Auditions Announced for BANDSTAND at Cincinnati Music Theatre

cmt_logoCMT proudly announces auditions for the regional premiere of BANDSTAND, a new Tony Award-winning musical with music by Richard Oberacker and book and lyrics by Robert Taylor & Richard Oberacker.

Auditions by appointment—please reserve your audition time on SignUp Genius:

BANDSTAND is about the journey to find your voice and face the impossible. Private First Class Donny Novitski returns to a post-WWII America with the hope of rebuilding his life with just the shirt on his back and a dream in his heart. When NBC announces a national competition to find the next swing band sensation, Donny sees a lifeline for himself and some fellow veterans, giving them the purpose they so desperately need. He and a motley crew join together, discovering the power of music to bring people home as they form a band unlike any the nation has seen.

SPECIAL NOTICE: The following roles require actor/musicians who not only sing and act, but also play the indicated instruments onstage: Donny Novitski (piano), Wayne Wright (trombone), Jimmy Campbell (reed player – saxophone and clarinet), Johnny Simpson (drums), Davy Zlatic (upright bass) and Nick Radel (trumpet).


  • Sun, Feb. 16 from 4-10pm
  • Mon, Feb. 17 from 6:30-10pm
  • Wed, Feb. 19 from 6:30-9:30pm

AUDITION LOCATION: Bassett Hound Sounds, 5633 Vine St, Elmwood Place, OH 45216


  • Please reserve your audition time at the following link:
  • After you sign up, you will be emailed an audition form. Please print and bring the completed form to your audition. Walk-ins are welcome and will be seen in the next available slot.
  • Please prepare 16-32 bars of a song that showcases your vocal range (no songs from Bandstand, please).
  • Bring sheet music in the proper key with cuts marked. There will be an accompanist. No tapes or a cappella numbers, please.
  • Wear (or bring) shoes and clothing appropriate for a dance audition.
  • Bring a copy of your resume and current headshot.
  • In addition to the vocal audition, those auditioning for the roles of the following band members should prepare 30-60 seconds of a memorized swing, jazz or classical piece. Instruments as follows:
    -piano (Donny Novitski)
    -drums (Johnny Simpson)
    -trumpet (Nick Radel)
    -bass (Davy Zlatic)
    -saxophone/clarinet (Jimmy Campbell)
    -trombone (Wayne Wright).
  • For band member auditions, a keyboard and basic drum set will be available. Drummers should bring their own cymbals or contact Music Director Kendra Struthers ( in advance. Brass, reed, and bass players should bring their own instruments.

Callbacks will take place at Clifton United Methodist Church on Sunday, Feb 23, 4pm.

Production rehearsals begin August 30, 2020. Please note: Actors cast as band members may have occasional rehearsals in the spring, dependent on cast availability and skill level.

Performances will be November 13-21, 2020, in the Jarson-Kaplan Theater at the Aronoff Center.

Recently named one of “The Ten Best Musicals of the Decade” by the editors of Theatremania, Bandstand is produced by Kathy Beiting and directed by Skip Fenker, with musical direction by Kendra Struthers with associate Michael Spresser and choreography by Mike Fielder. Bandstand is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc., a Concord Theatricals Company.


