Taming the shrew

The South Arkansas Arts Center in El Dorado will present "The Taming of the Shrew" in November.

The South Arkansas Arts Center in El Dorado has announced auditions for a modern adaptation of "The Taming of the Shrew,” by William Shakespeare.

The production is the first of SAAC's 55th theatrical season. The production is scheduled for November 9-10 and 15-17.

Auditions are scheduled for September 23 and 24. Registration is at 6 p.m. with auditions starting at 6:30 p.m.

Auditioners may attend either or both nights.

Delaine Gates and Darrin Riley, co-directors, will guide everyone through the process of cold readings and physical movement exercises.

Auditioning for a part is easy. Fill out an audition form, which is available in advance from the SAAC office or downloaded from SAAC's website, and be prepared to read from the script. Readings will be provided. No advance preparation is necessary, but the script and character breakdowns are available at the SAAC office.

You may call to have it emailed to you in advance of auditions.

Darrin Riley, co-director, said about auditions, "During the audition process we will be looking for actors and actresses, age 20 and up, with a good sense of comic timing and a willingness to play multiple roles, including a little gender-bending."

There are parts for 18 actors. Some of the featured role actors will only play one character, while others in the cast may play as many as four roles. These roles are all for adults, since this show is a raucous battle of the sexes with a bit of edgy humor.

The production may have contemporary perspective on the characters, but it is still mostly Shakespeare's text, which will be spoken in modern conversational style, rather than iambic pentameter. An adaptation in the spirit of "Kiss Me, Kate" or the movie "Ten Things I Hate About You,” this version of the play is funny and bawdy, with no accents or period costumes required.

Gates said about the production, "I think the audience will not expect what they are going to see. We are taking an interesting approach by combining the premise of a modern cast in rehearsal for ‘The Taming of the Shrew’ with a cast that is performing the play. ‘A play within a play.' We are also giving a comedic satire slant to the age-old and endless battle of the sexes."

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