Fall 2016 Performance: Excalibur! The Story of Young King Arthur


Fall 2016 Performance:  Excalibur!  The Story of Young King Arthur

The grandeur of ancient British and Welsh legend and lore brought to life through the eyes of the fabled master of Wizardry and Wit, the Magical and Mysterious Merlin the Enchanter, who re-creates the exciting and dramatic story of how young Arthur came to be one of the most celebrated Kings in history.

Important Registration Information:

Registration will close on August 25, 2016 after the auditions, in order to give the director time to finalize the script.

All participants are asked to attend auditions on Thursday August 25th at 1:00pm hosted at the Harrisburg YMCA.  If  your child wants to know their role before they commit to participating, they are welcome to attend auditions prior to registering, and can register directly afterwards.

Children who do not attend auditions are still invited to participate if they have notified the director beforehand and there is space available.  These performers should anticipate filling supporting roles.

How to Enroll:

  • Click ENROLL NOW link.
  • Submit the enrollment form.
  • Submit the $25/child deposit.


  • Open enrollment for actor/actress roles for proficient readers ages 5+.  Children are expected to read their script lines independently in front of the group beginning on the rehearsal after parts are cast.


2 Price Options –

A) Cost if you choose to sell ad space to fundraise:   

  • $80/child for the performance season ($25 due at time of registration via paypal, and $55 balance at the first class).  Sibling Discount applies where applicable.

A) Cost if you choose not to sell ad space to fundraise:

  • $160/child for the performance season ($25 due at time of registration via paypal, and $135 balance at the first class).  Sibling Discount applies where applicable.
    • (Brief explanation!  We know in the past, some parents have been uncomfortable with the ad sales requirement, so this season we’ve added the option to pay an increased registration fee and not participate in the fundraising.)
  • The enrollment fee includes:
    • 13, 1 or 2-hour rehearsals
    • 2, 2-hour rehearsals (total 17-30 hours of rehearsal instruction)
    • 1 invited dress rehearsal
    • 2 performances
  • Costumes and other necessaries are paid for separately by the parent, however costumes are inexpensive and most are created by the parent costume design team.

Rehearsal Location:

  • Cannon Memorial YMCA located @ 4110 Main Street, Suite 200 Harrisburg, NC 28075


All participants (those who have registered prior to auditions as well as those who are planning to register after auditions) are asked to attend the auditions on Thursday August 25, 2016 at 1:00pm in the Character Room of the Harrisburg YMCA.

How to Prepare for Auditions:

  • If you are 8 years old or younger, you should come prepared with a short* monologue. Students may use a passage from a favorite book, a monologue they’ve found online, one from a favorite movie, etc.

*Max. one minute

o   TIPS:

  • Whatever character or type of character you are supposed to be while giving your monologue, imagine you really are them. How would they say the words? How would they act while they’re saying them? Would they move around? Would they stand still? Would they sit? What facial expressions would they make? Would they be making any motions with their arms, or acting something out with their bodies?
  • Be loud! I always get nervous when I audition for shows, and sometimes when nerves hit, it’s easy to be quieter than you mean to be. If you think you’re being loud enough, be even louder.
  • If you are 9 years old or older, you will be cold reading from the script. I will have a few passages marked and you may be asked to read a character in any one of them. Follow the tips written above, and remember:

o   Just because you read one character’s part during auditions does not mean that you are being cast in that part. Rather than using passages for every single available part, only a few are marked to be read in auditions. The character you read in auditions is not an indication of where you will be cast. We’re sneaky that way. 😉

I’ve been in your shoes when it comes to auditions more times than I can count. I know how hard it can be when you’re nervous and you have to read for a part in front of someone and how it can seem intimidating having people watching and listening to you. I still get nervous when I go on auditions! Nerves are normal. If you are feeling especially nervous on audition day, please tell me. We will work out whatever we can to make you more comfortable. Know that everyone in that room is rooting for you. I’m rooting for you the whole time! Auditions are a great time to start getting to know everyone or to catch up with old friends. If I could take away all the nerves I would, but since it comes with the territory, we’ll dance the butterflies out, take deep breaths, and just do our best.


(Some of the male characters can be played by either male actors or female actors who are willing to put their hair up and dress the part. Also, depending on how many students register, some characters may be combined or doubled.)

