueline. French speaking.
Casting male mature age, the affable host and instructor of French for English students. His ferocious face and dark beard belie the affable earnestness with which he conducts the instruction of his pupils. Speaks French fluently.
Casting male 20 – 32, good looking, and easily ensnared by Diana’s charms. He eventually comes to his senses, admitting to loving Jacqueline without having known it.
Casting male 20 – 33, masculine, carelessly dressed, immodest and a zestful participant in the youthful pranks of the students. He takes advantage of “the green light” given him by Diana at one point but receives only a “sharp buffet on the kisser”; he laughs about the experience afterward.
Casting male 35 – 45, a sober man with a dark complexion. Studying French in preparation for an interpretership, he is a stereotype of the admirable, stiff-upper-lipped Englishman. His ensnarement by Diana ends when she admits her love for Alan.
Casting male 15 – 20, a bright schoolboy, awaited by Diana as her next possible conquest, appears at the very end, only to disappoint her, his age causing her to pursue Alan to London.
Casting female 20 -30, the maid, French-speaking
Commence 27th April 2022, twice weekly on Monday and Wednesday evenings and on Saturday afternoons.
1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16 July at 7.30pm and 3, 10 July at 2.00pm
AUDITION DATES AND VENUE
27th February 10.30 to 4.30pm by appointment (Bradley Studio, UWA) details below.
Possible call backs on 6th March.
Please acquaint yourself with the play, then sign up here, indicating which role you are interested in, and TAKE CAREFUL NOTE OF THE DATE AND TIME OF YOUR AUDITION:
Please prepare a relevant short monologue (about two-minutes), and/or read the character of your choice from:
QUERIES: Production Manager, email@example.com 0401 216 962
Barry’s most recent productions are Hay Fever (Old Mill Theatre), Arcadia (Harbour Theatre) and The Boys in the Band (Dolphin Theatre and State Theatre Centre of WA for GRADS). For Playlovers, his production of August: Osage County won several Finley Awards including the Finley’s Director Award and the Robert Finley Best Play Award, and Other Desert Cities, nominated for six Finley Awards, won the Technical Achievement Award. For Old Mill Theatre, Present Laughter, ranked in the Top Ten Plays at the Finley Awards, was nominated for several awards, winning the Best Costumes Award, and several Old Mill Theatre awards including Best Production and Best Set awards, and Design for Living won the Finley Best Set in a Play Award. For GRADS, M. Butterfly won several Finley awards including the Finley Director Award and Best Play Award; A View from the Bridge, nominated for four Finley Awards, was Runner-up Best Play; and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof won several Finley awards. The Real Thing, Broken Glass and All My Sons were also nominated for several Finley awards. He has also directed several productions overseas. As an actor, Barry has performed at The Edinburgh Festival Fringe and in Perth, London, South Africa and Zimbabwe, in plays, musicals, films, and radio and television productions and commercials. He most recently played Aegeon in The Comedy of Errors.
Terence Rattigan is one of Britain’s greatest playwrights. He was born on 10 June 1911 and educated at Harrow (Scholar) from 1925-1930 and Trinity College, Oxford (History Scholarship) to 1933. He served as a flight lieutenant in the Coastal Command, RAF from 1940-1945. By 1934 he had become a full-time playwright. His many successful plays include: French Without Tears, After the Dance, Flare Path, Love In Idleness, While the Sun Shines, The Winslow Boy, The Browning Version, Harlequinade, Adventure Story, Who is Sylvia?, The Deep Blue Sea, The Sleeping Prince, Separate Tables, Variation on a Theme, Ross, Man and Boy, A Bequest to the Nation, In Praise of Love and Cause Célèbre. Terence Rattigan still holds the record of being the only playwright to have notched more than 1000 performances for two separate plays, namely, French Without Tears and While the Sun Shines. During the war years, he had three plays running on Shaftesbury Avenue: Flare Path at the Apollo, While the Sun Shines at the Globe, and Love in Idleness at the Lyric. He also wrote screenplays of French Without Tears, The Way to the Stars, Journey Together, While the Sun Shines, The Winslow Boy, The Browning Version, The Prince and the Showgirl, Separate Tables, The Sound Barrier, The Man Who Loved Redheads, The Deep Blue Sea, The Final Test, The VIPs, The Yellow Rolls Royce, Goodbye Mr Chips, Conduct Unbecoming, and A Bequest to the Nation – and collaborated on The Quiet Wedding, The Day Will Dawn, English Without Tears, Uncensored, Brighton Rock and Bond Street. His television plays include: Heart to Heart, All On Her Own and High Summer. After the Dance was shown in the performance series on BBC2 in 1993 and The Deep Blue Sea was recorded for the same series. In 1958 he was awarded a CBE, and in 1971 he became Knight Bachelor. Sir Terence Rattigan died in 1977. He left his estate to charity with all royalties from his plays being donated to Denville Hall, a home for retired actors founded in 1926.
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