SKITS to hold auditions for spring play

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

No acting experience necessary to be involved

Shell Knob In The Spotlight (SKITS), will be holding auditions for its spring play on Feb. 6 at 10 a.m. at the Shell Knob Community Center.

Barb Van Dusen, vice-president for the theater group, said SKITS will be looking for male and female roles, and no acting experience is necessary. Director Kim Przybyl and the SKITS board will be present to explain the character roles and the play requirements in detail.

The play, which is the group's seventh since its start three years ago, is set to take place on three dates between April 29 and May 1, and it is called, "The Bold, The Young, & the Murdered."

Van Dusen said the play's title sounds like the well-known soap opera, "The Bold and The Beautiful," and the reference is intentional as its part of the plot, which is about a dysfunctional cast and crew of a soap opera and involves shock, intrigue, suspense and comedy.

"It begins with the long-suffering director struggling desperately with a disgruntled and self-absorbed cast, uncooperative crew members and a pesky new intern, to realize his creative vision," Van Dusen said. "Faced with falling viewership and poor productivity, he is issued an ultimatum by the show's executive producer -- complete one episode in one night, or the show dies. Locked in the studio for the night, he sets about attempting to corral performances from from his charges, only for people to start dying under mysterious circumstances."

Van Dusen said SKITS will be looking to fill about 15 adult male and female character roles, and she stressed that acting experience is not required, just a commitment to learn the part and character.

"Almost all of our actors auditioned with no prior acting experience," she said. "The public is invited to be a part of this process. We need men and women. There are no children's parts, just actors that may act like kids."

If people cannot attend the Feb. 6 audition date, they can set up another time before then by calling Przybyl at 417-459-3017.

Auditions will involve reading lines from one of the characters.

"We will have a synopsis of each character from the play, and will have a reading," she said. "People are usually drawn to a certain character, and if they don't have a clue, then we try to help them decide which part they'd like to read. In the end, we'll look at everything, then use our own guidance to determine how to put people in parts."

Van Dusen said practices will take place three times per week, but based on specific parts and how quickly everyone learns them, may only need to occur two times per week. Practices will last about six weeks. After learning lines, actors then learn their characters.

"We guide them on learning their character, such as how you stand, walk, and how you express your character in your words and movements," she said.

Van Dusen started working in the background with costumes and makeup, then went on stage.

"To me, it was learning how to say the lines while I walked and did all the actions," she said. "It's hard. We've had people that are natural comedians, thinking that learning funny parts would be so easy, but to learn your lines and stay in character, and deliver them and be on stage, it's a little bit more involved than people realize."

The board is there to help, though.

"All the board members have acted, so we know when someone new gets up on stage and freezes, we can help them," she said.

Everyone who participates can expect to have a good time, Van Dusen said, learn new skills and even put the experience on a resume.

"It's a hobby, it's entertainment, it's a challenge and it's just fun," she said.

For more information, SKITS can be found on Facebook by searching SKITS Community Theater, on the web at, or contacting Van Dusen at 417-858-9590.

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