Casting for “Mutually Assured Destruction”


Sofia Douglas, Staff Writer

For the first time, Director Victoria Alvarado had to cut nine actors during auditions for the school play, Mutually Assured Destruction: 10 Plays About Brothers and Sisters. There were not enough roles for everyone who auditioned; twenty students were cast. Auditions took place on September 17th from 2:45-4:15 p.m. in the Hieber Theater.

Jayla Field, an actor in this production, playing as Andrea, says the auditions are stressful but fun at the same time. The auditioners have to wait and tend to think the worst because you never know what part you are going to get… or not get at all. 

This year was the first in many that Alvarado had to cut actors. It’s a rare occurrence when she has to cut people from a cast. She says “I always try to find a featured role for each student who auditions.” However, this is not always possible; an example of this is how there is no ensemble (background cast) in this show, so people were cut. Once auditioners have been cut, the director has to cast the actors into roles. Ms. Alvarado explained how casting is challenging because she is disappointing so many actors, and she doesn’t enjoy it. “Prior to auditions, I read a play at least two times. After auditions, I read the play again. It takes me several days and several drafts of the cast list to come to a final decision.” Victoria explains. Victoria makes sure to have the right role set for everyone who is cast.

“You have the people who have proven themselves talented and directors will often stick with that talent because if you take a risk with someone new, you are taking that leap of faith.” Jayla says as she is describing why the directors take upperclassmen more often in plays. Another drama student explains it’s not favoritism as some might think, just that the upperclassmen tend to have already proven themselves dependable. If freshmen blow the directors away, they will get a good part; generally, everyone gets into the play even as an ensemble where you can still showcase their talents. Again, this show wasn’t like that so actors were cut.

Ms. Alvarado said “[she] take[s] detailed notes during auditions (especially on auditioners who [she hasn’t] had the opportunity to work with before).” She says she pays attention to height and features of the actors too, because sometimes for roles, it’s important; in Mutually Assured Destruction it helps if the actors look similar to each other because they are supposed to be siblings. Victoria makes sure everyone is  evaluated fairly to make sure her decisions are fair. Miss Victoria and Jayla are both excited to see how this play is brought to life. If you wish to see the play, performances will take place on October 28th and 29th in the Hieber Theater at Goffstown High School.