The 39 Steps – Audition Notice

With ‘The 39 Steps’ Auditions just around the corner, Director Sarah Matthews has provided the below Audition Notice for everyone that is planning on coming along to Audition.

Auditions are taking place on Tuesday 20th and Thursday 22nd February at Cordes Hall, Sunninghill at 7:30pm.

Excerpts from the author, Patrick Barlow…

“This version of The 39 Steps is based on John Buchan’s ground-breaking novel and Alfred Hitchcock’s iconic movie….I’d like to point out that…if you have insane ambitions and a dictatorial temperament, not to mention a large and willing cast…it can be done as a piece of genuinely epic theatre with every single role filled by a different actor…

While it would be good to keep to the text on the page, I would certainly encourage adventurousness and flexibility in staging. Don’t be bound by the instructions on the page. Just take what looks helpful or fun then invent the rest.

There is much opportunity for comedy and farce here. But it’s also a love story. A man and a woman who have never loved anyone, yet miraculously – through all the daredevil feats and daring-do – discover the beating of their own true hearts. That there is a reason to live and a reason to love. And above all a reason…to look after each other and look after the world.”

Although I would hope that no one would consider me to have a dictatorial temperament, I do not intend to cast this play with only four actors.  Depending on audition attendance, my ideal would be to have an actor play Hannay, and actress to play both Annabella & Pamela, TWO pairs of actors to fill the Clown roles and a single couple to play Crofter & Margaret, Professor & Mr Jordan and Mr & Mrs McGarrigle – giving a cast total of 8. 

Please bear in mind that this may change dependant on the number/calibre of auditionee.

I have been asked to specify audition pieces.  I will use the below speeches at the audition but please note that there will inevitably be some other parts of the script used.

Hannay – Opening Prologue

Annabella/Pamela – Act 1 Scene 3 Mr Hannay please… very careful my friend

Professor – Act 1 Scene 18 Mr Hannay – I’m afraid I’ve been guilty of leading you….Will you join us? Hannay?

Clowns Act 1 Scene 7 Salesman 1 & 2

Couple – Act II Scene 28 Mr & Mrs McGarrigle (Heavy will be played by a clown)

My main aim if for this production to be fun and lively.  In order for the audience to get this we need to do the same!

Any queries; please contact me at


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