Auditions

 

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Character Breakdowns:

Hairspray

IMPORTANT CASTING INFORMATION

Please note that the cast members in your production of Hairspray must accurately reflect the character descriptions contained in the script. The use of make-up to portray Black characters in your production (e.g., blackface) is not permitted under this Production Contract.

Tracy Turnblad

Our story’s unsuspecting protagonist, she is large and in charge. Confident, talented, and incredibly determined. A romantic with a good heart and desire to cut up the dance floor. Always on top of the latest trends. This role should be played by a white actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: G5
Vocal range bottom: G3
Corny Collins

The charismatic host of the Corny Collins’ Show. Good looking and smooth talking, he is a genuinely nice guy both on and off camera. Corny should be played by a white actor.

Gender: Male
Age: 25 to 35
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: D3
Edna Turnblad

Tracy’s big and blonde mother. She is a working housewife who has lost her confidence and dream to be a plus-size clothing designer. Boisterous and commanding. Often played by a male in drag. This role should be played by a white performer.

Gender: Male
Age: 30 to 50
Vocal range top: G5
Vocal range bottom: F3
Penny Pingleton

Tracy’s best friend and dorky sidekick. Not the brightest girl, but she has good intentions. Bursting to get free of her mother’s dominating control, she falls for Seaweed with childlike curiosity. This role should be played by a white actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: G5
Vocal range bottom: A3
Velma Von Tussle

Amber’s mother and the director of Corny Collin’s show. She is a devious taskmaster and snobby racist. The former Miss Baltimore Crabs will go to any length to ensure her daughter is the next big thing. This role should be played by a white actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 45 to 55
Vocal range top: E5
Vocal range bottom: G3
Amber Von Tussle

Link’s girlfriend and Tracy’s nemesis. She is pretty, thin, shallow, snobby, and racist. Can’t dance but is expected to win Miss Baltimore Hairspray. Always feels the need to be the center of attention. This role should be played by a white actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: F5
Vocal range bottom: A3
Link Larkin

The star heartthrob on Corny Collins’ show. He is extremely attractive and talented. Hoping to get his big break with a recording contract, he unexpectedly falls for Tracy. This role should be played by a white actor.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: A5
Vocal range bottom: G3
Seaweed J. Stubbs

Tracy’s classmate and friend, who is discriminated against due to his skin color. He is cocky but surprisingly lovable. Talented in song and dance. He falls for Penny. Seaweed should be played by a Black actor.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: F3
Little Inez
Seaweed’s little sister. Little Inez should be played by a Black actress.
Gender: Female
Motormouth Maybelle

Seaweed and Little Inez’s mother, she also appears as the Guest DJ on the Corny Collin’s Negro Day show. Big, blonde, beautiful and proud of it. She is sassy and confident. This role should be played by a Black actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 40 to 50
Vocal range top: E5
Vocal range bottom: F3
Wilbur Turnblad

Tracy’s simpleminded and kind father. He owns a joke shop and supports his daughter in spite of everything else. He also loves his wife, Edna, very much. This role should be played by a white actor.

Gender: Male
Age: 55 to 65
Vocal range top: A5
Vocal range bottom: A3
Prudy Pingleton

Penny’s strict mother. Very conservative, controlling, and closed minded. This role should be played by a white actress.

Gender: Female
Age: 40 to 50
Vocal range top: B4
Vocal range bottom: D4
Ensemble
Corny Collins’ Kids (Tammy, Brad, Brenda, Sketch, Shelley, Etc.); Students; Hookers; Protestors

Newsies

Jack Kelly

The charismatic leader of the Manhattan newsies, is an oprhaned dreamer and artist who yearns to get out of the crowded streets of New York and make a better life for himself out West. Fiercely protective of his best friend, Crutchie, and strongly loyal, Jack isn’t afraid to use his voice to attain better conditions for the working kids of New York City. Though living on the streets has given him a tough-guy exterior, Jack has a big heart and can demonstrate a sweet vulnerability – especially when it comes to bantering with a certain female reporter. Must have a great pop tenor voice and sense of physicality.

Gender: Male
Age: 16 to 20
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: Bb2
Crutchie

A dedicated newsie with a bum leg that’s painful, but helps sell more papes. Though he walks with the assistance of a crutch, Crutchie doesn’t let it define him; when in a jam, Jack Kelly’s best friend relies on a goofy- sweet sense of humor and optimistic resilience. Crutchie is the heart of the resistance. Though his movement will suggest his bum leg, Crutchie should still be included in the dance numbers.

Gender: Any
Age: 13 to 17
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: C3
Davey

Les’s straight-laced, bright big brother starts selling newspapers to help his family earn a living, but becomes swept up in the fervor of the strike. A leader in his own right who is learning to use his voice to uplift others, Davey is the brains of the resistance.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 20
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: D3
Les

Davey’s cheeky younger brother, is inspired by the freedom of the newsies and loves their independent lifestyle. A precocious and natural newsie, Les is an intuitive salesboy and a pint-sized charmer. He should present as younger than the other newsies.

