CNY Arts Center to hold auditions for ‘Helen Keller’

CNY Arts Center will be holding auditions for “Helen Keller,” a new adaptation of the true story of Annie Sullivan’s work.

Auditions will be held Jan. 29 and 30 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and Feb. 2 from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at CNY Arts Center in State Street Methodist Church, 357 State St., Fulton.

Fifty years ago this year, Director Nancy Fox saw her first live stage play – a production of the “Miracle Worker,” the traditional portrayal of the Helen Keller story.

“From the opening moments of the play, I was mesmerized by the drama unfolding and I knew without a doubt I would pursue theatre as my life’s work,” said Fox. “Since then I have been consumed with a passion for theatre that never quiets and I promised myself I would someday honor that memory by directing the play.

“This new version is a perfect reflection of our new stage and the new Arts Center and I think the time is finally right for this challenging production.”

An exhaustive search will be conducted for a 7-9 year old girl to play the demanding title role as a deaf/mute child able to communicate only through her physical behavior.

The role of Anne Sullivan will require an energetic actress between 16-25 who can demonstrate or learn manual sign language. CNY Arts Center is also recruiting a sign language expert to consult on the play and interpret for performances to be held April 26-28 and May 3-5.

Other roles being cast include Helen’s parents, Captain and Mrs. Keller, and several supporting adult roles including the role of Helen’s grandmother, uncle, a family friend and household staff.

Roles for Staff members of Perkins Institute for the Blind are also being cast along with a few roles for Helen’s playmates.

Actors are asked to register for auditions by choosing a date and time to attend. A one minute dramatic monologue is recommended for adults and some reading from the script will take place.

Children should be ready to read a favorite story with great expression.

Sign language teachers interested in working on the production are invited to attend auditions may call the Arts Center office at 592-3373 or e-mail the director at

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