Shakespeare in Love

Based on the Screenplay by Marc Norman & Tom Stoppard adapted for the Stage by Lee Hall



Penniless and indebted to two-demanding producers, struggling young playwright, William Shakespeare is tormented by writer's block, until he meets the beautiful Viola de Lesseps, daughter of a wealthy merchant, whose fiery passion for poetry leaves her secretly longing to be an actor. Viola quickly becomes the playwright’s muse, while she disguises herself as a man to become a player.  Both are despondent when they learn that Viola’s father has promised her to the stuffy Lord Wessex in order to gain a title for their family. Under veil of secrecy, Will and Viola’s passionate love affair becomes the basis of the very play he is writing – Romeo and Juliet. With opening night – and the wedding day – fast approaching, the plots race toward a parallel conclusion. Will it all work out in the end or are the two star-crossed lovers destined for tragedy?

From Samuel French Acting Edition

This is based on the Academy Award-winning film, and it is the first year that community theater groups around the country have the opportunity to obtain rights to this play. PTD Productions is excited to be one of three theater groups in Michigan producing this play in 2018.


Audition dates and times

Sunday, August 26 7-9pm

Monday, August 27 7-9pm

Callbacks (if needed):

Wednesday, August 29 7-9pm

Riverside Arts Center
67 N. Huron
Ypsilanti, MI 48197

Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script.

Performance dates

November 8-17

Performances will be held at

Riverside Arts Center.


All roles are open to actors of any ethnicity. Multiple roles may be available for some actors.


MUSIC: Most actors will have the opportunity to be part of the chorus, and some chorus members will just have singing roles.

DIALECTS: While a British account is not necessary, excellent enunciation will be required.


WILL SHAKESPEARE: Male, late 20’s-40, writer and poet

KIT MARLOWE: Male, late 20’s-mid 40’s, friend to Will, respected playwright

VIOLA: Female, 20’s-30’s, Wealthy young woman who disguises herself as Thomas Kent to audition for Shakespeare’s play

FENNYMAN: Male, mid 30’s to 50’s, financial backer of Henslowe’s production

HENSLOWE: Male, mid 30’s to 50’s, owner of Rose Theatre

BURBAGE: Male, 30’s to 50, famous and accomplished actor/stage manager

MISTRESS QUICKLY: Female, 25-55, wardrobe mistress

QUEEN ELIZABETH I:  Female, mid 30’s-50’s; last queen of Tudor dynasty

TILNEY: Male, early 30’s-60, Master of Revels responsible for censorship of plays

NURSE: Female, early 30’s-mid 50’s, Viola’s nurse and confidante

ROBERT DE LESSEPS: Male, 50-60’s, Viola’s father

LORD WESSEX: Male, mid 20’s-40’s, betrothed to Viola

RALPH: Male, 20’s-40’s, novice actor, plays Nurse and Petruchio

NOL: Male, 20’s-40’s, novice actor, plays Benvolio and Samson

ROBIN: Male, 20’s-40’s, novice actor, plays Lady Capulet

ADAM: Male, 20’s-40’s, novice actor, plays Gregory, Benvolio, and Servingman

JOHN WEBSTER: Male, 13-18, street urchin who aspires to be an actor

WABASH: Male, 30-40, novice actor, Henslowe’s stammering tailor

NED ALLEYN: Male, 20-40, lead actor of Admiral’s Men, plays Mercutio

SAM: Male, 20-40, plays Juliet

PETER: Male, 20-40, plays Tybalt

LAMBERT: Male, Fennyman’s henchman

FREES: Male, Fennyman’s henchman


CATLING: Male, guard at De Lesseps Hall

GUARDS: Male (2) guards at De Lesseps Hall




MOLLY: Female, tavern whore

KATE: Female, tavern whore


ACTOR: Male, plays Abraham

ACTOR: Male, plays Valentine

ACTOR: Male, plays Proteus



Contact Joe York, director, at or 734-646-2713