Casting call: In Camera (Huis Clos), Jean Paul Sartre

Thursday 14th September 7:00pm at
Hope Street Ltd, 76 Lord Street
Liverpool, L2 1TL

Imagine dying, knowing that you’ve committed a crime and expecting to go to Hell. But instead of finding a fiery furnace, instruments of torture and demons to torment you, you’re simply in an ordinary living room, with two other ordinary people. You’re all in the same boat, seemingly randomly thrown together to grapple with the consequences of your past. Or not, as the case may be. It gradually dawns on you that as much as you want the others to help you make sense of the situation, or comfort you, or provide distraction from your conscience, they won’t be able to. Not only that, but you are destined to grind each other’s gears, locked in the same room together with no sleep for all eternity. Who needs demons? ‘Hell is other people’

Network’s next production, directed by Andy Kerr, will revive Sartre’s classic of French existential theatre, and will provide opportunity for four actors to engage with the characters, themes and contemporary interpretation of a classic text. Cast members will be expected to cope well with direction and concentrated rehearsal process, and to be available for the whole rehearsal run from late September till performance in late November (exact dates to be confirmed) .The play will be performed in English translation from the original French.

Auditions will run from 7-9 and be conducted partly in a workshop environment in small groups as well as requiring some formal script reading which will be made available on the night. It is not necessary to prepare audition pieces, and latitude will be given in acknowledgement of the difficulties of sight reading. Potential cast members should therefore attend the whole session.

Characters

Joseph Garcin – His cowardice and callousness caused his young wife to die “of grief” after his execution. He is from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and deserted during an unspecified military conflict. He was unfaithful to his wife – he even recalls, without any sympathy, bringing home another woman one night, and his wife bringing them their morning coffee after hearing their engagement all night.

Inès Serrano – Inès is the second character to enter the room. A lesbian postal clerk, she turned a wife against her husband, twisting the wife’s perception of her spouse and the subsequent murder of the man (who is Inès’ cousin).

Estelle Rigault – Estelle is a high-society woman, a blonde who married an older man for his money and had an affair with a younger man. To her, the affair is merely an insignificant fling, but her lover becomes emotionally attached to her and she bears him a child. She drowns the child by throwing it into the lake, which drives her lover to commit suicide.

Valet – The Valet enters the room with each character, but his only real dialogue is with Garcin. We learn little about him, except that his uncle is the head valet, and that he does not have any eyelids, which links to Garcin because Garcin’s eyelids are atrophied.

There is some flexibility in playing ages, with a suggestion that Ines and Garcin are somewhat older than Estelle, who might me in mid to late twenties.

PS It sounds grim, but there is plenty of gallows humour to spice up the moral philosophy, and the rehearsal process of group work with a small cast will be demanding, but fun as long as people can go with the flow.

See you there!

Sandra (posting on behalf of Andy)