The Great Dickens Christmas Fair Missive
Great Dickens Christmas Fair 2017 - October Missive #3
Notes from your Missive Maven:
Clarification: workshops start on October 28th, not the 29th, it was inconsistent in the previous missive.

This missive is chock full of audition notices, go ye forth and chew some scenery!


Please remember to contact the folks referenced in each notice below, rather than hitting "reply".

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Cat Taylor
Entertainment Director
In This Missive

All else should be correct and it's correct on the missive site.

No matter what cast you are considering joining, if you're interested, please prepare yourself. 

This is an audition - you are showing your prospective director your potential. Memorize a brief monologue from a character you're interested in, or if you are not sure about a character, prepare for the type of character you are interested in playing. If you're auditioning for a musical role, prepare something that shows off your musical skills, even if it's not a period piece.

Most directors will be looking for your ability to form a distinct characterization as well as your ability to project yourself vocally and physically. Please come prepared -it will make everyone's experience more pleasant and useful.

(from Ellen Hoffman)

If you are already experienced w singing in Music Hall style, great!   
If you are not, but are interested in learning, great! 
Your shows would be once or twice a day, TBD.  Very small time commitment, very BIG fun! 

Send email to Ellen Hoffman at

Want to Chew Scenery? Consider Joining The Other Books

(from Therese Porter and Rydell Downward)

We put the "Dickens" in Dickens Fair!  

We are an ensemble cast  of improvisational actors and our role at the Fair is to continually interact with our guests and fellow actors providing those unique Dickensian moments that make our immersive world so unique.

We are looking for experienced improvisational, interactive performers to help fill out our cast and populate the streets of the event with the vivid and memorable characters from the fevered imagination of Charles Dickens.  All of the Fair is our stage, and its throngs our ever-changing audience. This is a full time commitment that requires energy, enthusiasm, strong improv skills and tremendous esprit de corps.

Dickens' characters run the gamut of age, physical appearance, station in life and personality types. People frequently ask us what we are looking for - we want people who love to act and interact and who can bring Our Author's characters to life. No character in Dickens is a small one - each one is a canvas bristling with possibilities. For inspiration, peruse the works of Dickens (online or actual pages) or watch some of the brilliant British TV and film adaptations of his works for an idea of the kinds of characters that exist in the Dickens universe.  Even if the roles you're thinking about are filled, giving us an idea of the "type" that interests you, can help us match you up with a role that you find fulfilling.

This year we are especially looking for:
Nicholas Nickleby: The eponymous protagonist of "The Life and Adventures of" - young(ish), passionate, filled with zeal to make a mark on the world and bristling with Romantic notions.

David Copperfield: The portrait of Our Author as a young man. Young(ish), idealistic, artistic and fascinated by his surroundings in London.

BUT THAT'S NOT ALL! Villains? We got 'em.  Colourful eccentrics? Ditto. Solid salt of the earth types? Yup. Exaggerated version of every Victorian type imaginable? Oh yeah. You have theatrical muscles you want to stretch? We've got every conceivable kind of role. If you are interested in joining us, we are working principally with the characters of these books: Nicholas Nickleby, Martin Chuzzlewit (English part of the story only), David Copperfield, Bleak House, Our Mutual Friend.

Auditions will take place Saturday and Sunday of first weekend after the workshops have ended.

Here's a great page to learn more about the characters and the books:  
If you have questions, contact Therese at

"A Christmas Carol" Auditions

(from Therese Porter)

We are looking for an understudy for Tiny Tim, along with a few children who can portray Cratchit progeny as well as "Ignorance" and "Want" from the iconic scene. We will be conducting auditions for these roles during the first weekend of workshops at the conclusion of the workshop period.  

Children should be mature, comfortable with being on stage,  and able to physically emote - there are almost no spoken lines. This engagement takes place entirely in the mid-afternoon so a child could participate in other areas of the Fair if schedules do not conflict.

If you have questions email
~ Therese Porter

Jack is Back Seeks Hero and Villain

 (from Heather Roni)

Looking to fill two roles this year for Jack is Back, a hilarious melodrama played three times a day on the Father Christmas stage. Set in the American West, it's chock full of physical comedy, romance, adventure, and good old fashioned American violence. It's family friendly, with plenty of jokes that mom and dad will enjoy, too. It's a very fun show to watch and perform.

The roles:
- Jack: This part is for a male, 20-30 years old. Jack is the hero and love interest to Geranium, the ingenue, but this is not a kissing story.

- Sam Snidely: the Villain. Snidely is a comic villain, and needs to be larger than life.

