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Owners

By Caryl Churchill

Production dates 23rd to 25th April 2020

Owners is one of Churchill’s earliest plays and is a black comedy/drama about property ownership in the 1970s. It tackles serious themes such as sexism, the role of women, the socioeconomic divide and mental health to name a few. The play takes place in Islington (London), and follows the story of Lisa and Alec being evicted from their small apartment by old acquaintance and successful property developer Marion. The play offers some great parts for men and women of all ages. Everyone cast will have a lot to do.
Auditions will be held on:

Contextual Information

Lisa: (pages 23-24)

In this scene Lisa has gone to visit an old acquaintance, Marion, who is a successful property developer. Lisa wants Marion’s help because she is being evicted from her apartment. Lisa knows that Marion and Alec (Lisa’s fiancé), had an affair in the past. At this point Lisa does not realise that it is Marion who has evicted her from the apartment. Lisa is also around 7 months pregnant.

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Marion: (pages 45-47)

This scene takes place in a hospital ward. Alec’s mother has fallen ill and had to be taken into hospital. Marion is visiting Alec who has been sitting with his mother all day. Marion has developed a keen romantic interest in Alec by this point in the play.

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Alec: (pages 30-32)

Set in Lisa and Alec’s apartment. Marion has come to see Alec to try to persuade him to leave his old apartment which she now owns. Alec and Marion had an affair around 6 years ago, leading to them breaking off contact. This is the pair’s first interaction in several years. In the last 6 months Alec has given up his job and fallen into a depressive state.

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Clegg: (pages 8-9)

Opening scene of the play, in Clegg’s butcher’s shop. Clegg’s shop is closing down, and it is the last day of business.

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Worsely: (pages 63-64)

Near the end of the play. Worsely has been trying to kill himself throughout the play and developed a love/hate relationship with a volunteer at the Samaritans. In his latest suicide attempt the Samaritan falls off a high ledge to his death, as Worsely describes.

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Mrs Arlington: (page 50)

Mrs Arlington has recently moved into the apartment below Lisa and Alec. She comes from a posh background and her husband is wealthy. She has organised for Lisa and Alec to look after her baby daughter so she and Mr Arlington can go out. Lisa has looked after her baby several times in the past.

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Alec’s Mum: (Molly’s monologue from Jim Cartwright’s Road – pages 21-22)

Alec’s mum’s lines are very spaced out across the play, and she does not have a chunk of text together. For this reason, I have chosen a monologue from a character of similar age and background from another play, Road. This can be performed in the style of Alec’s mum. Alec’s mum suffers from Alzheimer’s and her husband (Edie) died a long time ago. She now lives with Alec and Lisa and their two children. She barely moves and often gets confused.

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We are also looking for a really creative design team for costumes and set to help bring out the strong 1970s setting of the play. It should be a really fun job, and there will be a lot of creative freedom for whoever wants to take on this role.

The first rehearsal will be Friday 31st January 2020. For more information about any of this, please do get in contact with me at danielshaw2000@hotmail.co.uk

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