THE ELEPHANT MAN, Old Academy Players, 01/20/2018

Theater Website:
Theater Phone: (215) 843-1109

Start date of auditions: 01/20/2018

Old Academy Players welcomes new talent! Please note that we are a non-profit community theater and that all roles are performed on a volunteer basis. Please check this site for audition information which appears throughout the season. If you are auditioning for a show, please complete our Audition Form in advance of the audition. You can obtain the Audition Form if you go to our website at click on GET INVOLVED and then AUDITIONS.

The Elephant Man
Written by Bernard Pomerance
Directed by Jane Jennings

Audition Date & Time:
Saturday, January 2018, 11am

Old Academy Players
3544 Indian Queen Lane
Philadelphia PA 19129

Performance Dates:
Fridays & Saturdays, June 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23 at 8:00pm
Sundays, June 17 & 24 at 2pm
Rehearsals will begin in March, 2018.

SYNOPSIS: In 1884, John Merrick, grossly disfigured by a rare disease, is rescued from a carnival where he had been exploited as an object of curiosity and horror. Discovered by a young doctor, he is taken to the London Hospital where his condition is studied, and he is given refuge. Though initially repulsed by his appearance, his doctor and other visitors become his first friends, discovering the intelligent and sensitive soul within. He begins to see himself as fully human, deserving of love and respect. This moving play is based on a true story. Winner of several Tony awards, it premiered on Broadway in 1979, and was revived in both 2002 and 2014.

Audition Requirements:
This is truly an ensemble piece, in which all actors (except for the actor portraying John Merrick), play two or more roles. The show will be cast using 7–9 actors. Actors should demonstrate the ability to speak with an upper class British accent, a Cockney accent, or/and a French accent, depending on the roles. Women auditioning for female roles will be asked to sing 8–16 bars of a simple song of their choice, unaccompanied.

Sides are available here:

Comments from the director:
This is a “big” play — one which will require a high quality cast, set and costumes, and special dedication from the cast and crew. I am committed to creating a production worthy of Clive Barnes’ review, in which he deems The Elephant Man, “A giant of a play!”

JOHN MERRICK (age 27): This is the “elephant man”, the central character of the play. He is intelligent, artistic, sensitive and sympathetic. His disfigurement is not conveyed through makeup or prosthetics, but rather by the actor’s physical and facial contortions.
The playwright stipulates, “No one with any history of back trouble should attempt the part of Merrick as contorted. Anyone playing the part of Merrick should be advised to consult a physician about the problems of sustaining any unnatural or twisted positions.”

FREDERICK TREEVES (30’s): A young, ambitious doctor, newly hired at The London Hospital. He discovers, rescues and befriends John Merrick. He is caring and compassionate to his patients, but is also straight-laced and moralistic. This is a major role.

CARR GOMM (40’s-60’s): Administrator of the London Hospital. He is an upstanding representative of the hospital, and assertively enforces discipline among the staff.

MRS. KENDAL (30’s-40’s): An actress. Beautiful, intelligent, sophisticated, compassionate. She becomes Merrick’s friend. A pivotal role in the play.

THE PINHEADS (20’s-50’s): Women with pointed heads who are part of the freak show in Brussels. They have French accents and sing a nonsense song. Actors auditioning for all female parts should be prepared to sing an unaccompanied song of their choice.

BISHOP WALSHAM HOW (50’s-70’s): Merrick’s spiritual advisor. Straight-laced and pious.
ROSS (30’s-60’s): Manager of the elephant man. A carnival barker. Dishonest and exploitative.
SNORK (20’s-60’s): A porter at the London Hospital.
A PORTER (20’s-60’s): Works with Snork.
MISS SANDWICH (20’s-60’s): A nurse who applies for the position of Merrick’s caretaker. Despite her experience with lepers, she runs out, horrified at his appearance.

DUCHESS (30’s-70’s);
COUNTESS (30’s-70’s);
LORD JOHN (30’s-70’s): They each visit John Merrick and bring him a gift. Befriending him has become fashionable.

MAN (20’s-60’s);
CONDUCTOR (20’s-60’s)

Contact director, Jane Jennings ( for questions.

Historic Old Academy Players, a member of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit community theater in East Falls ( Philadelphia ), the urban village on the Schuylkill River. Constructed in 1819, the Old Academy building has been the OAP home since 1932. Old Academy Players, providing continuous community theater since 1923, featured the acting debuts of both Grace Kelly and Robert Prosky.

Find Old Academy Players on Facebook!

The following two tabs change content below.
Patricia Bradford

Patricia Bradford

Patricia Bradford holds a Bachelor of Music Degree in Vocal Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. She has performed, directed and produced theatre throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Ms. Bradford is founder and Managing Artistic Director of Bare Stage Theatre. Leading STAGE Magazine has become a consuming passion - one which combines her many artistic skills, theatrical contacts, web development and digital marketing abilities. She is thrilled to be carrying on the vision that was begun by Holley Webster over 30 years ago, and leading STAGE to new levels of success.

Leave a Reply