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Auditions for HCLT’s production of Ramona Quimby set

SoVaNow.com / April 06, 2010
The Halifax County Little Theatre is busy this spring. While SUDS – the Rockin’ 60’s Musical – is set to open April 23, plans are under way for the next production, Ramona Quimby. Auditions for the Beverly Cleary family favorite will take place next week, Thursday and Friday, April 15 and 16, at 7 p.m. at The Prizery, and Saturday morning, April 16, at 10 a.m.

Directed by Sandy Slayton, Ramona Quimby follows the adventures of the 8-year-old title character as she deals with life’s ups and downs on Klickitat Street. And Ramona has problems coming at her from every side. Her teacher is unfair, her big sister is a know-it-all, her family has money problems, and nobody will take her seriously.

Slayton is looking for several children to play certain roles: Ramona herself, who could be played by girls 8 to a small 12; Ramona’s best friend Howie, played by boys 8 to a small 12; and several of their third grade classmates. Ramona’s older sister Beezus is 13, so girls who could pass for 13 could audition for that part.

There are parts for several adults as well. Ramona’s parents (30’s to 40’s) play a pivotal role in the show, as do Ramona’s Aunt Bea (in her 30’s) and Howie’s Uncle Hobart (also 30’s). There are parts for Ramona’s third grade teacher, Howie’s grandmother, and other adults of all ages who live in their town. There is a part for a waitress in the burger joint the family goes to, who could be played by an older teen or someone in her 20’s.

There is a scene where some Brownies and Cub Scouts come into the story, so Slayton is also looking for local children who are currently Brownies and Cub Scouts and might want a small role in the show. All in all, it is a fairly large cast, and a show that the whole family could participate in, either on stage or working behind the scenes.

Slayton has established herself recently as a director who works well with young children. She directed the popular Winnie-the-Pooh two summers ago, and has done a series of children’s theatre camps at The Prizery. Most recently, she held a children’s theatre sleep-over, which was well-attended and culminated in a performance the next morning for the families, complete with costumes, props, and scenery that they made the previous night.

Those children and adults who are interested in being a part of this show are encouraged to attend auditions. Those who know the Ramona series know that Ramona is unpredictable, exasperating, boisterous, and independent. The problems she faces are those faced by many people as they go through life. And while Ramona feels that life isn’t fair, she has to learn to deal with her life as it is – both the good and the bad.

Slayton is also looking for people who would like to be involved in the production end of the show and would like for them at attend auditions to fill in a preference form, or they could contact her at 575-7473. The show will run for several performances the third week in June.


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