Category: Audition Notices

Audition Notice: Shakespeare in Love by Lee Hall

Audition Dates
  • 8th February 2022 at 7:45 pm
  • 10th February 2022 at 7:45 pm
Performance Dates
16th -21st May
Rehearsals will be on Tues and Thurs, with some Sunday mornings up to the opening. Tec will be on the 13th May with Dress on 15th May.

Shakespeare in Love by Lee Hall
Directed by Nicki Pope
Movement by Katie Rallison
Audition Dates – 10th and 12th Feb at 7.45pm
Rehearsals will be on Tues and Thurs, with some Sunday mornings up to the opening. Tec will be on the 13th May with Dress on 15th May.
Performance Dates – 16th -21st May

Based on the Academy Award-winning movie, this enchanting, hilarious, romantic stage play reimagines William Shakespeare’s creative process – and explores his inspiration – as he writes Romeo and Juliet.

We all know William Shakespeare as a brilliant, imaginative, funny, trendsetting playwright whose work has held up the test of time better than any other. We know he lived in the 16th century and that he performed plays for the Queen, but how did Shakespeare become the Shakespeare we know today? In this exciting play by Lee Hall, adapted from the screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard, we get to witness a version of what might have been. Did Shakespeare have writer’s block from time to time? Did he need a muse to write his famous tragedy Romeo and Juliet? Lee Hall’s version of this successful screenplay follows the same story of Shakespeare meeting and falling in love with a aristocratic woman named Viola De Lesseps who wishes she could be an actor, and transforms it for the stage, just as Shakespeare did with stories in his day. It is funny, clever, filled with references to Shakespeare’s work, and a delight for theatre goers of all ages.

Will Shakespeare
Viola De Lesseps
Christopher ‘Kit’ Marlowe
Philip Henslowe
Lord Wessex
Ned Alleyn
Edmund Tilney
Richard Burbage
Hugh Fennyman
John Webster
Queen Elizabeth I of England
Sir Robert De Lesseps
Molly and Kate

The principal characters are Will and Viola – however the supporting cast will all have the opportunity to shine with some very meaty characters to portray – there may be some doubling of parts, depending on who auditions.

As with all my productions, we will explore the period and the characters, and as an ensemble bring Elizabethan England to the QMT.

Books will be available shortly, and if you have any questions, please get in touch.

Once more unto the breach dear friends….

Nicki Pope

Audition Notice: Cleo, Camping, Emmanuelle, and Dick – by Terry Johnson

Audition Closed

About the Play

In 1964 a fifty-one-year-old man meets a twenty-seven-year-old woman at work.

She’s young, buxom, blonde, pretty. And just about to get married…

Over the years, as they work together, the two grow closer; they become friends. He becomes obsessed with her. She promises him one night of lust in Brighton. Just one night.  Just to get it out of his system.

He takes her up on her offer and then begins one of the most well-known secret affairs of the twentieth century.

He was Sid James.

She was Barbara Windsor.

Terry Johnson’s biographical play follows the affair from their first meeting all the way to its conclusion. Focusing on the events during the making of four Carry On films, and all set in a leaky and distinctly unglamourous caravan. It’s funny, touching and ultimately tragically sad as the lives of these icons of British comedy are put under the theatrical microscope.



From the outset, it’s important to recognise that whilst four of the characters were real people, three of these characters are iconic public figures and even to this day they remain well-known to millions.

But I am not looking for people who look like them, or asking people to do impressions of them. I am looking for people who can work at developing these characters to bring them to life on the stage. The ages are just a guide – it is a period piece, and much can be done with performance, costume, and make up.

    • Sid James – Comedy actor. Also, a gambler and womaniser. Not a fan of Kenneth. (Age late 40s – 60s)
    • Kenneth Williams – Comedy actor. Bitter at the lack of recognition of his own acting genius. Good friend to Barbera. Not a fan of Sid. (Age late 30s to 50s).
    • Barbara Windsor – Actress. Eastender. She is confident and strong from the outset but also vulnerable. (Age 25-40)
    • Sally – Sid’s young dresser. She puts up with Sid’s endless demands (Age 18-30)
    • Imogen Hassell – A young actress looking for her break. Naïve. (Age 18-25)
    • Eddie – Barbara’s driver and bodyguard. An Eastend heavy. (Age 40s/50s)


Notes About the Auditions

Scripts will be shortly available by the box office with a signing in and out list. Please try not to keep them too long, as numbers are limited.

For those interested in auditioning please look at the first act/scene (with the exception of Eddie who is only in the later scenes).

