Audition Notice: The Wal*Mart-ians
by Steven Young
Tuesday, September 5th @ 5 p.m. in the Redbud Studio, Rm. 204
Please prepare a one minute monologue, comedic or dramatic, a joke, and bring a resume and headshot. (New students may choose do a cold read and are not required to have a headshot). Sign up for an audition slot at The Redbud Theatre Callboard.
Callbacks to be held on Wednesday, September 6th @ 5-8 p.m. Callbacks will consist of readings from the script.
Performance Dates: October 11-15, 2017
The Wal*Mart-ians by Steven Young was a Minneapolis Playwright’s Center - Jerome Fellowship finalist and selected by Chicago Arts & Entertainment as the ‘best comedy’ of 2003.
Young’s story, inspired by Cro-Magnon extinction theory, is an apocalyptic comedy set in small town Fredericksburg, Iowa. It is the 70th birthday of the cashed strapped, but land rich, widowed, matriarch, Jan Gunter. Jan is obsessed with television and archives hours of daytime programming. Her family arrives late to the party, more interested in the potential of Jan’s final will-and-testament than a celebration of the continuance of her life. Over the course of the day, the materfamilias, under no illusions, uses the implied threat of being cut from the will, as a pulpit to condemn the lifestyle choices of her daughter’s spouses, friends and careers, by pitting family members against one-other.
There is Jan’s daughter, Gina, a greeter for Wal-Mart and addicted to over-the-counter prescription pills. Gina is married to Thomas, an unemployed actor. Their mentally challenged daughter Cathy can only quote the film Apocalypse Now.
Lorraine, Jan’s other daughter, is childless and a former beauty queen, now 150 pounds heavier than when she held the title. Lorraine is married to the slightly deaf, farmer and veteran of the invasion of Grenada, Bob Weidler.
Reverend Verbal, a local pastor of a failing church and host of the radio show Lunch Time With The Savior joins the event. The party just gets going when Gina discovers a possum in the kitchen eating their dinner. All are armed and join in to subdue the rodent, engaging in a huge assault of firepower.
As afternoon becomes evening, Jan pushes Thomas over the edge. He snaps and suffocates Jan on a Wal-Mart lasagna. No sooner has Jan been murdered, than DB, Jan’s third and sexually ambiguous daughter, arrives with her teen-age ward Anna-Nicole. DB, who is on dialysis, convinces the partygoers to disregard the truth, harvest Jan’s kidney and find the title for the farmland.
In the search for the deed, the group rips apart the house dumping out drawer after drawer of Jan’s video recordings. When the group manages to locate the title, they find an attached EPA report denouncing the land as contaminated. Knee-deep in VHS cassettes, the survivors speculate what once was sacred was now meaningless; the common uncommon; and the land that sustained them, had become the enemy.
Gina detects a gas leak in the kitchen, caused by the possum hunt. With that knowledge, Tom looks to the audience and chooses to light a cigarette. The house explodes. The only person to survive the cataclysm is the mentally challenged, Cathy.
The Wal*Mart-ians is a world of characters, blind to their behavior until it is too late, suggesting any species, person, or nation that fails to evolve or take heed to basic survival instincts will ultimately destroy itself, going the way of the Cro-Magnon.
Page last updated 8:35 AM, July 26, 2017