  • DAVINA:  Female. A druid who knows all of Merlin’s secrets, Davina works closely with Merlin, Deirdre, and Damaris to unveil the mystery of who will be the next king of Britain. As a druid, Davina would have been considered a “wise one” in ancient Celtic times. She is a companion, advisor, and assistant to Merlin.
  • DEIRDRE: Female. Like Davina, Deirdre is a druid who knows what is soon to take place. She keeps the secret with Davina, Damaris, and Merlin until the time is right and the full story is revealed. As a druid, Davina would have been considered a “wise one” in ancient Celtic times. She is a companion, advisor, and assistant to Merlin.
  • DAMARIS: Female. One of the three mysterious druids, Damaris works with Davina, Deirdre, and Merlin to unveil the legend of Arthur and the sword in the stone. She knows nearly everything going on in the forest, and is waiting for the plot to unfold. As a druid, Davina would have been considered a “wise one” in ancient Celtic times. She is a companion, advisor, and assistant to Merlin.
  • MERLIN: Male. Mysterious and humorous, Merlin is an ageless wise man and magician who knows the future. He keeps his knowledge of the future secret (although sometimes in his forgetfulness he needs the help of the druids not to reveal too much…) though he clearly knows more than he’s willing to share. He wants to do the right thing so that Arthur can meet his destiny. He is strong and gentle, and very talented.

o   NOTE: The magic props and effects we hope to use as part of this show require that Merlin be cast from among our older students. Of these students, it is imperative that whoever is cast in the part of Merlin strictly follows the rules of no use or handling of props when not on stage performing in the show. Props must be used only as the script requires and only when the director(s) have given permission.

  • MATILDA: Female. A woman of King Uther Pendragon’s castle, she is an attendant of the queen and a loyal nursemaid to baby Arthur. Matilda cares for the child a great deal, and is protective enough to want what is best for him.
  • MAURA: Female. A nursemaid to baby Arthur, Maura assists Matilda in caring for the child and helps find a way to keep Arthur safe as he grows into his destiny.
  • MEDWENNA: Female. One of baby Arthur’s four nursemaids, Medwenna seeks to keep the child safe and assists Matilda in caring for him.
  • MELVINA: Female. Like Matilda, Maura, and Medwenna, Melvina is a loyal nursemaid to baby Arthur and loves him very much. She assists the others in their difficult task of bringing Arthur to safety.
  • SIR ECTOR: Male. An exceptional man, Sir Ector is brave, loyal, and good. He is a knight of the realm. He is father to Kaye and Elaine, and husband to Lady Enid. He takes baby Arthur in to protect him and raises him as his own son.
  • LADY ENID: Female. Warmhearted and gentle, Lady Enid is delighted to bring Arthur into her home. She is the wife of Sir Ector and the mother of Kaye and Elaine. She is kind and sweet, and a true lady.
  • KAYE: Male. Kaye is the son of Sir Ector and Lady Enid, and the older brother of Arthur and Elaine. His greatest desire is to one day be a great knight. Although he loves his brother Arthur, he struggles with feeling jealous of and competitive with him. He is enthusiastic but sometimes selfish, and does not have much patience for his little sister Elaine. He will grow up to be one of the knights of the round table.
  • ELAINE: Female. Elaine is the feisty daughter of Sir Ector and Lady Enid, and the younger sister of Arthur and Kaye. She is loveable, endearing, and above all stubborn. She hates to feel left out, especially by her big brothers. She wants to be able to do everything that they can do. Although at times she can seem spoiled, she has a sweet heart and a special relationship with Arthur, who is a wonderful older brother to her.
  • ARTHUR: Male/Female. The “once and future king,” Arthur has no idea what his past or future hold. He is kind and fair, intelligent and unusually mature for his age. He loves his family and looks out for his younger sister, Elaine. Unlike the other boys his age who are learning to be knights, Arthur studies under Merlin learning all sorts of lessons. He is not competitive with the others but has a strong sense of justice. He is humble and willing to serve.
  • GARETH: Male/Female. Gareth is the son of a noble family who lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Kaye and Arthur. Gareth is learning how to be a knight and loves spending time enacting battles and jousts with the other boys. He is competitive and feisty. He will one day grow up to be one of the knights of King Arthur’s round table.
  • GAWAIN: Male. Gawain is the son of a noble family and lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Kaye and Arthur. He is also learning how to be a knight and loves swordplay. He has a mischievous side and is full of fun. He will grow up someday to be a knight of Arthur’s round table.
  • BEDEVERE: Male. A future knight of the round table, Bedevere is the son of a noble family who lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Kaye and Arthur. He is training to be a knight and is always up to take part in a pretend tournament (or a real one!). He is determined to be the winner.
  • ROWENA: Female. Rowena is the daughter of a noble family who lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Elaine. She is a loyal friend to Elaine though she has definite ideas about what ladies should or should not do. She loves watching the boys as they play at being knights, but unlike Elaine, she has no desire to learn how to be one or to participate. While she wants to be a lady, she wishes it did not involve sewing lessons.
  • GWYNETH: Female. Gwyneth is the daughter of a noble family who lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Elaine. Like Elaine, she does not see why she should be left out of the games the boys play. She is outspoken and is the first to back up her friend and support her in everything. She loves the idea of kings and queens and knights in shining armor, and is always up for adventure.
  • LYNETTE: Female. Lynette is the daughter of a noble family who lives with Sir Ector’s family as a companion to Elaine. She wants to be a lady, though like the other girls she is not a fan of her sewing lessons. She and Rowena are similar in that they have no desire to be knights—though she would not say no to being a queen!
  • OSRIC: Male. Osric is an attendant employed in Sir Ector’s castle. He often joins the games of the noble boys as their squire, though his first priority is serving Sir Ector. Osric can often be found in the stables tending to the horses, but he loves a good tournament just as much as anyone else!
  • CYMRIC: Male. Like Osric, Cymric is employed by Sir Ector as an attendant in the castle. Cymric has a mischievous streak and likes to imitate the grown-ups. He is funny and loyal and makes a wonderful squire.
  • CERDIC: Male. Like Osric and Cymric, Cerdic is an attendant at Sir Ector’s castle. He often acts as a squire for Kaye, Gawain, Gareth, and Bedevere. However, if you asked him who was the best at sword fighting and jousting, he would tell you it’s him!
  • PEGEEN: Female. A handmaiden of Lady Enid, Pegeen is loyal and hardworking. She is ecstatic over the idea of going to London and cannot wait to watch the grand tournament. She is fascinated by the noble ladies and tries to be like them, watching them closely and practicing her curtsies.
  • CAITLIN: Female. Caitlin is also one of Lady Enid’s handmaidens. She is spirited and full of giggles and can brighten up any room. Unlike the other girls, Caitlin loves to sew. She is proud of her accomplishments. She is a little bit clumsy, which she doesn’t notice although everyone else does.
  • FIONA: Female. Like Pegeen and Caitlin, Fiona is a handmaiden to Lady Enid. She is intelligent and funny, and her mischief making is a source of comedy as she makes faces and imitates other characters while they are speaking.
  • MORGAN LE FAY: Female. Morgan is Arthur’s aunt, sister of the late Queen. She is beautiful but deadly, good at charming people and then striking to gain power. She is jealous of Merlin and makes herself out to be superior to him at magic, though she cannot actually beat him. She is power-hungry and plots against Arthur and Merlin, hoping to control the throne of Britain herself. She is over the top and somewhat flamboyant in her clothing and actions, making a great deal out of herself. Her pride is unmatched, and she loves being the villain.

