The director will call actors in for an in-person audition if interested. Audition videos should be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org We are looking to cast the role before Thanksgiving. Rehearsals will begin the week of December 1st. We can work around schedules in December. There will be no rehearsals during the week between Christmas and New Years. Here's a short character breakdown:
Charlie and Ethel:
NORMAN. But, you've already filled the buckets.
ETHEL. Don't move. (He doesn't. She exits into the kitchen. The sound of a motorboat can be heard. Norman looks to the lake.) NORMAN. Here comes whatshisname. He'll be bringing the paper, you know. I wouldn't want to miss any career opportunities just because I'm out looking for strawberries.
ETHEL. (Coming back with an empty bucket.} I'll pay you, Norman. It could be the beginning of something big. You may become a major strawberry picker.
NORMAN. Not ifl have to be bending over all the time. I think you're trying to kill me.
ETHEL. I've thought about it.
NORMAN. You needn't bother. I'm on borrowed time as it is. ETHEL. Would you please take your cheery personality and get out of here?
NORMAN. Maybe I could lie down to pick the berries. ETHEL. Would you go on?
NORMAN. Where did you say these strawberries were? Other than on the ground I mean?
ETHEL. On the old town road. Just up from the meadow. (He exits. Ethel watches him go. There's a look in her eyes, partly concern, partly pleasure at making old Norman get moving. She closes the door and crosses the room, tidies the pile of newspapers. The motor is very loud now. Ethel steps up onto the plaiform and looks down at the lake. She opens the wooden door and calls through the screen.) Yoo hoo! Charlie! Hey! (The motor stops.) Good morning. Got some coffee on, if you'd like. Come on up, you can take five minutes off. I'll write you a note and you can send it to the Postmaster General. (She steps quickly to the kitchen where she can be heard banging about. After a moment Charlie Martin appears on the porch. He's a big, round, blond-haired man, weather beaten face, smiling eyes, strong Maine accent. He is indeed a laugher, but not exactly ''deficient. " In his rustic, simple, thoughiful way, he is actually quite charming. He carries a small package, a rolled newspaper, and several letters. He peers through the screen door.)
CHARLIE. Morning, Ethel.
ETHEL. (Opening the kitchen door and leaning out.} Come in, Charlie, and have a seat. Like a biscuit?
CHARLIE. Sure. (She goes back inside. Charlie pulls the screen door. It falls back over on him. He wrestles with it and it slams down onto the porch.) Uh oh. (Ethel comes back out, having heard the noise.) I
think I broke your door.
ETHEL. Oh, no. It's been that way for a month now. I should have warned you. Norman is supposed to fix it. It's not high on his list of priorities. I'm afraid.
CHARLIE. (He sets down the mail and leans the door up against the wall.) I could give it a try. It's just missing its little thing-amabobbers, that's all.
ETHEL. No, better let Norman get to it. Come in and let's close the big door before every mosquito in the county finds its way in here. (He steps in, laughing, leaving the mail outside.)
CHARLIE. Pretty bad this year, huh?
ETHEL. Worse than ever. Sit down. How's your brother? We haven't seen him at all this season.
CHARLIE. You mean Tom?
ETHEL. That's the only brother you have, isn't it?
CHARLIE. Yes. He's fine. He's just come back up from Portland. Got stopped twice for speeding. Once down and once up. (He laughs.) By the same policeman. (He laughs. Ethel comes in with a coffee carafe.) You should have seen his face.
ETHEL. I love your laugh, Charlie.
CHARLIE. Thank you. (He laughs.) Tom wasn't too happy to hear it yesterday. I don't know, it just struck me as awfully funny that he could be stupid enough to be stopped twice by the same cop. When he told me, I couldn't stop laughing. (He laughs. He stops.) Tom's not speaking to me anymore now. (He helps himself to his cof fee and grabs a biscuit. Ethel smiles at him.) Where's Norman? ETHEL. Norman is off picking strawberries. I threw him out. (Charlie laughs.) Don't laugh. (Charlie stops.) Norman is restless this year. I don't know what's got into him. How's your mother? CHARLIE. My mother?
