Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre sets youth auditions

Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre will hold youth auditions for the 2016 summer season, including roles in “West Side Story” and the opportunity to appear in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” as part of The Groundlings Company, on Feb. 28.

Interested actors ages 8 to 17 are encouraged to audition.

Auditions will be from 3-6 pm in the Black Box Theatre in the Snow Fine Arts building on the University of Central Arkansas campus. No preparation is necessary, but participants will be asked to sing and move, as well as be given a scene to read. To secure a space, e-mail with the names and ages of those wanting to audition. AST officials will respond with an assigned audition time and more information.

The AST summer season consists of the musical “West Side Story,” Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Romeo and Juliet” and a special adaptation of “Twelfth Night” specifically for families. AST is looking to cast young singers/dancers for West Side Story for ensemble roles and possibly roles in Romeo and Juliet, as yet to be determined.

AST’s summer educational program, The Groundlings Company, will appear in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” as fairies and creatures of the forest.  This unique opportunity combines learning with practice as students participate in acting classes while also rehearsing and performing alongside AST’s professional acting company in “Midsummer.” There is a fee of $300 to participate in this program.

Rehearsals for all productions will begin May 17. Rehearsals for both “West Side Story” and “Midsummer” will be primarily in the evenings, with some daytime technical rehearsals prior to opening. “Midsummer” opens June 10 on the UCA campus and runs through the end of the festival on July 9. “West Side Story” opens June 17, with additional performances throughout the duration of the festival.

For more information about the auditions, contact Dr. Mary Ruth Marotte at (501) 269-9428 or For more information about AST and its season, visit

Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre is the state’s only professional Shakespeare company, housed on the campus of the University of Central Arkansas. Each summer, AST offers full productions of a range of Shakespeare’s works, as well as other plays and musicals that help fulfill AST’s mission to entertain, engage, and enrich the community.