The performance dates are 21st to 26th February 2022

Rehearsal nights will be Mondays and Wednesdays


Want to Know More?

Feel free to drop me an email if you want any more information at

Many thanks


Audition Notice: The Maids by Jean Genet

Audition Closed

“Dazzling, dangerous and captivatingly queasy” The Guardian
Based very loosely on a notorious 1930s murder case, The Maids is a shocking play with boldlydrawn characters, unreliable narrators and a lot to say about class and gender politics.

Claire and Solange are two maids, trapped in a menial life of service to a Mistress so uncaring that she cannot reliably tell them apart. While she is out of the apartment, they enact vicious erotic fantasies of murdering her, by dressing in her clothes and taking turns to play at being her and each other.

When she returns before they have fully cleaned up from their games, the Maids realise they must turn the fantasy into reality to save themselves. But how can they, when she has all the power and they have none?

This play has immense contemporary resonance in two distinct ways: the conversation around breaking down traditional gender constructs; and the corrosive approach of extreme inequality on society.

My intention is to create a show that delivers a real emotional punch and The Maids has the potential to be spectacularly powerful when staged inside the Studio’s ‘black cube!

Of all Genet’s works, The Maids (1947) is the one most often revived. It combines respect for theatrical form and language with an absurdist challenge to the audience’s expectations – and comfort.

All three characters are female, but they have historically been played by either gender. Although we go into the auditions with a preference for casting a man as the Mistress and women as the two maids, we remain open-minded and invite any Bancroft Players member to read for any role. It is essential to remember that the characters will be played as female whatever the casting – this is not an opportunity for Panto-style exaggeration!

We are using the modern translation of the text by Andrew Upton and Benedict Andrews. It contains a large amount of strong language – and three equally strong characters that will reward a cast willing to improvise and workshop a non-naturalistic style during the rehearsal process. We will be setting this production in the 1980s.

All roles can be played by any gender or age, but the characters themselves have fixed genders and ages. Any discrepancy between cast and character is exactly the effect Genet intended…

The Mistress: playing gender/age female/20-35. Wealthy, capricious, shallow and sometimes brutally dismissive of her maids, the Mistress has all the money and luxury her heart could desire. Like a modern-day Footballer’s Wife, however, she hasn’t earned it and isn’t quite sure she deserves it.

Solange and Claire: playing gender/age female/30s. Maids, and sisters (although not necessarily blood sisters). In their enactments of the Mistress’s murder they sometimes play as each other, and the roles are somewhat similar. Solange is the older sister, a self-loathing masochist who is the more resentful of Madame, with a long and powerful monologue near the end of the play. Claire is slightly more sympathetic to the Mistress, but is also capable of brutally cruel impersonations of her. While Solange hates the Mistress, Claire wants to be her.

Audition extracts available from Lisa.
Contact: Lisa Hutchins on 07544214477

Audition Notice: The Snow Queen

Audition Closed

Our Christmas show is a new version of Hans Christian Anderson’s wonderful story – The Snow Queen. Gerda’s friend Kai disappears one day after the Snow Queen meets him. She puts a splinter of ice into his heart so that he cannot remember his home or anyone he knows. Gerda goes to find her friend and, on the way, enlists the help of all those she meets. Will she get to Kai on time or will he stay a prisoner forever in the frozen castle?

There is a long list of characters. Much of the story though can be played by an ensemble who take on the many roles. Of course we will need someone to play Gerda and Kai and the Snow Queen herself in all her chilling power! Which means there are lots of opportunities to act.

This is a funny and touching show – just like the original story. With some songs to cheer us on. It will truly be a magical evening for the audience and for everyone involved.

We are casting across the Bancroft Players, Big Spirit Youth Theatre and the Juniors so all the generations of the Society can work together.

Audition Notice: THE WASP by Morgan Lloyd Malcolm

Audition Closed

Audition dates: Tuesday 24th and Thursday 26th August 2021

Performance dates: Tuesday 9th November to Saturday 13th November 2021

Rehearsal nights: Tuesdays and Thursdays


The Wasp

by Morgan Lloyd Malcolm, is a densely coiled two-hander.


Heather and Carla haven’t seen each other since school. Their lives have taken very different paths – Carla lives a hand to-mouth existence while Heather has a high-flying career, husband and a beautiful home. And yet, here they are in a café having tea and making awkward conversation. That is until Heather presents Carla with a bag containing a significant amount of cash and an unexpected proposition.


Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s electric play asks how far beyond the playground we carry our childhood experiences and to what lengths some people are willing to go in order to come to terms with them.


Characters: Carla and Heather both in their late twenties or early thirties.