CHARLIE. She's holding her own. (He laughs and laughs.) She fell down, you know, a couple of months ago.
ETHEL. I didn't know that.
CHARLIE. Yuh, a couple of months ago, right on her rump, when she was out helping clean up the town common with the Ladies' Auxiliary. She was having a tug-a-war with a dead juniper bush, and she won, or lost, depending on how you look at it. (He laughs.) She hasn't been normal since. (He laughs.) She walks all right, and sleeps and everything. She just can't sit. (He snickers.) It's taken a little adjustment. (He laughs and laughs. Ethel smiles.) If you'll pardon the expression, she's one old lady who really believes in busting her ass for the community. (He howls. Ethel joins in, neither of them noticing at first as Norman steps in, carrying a bucket.) Hi, Norman.
NORMAN. Huh. What sort of car is it?
CHELSEA. Oh, I don't know. Red, I think.
ETHEL. (very cheerily.) Ooh! A red car!
NORMAN. No, I meant - what sort of make is it? CHELSEA. (Stymied.) Um. I don't know.
ETHEL. She doesn't know, dear. It doesn't matter.
NORMAN. Of course it doesn't matter. I was just curious. CHELSEA. Well, I should have looked, I guess. It's um, very ugly and it breaks down a lot.
NORMAN. Ugly and it breaks down a lot. That sounds like a [Nash]. I bet they bought up all the old [Nashes] all over the country and are renting them to unsuspecting customers. CHELSEA. I'll bet.
NORMAN. I'll bet, too.
CHELSEA. Well. Okay. (A standoff. She turns away.) Well. The old house looks exactly the same.
NORMAN. The old house is exactly the same. Just older. Like its inhabitants.
CHELSEA. Well ...
ETHEL. Where's your friend? You did bring your friend, didn't you? CHELSEA. I knew I was forgetting something.
NORMAN. That's still on then, huh?
CHELSEA. As far as I know. It was two minutes ago. I may have
been deserted. It wouldn't be the first time. Are you two ready? ETHEL. Of course. We can't wait.
NORMAN. That's right. We can't wait.
CHELSEA. Great. (She steps toward the door and calls.) Hey! Come on in. Nobody's going to bite you. I hope. (Norman and Ethel watch expectantly and Billy Ray enters. He is thirteen, short and flippant, but only to cover his awkwardness. He is eager and bright, his hair long, his posture terrible. He carries a backpack, a duffel bag and a boom box into the room, dumping them unceremoniously on the floor, as Norman and Ethel watch in wonder.) Mommy and Norman, this is Billy Ray. BILLY. How ya <loin'?
NORMAN. You seem awfully young to be a dentist.
BILLY. I'm a midget.
NORMAN. Oh, really?
CHELSEA. This is Billy Ray, Junior.
NORMAN. Oh. I'm Norman Thayer, Junior.
CHELSEA. His dad is out trying to soothe the car.
ETHEL. (Stepping forward.) What a nice surprise! Hello, Billy.
You can call me Ethel. And you can call Norman Norman. CHELSEA. I like your logic, Mommy. (She steps to the door.) I better see if Bill's gotten lost. He was trying to turn around. He probably drove into the lake. (She exits. Ethel steps to the door and looks out. Norman and Bilry stare at each other.)
ETHEL. It's so dark outside. It never used to be this dark. BILLY. I hear you turned eighty today.
NORMAN. Is that what you heard?
BILLY. Yeah. That's really old.
NORMAN. Oh? You should meet my father.
BILLY. Your father's still alive?
NORMAN. No. But you should meet him.
ETHEL. (Turning back to the room.) This is so much fun! Norman, why don't we put Billy in Chelsea's old room and then he can look out on the lake in the morning.
NORMAN. Why don't we put him out on the float and he can look at the lake all night long.
BILLY. I'd like that.
ETHEL. I'm afraid you'd be eaten alive by all the bugs. NORMAN. So?
ETHEL. Norman, take him up and show him where everything is. NORMAN. Come on, boy. Get your clutter. (Billy does and he follows Norman up the stairs.)
