The Ruling Class - Reading and Audition Notice

Reading:                            Sunday 28th January 2018, 6.00 pm, Coward Room

Audition:                           Sunday 4th February 2018, 6.00 pm, Coward Suite

Performance Dates:         Saturday 12th May – Friday 18th May 2018 (Auditorium)

Director:                              Barry Evans

The Ruling Class is an extraordinary play. Rooted in the satire boom of the late ‘60s and the theatre’s new found freedom from censorship, this play bubbles with acerbic wit and feverish energy. On its first appearance, Peter Barnes was hailed by some critics as an emerging genius. I am proud that TTC has given me the opportunity to direct this modern masterpiece.

Focussing on the absurdity of unearned privilege, The Ruling Class contains a wide range of comic roles: see the brief audition notes below. For e-mailed copies of the audition pieces please contact me. The reading a week before the auditions is just that – a chance to get to know the script. Copies of the audition pieces will be available at the reading. Everyone who wishes to participate in the reading will get the chance to do so, and parts will be allocated on an entirely random basis.

Jack, 14th Earl of Gurney – 30s. Begins as a charismatic - but mad - monkish innocent, believing he’s God, and full of love for humanity. Ends as a cruel, sardonic serial killer.

13th Earl of Gurney – 60s and upwards. An aristocratic high court judge. Lives in the past. Worships the concept of discipline. Enjoys auto-erotic asphyxiation.

Sir Charles – 40s. Jack’s uncle. Pompous Tory grandee. Greedy, manipulative, but slow-witted.

Dinsdale – 20s. Sir Charles’ son. A chinless wonder, waiting for a vacant parliamentary seat. Awf’lly nice chap, though.

Claire – 40s. Wife and mother of the above. Elegant, sexy but frustrated. Utterly ruthless in plotting continued control of the Gurney estate and fortune.

Tucker – 50s and upwards. The old family retainer who secretly nurses contempt for them all and dreams of red revolution. Frequently drunk. Has some of the funniest lines in the play.

Grace – 20s/early thirties. Former ‘exotic dancer’ with East End roots. A practical, down-to-earth sex bomb. Must perform a partial strip routine.

Bishop Lampton – 70s and upwards. A doddering cleric who understands very little of what is going on around him, but is master of performing liturgical rites. (Possible double with McKyle)

Dr. Herder – 40s, but age not critical. A psychiatrist on the make. To all appearances a detached clinical scientist but has an ego-driven agenda. Should have a slight accent – possibly German – but only a touch. (Possible double with Peake)

Peake – Any age, but probably 50s. Family solicitor, in awe of his clients’ nobility. (Possible double with Herder)

Mrs Piggot-Jones & Mrs Treadwell – A double act of middle aged Tory ladies from the local village, totally overwhelmed by the aristocratic surroundings. A tiny bit of dancing will be required.

McKyle – Any age, but physically imposing. He shares the Earl’s delusion God delusion, but a different kind. A fearsome Old Testament electric Messiah.

DI Brockett – Any age, but probably 60-ish. With limited intelligence, and blindly deferential. Clearly believes the aristocracy incapable of any crime. (May double with 13th Earl)

DS Fraser – Brockett’s right hand man. Has only a couple of lines – could double.

Kelso Truscott, QC – Eton-educated key functionary of the legal establishment.


Please do not hesitate to get in touch with me if you have any questions.

Barry Evans



Contact Details:  To get in touch with the director before the Reading/Audition, please use the Contact page of this website and your message will be forwarded.

NOTE:   We have an open casting policy:  anyone can audition for our productions and, if cast, will then be required to join as a Full Member.  

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