Audition Notice: Guys and Dolls

Music and Lyrics by Frank Loesser
Book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows
Presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI)

Director: John Gaston
Producer: Priscilla Losey
Music Director: Bennie Glasner
Choreographer: Miriam Durrie-Kirsch

Audition Dates & Times: 

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, August 20-22, 2018 at 7:30pm.

Audition Location: 

Hillcrest Center for the Arts
403 W. Hillcrest Drive
Thousand Oaks, CA
(PLEASE NOTE: These auditions are not being held at CPT due to scheduling conflicts; make sure you don't go to the wrong place -- we don't want to miss seeing you!)

Performance Dates: 

November 16 through December 16, 2018
Thursday, Friday, & Saturday at 8:00 pm
Sunday at 2:00 pm
No performance on November 22 (Thanksgiving Day)

September 17 through November 15, 2018
Monday – Friday, 7:00pm to 10:00 pm (or 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm).
Occasional weekends, either daytime or evening. NOTE: Not everyone will be called for every rehearsal.
Tech Week: November 11-15 (all called; no conflicts permitted).

Audition Requirements: 

Prepare a one minute cut of a standard musical theatre song that demonstrates your vocal range and ability. Bring sheet music in your key. An accompanist will be provided. Alternatively, you may use a recorded accompaniment.

Bring your calendar and be prepared to identify your conflicts for the rehearsal period. We can accommodate some conflicts but need to understand when they are.

A dance combination will be taught, though not all roles are required to dance. Some will be asked to read from the script. Callbacks will likely include the songs listed in the character breakdown below, though callbacks will only be held if necessary and may not include all roles.

No appointment necessary; open call audition. Non-union, NO PAY.

Audition Tips: Appropriate material for this audition might include the songs of Frank Loesser, Lerner & Loewe, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Kander & Ebb, Jerry Herman, etc. Pop songs or contemporary musical theatre (e.g., Rent, Hamilton, Hairspray) are discouraged, as they are not in the style of this show. For initial auditions, singing from the show is acceptable but no preference will be given to those who do. If you will be using our accompanist, bring sheet music in your key that includes the complete piano accompaniment (not a lead sheet). If you are using a recorded accompaniment, bring a CD or a device (e.g., phone or MP3 player) with the necessary cable to plug into an amplifier. Recorded accompaniments must not include vocals. Everyone should sing with some form of accompaniment; a capella auditions are not permitted. If you are auditioning for a non-singing part, just bring something simple that demonstrates you can sing well enough to sing in a group if needed. 

Callback songs have been listed in this notice as a help to you. Not everyone will be called back, and not every role will be called back. Nevertheless, if you are invited to come back, being prepared with this material will help you give your best callback audition.

Plot Summary: 

Set in Damon Runyon's mythical New York City, GUYS AND DOLLS is an oddball romantic comedy. Gambler, Nathan Detroit, tries to find the cash to set up the biggest craps game in town while the authorities breathe down his neck; meanwhile, his girlfriend and nightclub performer, Adelaide, laments that they've been engaged for fourteen years. Nathan turns to fellow gambler, Sky Masterson, for the dough, and Sky ends up chasing the straight-laced missionary, Sarah Brown, as a result. GUYS AND DOLLS takes us from the heart of Times Square to the cafes of Havana, Cuba, and even into the sewers of New York City, but eventually everyone ends up right where they belong. ~ RATED PG

For More Information: 

Please contact Priscilla Losey, producer, at at (949) 306-7297 or

Character Breakdown: 

Age ranges are a rough guide, and all roles are open to all ethnicities.  Note that roles are available for singers and non-singers, as well as dancers and non-dancers. 

+ Sky Masterson: (Lead) Legit baritone, B to Eb; to play age 30s - 40s. He is a suave, intelligent, and confident gangster who naturally commands others’ respect and attention. Handsome, with excellent stage presence, he is familiar with attracting the attention of the ladies but finds himself falling in love with the one woman who brushes off his advances. Some dance/movement ability would be useful but is not essential. Possible callback material includes “Luck Be a Lady” and “I’ll Know.”

+ Sarah Brown: (Lead) Soprano to high A; to play age 18 - 35. Prim Salvation Army officer with a genuine passion for missionary work. Gives Sky a frosty reception, but after a little too much rum, her straight-laced persona slips away. This role requires a versatile singing actress with range that includes stern, romantic, comedic, and drunk. Possible callback material includes “I’ll Know” and “If I Were a Bell.”

