On Tuesday, April 12th and Wednesday, April 13th, Jeremiah Productions, Inc. will hold auditions for “Second Coming – The Character and Ministry of Mother Ann Lee of the United Society of Believers (Commonly Called Shakers).” This new play-with-music, written and directed by Bruce Cornwell, will be presented at the Shaker Meeting House at the Shaker Heritage Society in Colonie on July 15th, 16th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd and 24th. The auditions on April 12th and 13th will be held at the Community Reformed Church of Colonie, 701 Sand Creek Road in Colonie, NY from 7 to 9 pm. Actors should prepare a song to be sung acapella along the lines of Greensleeves (“What Child is This?) or “Simple Gifts”/“Lord of the Dance.” Actors will be asked to read from the script. Sides from the play will be provided.
The play tells the story of Ann Lee one of the most influential female religious figures in western culture. She and a small band of followers arrived in the American Colonies in 1774 and established a Christian sect in upstate New York which eventually grew to have thousands of followers and which became America’s most important and successful utopian community. The sect, which was characterized by wild shaking, impassioned singing, dancing, and speaking in tongues believed Ann to be the female embodiment of Christ.
All cast members must be able to sing and handle simple choreography. A number of cast members portray multiple characters. There are roles for 8 women and 8 men in this ensemble piece. Cast members will receive a stipend and mileage.
- Ann Lee – mid-30s
- Eldress/Eunice Cunningham (NYC landlord), 40s
- Mother Jane (British religious dissenter), 40s
- Mary Partington (follower), 30s
- Rachel Partington (follower), teens
- Phoebe (prostitute), 20’s
- Hanna Hocknell (follower), 40s
- Nancy Lee (Ann’s niece)/Rebecca Hocknell (follower), teens
- Priest/Joseph Meacham (Shaker Leader), 30s-40s
- Abraham Standerin (Ann’s Husband), 30s-40s
- James Whittaker, 20s
- William Lee (Ann’s Brother), 30s
- John Hocknell (follower and financier), 40s
- John Lee (Ann’s father)/Captain Smith (ship’s captain)/General Sullivan, 40s-50s
- Elder/Governor Clinton/John Partington (follower), 40s
- James Wardley (British religious dissenter/Calvin Harlow (Shaker leader), 30s-40s