Scripts: Please contact Keith Swainston to borrow a copy of the script or to obtain further information on

07799 803623 or

Audition Notice: SHIRLEY VALENTINE by Willy Russell

Audition Closed

Feeling trapped in a world of domesticity, Shirley, a housewife from Liverpool, needs a change in her life before she has another conversation with the walls.

When her friend Jane invites her on a trip to a Greek island, Shirley jumps at the chance.
While relaxing on holiday, she rediscovers the woman she used to be and the happiness that she has been missing. Shirley embarks on a passionate affair with Costas, a local Greek man, and realizes that there is more to life than the dull, mundane existence she leads back home.

At the airport, she has a major decision to make. Head home to her old life or go back to the hotel she has been staying at to ask for a job. Finally, she is living the life she has dreamed of and rediscovered the self-confidence she has lost.

The auditions will take place at The QMT on Monday 19th July and Wednesday 21st July 2021


Shirley – a middle-aged housewife. You all know Shirley and you also know the commitment and hard work that will be required to play this amazing role. It is not for the faint-hearted. It’s two hours of YOU, talking, remembering, cooking (chips and egg), engaging, playing, laughing, crying and being Shirley Valentine! But what a fantastic role!

Audition pieces

Choose two of the following that you think really brings out your best.
1. Clitoris
2. Crying
3. Greece

I am really excited to be directing this strong one-woman show and looking forward to having lots of laughs with whoever becomes “Shirley”.

Elliott Bunker

Audition Notice: The Retreat by Sam Bain

Audition Closed

The Retreat is a fast moving comical play which explores a modern day search for
enlightenment and the process of giving up a former life.

The main action focusses on the turbulent relationship between Luke and his brother Tony.
Luke has decided to give up his lucrative job and expensive London flat in search of peace
and happiness as a Buddhist monk. Tony who has been enjoying the life his brother has
provided for him thinks it’s a dumb idea and has tracked his brother down to a retreat in the
Scottish highlands to change his mind. There is one problem Tara. A beautiful, enigmatic and idealistic young woman who would rather see Luke’s money helping the community to build a temple.

500 years BC the Buddha renounced his princely life and left his family to experience the real world. During many years he encountered suffering and self-denial until he reached a state of enlightenment and began to teach “The Middle Way” based on key principles to live life to reach Nirvana. Today millions of people around the world follow the teachings which emphasise the ability to effect your own destiny rather than relying on divine power.


  • Luke: acting age 25-35; Businessman, charismatic, previously stressed now turning to
    meditation and Buddhism so projects a calm image. He is clearly attracted to Tara but trying to hide it.
  • Tony: acting age 25-35. Outspoken, quick witted and cutting. Likes his life, uses drugs recreationally and has no desire to change.
  • Tara: acting age 25-35. Charismatic and determined. She is an entrepreneur and quietly seductive without trying. She is dressed as the “Green Tara” (a Buddhist deity who enables men to make change).

Audition Pieces
Chanting: There will be some Chanting and meditation come prepared!
Luke and Tony pg 5-8, Luke and Tony (40-46) & 48-53, Luke and Tony 70-71 Meditation
Luke and Tara 61-67, All 15-22.

For further Information:
Contact: for copies of the audition pieces (in pdf format) or on 07973 563511 if you would like more information about the play.

Audition Notice: A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM by William Shakespeare

Audition Closed

These auditions are being held online – please DO NOT come to the theatre. Zoom details below.

Seventy years ago (in 1951) the Dell Theatre was opened by the then Hitchin Urban District Council (now NHDC) as part of the Festival of Britain celebrations. The Council built the theatre for what they thought may just be a one-off occasion and the show was A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed for the Bancroft Players by Maurice Keeley, a local schoolteacher. In fact, the Bancroft Players went on to use the Dell Theatre for several years into the 1960s, presenting the gamut of Shakespearean comedies. When, the QMT was built and opened in 1983, the Dell had long grown into dis-use so it was left to the wonderful Rosemary Bianchi to lead the charge to get it re-opened, especially as the QMT was bang next door to the venue. And from the 1990s until about 2011 the BPs continued to use it each year.


After years of petitioning the local council and through the sterling efforts of Keith Hoskins and Judy Billing, the council have recently agreed to re-launch the venue and they have asked the Bancroft Players to open the new Dell with – what else – A Midsummer Night’s Dream as part of this year’s Hitchin Festival.


It will be a whole-Bancroft Players production with Juniors, Big Spirit and the senior Society involved. To make the rehearsing easier we will rehearse in teams and each team will have a very experienced director leading it.