BILLY. I just had a birthday, too. I turned thirteen two weeks ago. NORMAN. We're practically twins.
BILLY. We're sixty-six years and fifty weeks apart.
NORMAN. You're quick, aren't you?
BILLY. Oh, yeah. (They go into the room at the landing. Chelsea steps back in downstairs.}
CHELSEA. He's coming. He thought he had to lock the doors. ETHEL. Well, you never know; the changes around here. CHELSEA. (Stepping to Ethel.) Norman looks very old. ETHEL. Really? Well, I don't know.
CHELSEA. You look great though.
ETHEL. Thank you. So do you. I love your hair like that. CHELSEA. You do? (She touches her hair se/fconsciousry. She leans to her mother, not noticing Norman appear on the landing above.) How's his mind? Is he remembering things any better?
ETHEL. Oh, he's all right.
NORMAN. (Loudry.) Come on, Billy. I'll show you the bathroom, if I can remember where it is. (He disappears into the hallway. Bill
Ray bursts through the door. Attractive and well-dressed, a tad self serious but with a good sense of humor when he remembers to use it. He drops his several suitcases, out of breath and more than a little rattled) CHELSEA. Look at you. You made it.
BILL. Yes. I think I saw a bear.
CHELSEA. I doubt that. Bill, this is my mother. Mommy, Bill Ray. ETHEL. (Shaking Bill's hand) I'm very pleased you could come. Welcome to Golden pond.
BILL. Thank you. Do you have a dog?
ETHEL. What? No. (To Chelsea.) You know, I tried to interest Norman in getting a dog this summer, but he went into some morbid diatribe about how unfair it is to take on a puppy if you're planning to die soon.
CHELSEA. You could have gotten him an old dog. Something on its last leg.
ETHEL. Well, Norman is still in mourning for Chum, I'm afraid. CHELSEA. (To Bill) Chum was a Labrador retriever who passed on just twenty short years ago.
BILL. (Not exact!J following.) Oh. Do any of your neighbors have dogs?
ETHEL. Um. No, I don't believe so.
BILL. Then I definitely saw a bear.
ETHEL. Oh, no, I don't think there'd be a bear out there this time of year. They go pretty far into the woods when the summer people show up. There are a lot of very nasty moths flying around, though, I'm sorry to say.
BILL. This was kind of big for a moth.
CHELSEA. Probably a wild boar, then. (Bill looks at her, not immediate!J comforted by her Norman-like drollery. She smiles, taking his hand) Bill, you want to visit the men's room before you go through the shock of meeting my father?
BILL. Huh? Uh. No. I'm all right. (There is a clatter on the stairs, and Bil!J leaps down, followed by Norman.)
CHELSEA. Too late anyway.
BILLY. Dad. They do have indoor plumbing.
BILL. (Embarrassed) Oh. Good.
BILLY. (Crossing down into the room.) Chelsea was bullshitting us. BILL. Billy.
CHELSEA. (To Ethel) I always try to paint a rustic picture of life on Golden Pond.
ETHEL. Oh, it's rustic all right.
BILL. It's lovely, though. Lovely rusticity. (He turns wari!J, feeling Norman bearing down on him.)
NORMAN. We've been peeing indoors for forty years.
BILL. Oh. You must be Norman.
NORMAN. Yes, I must be. Who are you?
BILL. Bill Ray. (He puts out his hand. Norman shakes it.) NORMAN. Bill Ray. The dentist?
BILL. Um. Yes.
NORMAN. Want to see my teeth? (He bares them.)
BILL. (Smiling.) I just want to tell you how glad I am to be here, sir. Chelsea talks so much about you and your wife and your wonderful house on the lake, and I'm very pleased that she's brought us here. NORMAN. (He stares at Bill a moment, then turns to Chelsea.) Charlie's been asking for you.
CHELSEA. Charlie? (Norman responds by mimicking Charlie's laugh.) Holy Mackinoly. (To Bill) Charlie is our mailman. He was also my boyfriend every summer for twelve years. He taught me everything. BILL. (Goodnaturedly.) Isn't that amazing?
