Description:

Set in turn-of-the century New York City, Newsies is the rousing tale of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a band of teenaged "newsies." When titans of publishing raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack rallies newsies from across the city to strike against the unfair conditions and fight for what's right!

Based on the 1992 motion picture and inspired by a true story, Newsies features a Tony Award-winning score by Alan Menken (Little Shop of Horrors, Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (Kinky Boots). Featuring the now classic songs “Carrying the Banner,” “Seize the Day,” and “Santa Fe,” Newsies is packed with non-stop thrills and a timeless message, perfect for the whole family and every audience.

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Director's Vision Statement:

Newsies is based on the historical story of the Newsboys’ Strike of 1899.  During the Spanish American War all of the newspapers raised the prices from $0.50/hundred papers to $0.60/ per hundred papers.  After the war, all but The New York World, run by Joseph Pulitzer, and The New York Journal, operated under William Randolph Hearst, reinstated the pre-war prices.

In a time when there were no child labor laws, families were flooding to America looking for a life of opportunity that their native country could not offer, and the boroughs of New York were becoming more and more crowded.  These child workers recognized their value and went on strike. A .10 hike was a very big deal.  Sure, this amounted to .01 per paper.  Big deal, right?  RIGHT!  In 1899 as a kid providing for themselves, or working to support their families, it made the difference between sleeping on the streets, or having a bed with shelter for the night; the difference between getting to eat that day, or not.  

The Newsies realized that they would be unable to earn a livable wage with the war ending and newspaper sales waning in the wake of less dire information.  They recognized their value and decided to take a stand.  Without anyone to sell the papers to the public, there would be no profit, and Pulitzer and Hearst were interested in the bottom line.  After 2 weeks the newsies and publishers were able to come to a compromise, the price would remain the same but Pulitzer and Hearst would buy back any unsold papers.  This was a monumental moment in history, as children had led a strike and prevailed.

“Now is the time to seize the day...wrongs will be righted if we’re united” are powerful lyrics.  This mantra can be applicable in so many life situations and reads in a similar manner to 1 Corinthians 16:13.  

"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong."  - 1 Corinthians 16:13

The newsies stayed on their guard, stood firm in what they believed, were courageous against a powerful force, and showed strength.  They seized the opportunity and made a difference.  Standing together for what they knew was right, they were victorious.

Newsies is a story of strength in numbers and fighting to make a difference.  It is a powerful story where kids are heard.  Their voices mean something.  It is a lesson in facing life head on.  You may have been dealt a crumby hand, but that does not mean they are the cards you are stuck with.  

This show is filled with high intensity dance numbers that are likely to involve more advanced technique and substantial stamina.  The story is told through the powerful and motivating motifs of the music, as well as the passion of the dance.  Alan Menken brought his Disney magic to yet another score.  It pops, punches, syncopates, and sings smoothly in all the right places to bring about all the feels.

It is important to note that traditionally male roles may be cast as females in our production.  This would come down to the lines of the character and the gender fluidity of the character’s name.  Another thing to consider, for females auditioning, would be whether or not you would be willing to be cast in the role of a male character and be costumed as such.

This script lends itself to a cast of tweens and teens.  Les is the only named Newsie that is 10 but supposed to act 7 to sell more papes.  
 

Dates / Times:

  • Friday, Oct 29th @ 7:00pm
  • Saturday, Oct 30th @ 2:00pm
  • Saturday, Oct 30th @ 7:00pm
  • Sunday, Oct 31st @ 2:00pm
  • Friday, Nov 5th @ 7:00pm
  • Saturday, Nov 6th @ 2:00pm
  • Saturday, Nov 6th @ 7:00pm
  • Sunday, Nov 7th @ 2:00pm
Tickets go on sale Wednesday September 22, 2021 at 12:00am

Ticket Prices:


Charles Bender Performing Arts Center:

611 Higgins Street, Humble, TX 77338


Show Notes:


Auditions:
Venue - Klein United Methodist Church 
Vocal + Dance Auditions- August 27
  • Vocal auditions 3:00-4:30, 7:15-7:45
  • Dance auditions 5-7pm
Callbacks- August 28
  • Dance callbacks  9-11am
  • Callbacks beginning at 12pm

Rehearsals:
Venue - Klein United Methodist Church 
Fridays (6:00-9:30) & Saturdays (9:30-4:00) Praise & Worship 9:30 am, rehearsals at 10:00am-4:00pm
Call times may vary and will be posted each week on the Callboard by Wednesday evening.
 
Rehearsal Schedule:
Sept 3-4
Sept 10-11
Sept 17-18
Sept 24-25
Oct 1-2
Oct 8-9
Oct 15-16
Oct 22-23

Mandatory Parent Meetings - Friday, September 3 @ 7:00pm; Friday, October 22 @ 7:00pm
Feedback Sessions – TBD
Promo Pics - TBD
Character Portraits –TBD 
Tech Week -10/25-10/28, pick up rehearsal 11/4
Performances - Friday 10/29, Saturday 10/30, Sunday 10/31, Friday 11/5, Saturday 11/6, Sunday 11/7, Charles Bender Performing Arts Center

Artistic Team:
Director- Christina Haynes

Vocal Director- Lisa Woods
Choreographer- Melody Johnson

Please email the show coordinator, Donna Kincer, at Donna@cythouston.org with any questions.