Please note, you must be able to commit to the entire Fair run, plus most, if not all, workshop weekends. These are paid parts and we have a private dressing room behind the Father Christmas stage. I'm happy to have actors from other casts audition, so long as your director approves and it fits into your existing schedules. These roles are open to first time Dickens performers.

Please PM Heather Roni on Facebook, or contact me at

Looking for the Next Mother Goose!

(from Robin Edwards-Harvey)

The Toy parade is looking for our new Mother Goose. The gig is basically in the morning, 1 stage show involved. Must be able to work with Children and be able to improv. While we do have a script for the show, the ability to work in an impromptu fashion is also required. 

Contact Robin Edwards-Harvey at for more details.

Adventure, History, Literature!

(from Steve George)

Adventurers' Club is are looking for new people to fill roles as Explorers, Adventurers, Social Reformers, Authors and Kitchen/Household.

If you are interested please feel free to contact:

Steven George
President - Adventurers' Club

PS: *Love of character research highly encouraged*

Do you have what it takes to join the lowest of the low?

(from  Kaellie Clein-Cunningham)

Do you have what it takes to join the lowest of the low?

That's right, SCUM is looking for people!  

Do you have a secret desire to swindle, gamble and carouse? Have you ever wanted to play the villain? Do you like audience interaction, fun games, great shows, great food and even better, being part of an amazing cast of strong, committed improv actors?

If so, we are looking for you!! 

We represent the criminal underclass of Victorian London. We are gamblers, pickpockets and drunks. We are swindlers, cardsharps and rakes. And we are the nicest bunch of people you will ever sit down with. Well, most of us...

Auditions will be held on Sunday, October 29th immediately after the final workshop; Men or Women 18+ only please. Full time run commitment preferred, including rehearsals. If you are interested, or for more information, please contact Kaellie Clein-Cunningham at  flaminglez at

Temperance Union is Recruiting 

(from  Harry Steeper)

Temperance is primarily a Meet and Greet/Improv troupe. We need supporting players. Supporting players can be any age and male or female. Willingness to sing is required, but you don't have to be a professional singer. In Temperance we sing enthusiastically, except for the maid. Temperance actors wear upper-class costumes. I would consider middle-class characters if costuming approves, as Temperance had many middle-class supporters. We are also looking to cast three major characters: The Temperance Lady, The Maid and Miss Auroa. I will provide character details to any interested actors.

I am willing to consider part-time official members who can commit to at least 50% of the run. Part-timers could include Postcards people looking for gate passes if our schedules don't conflict. I also welcome members of other groups who wish to drop in. The last few years we have had two main gigs. Drop-ins are greatly appreciated for these gigs as they help us field a larger group. 

Anyone out in Facebook land that might be interested please PM me (Harry Steeper). I can also be emailed at

Green Man Needs Assistance & New Folks

(from  Kathleen Bartholomew )

Do you appreciate the participants' bar at the Green Man? Count on being able to get water and lemonade to see you through the day? Like having a space you can sit down in and chat with patrons?

1) We need your help this year to get the walls up and all the deco in. We also need 2 or 3 people who can be with us in the Parlour for the Run. Have you longed to have a base, a place to meet guests and other performers, a bright, cheerful, bustling Holiday HOME? We could be the place for which you are searching!

2) We need 3 or 4 able-bodied people on Sat Nov 4 to help us put up the walls and repaint. 

3) We need 5 or 6 able-bodied people on Sun Nov 5 to help us empty the storage unit and fill the Inn.

4) New folks - whether full-time, part-time, or magic genies summoned as needed from gin bottles, need to be aware that we need EVERYONE for breakdown at the end of Fair, as well.

And, of course, these can be the same people ... Please contact Kathleen Bartholomew at, Kristen Skold at, or Jennifer Gard at Or come look for us at 1st weekend of Rehearsals."


Reminder: This Year's Dates

These are also on the Vendors & Performers page and the missive page:

2017 Workshop and Show Dates
Oct. 28-29: Workshops in Pacifica
Nov. 4-5: Workshops in Pacifica
Nov. 11: Workshops at the Cow Palace
Nov. 12: Dress Rehearsal at the Cow Palace
Weekend 1: Nov. 18-19
Weekend 2: Nov. 24-25-26
Weekend 3: Dec. 2-3
Weekend 4: Dec. 9-10
Weekend 5: Dec. 16-17

Reminder: The Missive Page

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Contact Information
For specific questions regarding performing at the Fair, please email Cat Taylor
If your group would like to perform at the Fair for just one day (school caroling groups, etc.)
please email Robert Young
For specific questions regarding vending at the Fair please email Vendors
For specific questions the beverage department please email Beverage
For questions regarding costumes, please email Costumes
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