NORMAN. It is when you know Charlie. (A pause.) CHELSEA. Well. I'm going to say hello to the lake. Anyone like to come?
BILLY. Me. I've never seen anyone say hello to a lake. CHELSEA. Then this will be a valuable experience for you, wise guy. It's always my first order of business when I get to Golden Pond. Coming, Mommy?
ETHEL. Yes! Want to take the boat?
CHELSEA. Why not? Let's go, Bill.
BILL. Where? Outside?
CHELSEA. That's where the lake is. (She heads for the door. Ethel and Billy follow.) Coming, Norman?
ETHEL. Oh, come on.
NORMAN. No. I'm just going to sit here and enjoy the quiet. CHELSEA. Oh. Um ... (She looks to Ethel and then at Bill.) BILL. I think I'll stay, too.
ETHEL. Come on, Norman.
NORMAN. Don't be silly. I want to sit here and enjoy the quiet. With Bill. We can talk baseball.
Bill and Norman:
BILL. What shall I call your wife?
NORMAN. How about Ethel? That's her name. Ethel Thayer. Thoundth ath ith I'm lithping, doethn't it? Ethel Thayer. It almost kept her from marrying me. She wanted me to change my last name to hers.
BILL. What was that?
NORMAN. I don't remember. Ethel's all you need to know. That's the name she goes by.
BILL. I never knew. Chelsea always calls her Mommy. NORMAN. There's a reason for that.
BILL. But she calls you Norman.
NORMAN. There's a reason for that, too. (He pauses.) I am her father, if you're trying to figure it out. I'm her father but not her daddy. Ethel is her mommy, and I'm Norman.
BILL. (Confused.) Oh. Is it all right if I sit down?
NORMAN. As far as I'm concerned it is. (Bill sits. Norman stares at him. Bill tries to smile. Norman abruptly rises.) I think I'll start a new book. See if I can finish it before I'm finished mysel£ Maybe a novelette. (He steps to the shelves and studies the collection.) Maybe something in Reader's Digest Condensed. (He pulls down a book.) Here's Swiss Family Robinson. Ever read it?
BILL. Oh, yes. It's great. I'd recommend it.
NORMAN. No need for that. I've read it, too. (He sits again.) But my mind's going so it'll all be new to me. (He opens the book.) Has that son of yours read this book?
BILL. I ... don't think so.
NORMAN. Your son hasn't read Swiss Family Robinson?
BILL. No. But I intend to have him read it. I'm afraid his mother's been the motivating force in his life the last few years, the poor kid, and now I'm making a move to eradicate some of the ... dishevelment. (Norman stares at Bill without comment. He returns to his book. Bill feels compelled to communicate.) Yeah, things are coming together for me pretty nicely now. The practice is real strong, and I'm feeling very good about mysel£ Meeting Chelsea has been a major ... thing. And she's really flowering. She likes her job a lot, and she's been doing some beautiful paintings. We have a very kinetic relationship. Very positive. Pm sure you'd be pleased. (Norman looks up. There is a pause.)
NORMAN. What do you charge for a filling?
NORMAN. You're a dentist, aren't you? What do you charge for
BILL. Um. Start at about [ninety-five dollars].
NORMAN. [Ninety-five dollars]?! Good God! My brother charged [fifteen dollars] a filling right up until  when he raised it to [twenty]. That's when I stopped going to him.
BILL. Your brother is a dentist?
NORMAN. He was. When he was living.
BILL. Isn't that amazing?
NORMAN. I don't know. I think every family has one. (He returns to his book. Bill studies him, then chooses his words with care.) BILL. Norman. Um. I don't want to offend you, but there's a rather important little topic that I feel I have to broach. NORMAN. (Looking up.) I beg your pardon?
BILL. I don't want to offend you, but ... if it's all right with you, we'd like to sleep together.
NORMAN. What do you mean?
BILL. We'd like to sleep ... together ... in the same room ... in the same bed. If you don't find that offensive.
NORMAN. All three of you?
BILL. What? Oh, no. Just two.
NORMAN. You and Billy?
NORMAN. Not Chelsea and Billy?
BILL. No, sir.
NORMAN. That leaves only Chelsea and you then.