Team 1 – The Court

  • Theseus – King of Athens
  • Egeus – father of Hermia
  • Hippolyta – Bride to Theseus
  • Philostrate – master of revels


Team 2 – The Lovers

  • Demetrius – a young swain
  • Lysander – in love with Hermia
  • Hermia – in love with Lysander
  • Helena – in love with Demetrius


Team 3 – The Mechanicals

  • Peter Quince – the troupe’s director
  • Bottom – a weaver who is a bit of an ass
  • Snug – a joiner
  • Flute – a bellows-mender
  • Snout – a tinker
  • Starveling – a tailor


Team 4 –  The Fairy Folk

  • Titania – Queen of the fairies
  • Oberon – their King
  • Puck – a mischievous sprite
  • Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Mustardseed and Moth – fairy folk


So there are many adult roles to be cast, guys. We are taking a gender-neutral approach so don’t be put off if you feel the wrong gender for a particular role – go for it!


The audition pieces will be put on the BP members FaceBook page by this weekend and the auditions will take place on Wednesday and Thursday at 8pm on 5th and 6th May via Zoom.

It’s going to be a big welcome back production for everyone so I want all of you to be part of it one way or another. Rehearsals start on Monday 17th May (first day back in the Theatre!). I will also send the pieces by email if you wish and you can contact me on . And I will send them out.


As we are doing the play in modules, it will be super easy to rehearse, and you will only be called to rehearsals you are involved in with your particular team.


Performance dates: 29th-31st July 2021

Audition Notice: Bull by Mike Bartlett

Audition Closed

Auditions will be by appointment ONLY – please do not turn up to the theatre without an appointment.

Directed by Maisie Brooker

This is a NT award winning, razor-sharp play about the fine line between office politics and playground bullying, Bull offers ringside seats as three employees fight to keep their jobs.

The play is all set in real time following Tony, Isobel and Thomas as they wait in a meeting room to hear from their boss (Carter) who out of the three will be made redundant. Tony and Isobel use this time to play mind games with Thomas, baiting him with every line until Thomas hits breaking point, just in time for Carter to arrive.

Maisie says she loves this play because it’s funny yet so uncomfortable, you watch it constantly hoping for the best but your hopes are shot down at every corner. Also love how it builds beautifully from using tiny bits of malice and small comments about appearance “Is that the suit you’ve chosen? Mmm” to a full blown attack on Thomas and his life. Finally, let’s get deep for a sec, as someone who has personally been bullied by an adult as an adult I feel it’s important to shine a light on situations like this and understand that playground politics carry on way into adulthood.

Running time: about 1 hour

Characters and acting ages:

  • Isobel (F/20s-30s) Powerhouse, stinging, bully.
  • Tony (M/20s-30s) Smug, athletic, bully.
  • Thomas (M/Late 20s-40s) Desperate, sympathetic, ambitious.
  • Carter (M/F/40s-60s)- The Boss, straight talking, assertive.

About auditioning and rehearsing in our Covid-secure theatre:

Auditions will be by appointment ONLY– so you will need to email Maisie to say that you are interested in this play and Maisie will confirm the time for you to arrive at the theatre. All those entering the theatre must comply with our Covid-secure requirements and a copy of these will be emailed to you before you attend the auditions.

Likewise, when rehearsing the cast and others involved must comply with our Covid-secure requirements. These will be made clear to everyone before rehearsals begin.

If you are interested in auditioning:

Please email: or phone Maisie on 07887 930726 for more information. Maisie is also on Facebook if you want to contact her there.

Extracts of the passages that will be used in auditions:

These will be available on request to those who are interested in auditioning. In the NHB published script the extracts are pages 5 to 10 for Thomas, Isobel and Toby and the for Carter pages 33 to 35.

Audition Notice: The Wind In The Willows

Audition Closed

These auditions will now be held via Zoom.

The adventures of Kenneth Graham’s much-loved characters are brought to life in this brand new socially-distanced stage version.

Meet Mole and Ratty, Badger and Toad as they try to bring order to the wood. Of course, Toad is his own worst enemy, and in the end the gallant band have to fight the weasels to save Toad Hall.

This is a brilliant, timeless tale that will be played by a versatile, imaginative group of six actors. Why not come along to audition – we’d love to see you and you’ll have lots of fun.

If you are interested in auditioning please email and you will be sent an electronic copy of the script.

The auditions will be held on the morning of Sunday 15th November and the evening of Monday 16th November. Auditions will now be held online, via Zoom.

Final performance dates to be confirmed.

Director: Sam Powell