Every year, Silicon Valley Shakespeare holds at least one general audition that is entirely open to the public. We also frequently audit Theatre Bay Area’s general auditions. Actors new to SVS are not only welcomed but encouraged to audition. Our casts always include many new ensemble members in roles of all sizes.
Silicon Valley Shakespeare does not pre-cast, with the occasional exception of a role for which we have an Equity contract and for which we may read or audition a limited number of Equity actors. Any other rare exceptions will be clearly communicated prior to open auditions.
We make every effort to respect actors’ craft and time by being clear about casting opportunities and policies. We ask all actors to do the same by being open with us about other conflicting projects for which they are being considered. Being considered elsewhere will not exclude you from being considered by SVS.
Callbacks are held on a show-by-show basis by invitation only. Callbacks for some or all of our shows may occur simultaneously due to the repertory nature of our season. Actors are invited to callbacks from our general auditions, TBA generals, past SVS performances, etc. We frequently consider actors for roles that may not appear specifically in their callback notification.
If you are unavailable for an audition date but are interested in performing with us, please let us know so that we can inform you of potential alternate dates. Due to the sheer number of roles we must cast in a season and the extensive list of actors we audit, however, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to accommodate you with an alternate opportunity.
If you are only interested in a certain role or roles within a given production and will not accept other parts, let us know as soon as possible. We do consider these casting stipulations even though we cannot, of course, always accommodate them.
We are eager to wrap up the casting process and get on with the far more exciting work of putting on a play. For this reason, we will always notify actors about their casting status as soon as we possibly can.
Silicon Valley Shakespeare is one of the few companies in the Bay Area that offers actors and audiences a true repertory experience with our frequently double-cast Sanborn Park productions — one cast, two entirely different plays. Actors typically find this process to be both challenging and extremely rewarding. While casting these two shows with the same company of actors is our typical practice, it is possible that due to the nature of the productions, line load, actor availability, or specific casting needs, some cast members may participate in only one production. At this time, it is impossible for one or both of our Sanborn Park shows to share actors with our Willow Street Park show. Actors can still be considered for all productions.
Casting Equality Policy
The type of theatrical work that we do gives us wonderful opportunities to break away from “traditional” ideas about ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disabilities, and body type in our casting choices, and we fully embrace those opportunities. We are firmly committed to casting based on the specific talents and skills that an individual actor brings to a role. All roles are open to actors of any sexual orientation. If you are an actor with a disability, we will work with an open mind to accommodate your needs whenever possible. Directors may express casting preferences with regard to gender, ethnicity, and body type when they have shown that these choices are essential to the character, plot, their concept, or the text itself. However, if you feel strongly about being considered for a role that has been slated for a gender, ethnicity, or body type with which you don’t identify, please don’t hesitate to let us know. We can’t guarantee that your request will be accommodated, but we do guarantee that it will be sincerely considered.
Casting of Staff and Family or Significant Others of Staff
Like many other companies, we have found that due to the small size of our theatre community and the frequency with which close friendships and romantic relationships develop between theatre artists, it would be unrealistic to bar staff members of people with close relationships to company or production staff from auditioning for our productions. Such casting situations, however, will always be handled with the utmost discretion and under the guidance of other impartial company and production staff. SVS staff are permitted to audition for company productions with the understanding that their audition will not be influenced by their position as a staff member. Every reasonable effort will be made to keep actors from being audited by a potential cast mate.
If you have any questions about this policy or its implementation, feel free to contact Artistic Director Angie Higgins.