NORMAN. Why would I find that offensive? You're not planning on doing something unusual, are you?
BILL. Oh, no. Just ... (He can't go on.)
NORMAN. That doesn't seem too offensive, as long as you're quiet. BILL. Great.
NORMAN. Chelsea always used to sleep in the same bed with her husband.
BILL. Oh, I'm sure.
NORMAN. And Ethel and I do, you know. We sleep together. Been doing it for years.
BILL. Well, of course. But you're married and all.
BILL. Well ...
NORMAN. I think I'm beginning to see this more clearly. It's a moral issue, isn't it?
BILL. Well, it's just that we're of different generations, different mores ...
NORMAN. What is a more? I've never known.
BILL. Um ... a custom, I'd say. Or something.
NORMAN. Go on. Forgive me for interrupting.
BILL. Well, it's just a matter of points of view ...
NORMAN. (Interrupting.) I shouldn't have interrupted.
BILL. Oh. Of course. (Starting again.) It's just that I don't want our relationship to ...
NORMAN. It's a terrible social problem, I think.
BILL. Um ... ?
NORMAN. Interrupting. Not listening. The art of conversation went out with radio probably.
NORMAN. Or maybe with mirrors.
BILL. Um ...
NORMAN. Ever notice how people start to check themselves out in a mirror or a window or your eyeglasses when they're supposed to be listening?
BILL. Yes, I have noticed that.
NORMAN. It's a shifty sort of quality, I think.
NORMAN. Or perhaps it's just a form of egocentricity.
NORMAN. I do it.
BILL. You do?
NORMAN. Sure. Conversations bore me to tears. I always look for a little divertissement while I'm waiting for my turn to talk. BILL. Huh.
NORMAN. Pretty shabby, huh?
BILL. Well ...
NORMAN. I don't do it with Ethel. She's so pretty, isn't she? BILL. Yes.
NORMAN. After all these years I still can't get over how pretty she is. Or how handsome I am. That's the real reason I always look for a mirror. I like to keep checking. Make sure I haven't faded.
NORMAN. They say you fade with old age. They say your looks just go. Haven't seen a sign of it.
BILL. No, indeed.
NORMAN. What were we talking about?
BILL. Um ...
NORMAN. Sex, I believe. You were concerned that my morals somehow wouldn't mesh with yours.
NORMAN. Don't be silly. I'd be delighted to have you abusing my daughter under my own roo£
BILL. Um ...
NORMAN. Would you like the room where I first violated her mother, or would you be interested in the master bedroom? BILL. Norman ...
NORMAN. Ethel and your son and I could all sleep out back and you could do it right here on the hearth. Like that idea?
BILL. (He's embarrassed, but he's also heard enough. He smiles at Norman and shakes his head) You're having a good time, aren't you? NORMAN. Hmmm?
BILL. Chelsea told me all about you, about how you like to have a good time with people's heads. She does it, too, sometimes, and sometimes I can get into it. Sometimes not. I just want you to know that I'm very good at recognizing crap when I hear it. You know, it's not imperative that you and I be friends, but it might be nice. I'm sure you're a fascinating person, and I'm sure it would be fascinating to get to know you. That's obviously not an easy task. But it's all right, you go ahead and be has poopy as you want, to quote Chelsea, and I'll be as receptive and as pleasant as I can. I just want you to bear in mind while we're sitting here smiling at each other and you're jerking me around that I know precisely what you're up to and that I can take only so much of it. Okay? Good. (He pauses. "Wtiits for a reaction. Norman has been listening very intently.) Now. What's the bottom line on the illicit sex question? NORMAN. (He stares at Bill for a long moment, then smiles.) Very nice. Good speech. I liked that a lot. So, bottom line, huh? You're a bottom-line man. All right. Here's the bottom line: oh-kay. Ethel and I haven't always been married. It just seems that way. We tipped over a canoe or two in our day, trying to accommodate another generation's mores. (He pauses.) You seem like a nice person, a bit verbose perhaps, a bit outspoken, but ... nice.
BILL. Thank you.
NORMAN. And you're right about me. I am fascinating.
