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Auditions (Calgary): Cantata: Rumours of my Crazy, Useless Life – Fire Exit Theatre

The Virgin Trial – Alberta Theatre Projects
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Auditions (Calgary): Cantata: Rumours of my Crazy, Useless Life – Fire Exit Theatre


Fire Exit Theatre is seeking actors for their February 2024 production of Cantata: Rumours of my Crazy, Useless Life by Clem Martini.

SYNOPSIS: Cantata is a dramatization and fictionalization of Clem Martini’s experience as a caregiver for a brother with schizophrenia and a mother developing dementia. The family undergoes much stress as the delicate balance of caregiving unravels. From organizing home care to eventually finding a long-term care, the Berenger family strains to navigate an unforgiving system and experiences that haunt the dignity of all involved.
It includes a marimba, musically developing with the story. Professional musician and professor Rod Squance is composing and performing these pieces.
Directed by Jason Mehmel

SCHEDULE: Rehearsals will begin in earnest in early January 2024 and take place on evenings and weekends. Tech rehearsals are [TBD] with performances running from Feb. 28th, 29th, Mar. 1st, 2nd, 3rd.

HOW TO PREPARE: Actors will be asked to read from a side of the play and collaborate with the director giving notes. If cold reads are difficult, please prepare a contemporary monologue of one minute in length. Expect to receive notes on the monologue, in the spirit of discovering the collaborative experience with the director.

HOW TO SIGN UP: Auditions will take place at Alberta Bible College (823 64 Ave. NW) on Friday Nov. 3rd from 6:00-9:30 p.m. Please schedule an audition time by emailing Val Lieske at .
Call backs will be Sunday Nov. 5th.

Submission deadline – Nov. 1st

We will be auditioning for the following roles:

  • Irene Berenger: elderly, the mother of Martin and Dennis
    Could reasonably play between the ages of 70 – 80
    Proud of her sons, proud in general. Survived WWII. Develops dementia over the course of the play.
  • Martin Berenger: the younger son
    Could reasonably play between the ages of 30-50
    Post-secondary professor, married with 2 daughters. Often overwhelmed with the responsibility of managing care for his mother and brother.
  • Dennis Berenger: the older son
    Could reasonably play between the ages of 35-55
    Dennis has schizophrenia. Lives with Irene. Tries to help in managing Irene’s dementia but also struggles with intrusive thoughts.
  • ‘Everyone Else’ (Psychiatrist/Counsellor/Bank Manager/Nurse, Growling Patient)
    Very dynamic role; portraying a variety of very different characters. Bureaucrats presenting obstacles to Martin, alongside empathetic nurses who are trying their best to help Irene.

Although these characters are inspired by the playwright’s real family and history, we are not limiting our search to actors who match the specific demographics of those individuals. We encourage artists to indicate their lived experience with the available context.

Fire Exit Theatre is a non-equity semi-professional theatre company. Actor honorariums are paid.
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