Audition: The Importance of Being Earnest

Audition Dates:                     Sunday 4th Feb 6.30pm

                                               Monday 6th Feb 7.30pm

Recalls:                                  Sunday 11th Feb 6.30pm


Please find below the details of the auditions and backstage help required The Importance of Being Earnest Please do get in touch with the Director, Kirsty Harrison, with any questions you may have by emailing


Performance Space:             150 seat Theatre at Putney Arts Theatre


Performance Dates:             1st – 5th May 2018


Rehearsal Period:

Rehearsals will take place from mid February at 7.30pm for 2-3 evenings on Monday to Thursday, as well as around 3 hours rehearsal on a Sunday.  Due to the small cast, actors should be prepared to rehearse on up to 4 days a week.


Please note:

This is an amateur production. You do not need to be a member of Putney Theatre Company to audition, but actors and crew will need to become a member of Putney Theatre Company to take part in the show for £20 a year, and a £20 show fee will be due.


Audition Preparation:

There is no preparation required, although reading of the play is advised.

Please arrive in time to fill out necessary forms and allow the auditions to begin promptly at the schedules times – the longer we have to wait to start, the longer we will take to finish.




The Importance of Being Earnest is the most renowned of Oscar Wilde’s comedies. It’s the story of two bachelors, John ‘Jack’ Worthing and Algernon ‘Algy’ Moncrieff.

Jack and Algernon are wealthy gentlemen. Jack (known to Algernon as Ernest) lives a respectable life in the country providing an example to his young ward Cecily. Algernon lives in luxury in London and has invented an imaginary invalid friend (Bunbury) whom he visits in the country whenever an unappealing social engagement presents itself. Jack has also invented a character - a wayward younger brother called Ernest whom he uses as pretext for going up to London and enjoying himself.

Jack wants to marry Algernon’s cousin Gwendolen, but must first convince her mother, Lady Bracknell, of the respectability of his parents. For Jack, having been abandoned in a handbag at Victoria station, this is quite a difficult task.

 The pair struggle to keep up with their own stories and become entangled in a tale of deception, disguise and misadventure. The elaborate plot ridicules Victorian sensibilities with some of the best loved, and indeed bizarre, characters to be found on the modern stage. 


Characters:                            [4] Female.  [4] Male

Playing Ages are indicated in brackets


Jack Worthing:  Jack Worthing is a seemingly responsible and respectable young man who leads a double life. In Hertfordshire, where he has a country estate, Jack is known as Jack. In London he is known as Ernest. As a baby, Jack was discovered in a handbag in the cloakroom of Victoria Station by an old man who adopted him and subsequently made Jack guardian to his granddaughter, Cecily Cardew. Jack is in love with his friend Algernon’s cousin, Gwendolen Fairfax. (29)

Algernon Moncrieff: Algernon is a charming, idle, decorative bachelor, nephew of Lady Bracknell, cousin of Gwendolen Fairfax, and best friend of Jack Worthing, whom he has known for years as Ernest. Algernon is brilliant, witty, selfish, amoral, and given to making delightful paradoxical and epigrammatic pronouncements.  (25-30)

Gwendolen Fairfax: Algernon’s cousin and Lady Bracknell’s daughter. Gwendolen is in love with Jack, whom she knows as Ernest. A model and arbiter of high fashion and society, Gwendolen speaks with unassailable authority on matters of taste and morality. She is sophisticated, intellectual, cosmopolitan, and utterly pretentious. (25-35)

Lady Bracknell: Algernon’s snobbish, mercenary, and domineering aunt and Gwendolen’s mother. Lady Bracknell married well, and her primary goal in life is to see her daughter do the same. Through the figure of Lady Bracknell, Wilde manages to satirize the hypocrisy and stupidity of the British aristocracy. She is cunning, narrow-minded, authoritarian, and possibly the most quotable character in the play. (50+)

Cecily Cardew: Jack’s ward, the granddaughter of the old gentlemen who found and adopted Jack when Jack was a baby. Like Gwendolen, she is obsessed with the name Ernest, but she is even more intrigued by the idea of wickedness. This idea, rather than the virtuous-sounding name, has prompted her to fall in love with Jack’s brother Ernest in her imagination and to invent an elaborate romance and courtship between them. Cecily is breathless. (18-25)

Miss Prism: Cecily’s governess. Miss Prism is an endless source of pedantic bromides and clichés. She highly approves of Jack’s presumed respectability and harshly criticizes his “unfortunate” brother. Despite her rigidity, Miss Prism does have a softer side in matters of the heart. (45+)

The Reverend Canon Chasuble: The priest of Jack’s parish, a good pious man. Dr. Chasuble entertains secret romantic feelings for Miss Prism. (50+)

Lane / Merriman: A dual role of butlers! They are different, or are they!? A small, but fun pair of roles for the right person.  (Any age over 25)



Backstage opportunities available include:


Lighting operator,

Set construction,

Assistant stage manager

Sound operator

Costume assistants


Please get in touch with if you are interested in getting involved.