BILL. I'm sure you are.
NORMAN. I didn't mean to weight down our conversation. We can go back to talking about sex if you like.
Chelsea, Norman and Ethel:
NORMAN. Tsk. (He walks over and transfers a few items from Billy to the floor.)
ETHEL. You two need constant supervision, I declare. (Billy spots Chelsea.)
BILLY. Hey! Look at you.
CHELSEA. Hey, kid. (She steps to him and hugs him.)
BILLY. How ya <loin'?
CHELSEA. Not too shabby.
BILLY. Where's the dentist?
CHELSEA. He went ahead. He's going to call you tonight. ETHEL. (Taking Billy by the collar.) Would you please march upstairs and deposit yourself in a warm shower? Chelsea has news for you which you can't hear till you're dry. (She prods him up the stairs.) NORMAN. What news?
BILLY. (Turning back.) Chelsea, you should have seen the bass I caught this morning. (He holds his hands wide apart.) NORMAN. Ha!
BILLY. Five pounds easy.
BILLY. But then I saw this depressed look on Norman's face so I decided to let it go.
NORMAN and BILLY. Ha! Ha! Ha! (Billy exits.)
ETHEL. Are you two going to be all right alone? I'm sure you can find something to talk about.
NORMAN. Yes. We can talk about the fact that the little person gets to take a shower while I develop pneumonia.
ETHEL. You're a tough old buzzard. Aren't you? (She exits. Norman scowls after her, then he turns to Chelsea.)
NORMAN. Tough old buzzard. Don't these little endearments make your heart go pit-a-pat?
CHELSEA. Yes. (They study each other a moment.)
NORMAN. Did you hear what the stupid Yankees did? CHELSEA. No. (Carefully.) I don't want to talk about baseball. NORMAN. Oh. I was just going to mention something you might have found interesting, but it doesn't matter.
CHELSEA. I want to talk about us.
NORMAN. What about us?
CHELSEA. You want to come sit down?
NORMAN. Should I? I've already started a puddle here; perhaps I'd better stand.
CHELSEA. I just wanted to say ... that I'm sorry.
NORMAN. Fine. No problem.
CHELSEA. Don't you want to know what I'm sorry about? NORMAN. I suppose so.
CHELSEA. I'm sorry that our communication has been so bad. That my . . . that I've been walking around with a chip on my shoulder. I think it would be a good idea if we tried ... to have the kind of relationship we're supposed to have.
NORMAN. What kind of relationship are we supposed to have? CHELSEA. Like a father and a daughter.
NORMAN. Ah. Well. Just in the nick of time, huh? CHELSEA. No.
NORMAN. Worried about the will, are you? I'm leaving everything to you, except what I'm taking with me.
CHELSEA. Stop it. (She steps to him.) I don't want anything. We've been mad at each other for too long.
NORMAN. Oh. I didn't realize we were mad. I thought we just didn't like each other. (Direct hit. Chelsea turns away, hurt. After a moment, she regroups, stepping back to him.)
CHELSEA. I want to be your friend.
NORMAN. Oh. Okay. Does this mean you're going to come around more often? I may not last eight more years, you know. CHELSEA. Tsk. I'll come around more often.
NORMAN. Well. It would mean a lot to your mother. CHELSEA. Okay. (They look at each other a moment, nothing more to say.) Now you want to tell me about the Yankees? NORMAN. The Yankees? They're bums. Your mother said you had some news, what is it?
CHELSEA. I got married in Brussels.
NORMAN. You did? In Brussels. Isn't that nice?
CHELSEA. It is. It's the best thing that's ever happened to me. He makes me very happy.
NORMAN. That's good. He speak English?
CHELSEA. Tsk. I married Bill.
NORMAN. Oh, Bill! That is nice.
ETHEL. (Offitage.) Next!
NORMAN. What is she screaming about?
CHELSEA. You're next in the shower.
NORMAN. Oh. (He turns to go. Turns back to Chelsea.) Talk to you later. (Chelsea nods, pleased. Ethel appears on the landing.) ETHEL. Next!
NORMAN. Good God. This place is starting to sound like a brothel.