King Charles lll
by Mike Bartlett
Production dates : June 24, 25, 26 & 27 2020
Directed by : Mike Wells
Winner of the 2015 Olivier Award for Best New Play, King Charles III is the “fresh, thrilling and fearlessly comic” drama of political intrigue by Mike Bartlett, with sensational runs in London’s West End and on Broadway. This controversial “future history play” explores the people underneath the crowns, the unwritten rules of Britain’s democracy and the conscience of its most famous family.
After a lifetime of waiting, Prince Charles ascends the throne with Camilla by his side. As William, Kate, and Harry look on, he prepares for the future of power that lies before him. But how to rule?
The play looks at the future rule in terms of a Shakespearian drama, with a king struggling to rule in terms of his ideals and facing political intrigue and a ghost from the past.
Monday March 9th : 7.45 pm –
Southwick Community Centre, BN42 4TE
Thursday March 12th : 7.45 pm –
Southwick Community Centre, BN42 4TE
To audition, you do not have to be member of the Company. Do let me know if you want to audition but really can’t make the dates.
Below – a list of roles : some could be played by a man or a woman.
There is a chance to be involved if you would like to play small role or roles and there is a chance to play bigger roles. Like a Shakespeare play it is an ensemble piece and there is no problem with doubling. The play is written in blank verse but without the challenging vocabulary of a real Shakespeare play.
What an opportunity to play well known people! BUT this is not a look- a- like or sound a- like exercise. You play a character and you don’t just impersonate the royal family. When Tim Piggott Smith took the role of Charles he did not do an impression – he offered a real character. This is a fantasy not a realistic projection of what will happen so in this version Harry has not married Meghan, for instance,
This is a play which has been widely formed by a variety of professional and amateur companies and is not a political statement or a republican tract. It is a clever, fast, funny and sometimes moving study of power and responsibility. It needs crisp characterisation, fast pace and lots of energy – like a good Shakespeare production. Its popularity with both actors and audiences suggest that this is going to be both fun to do and rewarding.
This production will be staged in the round.
Roles available (Gender, playing age)
Some of the roles below are suitable for doubling and could be played by men or women. Several characters appear for only one scene and, whilst the actors will be used in other scenes (as MPs, members of the press, rioters etc) it is likely doubling will occur.
King Charles III (M, c70)
The titular role is by far the biggest role of the play. Well meaning and tries hard, however struggles to come to terms with life as King rather than King-in-waiting.
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall (F, c70)
Camilla is a relatively small role compared to the other royals. She appears mostly at Charles’ side, and frequently is seen embattled against the younger royals for what she perceives as lack of respect for their elders.
William, Duke of Cambridge (M, 30s)
A faithful servant to both his father and the crown, William is stuck in the middle of opposing forces from different sides of his life throughout the majority of the play.
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (F, 30s)
Kate’s role in the play is mostly served as trying to guide William to resolve matters from the outset. Shown as very much in control and an equal to William. Also gets on well with Jess and the Prime Minister.
Prince Harry (M, early 30s)
The driver of the second plotline, meets a republican girlfriend and spends a lot of the play debating whether he wants to remain a royal or become a “commoner”.
James Reiss, Press Secretary to King Charles III (M, 50s but flexible)
James has worked as Press Secretary to Charles for thirty years. He is the confidant of Jess during her troubles with the press and switches allegiances from the King towards the end of the play.
Evans, Prime Minister (either M or F, 40+)
The Prime Minister finds themselves in a difficult position throughout the play. Spends much of the early scenes in debate with Charles, trying to make him see that the Bill cannot be altered and that he must sign. Then proposes removing Royal Assent entirely, and is seen to represent the public’s views much of the time.
Stevens, Leader of the Opposition (either M or F , 40+)
The Leader of the Opposition is the politician who subtly nudges Charles along the path towards dissolving Parliament, however maintains the public front of supporting the Prime Minister when difficulties emerge between Crown and State.
Ghost (of Diana) (F, under 35)
appears twice, with the same purpose on both occasions. She is there to tell both Charles and William they will be great kings. We may put the voice on tape.
Spencer and Cootsy (M, late 20s/early 30s)
Contemporaries and friends of Prince Harry.
Jess (F, 20s or 30s)
Republican, love interest of Harry. Battles with her hatred of royalty with her attraction to Harry.
Sarah and Nick or Nicola (M or F. Flexible re ages)
Chief Political and Communications Advisers to the Prime Minister. Both appear in one scene, when the Prime Minister needs to discuss Charles’ refusal to sign the bill.
Speaker of the House of Commons (M or F, 50s+)
Appears in the climax to the first half, when Charles dissolves Parliament.
Terry, Royal Security (M or F )
Appears in one scene, during the riots. Charged with protecting Harry.
Free Newspaper Seller (M/F any age)
Single speech character who opens the second half, serves as narrator to bridge audience into the riot scenes.
Sir Gordon, Chief of Defence (M, 50s+)
Single conversation with Charles – regarding the parking of tanks outside Buckingham Palace.
Head of the Metropolitan Police (M or F, 50s+)
Single conversation with the Prime Minister, William and Kate – to update them on the riots spread across the United Kingdom.
Butler (either, flexible)
Appears to introduce three characters in three different scenes.
Kebab vendor (male, any age)
Single conversation – with Harry, where Harry first discloses he is thinking about quitting his “job” due to Jess.
TV Producer (M or F any age )
Single scene – in conversation with Charles and William.
Archbishop of Canterbury (M, 60+)
Closes the play with the coronation.
‘Chorus’ : Clubbers, Attendants, Members of Parliament, Commuters, Protesters, Members of the Press (M/F)
Actors will be utilised to provide weight to crowd scenes at various points during the evening and will probably be doubled with smaller roles.. If actors specifically wanted to audition for non-speaking roles, they would be welcome to.
Sarah/newspaper seller/TV producer
Suggested Audition Pieces
- Charles – Monologue – page 16
- Charles and James – pages 104 – 106 (William enters)
- Charles and William – bottom of page 110 -113 (Evans enters)
- Camilla – pages 58 – 59
- Charles, Camilla, Kate, William, Harry – pages 11 -15 (Entrance of James)
- William – Monologue – page 101
- Harry and William – pages 63-65 (Kate’s entrance)
- Harry and Jess – pages 38 – 40 (James’s entrance) and pages 119 -120
- Kate – Monologue – pages 91 – 92
- Clive – Monologue – page 34
- Sarah, Clive and Mr Evans – pages 33 -35
- James and Jess – pages 55 -57
- Stevens (could be Mr or Mrs) and Charles – pages 59 -61
- Evans and Charles – pages 24 – 27
- Evans and Stevens – pages 36 -38
- Paul and Harry – pages 71 -74
- Speaker of the House, Charles , Evans, Stevens – pages 74 -77
- Free Newspaper Woman – page 78
- Sir Gordon and Charles – pages 82 -84
- Sir Michael (Head of Met, could be a woman) Evans, Kate – pages 93-94
- TV Producer, James, Charles – pages 97 -99 (to entrance of William and Kate)
- Ghost of Diana and Charles – pages 62 -63
- Ghost of Diana and William – pages 70 and 71
- Cootsy and Spencer, Harry, Jess – pages 19 – 24
- Archbishop of Canterbury – page 121