Theater on the Run, 3700 S. Four Mile Run Drive, Arlington, VA 22206
5 Women, 6 Men, multi-cultural casting
Cold readings from the script
Poignant, poetic, powerful, and profound capture some of A Streetcar Named Desire, the Pulitzer Prize winning and widely regarded finest play written by Tennessee Williams. Set in the steamy, languid post-war New Orleans French Quarter, imagination and reality clash in honest rawness and sympathy. Stella and Stanley, a young couple enjoy a happy and active life together with their neighbors and friends, when Stella’s sister Blanche arrives following the foreclosure of the family home. The intimacy and close quarters of the two-room apartment turn from genial to conflict when rough and refined personalities collide toward a haunting resolution.
Stanley Kowalski, 20’s-30’s, is a self-made, working-class man, married to Stella. He served in World War 2 as an Army Engineer and now works as a successful factory parts salesman. He is spontaneous, impetuous, quick tempered, loud, boisterous, rough-hewn, passionate, highly sexual and can be violent. He sees people and situations on face value and distrusts complicated people. He is driven on instincts, which can be protective (as in his love for Stella) or destructive.
Stella Kowalski, 20’s-30’s, sister to Blanche, was born to wealth, privilege and gentility, but rejected her past life and has embraced fully her new home with her husband Stanley and their working-class friends. She is determined, passionate, devoted, loyal, confident in her choices, and highly sexual. She is protective of both her husband and sister, but finds herself torn between them.
Blanche DuBois, 20’s-40’s, sister to Stella, was similarly born into wealth of the old-time Southern traditions. She became a schoolteacher and was briefly married to a young man who killed himself. Due to family deaths and debts, she was evicted from her family home "Belle Reve". In spite of losing her job and reputation, she maintains a veneer of social snobbery and sexual propriety. She loves fine clothes and objects. She is vain, lost, delicate, fearful of aging, haunted by her past, desperate for love and affection, and tries to reassure herself with drink and illusive dreams.
Harold Mitchell (Mitch), 20’s-30’s, is a buddy of Stanley’s from their Army days, and of the regular poker players. He is single and lives with his ill mother, to whom he is devoted. He is lonely, romantic, traditional, and wishes for a relationship like Stanley’s and Stella’s. He has a sensitive side and is not as boisterous as his friends, but underneath he has a temper. He sees people and situations on face value.
Eunice Hubbell, 30’s-40’s, neighbor to Stanley and Stella, married to Steve, is a no-nonsense, practical woman, who holds nothing back. She can fight with her husband and the next moment leap into his arms, every emotion is at full throttle. She is a confidant and protective of Stella.
Steve Hubbell, 30’s-40’s, neighbor to Stanley and Stella, married to Eunice, is one of Stanley’s poker buddies. He is unrefined, hot-blooded, working-class man, who accepts the world exactly as it is. He and Eunice are a pair with no holds barred from violence to sex.
Pablo Gonzalez, 30’s-40’s, is one of Stanley’s poker buddies. While from the same mold as his buddies, he tries to be a peacemaker at times. He enjoys the traditions and the camaraderie of the game. He doesn’t pull punches and also sees and says it like it is.
The following characters with lines will be double cast either among these roles or other characters on stage:
Woman, 30’s-50’s, friend to Eunice and Stella, she knows the neighborhood and all its characters and has a great sense of humor about all the personalities and goings on. (Traditionally, African-American actress).
Flower Vendor/Mexican Woman, 30’s-50’s, is a vendor of flowers in the tradition of Mexican funeral decorations. She has her plaintive call “Flores para los muertos,” which means “Flowers for the dead.”
A Young Collector, 15-20’s, is a teenager who collects for the newspaper subscriptions. He is poised, respectful and dedicated to his job.
Nurse, 30’s-50’s, also known as Matron, is stern, serious, strong and professional. She has the difficult task of working with sometimes unpredictable, mentally ill patients. She knows she is often called upon to subdue or restrain patients.
Doctor, 40’s-70’s, is serious, professional, and experienced. He understands his patients and can read their behavior. He is basically kind and sensitive.