Gender: Male
Age: 10 to 15
Vocal range top: Bb3
Vocal range bottom: Db3
Newsies

Including Albert, Buttons, Elmer, Finch, Henry, Ike, Jo Jo, Mike, Mush, Race, Romeo, Specs, Splasher, and Tommy Boy, are some of the hard-working kids of New York City that go on strike for a livable wage.

Gender: Male
Age: 13 to 20
Scabs

Three newsies who are hesitant to join the strike.

Gender: Any
Age: 10 to 20
Spot Conlon

The proud leader of the Brooklyn newsies, boasts an intimidating reputation and a short singing solo in “Brooklyn’s Here.”

Gender: Any
Age: 17 to 20
Katherine Plumber

An ambitious young reporter, works hard to make a name for herself as a legitimate journalist in a time when women aren’t taken seriously. Quick, funny, and resourcesful, she boldy captures the voice of a new generation rising in her coverage of the newsies’ strike. While she generally has no time for cocky, streetwise young men, she makes an exception for Jack Kelly. Though she only has a brief dance solo in “King of New York,” Katherine should have a great contemporary pop voice with a high belt – diction is key.

Gender: Female
Age: 17 to 20
Vocal range top: F5
Vocal range bottom: A3
Darcy

The upper-class kid of a publisher who sides with the newsies. Can double as a newsie.

Gender: Any
Age: 15 to 20
Bill

The son of William Randolph Hearst who joins the newsies’ cause. Can double as a newsie.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 25
Wiesel

Or “Weasel,” runs the distribution window for the World and knows most of the newsies by name. Assisted by the intimidating Delancey brothers, who keep order by any means necessary, Wiesel is Pulitzer’s disgruntled paper- pusher.

Gender: Male
Age: 35 to 50
Oscar and Morris Delancey

Tough brothers who work at the distribution window for the World, take the side of the publishers in the strike and are known to use their fists to make a point.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 20
Goons

Assist the Delanceys in roughing up the newsies at the end of Act One.

Gender: Male
Age: 15 to 20
Joseph Pulitzer

A pompous businessman through and through, owns the World and is concerned solely with the bottom line. Katherine’s no-nonsense father, Pulitzer doesn’t sympathize with the strikers, but he does eventually – and grudgingly – respect Jack.

Gender: Male
Age: 35 to 50
Vocal range top: F4
Vocal range bottom: C3
Seitz

Editor, advises Pulitzer, but ultimately admires the kids’ newspaper.

Gender: Any
Bunsen

Pulitzer’s bookkeeper, comes up with the ideas to raise the newsies’ price per paper.

Gender: Any
Age: 35 to 50
Hannah

Pulitzer’s practical and insightful secretary.

Gender: Female
Age: 20 to 40
Nunzio

Pulitzer’s barber.

Gender: Male
Age: 30 to 50
Guard

The Guard removes the newsies from Pulitzer’s building.

Gender: Any
Age: 20 to 60
Snyder

The crooked and sinister warden of The Refuge, a filthy and horrible orphanage, is concerned only with catching enough kids to keep his government checks coming.

Gender: Any
Age: 45 to 65
Medda Larkin

Inspired by vaudeville performer Aida Overton Walker, this big-voiced saloon singer and star of the Bowery offers her theater as a safe haven for the newsies. An astute entertainer with great comic delivery, she’s a good friend to Jack and stands firmly behind the newsies in their fight for justice.

Gender: Female
Age: 25 to 45
Vocal range top: E5
Vocal range bottom: F3
The Bowery Beauties

Female performers at Medda’s Theater.

Gender: Female
Age: 18 to 30
Stage Manager

Introduces Medda’s act.

Gender: Any
Age: 25 to 55
Nuns

The three nuns offer breakfast to the hungry newsies. Feel free to cast additional nuns.

Gender: Female
Age: 20 to 60
Photographer

Takes the triumphant photo of the newsies at the end of “Seize the Day.”

Gender: Any
Age: 15 to 25
Woman

A newspaper customer.

Gender: Any
Age: 15 to 45
Mr. Jacobi

Allows the newsies to congregate in his restaurant to plan their strike – when he doesn’t have any paying customers, that is.

Gender: Any
Age: 35 to 55
Policemen

Assist Snyder and turn against the newsies in the fight that concludes Act One.

Gender: Male
Age: 20 to 60
Mayor

The Mayor of New York City rebuffs Pulitzer’s attempts to shut down the newsies’ strike.

Gender: Male
Age: 45 to 60
Governor Teddy Roosevelt

A well-respected lifelong public servant, inspires Jack to stand up to Pulitzer.

Gender: Male
Age: 50 to 65
Ensemble
Gender: Any