From: Lisa Middleton, Vice President, Marketing & Communications  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 


Calling All Triple Threats:
Lyric Opera of Chicago to hold ensemble auditions
for dancer/singer/actors for Leonard Bernstein's West Side Story
January 28 and 29, 2019
CHICAGO (1/16/2019) Lyric Opera of Chicago will hold auditions for dancer/singer/actors for the 2018-19 Season production of Leonard Bernstein’s musical theater masterpiece West Side Story. Directed by Francesca Zambello, this new co-production is shared by Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, and the Glimmerglass Festival. James Lowe is the conductor and the original Jerome Robbins’ choreography will be recreated by Julio Monge. Eric Sean Fogel is the associate director. The production design is contemporary, with sets by Peter J. Davison, costumes by Jessica Jahn and lighting by Mark McCullough.

Weekly rates for ensemble performers are subject to the collective bargaining agreement with the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) and are set at $1,176.50/week in the 2018-19 Season. The rehearsal and performance period for West Side Story is Monday, April 8 through Sunday, June 2, 2019. There is the possibility of a short one-week extension of the performance period through Sunday, June 9, 2019. Ensemble members may also be cast as understudies for some principal and small, named roles.

Lyric is now accepting submissions from current members of AGMA and Actor's Equity Association, as well as Non-Union and EMC artists. All dancer/singer/actors seen at the preliminary union calls must belong to AGMA or AEA (Equity Membership Candidates will be seen at the non-union calls).
Specifically seeking young, energetic artists to play teenaged members of the Jets and Sharks gangs, and their girlfriends. Must be advanced-level dancers with strong ballet and jazz technique, as well as strong singers. All ethnicities welcome, artists of color strongly encouraged.

For dance calls, men should bring sneakers and knee pads, and women should bring heels and flats and (if possible) a rehearsal skirt. Please arrive warmed up and ready to dance.

Artists should prepare an entire song of their choosing from classic musical theater or the Great American Songbook, and also prepare a 16-32 bar cut of that same song. Bring sheet music in the correct key; an accompanist will be provided. Come prepared to sing; there will not be space for you to warm up.

The schedule for auditions is as follows:

Monday, January 28, 2019

AGMA/AEA            Men - Preliminary Dance Auditions
                                 10:00am - 11:30am Audition (Check-in at 9:15am)
Non-Union/EMC   Men - Preliminary Dance Auditions
                                 12:00pm - 1:15pm Audition (Check-in at 11:15am)
AGMA/AEA            Women - Preliminary Dance Auditions
                                 2:00pm - 3:30pm Audition (Check-in at 1:15pm)

Non-Union/EMC   Women - Preliminary Dance Auditions
                                  4:00pm - 5:15pm Audition (Check-in at 3:15pm)

AGMA/AEA, followed by Non-Union/EMC   Men-Preliminary Singing Audition
                                                                               5:00pm - 6:30pm Audition
AGMA/AEA, followed by Non-Union/EMC   Women-Preliminary Singing Audition
                                                                                6:45pm - 7:45pm Audition

Check-in times for preliminary singing auditions will be assigned after the dance call

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Callbacks - Men and Women
Sing and read for Jets
10:00am - 1:00pm Audition

Callbacks - Men and Women

Dancing/reading/singing as needed for Jets/Sharks
3:00pm - 5:00pm Audition

SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED to January 21, 2019 at 5:00pm CST.
For more information about this production, and to submit for these auditions, please email your résumé and photo to; please indicate whether you belong to AGMA and/or AEA, or if you are a Non-Union or EMC artist.

Auditions are by invitation only and will be awarded based on review of your complete submitted materials. They will be held at Lyric Opera of Chicago, 40 North Wacker Drive, Chicago.

Walk-ins will not be seen.

Artists at Lyric Opera of Chicago are represented by the American Guild of Musical Artists. Should you be hired for West Side Story you will be required to join this union, if you are not already a member.
From: Lisa Middleton, Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Gretchen Meyerhoefer
Music Administration Associate

About Lyric

Lyric Opera of Chicago’s mission is to express and promote the life-changing, transformational, revelatory power of great opera. Lyric exists to provide a broad, deep, and relevant cultural service to Chicago and the nation, and to advance the development of the art form.

Founded in 1954, Lyric is dedicated to producing and performing consistently thrilling, entertaining, and thought-provoking opera with a balanced repertoire of core classics, lesser-known masterpieces, and new works; to creating an innovative and wide-ranging program of community engagement and educational activities; and to developing exceptional emerging operatic talent.

Under the leadership of general director, president & CEO Anthony Freud, music director Sir Andrew Davis, and creative consultant Renée Fleming, Lyric strives to become The Great North American Opera Company for the 21st century: a globally significant arts organization embodying the core values of excellence, relevance, and fiscal responsibility.

To learn more about Lyric’s current season, go to You can also join the conversation with @LyricOpera on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. #Lyric1819 #LongLivePassion

Photo: Lynn Lane/Houston Grand Opera

Lyric premiere of Bernstein’s West Side Story generously made possible by Lead Sponsor The Negaunee Foundation and cosponsors an Anonymous Donor, Randy L. and Melvin R. Berlin, Robert S. and Susan E. Morrison, Mrs. Herbert A. Vance and Mr. and Mrs. William C. Vance, and Northern Trust. Major in-kind audio support provided by Shure Incorporated.

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