For more information, please visit CYT Houston's Parent Hub.
Please join our Facebook Group: CYT Newsies 2021


Characters:

Jack Kelly

The charismatic leader of the Manhattan newsies, is an oprhaned dreamer and artist who yearns to get out of the crowded streets of New York and make a better life for himself out West. Fiercely protective of his best friend, Crutchie, and strongly loyal, Jack isn’t afraid to use his voice to attain better conditions for the working kids of New York City. Though living on the streets has given him a tough-guy exterior, Jack has a big heart and can demonstrate a sweet vulnerability – especially when it comes to bantering with a certain female reporter. Must have a great pop tenor voice and sense of physicality. Vocal range top: A4, Vocal range bottom: Bb2

Crutchie

A dedicated newsie with a bum leg that’s painful, but helps sell more papes. Though he walks with the assistance of a crutch, Crutchie doesn’t let it define him; when in a jam, Jack Kelly’s best friend relies on a goofy- sweet sense of humor and optimistic resilience. Crutchie is the heart of the resistance. Though his movement will suggest his bum leg, Crutchie should still be included in the dance numbers. Vocal range top: A4, Vocal range bottom: C3

Davey

Les’s straight-laced, bright big brother starts selling newspapers to help his family earn a living, but becomes swept up in the fervor of the strike. A leader in his own right who is learning to use his voice to uplift others, Davey is the brains of the resistance Vocal range top: A4, Vocal range bottom: D3

Les

Davey’s cheeky younger brother, is inspired by the freedom of the newsies and loves their independent lifestyle. A precocious and natural newsie, Les is an intuitive salesboy and a pint-sized charmer. He should present as younger than the other newsies. Vocal range top: Bb3, Vocal range bottom: Db3

Newsies

Including Albert, Buttons, Elmer, Finch, Henry, Ike, Jo Jo, Mike, Mush, Race, Romeo, Specs, Splasher, and Tommy Boy, are some of the hard-working kids of New York City that go on strike for a livable wage.

Scabs

Three newsies who are hesitant to join the strike.

Spot Conion

The proud leader of the Brooklyn newsies, boasts an intimidating reputation and a short singing solo in “Brooklyn’s Here.”

Katherine Plumber

An ambitious young reporter, works hard to make a name for herself as a legitimate journalist in a time when women aren’t taken seriously. Quick, funny, and resourcesful, she boldy captures the voice of a new generation rising in her coverage of the newsies’ strike. While she generally has no time for cocky, streetwise young men, she makes an exception for Jack Kelly. Though she only has a brief dance solo in “King of New York,” Katherine should have a great contemporary pop voice with a high belt – diction is key. Vocal range top: F5, Vocal range bottom: A3

Darcy

The upper-class kid of a publisher who sides with the newsies. Can double as a newsie.

Bill

The son of William Randolph Hearst who joins the newsies' cause. Can double as a newsie.

Wiesel (Weasel)

Or “Weasel,” runs the distribution window for the World and knows most of the newsies by name. Assisted by the intimidating Delancey brothers, who keep order by any means necessary, Wiesel is Pulitzer’s disgruntled paper- pusher.

Oscar Delancey

Tough brothers who work at the distribution window for the World, take the side of the publishers in the strike and are known to use their fists to make a point.

Morris Delancey

Tough brothers who work at the distribution window for the World, take the side of the publishers in the strike and are known to use their fists to make a point.

Goons

Assist the Delanceys in roughing up the newsies at the end of Act One.

Joseph Pulitzer

A pompous businessman through and through, owns the World and is concerned solely with the bottom line. Katherine’s no-nonsense father, Pulitzer doesn’t sympathize with the strikers, but he does eventually – and grudgingly – respect Jack. Vocal range top: F4, Vocal range bottom: C3

Seitz

Editor, advises Pulitzer, but ultimately admires the kids’ newspaper.

Bunsen

Pulitzer’s bookkeeper, comes up with the ideas to raise the newsies’ price per paper.

Hannah

Pulitzer’s practical and insightful secretary.

Nunzio

Pulitzer’s barber.

Guard

The Guard removes the newsies from Pulitzer’s building.

Snyder

The crooked and sinister warden of The Refuge, a filthy and horrible orphanage, is concerned only with catching enough kids to keep his government checks coming.

Medda Larkin

Inspired by vaudeville performer Aida Overton Walker, this big-voiced saloon singer and star of the Bowery offers her theater as a safe haven for the newsies. An astute entertainer with great comic delivery, she’s a good friend to Jack and stands firmly behind the newsies in their fight for justice. Vocal range top: E5, Vocal range bottom: F3

The Bowery Beauties

Female performers at Medda’s Theater.

Stage Manager

Introduces Medda's act.

Nuns

The three nuns offer breakfast to the hungry newsies. Feel free to cast additional nuns.

Photographer

Takes the triumphant photo of the newsies at the end of “Seize the Day.”

Woman

A newspaper customer.

Mr. Jacobi

Allows the newsies to congregate in his restaurant to plan their strike – when he doesn’t have any paying customers, that is.

Policemen

Assist Snyder and turn against the newsies in the fight that concludes Act One.

Mayor

The Mayor of New York City rebuffs Pulitzer’s attempts to shut down the newsies’ strike.

Governor Teddy Roosevelt

A well-respected lifelong public servant, inspires Jack to stand up to Pulitzer.

Ensemble