  • DONNY NOVITSKI – Approximately 24 years old, ruggedly handsome with his Italian and Polish heritage. A piano prodigy, he is passionate about swing music and writing his own songs. While dearly shining with that elusive star quality, he carries the dark weight of wartime experiences. Baritone/tenor, B-flat 2 to B-flat 4.
  • JULIA TROJAN – Approximately 24 years old, beautiful in a wholesome and effortless way. A gifted singer, but one without the drive to be a star. Her talents are personal to her and not showy, a means of expression and discovery. She is smart, honest, arid no one’s fool. Her star quality is born of her natural ability to simply tell the truth when singing; she is emotionally translucent on a stage. Soprano with strong belt, G3 to F-sharp 5.
  • MRS. JUNE ADAMS – Mid-40s to mid-50s, she is Julia’s mother and a woman of very modest means. She has a nervous anxiety most of the time and a desire to please that belies a personal history filled with disappointment and loss. Out of this energy comes her very quirky sense of comedy. But her grounded honesty is never far away when it comes to Julia’s happiness. Alto, G3 to B4,
  • WAYNE WRIGHT – Late 20s to late 30s, he is a gifted jazz trombone player and a veteran Marine lieutenant. Wayne manifests his war experiences in a severe case of obsessive compulsive disorder. He carries enormous tension in his body and mind and maintains an aloofness that hides his emotional turmoil. He is a man that can be very intimidating in his silence. High baritone, C3 to B-flat 4.
  • JIMMY CAMPBELL – Late 20s to mid-30s, he is a gifted jazz reed player, predominantly saxophone and clarinet. Jimmy is very bookish, thin, and well put together. He is wisely studying law, having just returned from the Navy. He has a careful and guarded personality but is fiercely loyal to Donny and the band. While the text never gives him away, Jimmy is privately gay and committed to fighting injustices in whatever ways he can. Baritone, C3 to G-sharp 4.
  • JOHNNY SIMPSON – Mid-20a to late 30s, he is a drumming phenomenon. A returning Army private, he suffers from severe back pain due to an injury requiring three surgeries. He is therefore reliant on pain medication, which affects his mental clarity. He also shows signs of traumatic head injury with memory loss. But mostly this all combines to give Johnny an almost childlike and gentle personality. He is by no means stupid – he has very honest insight -but he carries a charming simplicity that is in contrast to his sharp and impressive musical skills. High baritone, B2 to G-sharp 4.
  • DAVY ZLATIC – Late 20s to early 40s, he is a wiz on the upright bass. A recent Army veteran who served in the European theater and liberated Dachau, Davy is modeled heavily on Shakespeare’s lovable Falstaff. A big man of big appetites, he drinks to no end and maintains a constant stream of silly jokes to entertain. He is an incredible talent and a loyal friend, playing the clown but in reality the protector. Baritone, B2 to F-sharp 4.
  • NICK RADEL – Late 20s to early 40s, he is a genius trumpet player. A recent veteran of the Army who spent the last months of the European battles in a German prisoner-of-war camp, Nick is a man desperate for career and personal security. He is outrageously confident in his gifts as a musician and always on the lookout for those who would shortchange him of his deserved credit and compensation. Everything seems to be a personal affront to him and he has not yet been able to stop fighting for his life every day since returning to the home front He prides himself on his ability to play exceptionally high notes on his trumpet and sometimes has a hard time being a team player. Baritone, B2 to F4.
  • JEAN ANN RYAN – Mid 30s to late 50s, a glamorous local radio personality. Jean Ann prides herself on being the voice of several of WTAM Radio’s most popular programs. She believes herself to be more worldly and sophisticated than she likely is, but her outsized persona is matched by a sentimental and dramatic heart. A voice that recalls early Judy Garland and Kate Smith, she is a warm alto.
  • OLIVER – Mid-40s to early 60s, a magnanimous owner of one of Cleveland’s most popular nightclubs. The club that bears his name may not be the fanciest in town, but it is respected for its music scene. Oliver treats his guests like family and enjoys the spotlight whenever possible. Ensemble vocal track.
  • AL – Mid-40s to early 60s, an elegant and gracious owner of the most prestigious supper club in Cleveland, The Pavilion. He is suave and attentive to his guests but carries the confidence of the upper classes of Midwestern society. Ensemble vocal track.
  • JO – Late 20s to early 50s, a forthright owner of the hole-in-the-wall jazz club The Blue Wisp. Jo is a woman in a man’s game and has incredible confidence. She’s possibly pretty masculine herself and doesn’t care who knows it. She’s proud of her little club and loyal to her musicians and her decidedly blue-collar clientele. Ensemble vocal track.
  • ANDRE BARUCH – Mid-40s to mid-50s, the real-life radio host and personality of several popular radio programs on NBC Radio in New York City. Andre is debonair and sincere with a classic radio voice that has the trained Mid-Atlantic accent of the time. Ensemble vocal track.
  • ROGER COHEN – Late 20s to early 50s, a corporate businessman in the much larger entertainment machine of the National Broadcasting Company. Roger is officious, efficient and very good at his job. While he enjoys show business and is comfortable and confident in its rarified world, he has no patience for conflict. Ensemble vocal track.
  • JAMES HAUPT – Early 30s to early 50s, a success full of radio programs at NBC Radio in New York City. He has the slickness of a New York show business professional with all the attendant charm and smarts. He always appears genuine and gracious when dealing with the talent, but is all business behind the scenes. Ensemble vocal track.
  • PAULA – A woman of indiscriminate age, a no-nonsense New Yorker in the heart of the professional radio entertainment capital of the world. Ensemble vocal track.
  • BETSY – Late teens, an excitable bobby-soxer fan of the Donny Nova Band. She is all smiles and enthusiasm when meeting her favorite band. Her comic sense comes out of her blithe honesty and unabashed love of the band. Ensemble vocal track.
  • ENSEMBLE – Includes various service men, club patrons, swing dancers, wait staff, radio staff, stagehands, jazz musicians, residents of Cleveland and New York.

“Right This Way” – Performed by Corey Cott and Company

“This Is Life” – Performed by Corey Cott and Laura Osnes

“Nobody” – Performed by Corey Cott and Company

“Welcome Home” – Performed by Laura Osnes

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