Location: The PANGEA LIVE, 956 N Liberty Street
33 VARIATIONS tells the story of Katherine Brandt, a musicologist dying of ALS, who passionately throws herself into studying Beethoven’s renowned variations on the mundane Diabelli waltz. The story of her singular pursuit of knowledge and her strained relationship with her spirited daughter is interwoven with that of Beethoven himself. The action takes place between 1819, 1823 and 2010 in New York, Bonn, Germany and Vienna.
DIRECTOR: Lee Hamby
ASST DIRECTOR/PRODUCTION MANAGER: Zeina Salame
AUDITION DATES & TIMES: Sunday, April 27 at 5pm and Monday, April 28 at 7pm
AUDITION LOCATION: MAP | The Pangea Live, 956 N Liberty Street
PERFORMANCE DATES: July 18- 27
PERFORMANCE LOCATION: The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens
The 5 & Dime is committed to casting considerations which reflect the diversity of the people of Jacksonville, while recognizing that a specific gender, ethnicity and age is often a crucial aspect of a particular role or of the piece as a whole. We will include gender, ethnicity and age in the breakdown, where needed, and encourage all actors to audition where none is stated.
Note: For those familiar with the script, the Pianist/Musical Director has been precast with Laura Peden. All other roles are available and listed below.
Contemporary Characters : All may be of any ethnicity
DR KATHERINE BRANDT, a musicologist
Female, late 40s – early 60s (to play late 50s) | A musicologist with a passion for Beethoven, Katherine is dying of ALS and has focused all of her energy on the study of Beethoven’s renowned 33 variations on the Diabelli waltz. Her all encompassing study provides a significant distraction from her disease – and her difficult relationship with her daughter. She finds her daughter’s life to be trivial, moving from career to career and man to man without ever delving beneath the surface of things. As her disease progresses, her motor skills begin to fail and she must rely on her daughter for physical and emotional support.
CLARA BRANDT, her daughter
Female, late 20s – early 30s | A scenic designer who has already cycled through several professions – and several boyfriends, Clara has an exploratory philosophy in life. She cannot imagine limiting herself to a single career when there is so much to sample and a relatively short amount of time to do it in. She shares her mother’s love for music, but her tastes are much more varied. She is concerned about her mother’s health and tries to dissuade her from moving to Germany for her studies. When she accompanies her mother to a medical appointment, she meets Mike, a physician’s assistant who ultimately teaches her to embrace what is in front of her.
MIKE CLARK, a nurse
Male, 20s – 30s | A physician’s assistant at the medical practice Katherine uses, Mike’s warm and caring nature is a contrast to her efficiency and coldness. He soon gains her trust – and before long he has asked Clara out on a date. Despite their differences, Mike wins Clara over with his ready charm, honesty, intelligence and love for music.
DR GERTRUDE LADENBURGER, a librarian
Female, 30s – 50s | A librarian at the Beethoven Haus, home of the composer’s archived musical sketches and conversation books. Gertie is a staunch lover and scholar of Beethoven. Even through her imperious demeanor lies a good heart. Although she is at first dubious of Katherine’s motives and abilities, she soon becomes a close colleague – the Watson to Katherine’s Sherlock Holmes – and ultimately a friend.
Historical Characters : All are caucasian
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN, a composer
Male, 40s – 60s | The genius German composer and pianist, Beethoven suffered from illness (abdominal, lead poisoning, and bipolar disorder). In the period during which the play takes place, his hearing begins to fail in a significant way, and he can no longer perform in public. His wife has left him, and his brother’s grave illness has left him penniless and volatile. As his health declines, he loses his hearing entirely and he can no longer have a conversation without the use of a notebook. He buries himself in his work – creating a series of variations on the mediocre waltz composed by a local music publisher, Diabelli.
ANTON DIABELLI, a music publisher
Male, 30s-50s | An Austrian music publisher whose mundane waltz is transformed by Beethoven into the renowned 33 variations. A businessman first, he dreams of composing and covets the attentions of the great composers of the day. Despite his attempts to be strict with deadlines and parameters, he falls prey to the beauty of Beethoven’s work — and his own narcissistic interests in hearing his waltz infused with greatness.
ANTON SCHINDLER, Beethoven’s secretary
Male, 30s-60s | Schindler’s calling card read “a friend of Beethoven.” He was in fact Beethoven’s associate and secretary. Schindler wrote the earliest biographies of Beethoven; as early as the 1850s, however, his account was called into question as inconsistencies with the historical record came to light. Schindler appears to have exaggerated the length of his acquaintance with Beethoven (six years, not the 12 he claimed) and may have made false entries into his conversation books to suggest a greater length of friendship with the composer. The unreliability of his accounts and the pervasiveness of some of the myths he established about Beethoven have continued to complicate the issues of Beethoven’s biography.
Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script. Sides are available for downloading. Please fill out form below and you will be emailed a link.
The audition process has finished.
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