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American River College - Theatre and Film

The Department of Theatre and Film at American River College offers a wide range of classes in all areas of theatre, along with an expanding Film Studies program. We also maintain a busy production schedule in a variety of performance spaces in our recently modernized and expanded facility. In addition to our season of full-scale department productions, we feature touring Children's Theatre productions, student-produced performances featuring scenes, improv and one-act plays, and an on-going partnership with the Fair Oaks Theatre Festival. This schedule provides broad opportunities for theoretical and practical training for our students, and an exciting and varied menu of theatrical fare for our audiences.

Program of Study Information/Class Catalog


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By Delondra Williams

Directed by Pamela Downs


On Dia de los Muertos, when the veil between this life and the afterlife is at its thinnest, a girl travels through the underworld searching for her dead mother. Along the way, she meets spirits who tell their stories of life and death, shadowing Maya’s own journey from this life to the afterlife, from girl to woman, from grief to acceptance. These stories, some filled with seemingly senseless loss and violence, others with tremendous sacrifice and beauty, were inspired by Delondra Williams' exploration of Mayan and Aztec cultures. According to Mayan myth, the souls of the dead had to follow a yellow dog on a horrific and watery path and endure myriad challenges before they could rest in the afterlife. This is the journey young Maya must take to reach her mother.

With "Skeleton Stories," Williams explores the ancient bones that lie just underneath the skin of modern culture, challenging our societal attitudes toward death and transformation. "Maya's journey…isn't just learning about what life is," says Williams, "it's also about learning to get her hands dirty, and seeing disgusting things, and realizing that people can be depraved sometimes and that they can be beautiful sometimes and that there's sadness. And you have to wade through it all." That this journey includes visions both macabre and whimsical makes "Skeleton Stories" all the more powerful and a fascinating celebration of love, death, and the next world.(Contains adult language and situations)

Audition Dates: Monday Aug. 31 7p

Tuesday Sept. 1 6p

Wednesday Sept. 2 7p Callbacks

Mandatory meetings Thursday/Friday Sept. 3,4

All auditions and rehearsals in Stage 2 – Room 550.

Rehearsals: Monday through Friday Sept. 28 – Nov. 19, 2015

Tech weekend Nov. 14, 15

Performances: Nov. 20 – Dec. 6 Thursday, Friday, Saturday evenings;

Sunday matinees including Thanksgiving weekend. No performance on Thanksgiving.

Audition Activities: Cold readings from the scripts (available in the Fine Arts Division Office).

Some movement and improvisation will be done.

Headshots / resumes not required. Bring your schedule and a list of your conflicts.

Actors in Music Man will be considered, but availability will be a casting factor.

Auditions are open to the community, but all cast members must become registered students in the production class.

For Further information, contact Pamela Downs,

Character breakdown:

MAYA - Female, 17+ (to play teenager.) Hispanic. Maya is a brave but foolish girl who ventures into the Underworld

YELLOW DOG - Male. Any age or ethnicity. An anthropomorphic dog who guides souls through the levels of the underworld. Charismatic and fun, but there is darkness there.

CORAZON- Female. 30+. Hispanic. Corazon is Maya’s dead mother. She is the favorite plaything of the god of the Underworld.

DAD/ABUELO- Male. 30+. Hispanic. Dad is Maya’s hard-working father who struggles as the single parent of a teenage girl. Abuelo is Maya’s grandfather.

SANTA MUERTE/JOSEPHINA - Female. Any age. Any ethnicity. Santa Muerte is a death saint worshipped in violent cities; she resembles the Virgin Mary with a skull face. Josephina is Maya’s great-grandmother.

IGNACIO/SOLDIER – Male 18+. Hispanic. Ignacio is a young Salvadorian. Soldier is an American combat soldier with a skull for a face.

BUTTERCUP/MARY – Female. 40+. Buttercup is a beautiful, blond, self-absorbed rich bitch. Mary is Christopher’s loving down-to-earth friend.

CHRISTOPHER/MAN – Male. 20+. Any ethnicity. Christopher is a sad, gentle man who misses his dead wife. Man is a sensuous, mysterious nighttime visitor with wings.

JEN/ANNIE – Female. 18+. Any ethnicity. Jen is a teenage girl who is missing in the desert. May resemble La LLarona. Annie is a wistful, insecure woman in love with a man she doesn’t really know.

CARLOS/ANCESTOR – Male. 20+. Hispanic. Carlos is a Salvadoran man who is not who he seems to be. Ancestor is an Aztec Eagle Warrior.

HALEY/BILLIE – Female. 18+. Any ethnicity. Haley is a young woman searching for her missing friend. Sings. Billie is a vapid college student dressed as a sexy witch for Halloween.

ALEX/JEFFY – Male. 18+. Any ethnicity. Alex is a funny, callous, young, but ultimately kind friend of Christopher. Jeff is a shallow, slick lawyer.

BUTTERCUP JR./ BRIDIE – 18+. Female. Buttercup Jr. is Buttercup’s rebellious, gothy clone. Bridie is Billie’s smarter but equally partygirl friend. She is dressed as a sexy nurse for Halloween.

SKELLY/MITCH – Male. 25+. Any ethnicity. Skelly is an elegant but ruthless skeleton who represents Time. Mitch is the god of the Underworld. He is a maniacal, psychotic yet dapper skeleton. Does magic.



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Auditions for Upcoming Shows

For February 2016 show: Dec 1 -3, 2015

For April 2016 show: Jan 25 - 27, 2016

Copyright 2012 American River College Theatre. All rights reserved.

American River College Theatre
4700 College Oak Drive
Sacramento, CA 95841
ph: (916) 484-8234

Kathy Burleson, Department Spokesperson


Dr. Kale Braden, Dean Fine and Applied Arts Division

(916) 484-8433

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