May 27, 2018 @ 7:00 pm – May 28, 2018 @ 10:00 pm

by Jessica Swale

Director: Natasha Boyd

Performance Season: September 7 to September 22, 2018


  • WHEN: Sunday May 27 from 7:00 pm, Monday May 28 from 7:00 pm
  • WHERE: 36 Turnham Ave, Rosanna, Vic
  • Auditions by appointment. Email the Director at [email protected]
    or call 0413188513
  • PLAY READING: Sunday May 6th at 7:00 pm at Heidelberg Theatre, 36 Turnham Ave Rosanna (a fortnight before auditions)
  • NOTE: Further details of Auditions and Reading are below.


Blue Stockings is set at Girton College, Cambridge in 1896 (a real UK College). The action is based on true instances but not real people per se. The play follows the story of four young women fighting for education and self-determination against the larger backdrop of women’s suffrage. Girton College was the first college in Britain to admit women.

The girls of Girton study ferociously and match their male peers grade for grade. Yet, when the men graduate, the women leave with nothing but the stigma of being a ‘blue stocking’ – a derogatory term for female intellectuals, or an unnatural, educated woman. They are denied degrees and go home unqualified and unmarriageable.

In Swale’s play, Tess Moffat and her fellow first year students are determined to win the right to graduate. But little do they anticipate the hurdles in their way: the distractions of love, the cruelty of the class divide or the strength of the opposition, who will do anything to stop them. The play follows them over one tumultuous academic year, in their fight to change the future of education. The play touches on some of the issues surrounding the feminist ideals of the late nineteenth-century New Woman including female bicycle-riding, equal education rights, sexual autonomy, and political enfranchisement.

Blue Stockings was developed in 2012 at the UK National Theatre Studio and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. Its first full production ran at Shakespeare’s Globe from 24 August to 11 October 2013.




The Girton College girls – to look early to late 20s

  • Tess Moffat, a curious girl
  • Carolyn Addison, an early bohemian
  • Celia Willbond, a fragile hard-worker
  • Maeve Sullivan, a scholarship student; a mystery

The Boys – to look mid 20s to early 30s

  • Ralph Mayhew, undergraduate at Trinity College
  • Lloyd, undergraduate at Trinity College
  • Holmes, undergraduate at Trinity College
  • Edwards, undergraduate at Trinity College
  • Will Bennett, undergraduate at King’s College; Tess’s friend

The Staff – 40s-70s+

  • Mrs Elizabeth Welsh, head of Girton College
  • Miss Blake, lecturer in moral science at Girton College
  • Mr Thomas Banks, lecturer at Trinity and Girton Colleges
  • Dr Henry Maudsley, renowned psychiatrist
  • Minnie, a maid – (*can be younger)
  • Mr Peck, the groundskeeper
  • Miss Bott, the ladies’ chaperone
  • Radleigh, a board member Trinity College
  • Anderson, lecturer at Trinity College
  • Collins, lecturer at Trinity College

Others – various ages (may be doubled up)

  • Billy Sullivan, Maeve’s brother
  • Mrs Lindley, shopkeeper in the haberdashery
  • The Librarian
  • A Lady in a Café
  • Husband (of the lady in the café)
  • Waiter in the Café



  • WHEN: Sunday May 6th at 7:00 pm
  • WHERE: 36 Turnham Ave, Rosanna
  • What the reading is about: All those interested in Blue Stockings, irrespective of audition intentions, are most welcome. This is a relaxed introduction to the play for all to learn about the story and the characters. Though helpful for those interested in auditioning later on, it is not a prerequisite. Due to numbers attending, it’s expected that not all will have the opportunity to read. If you do then please be at ease. This is absolutely an audition-free zone; you’ll not be judged in any way on your reading on the night.
  • If you’ll be attending then, for catering purposes, we request that you contact the director no later than 12:00 pm on Saturday, May 5. You can email [email protected] or call 0413188513.
  • Parking: In coming by car, allow time to park. Due to level-crossing-removal works parking nearby the theatre is limited. Off-street parking behind Rosanna Library is accessible via Douglas Street. Further details at htc.org.au.
  • Expected finish is 10pm


  • Script: Audition applicants are encouraged to read the script prior to the audition. If unable to attend the HTC play reading of Blue Stockings – details above – then copies of the script are available for purchase via the web, e.g. amazon.com.au.
  • Auditionees will be asked to present a 1-2min monologue, not from the play but one that showcases your abilities in terms of voice and movement, and something that highlights the characteristics and emotions suitable to the character(s) you are auditioning for. Following the monologue, you may be asked to read a scene with another auditionee.
  • For this production, no set audition pieces will be provided prior to day of audition (in contrast to other auditions the director has held)
  • Accents: These will vary, depending on character. For the audition, you can use a general British English accent or, if you wish, one you prefer to showcase. (For performance, appropriate accents will be essential.)
  • Please make your auditions application by email as follows:
    • Email to [email protected]
    • Attach a 1-page A4 resume that includes headshot
    • Indicate the character(s) you wish to audition for. (No characters have been precast.)
    • If you have a preferred audition session, please indicate. (There are 4 audition sessions: [i] May 27 at 7pm [ii] May 27 at 8pm [iii] May 28 at 7pm [iv] May 28 at 8pm.)
    • Please check the rehearsal notes below. To assist with rehearsal planning, please indicate times, if any, that you would be unavailable during the rehearsal period.
      [NOTE: Full availability for technical rehearsals is essential in the week prior to opening, starting Sunday September 2. Do NOT apply if you unavailable during this week or for any performances.]
    • Include your contact phone number (preferably a mobile number).



  • LOCATION: 36 Turnham Ave. Rosanna
  • PARKING: If coming by car, please allow extra time for parking. Due to level-crossing-removal works at Rosanna Station, parking adjacent to the theatre is limited. Off-street parking behind Rosanna Library can be accessed via Douglas Street. Further details at htc.org.au.
  • On arrival, you may be required to complete an HTC audition form.
  • You’ll need to be available for approximately 45 to 60 minutes for the audition.
  • For further information, you can email the Director at [email protected] or call 0413188513


  • Your prompt arrival at auditions and your patience and cooperation during your scene downtimes will be vital.
  • Rehearsals: Tuesday and Thursday evenings as well as Sundays (Sundays will be about 5 hours, longer as we get closer to opening night).
    Main characters: additional rehearsal evenings may be added on Monday or Wednesday evening, to suit the group.
    Minor characters: For the initial rehearsals, you will be required less than three times a week, and the director will plan as best as possible to minimise your downtime at rehearsals. However, note that, due to the large cast and the multiple-scene nature of the play, downtime will be unavoidable and as we proceed to full run throughs in the lead up to opening night, your attendance will be needed for the full rehearsal duration.
  • Commitment to attend at least one production build – usually a Saturday working bee, and will include costume fitting – will be required, in addition to the normal rehearsal schedule.
  • Performance dates/times: 8.00 pm on Sep 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 22.
    Matinee performances at 2.00 pm on Sep 9, 16, 22. There is a charity preview on Thursday 6 September. The day of last performance, Sep 22 has 2 shows: 2.00 pm and 8.00 pm