Hard Times – NYC Appointments


The Cell Theatre Company
New York, NY

Approval pending.

Book: Larry Kirwan
Music & Lyrics: Stephen Foster & Larry Kirwan
Director: Kira Simring
Casting Director: Jason Najjoum

Other Dates
Submit ASAP. NYC appointments and callbacks will be held in July.

Tentative schedule:
1st reh: 8/20/12. Rehearses approx. 25 hrs/week.
Runs Th-Sa 9/13-29, W 9/19 (@ 3) and M 9/24 (@ 8) in association with the 1st Irish Festival.

Musical theatre performers (m/f) for this musical in development. See Breakdown for synopsis and character details.

Written by the author/playwright/lead singer of Black 47 Larry Kirwan, the story weaves together Stephen Foster’s journey with his sexuality and his relationship with his wife, and the fusion of Irish step dancing and African American shuffle into American tap dancing, against the backdrop of New York’s infamous Five Points on a night of racially charged Civil War draft riots in 1863. It will feature the re-imagined songs of the enigmatic “father of American music” Stephen Foster, with additional material by Kirwan.


[JANE FOSTER] 30s, Irish/Anglo-Saxon Female. Though born into a moderately affluent, business-minded family, she is loyal and dutifully supportive of her artist husband. Warm and serene, with a quiet dignity, she is devastated, and somewhat confused, when she discovers her husband is gay, but never succumbs to self-pity because she must save face, and carry on for the sake of her child.

[NELLY] 25-40, Black female. Proprietor of a local saloon in Five Points, a feat for a black woman in 1863. Earthy, powerful, vivacious, and compassionate. Gospel belter.

[OWEN DUIGNAN] 20-29, White male. An Irish immigrant and entertainer at Nelly’s saloon. Had a one-nighter with Foster that he can’t forget and is torn about his sexuality. Innately dynamic, good-looking, and energetic. Life in America and the discrimination against Irishmen has twisted his personality, leaving him brooding, moody, and a bit dangerous. Sings once in blackface, as is typical of Irish performers of the era. Tap dancing experience required. Bari-tenor.

[THOMAS JEFFERSON] 20-29, Black male. A free man, he passionately believes that black people should have equal rights to white people. He’s Nelly’s protector, and is also an entertainer at her saloon. A foil to Owen, he is resilient despite his oppression, and represents the future of America post-Civil War. Tap dancing experience required. Bari-tenor.

[MICHAEL JENKINS] Mid-30’s, White male. A Bowery Boy (flashy dresser) and supporter of the nativist Know-Nothing Party. Loves Nelly, though this conflicts with his politics. Well-spoken. Bari-tenor.


Send To

The Cell Theatre Company


New York, NY



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