The Last Five Years
Everything you need to know
What the heck is this show about?
Where did it all go wrong? That is the question that Cathy and Jamie are trying to answer in Orpheus’ next production, The Last 5 Years. It follows Jamie—a budding author on his rise to success and Cathy—an aspiring actress and her struggles with succeeding in the theatre world. This one act musical examines how their relationship thrives and inevitably crumbles throughout their own personal journeys. Our production will explore the missed connections between Jamie and Cathy and will physicalize the idea of baggage and how a relationship can weigh a person down or set them free. The unique storytelling and plot structure will also influence our production and bring forth the idea of regret and nostalgia.
Why is this show a big deal?
This production will mark a lot of firsts for Orpheus. The Last Five Years will be the smallest cast that Orpheus has ever had: just Cathy and Jamie! It will also be the first time that a production does not have a choreographer meaning that the Stage Director and Music Director will be narrowing in on mastering the marriage between song and story! What is specifically unique about this production is our audition process. This will be very different than any past Orpheus show so please read on to make sure you are prepared! One other thing that makes this show so special is the score. In his career, Jason Robert Brown has written a variety of musicals. The Last Five Years, was one of his first musicals and the one that people arguably obsess over the most. He wrote the musical loosely based on his own life. Combine this influence with the relatable characters, raw emotions and the complexity of the score and it makes for a true musical theatre gem!
Am I even the right fit for this show?
That’s a great question...and the answer is: very possibly. In all sincerity, we are looking for two of Ottawa’s strongest musical interpreters. The Last Five Years is completely sung through so we need two actors who are solid singers and can really tell a story through song. The structure of this musical is best explained as a fractured chronology so refined acting abilities are a must as to not lose the audience. The very basic description of The Last Five Years explores a five-year period in these twenty-somethings’ lives and traces how their relationship fell apart. That being said, we have several ways of telling this story so we have opened up the age range of the actors portraying these characters to be anywhere from twenties to mid- forties. It really comes down to who is the best fit for the characters.
What should I prepare?
Because this show is fully sung through we want to set you up for success by allowing you to showcase your variety of skills. We are looking for you to perform two contrasting pieces. Seeing that there won't be a specific reading that will be given to you for the acting portion of the audition we are asking that one of the songs be comedic or light in tone and the other, a dramatic piece. These two songs will serve as your ‘acting’ audition. You can also expect some sort of re-direct on one of your songs. In some cases, we might ask you to perform it in a completely different way. Don’t worry! This doesn’t mean that we hated your audition, we just want to see if we can flex your muscles a bit! Our musical director might check your vocal range. If your audition excerpts showcase your range well, this step might not be needed.
Vocal range for Jamie Wellerstein: A2 to Bb4
Actor must have strong, tenor range with falsetto.
Vocal range for Cathy Hiatt: F3 to D#5
Actor must have a rich lower range, a good belt with a great mix.
What time should I show up?
We will be having auditions on the evening of June 13th and 14th. The first thing to note is that your audition slot will be an individual time slot and will be scheduled in increments of 15 minutes. We ask that you arrive 15 minutes early to sign in and to fill out any paperwork. As an example, if you are given an audition slot of 7:45 please arrive at 7:30.
What will happen to me once I get into the room?
Well nothing drastic, except for maybe a creative breakthrough?! Since there isn’t a choreographer for this show, the dance element will look very different at this audition. The producer will bring you into the room and introduce you to the directing team, accompanist, and board representative. The very handsome director will then show you 4 dance steps. He will show each move once and then ask you to perform it back to him. It’s that simple! I know, every singers dream dance audition! After that we will ask you to perform your two songs. TWO SONGS you ask? I guess you must have been skimming this note! Each song should be about 16-32 bars and showcase you range and ability to tell a story through song. See above for a reminder.
What’s the next step?
If needed we are putting aside some time on the evening of Friday, June 15th for a call back and you should do the same just in case we need to see more of you! After that, if you are cast you will get a phone call. All auditonees will be notified as to whether they were cast or not.
When does this thing rehearse anyway?
While you won’t be spending your Summer in Ohio, if you are cast, you will be spending it at Orpheus House (the same place that you auditioned). Since this show is short (about an hour and fifteen minutes to be exact) our rehearsal schedule will be light and will really let you enjoy all the patios and camping your little hearts’ desire! We will make the rehearsal schedule around your availability and we are looking at about two rehearsals a week starting around early July.
The show will open in the studio at Centrepointe Theatre on September 19th and runs until the 23rd.
If you have any more questions, please come and see us at our opening meeting on Monday, June 11th at 7pm.
AUDITION BOOKING INFORMATION
Auditions can be booked as of Monday, May 28 for members of Orpheus and Monday, June 4 for non-members of Orpheus.
If you are interested in booking an audition slot please email the Producer, Ashley Cannon, at
Download the audition form here: