“Can you sing?”

—Sir Joseph Porter
H.M.S. Pinafore
Auditions for Ruddigore

Auditions for Ruddigore

The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company will hold auditions for its Spring 2020 production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Ruddigore, Saturday, November 2, 2019 1:00 to 5:00 pm, and Sunday, November 3, 2019, 4:00 to 7:00 pm.  Call Backs will be held on Monday, November 4, 2019, starting at 7:00 pm.

Ruddigore, or The Witch’s Curse, is Gilbert and Sullivan’s parody of Victorian melodrama, traditionally set in the Regency Period, decades before Gilbert and Sullivan’s time.  In our upcoming production, Director Joe Andrews will take us decades before our time with his vision of Ruddigore set as a classic 1940s Hollywood film noir.

This production will be directed by Joe Andrews, with Choreography by Penelope Freeh and Music Direction by Dr. Randal Buikema.

The auditions will be held at:

Lake Harriet Methodist Church
4901 South Chowen Avenue
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55410

Roles in Ruddigore


    Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd, Disguised as Robin Oakapple (baritone)
    Richard Dauntless, A sailor, Robin’s foster brother (tenor)
    Sir Despard Murgatroyd, The wicked baronet of Ruddigore (bass / baritone)
    Old Adam Goodheart, Robin’s faithful retainer (bass)
    Sir Roderick Murgatroyd, A ghost, a former baronet of Ruddigore (bass / baritone)
    Rose Maybud, A village maiden (soprano)
    Mad Margaret, A mad woman, in love with Sir Despard (mezzo)
    Dame Hannah, Rose’s aunt (contralto)
    Zorah, A professional bridesmaid (soprano / chorus)
    Ruth, A professional bridesmaid (speaking role / chorus)


    Professional Bridesmaids, Gentlemen from London, Village Residents


All principal roles for the production will be cast through these auditions.  No principal roles are pre-cast.

While approximately a third of the Ensemble is already filled by performers who are company members, the remaining Ensemble vacancies, all voices, will be filled through these auditions.

All performers receive a stipend of $200.00.

To Audition

We ask you to bring a performance resume as well as a completed audition form, which we will email to you.  Those without performance resumes may simply submit a completed audition form.  We also ask you to bring a copy of your head shot or another good photo of yourself.

Please audition with a song or aria in English (other languages are acceptable), which may be an opera or operetta piece, a Gilbert and Sullivan selection, a show tune, etc.  No pop or rock music please.

An accompanist will be provided.  We strongly recommend that all those auditioning prepare an accompanied piece rather than something unaccompanied.

You do not need to prepare a monologue.  The Directors may provide you with sides during your audition.  If they do so, you will rehearse the sides privately with others who are auditioning and then present to the Directors.

Call Backs

Most of those being considered for a named role in the production will be asked to come to Call Backs, which will be held on Monday, November 4, 2019 starting at 7:00 pm.  You will be notified via email if you are being called back.  Those emails will be sent out on Sunday, November 5, 2019 after auditions are completed that evening.

You will be notified for which role or roles you’ll be asked to read and sing.  Sides will be provided at Call Backs.  The music that will be used for specific roles is available on this page in the near future.

Rehearsal Schedule

Full Cast Introductory Rehearsal: Monday, January 20, 2020, from 7:00 to 10:00 pm.

Ensemble rehearsals begin promptly at 7:00 pm and run until 10:00 pm on Monday and Thursday nights.  The Ensemble will be called to rehearse on Tuesdays, as necessary.

Principal rehearsals will be scheduled by the Directors, and will generally occur, as scheduled, on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 10:00 pm and Saturday mornings from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.  Principals will be called on Mondays and Thursdays, as necessary.

Rehearsals are held at Lake Harriet Methodist Church, 4901 Chowen Avenue South, Minneapolis, from Monday, January 20, 2020 to Saturday, February 29, 2020.

Directions to rehearsal space – Google Map

Rehearsals will be held at the Howard Conn Fine Arts Center, 1900 Nicollet Avenue South, Minneapolis from Monday, March 2, 20120 to the Thursday, March 12, 2020 Preview Performance.  Directions – Google Map

Tech Week: Sunday, March 8, 2020 to Wednesday, March 11, 2020, with the night off on Tuesday, March 10, 2020.  Estimated call: 6:30 to 11:00 pm.

The Sunday, March 8, 2020 rehearsal is an Understudy Rehearsal.  All cast members are called.  Estimated call: 6:30 pm.

Preview Performance: Thursday, March 12, 2020.  Estimated call: 6:30 pm.

Performance Schedule

Thursday, March 12, 7:30 pm, Preview Performance
Fridays, March 13, 20, 27, April 3, 7:30 pm, Evening Performances
Saturdays, March 16, 21, 28, April 4, 7:30 pm, Evening Performances
Saturday, March 28, 2:00 pm, Matinee Performance
Sundays, March 14, 22, 29, April 5, 2:00 pm, Matinee Performances

The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company performs at the Howard Conn Fine Arts Center, 1900 Nicollet Avenue South, Minneapolis.


We intend for casting to be completed by Monday, November 18, 2020.  We will call those being offered principal roles first.  They are given a limited amount of time to accept or decline the offer before the offer will go to the next candidate.  After the principal roles have been filled, those being offered Ensemble roles will be called.  Finally, we will notify via email those whom we are unable to cast.  This process usually takes about two weeks, but everyone who auditions will be called or notified via email.

To Schedule an Audition

We are scheduling auditions now, with everyone scheduled for a specific audition date and time.  If you would like to schedule an audition, you may do so on our Ruddigore Audition Sign-Up page.

“They sing so nicely too!”

—Lady Blanche
Princess Ida