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CHARACTER DESCRIPTIONS

Note: The Cast features a sizable ensemble, (the townspeople of River City, Iowa) along with the roles listed below. Ages are approximate, but should not prevent anyone from auditioning for a desired role. That said, if you are only auditioning for a specific role (aside from the ensemble) please make a note of that on your Audition form.

 

Professor Harold Hill  Age: 30-50 Baritone

A dynamic con man and traveling salesman. Prof. Hill comes to River City, Iowa, and creates a hysteria about the "trouble" of the new pool table in town in order to sell band instruments and uniforms. He promises to form a wholesome boy's band, though he can't read a note of music. His main ambition, besides fleecing the good citizens of their cash, becomes trying to win over the local librarian, with whom he eventually falls in love.

 

Marian Paroo Age: 25 -35 Soprano

Daughter of Mrs. Paroo, sister to Winthrop. She is the stuffy, conceited librarian and piano teacher in town. She is very learned and defends the “questionable” books that are in the library. She was close to her deceased father’s friend, Mr. Madison, and the town believes that she had an affair with him. After all, he left the library to the town and the books to her! But there was no affair, he was like an uncle to her. At first, after meeting Harold Hill, she dislikes him but then gets to know him better and we see a transformation in her while she falls in love. She realizes that like her, in spite of their reputations, he is earnest in wanting to make a difference. They end up together.

 

Marcellus Washburn Age: 30-40 Tenor

Marcellus works in town and is dating Ethel Toffelmeier. He knows Harold from a long time ago. When they are reunited in River City, they become fast friends again. He is a comical character. He helps Harold in learning about the town, in setting up the con and in trying to help him get out of town before they figure it all out.

 

Mrs. Paroo Age: 50-60 Mezzo Soprano

Widowed, Irish mother to Marian and Winthrop. Sweet homemaker who wants the best for everyone. Gives Marian a lot of advice about finding a man. Dotes on Winthrop. Falls for Harold’s con. Always keeps her hands busy.

 

Winthrop Paroo Age: 5-8 Alto

Marian’s lisping little brother. Cute as a button. Does not talk because he misses his deceased father. Learns to trust again and is a chatterbox by the end of the show.

 

Mayor Shinn Age:40-50

The Mayor of River City. Somewhat blustery, pompous, not terribly intelligent. Gets a lot of things wrong! Listens to wife. Protective of daughter, Zaneeta, who he thinks is dating the wrong boy in town. Stereotype small-town politician.

 

Eulalie Shinn Age: 40-50 Alto

Mayor Shinn’s wife. Definitely a society lady. Knows everyone in town. Struts like a peacock. Somewhat snooty. Member of every auxiliary organization in town. Has strange ideas and doesn’t think she looks as ridiculous as she really is. Keeps husband in line.

 

Zaneeta Shinn Age: 14-18

Mayor’s and Eulalie’s daffy teenage daughter. Has a crush on the “bad” boy in town, Tommy. Not rebellious but learning to stand up for herself. Very cute and feminine.

 

Gracie Shinn Age: 6-10

Mayor’s and Eulalie’s younger daughter. Somewhat of a tomboy and a bit devilish.

 

Olin Britt Age: 40-60 Bass

A member of the School Board who does not get along with the other members. However, once Harold gets him to sing with the others, they are inseparable and not only learn to sing in harmony but behave in harmony.

 

Ethel Toffelmier Age:30-40

Plays the player piano. Is jolly and friendly. She is dating Marcellus. She does gossip, however, with the other ladies in town.

 

Oliver Hix Age: 40-60 Baritone

A member of the School Board who does not get along with the other members. However, once Harold gets him to sing with the others, they are inseparable and not only learn to sing in harmony but behave in harmony. Married to Alma.

 

Alma Hix Age: 40-55

Wife to Oliver. Gossipy lady who is a buddy of Eulalie and other “hen/bird” women.

 

Ewart Dunlop Age: 40-60 Baritone

A member of the School Board who does not get along with the other members. However, once Harold gets him to sing with the others, they are inseparable and not only learn to sing in harmony but behave in harmony. Married to Maud.

 

Maud Dunlop Age: 40-55

Wife to Ewart. Gossipy lady who is a buddy of Eulalie and other “hen/bird” women.

 

Jacey Squires Age: 40-60 Tenor

A member of the School Board who does not get along with the other members. However, once Harold gets him to sing with the others, they are inseparable and not only learn to sing in harmony but behave in harmony. Married to Mrs. Squires.

 

Mrs. Squires Age: 40-55

Wife to Jacey. Gossipy lady who is a buddy of Eulalie and other “hen/bird” women.

 

Tommy Djilas Age: 16-18

A teenager who has a crush on Zaneeta. Wants to do the right thing but is shunned by all because he comes from the “other” side of town and is considered the “bad” boy. Harold befriends him, makes him useful and gives Tommy self-confidence and trust.

 

Charlie Cowell Age: 30-50

A rival traveling anvil salesman. First seen on train at the start of the show. He returns to town to warn them about Harold and hopefully make himself a hero and thus earn sales himself.

 

Constable Locke Age: 30-60

Town policeman. Always ready to do as instructed. Cuffs Harold.

 

Amaryllis Age: 8-10 Alto

Young piano student of Marian’s. Likes Winthrop.

 

Conductor Age: 50-60

Conductor on train. Very business like. Intent on collecting tickets and doing job. Does not sing.

 

Traveling Salesmen Ages: Various

Salesmen on train that warn each other about what they’ve heard about Harold Hill. None of them have ever met him but all know about his reputation. They do not realize that he is there among them and can hear everything they are saying. They have a syncopated song in the first scene that is "rap" style to sound like a moving train. Script written for 5 in addition to Charlie Cowell.

 

River City Townspeople (Chorus) Ages: Various

These are small town folks who are proud of their town. They consist of men and women, teenagers and children. All ages will be used. (NOTE: the Traveling Salesmen can become Townspeople once Act I Scene 1 is finished.)

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