+ Nathan Detroit: (Lead) Baritone or tenor to F; to play age 35 - 50. Organizer of the floating crap game. A slightly neurotic, lovable rogue who is always struggling to stay one step ahead of the pack - and looking for the big break he never seems to get. His heart is torn between the camaraderie of his gambling circle and Adelaide, to whom he has been engaged for 14 years. Excellent actor with strong comedic timing.  Possible callback material: “Sue Me.”

+ Adelaide: (Lead) Mezzo to A; to play age 30s - 40s. An attractive nightclub singer/dancer at the “Hot Box” and Nathan’s long-suffering fiancée, this role requires a strong belter with dancing ability and excellent comedic skills. She adores Nathan but is driven so crazy by his antics that she famously develops “psychosomatic symptoms involving the upper respiratory tract." Possible callback material includes “Adelaide’s Lament” and “Sue Me.”

+ Nicely Nicely Johnson: (Featured supporting role) Tenor to high B flat; age range open, perhaps 30 - 60. Nathan Detroit’s best pal, whose appetite and enthusiasm know no bounds. Comic, cheerful, and likeable as he delivers funny one-liners and several of the show’s most well-known numbers with equal aplomb, including “Fugue for Tinhorns” and the show-stopping “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat.” Both of these songs are likely callback material. Note: This role is rather high vocally, and while a tenor is preferred, we may consider transposing for the right lower-voiced actor.

+ Benny Southstreet: (Featured supporting role) Baritone; age range open, perhaps 30 - 60. Nicely’s somewhat dim pal who sings “Fugue for Tinhorns” (callback material) and “Guys and Dolls.” Upbeat, sometimes nervy, and further down the pecking order among the gamblers.

+ Arvide Abernathy: Lyric Baritone; to play age 60 - 90. Sarah’s grandfather and a prominent missionary at the Save-a-Soul Mission. Wise, warm, and caring. Actors interested in this role are encouraged to prepare “More I Cannot Wish You” for the first audition in case requested by audition staff.

+ General Matilda B. Cartwright: Female mezzo; age range open, perhaps 40 - 65. Regional representative of the Salvation Army. Authoritative but motivated by charity. Some comic moments.

+ Harry the Horse: (Supporting role) Age 30s - 40s. The quintessential tough guy gambler. Has come into money by collecting the reward on his father. Sidekick and mouthpiece to Big Jule, so – though a pleasant rogue – is more on the ball and can be a cool customer who is able to stand his ground when necessary. Sings with ensemble but not alone.

+ Big Jule: (Supporting role) Age 35+. An intimidating hustler from Chicago. A temperamental sore loser. Stage presence and acting ability are the main requirements for this comedic speaking role. The role can be played by an actor of large height and stature to match his name, or it can be played by a diminutive actor as an ironic and comic gesture. 

+ Rusty Charlie: Baritone. Age range open, perhaps 25 - 40. Featured singer in “Fugue for Tinhorns” with Nicely & Benny, and then joins the ensemble.

+ Lt. Brannigan: Male non-singing role, though could sing off stage at times.  Age 35+. Member of the local police force, wise to the gangsters’ exploits and trying to keep them in order. Commands respect from Nathan and the guys.

+ Female Dance Ensemble: Female dancers who sing, to play age range 18 - 35. These performers will back-up Adelaide in her nightclub act. They will perform two numbers with Adelaide, including a tasteful strip tease. Must be comfortable with form-fitting costuming. They will also double as Havana dancers; may double as Runyonland characters. Cameo roles such as Mimi will be cast from this group.

+ Female Singing Ensemble: Female singers who move but need not be skilled dancers. Ability to play a band instrument at an elementary level is a plus. Will be part of the Mission Band to perform in “Follow the Fold” and “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat.” May double as Runyonland characters.  Cameo roles such as Agatha and Martha will be cast from this group.

+ Male Dance Ensemble: Male dancers who sing. Will consider non-singing male dancers. Will be featured in “Luck Be a Lady” and as Havana dancers; may double as Runyonland characters. Cameo gambler roles will be cast from this group.

+ Male Singing Ensemble: Male singers who move but need not be skilled dancers. Ability to play a band instrument at an elementary level is a plus. Ability to hold harmony is required. Will sing some of the greatest male ensemble numbers in musical theatre (e.g., “Oldest Established,” “Luck Be A Lady”). Some will be featured in the Mission Band; may double as Runyonland characters. Several cameo roles will be cast from this group.