The Crucible

by Arthur Miller

Directed by Liz Greaves-Hoxsie


The Crucible has been a classic of American theatre since 1953 when it received the Tony Award for Best Play. Based on the 17th century Salem witch trials, it tells the story of the eternal love triangle - wife, husband and mistress. John Proctor had an affair with his young servant girl, Abigail Williams, who was then fired by his wife, Elizabeth. Abigail is sure John will return to her if she can get rid of Elizabeth. She gathers a group of girls to dance in the forest and invoke the powers of darkness against Elizabeth. However, they are discovered and are now at risk of being called witches. Abigail leads them to strike first and accuse others (including Elizabeth) of witchcraft. John tries to protect Elizabeth, although he is fearful that his affair with Abigail will become known. A group of girls that had been powerless become all powerful as the tidal wave of accusations grows. A paranoia grips the community as neighbors are arrested, convicted, and sent to the gallows. The play is a timeless story of a community gripped by anxiety and betrayal, of a community's abandonment of people who have been labeled “the other,” of the brutality of the mob, and the price of integrity.

Audition dates and times

Saturday, February 24 at 1pm
Sunday, February 25 at 5pm
Monday, February 26 at 7:30pm
Tuesday, February 27 at 7:30pm

Callbacks (if needed):
Wednesday, February 28 at 7:30 pm

Riverside Arts Center
67 N. Huron
Ypsilanti, MI 48197

Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script.

Performance dates

May 10–19, 2018
Rehearsals start the week of March 4 and will take place at the Riverside Arts Center.


11 women and 10 men. Any ethnicity will fit any character. The ages of the characters are not fixed — some characters may be cast older or younger.

Reverend Samuel Parris (male, 40–49) — minister of the church in Salem; a widower, self-righteous, austere and controlling; protective of his reputation and assets; paranoid that his enemies are attempting to overthrow him; his status in the community is undermined when he finds his young daughter dancing in the woods and now she seems to be possessed by the devil.

Giles Corey (male, 50–79) — a farmer; salt of the earth with a good heart, plainspoken, hardworking; still physically powerful; straightforward and unrefined; has little formal education and relies on his common sense; speaks before thinking.

Rebecca Nurse (female 50–79) — an elder of the Salem community; pious, kind, patient and virtuous; her age, combined with the respect she has earned, has made her unafraid to voice her opinions; appalled by the behavior of the witch trials, she stands solidly in the path of the tidal wave of fear, hatred, and bigotry until it engulfs her.

Thomas Putnam (male, 40–59) — wealthy landowner in Salem; savvy, politic, shrewd; even in the furor and chaos of the trials, he is able to see opportunity for profit.

Ann Putnam (female, 40–49) — wife of Thomas Putnam; brittle, fretful, and anxious; haunted by the loss of her seven children, her grief has left her embittered and resentful of others' good fortune.

Judge John Hawthorne (male, 40–49) — runs the witch trials, second in command to Judge Danforth; confident and resolute; believes strongly in his own authority and importance; ignores any dissent voiced by the community.

Mary Warren (female, 13–19) — the Proctors' servant girl; timid and emotionally fragile; particularly susceptible to persuasion and coercion by stronger personalities.

Tituba (female, any age) — Reverend Parris' slave, born in Barbados and brought to Salem; wary and cautious; exhausted and worn down after years of abuse; spiritual; rooted in a cultural tradition that is perceived as completely foreign by the small, insular Salem community.

Ezekiel Cheever (male, 30–49) — officer of the court; takes his responsibilities extremely seriously even when it involves arresting friends and neighbors; torn between duty and humanity.

Francis Nurse (male, 70–79) — elder of Salem and the husband of Rebecca Nurse; an upstanding member of the community; honest and straightforward; when his wife is accused he comes to her aid and attempts to reason with the court for her release.

Betty Parris (female, 13–16) — youngest of Abigail's group of girls; fearful, nervous, easily intimidated by Abigail.

Mercy Lewis (female, 13–19) — Putnam's servant and one of the girls identifying witches; clever and sly; friend and confidant of Abigail's, she functions as Abigail's lieutenant and second in command.

Susannah Walcott (female, 13–16) — one of the girls identifying witches; nervous and worried.

John Proctor (male, 35–50) — farmer; independent, forthright, opinionated; deeply complicated; despises hypocrisy, most especially in himself; has little patience for the pretense and duplicity of the church or for making a show of his devotion; tormented by guilt over his recent affair with Abigail Williams; he tries to save his wife, yet hesitates to expose Abigail as a fraud because he worries that his secret will be revealed and his good name ruined. Weighed down by guilt, Proctor journeys to regain his self-respect and redemption.

Abigail Williams (female, 16–17) — Reverend Parris' orphaned niece who used to be a serving girl in the Proctor household; impulsive, strong-willed, passionate, with a potent sexuality and a fiery temper; unwilling to accept her status in life and keenly aware of her own power, she is determined to get what she wants.

Elizabeth Proctor (female, 30–45) — John Proctor's wife; honest, proud, faithful, and principled; a person who sees little or no latitude when it comes to what is right; at times, her rigid austerity tips toward coldness; deeply hurt by her husband's infidelity, but still loves him fiercely.

Judge George Danforth (male, 50–69) — Deputy Governor of Massachusetts; called to Salem to preside over the trials; imperious, absolute, commanding; relishes his own power; knows the law and is unwilling to deviate from it or entertain exceptions or opposing views; not afraid to use his position and authority to bully suspects and dissenters.

Reverend John Hale (male, 40–59) — respected minister and expert on witchcraft; brought to Salem to judge the veracity of the girls' claims; observant, judicious, rational; a man of faith; he truly believes in his power to heal and return individuals to God; believes honestly in the trials until they begin to veer out of control.

Sarah Good (female, any age) — a homeless woman and one of the first accused of witchcraft; eccentric, slovenly, and prone to inappropriate outbursts, her unbecoming behavior sets her apart from the rest of the community.

Hopkins (male, 30–59) — guard in the prison.

George Herrick (male, 35–40) — marshal of the court; sympathetic and kind to the accused who are under his watch; attentive to his duties, but not overzealous.


Contact Liz Greaves-Hoxsie, Director, at 734.662.2063 or
Liz directed PTD’s 2017 production of August: Osage County.