o   NOTE: The magic props and effects we hope to use as part of this show require that Morgan Le Fay be cast from among our older students. Of these students, it is imperative that whoever is cast in this part strictly follows the rules of no use or handling of props when not on stage performing in the show. Props must be used only as the script requires and only when the director(s) have given permission.

  • DRAGONFLY: Male/Female. Dragonfly is a devoted follower of Morgan Le Fay. It is a pleasure to obey her and do exactly as she bids, because Morgan is the epitome of evil in this show and Dragonfly thrives on that. Dragonfly is always by Morgan Le Fay’s side and ready to wreak havoc.
  • KATYDID: Female. Like Dragonfly, Katydid follows Morgan Le Fay and is absolutely devoted to her. She follows her every order and loves obeying her because she loves to stir up trouble. She wants to be a magician like Morgan and assists her as much as she can.
  • SIR ULFIUS: Male. A noble who comes to the tournament in hopes of becoming king, Sir Ulfius desires power and authority and is not sure he trusts Sir Ector or the Archbishop. Husband of Lady Wolfgar.
  • EARL PELLINORE: Male. Earl Pellinore comes to London hoping that he or his son will be crowned king. He acts as a messenger for the Archbishop and feels he outranks all of the others who come to the grand tournament. He expects to be the winner of the tournament, certain that his skills are superior. Husband of Lady Alfrieda.
  • DUKE OF CLARENCE: Male. The Duke of Clarence is the husband of Lady Fergus. He loves tournaments and jousting. He is very smart and has a huge vocabulary. He is clearly (at least, in his mind) the man who should be king—or if not him, his son.
  • ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY: Male. The Archbishop is the main authority in Britain at this time. He has spent years waiting for a miracle, a way to know who the rightful king of Britain is. He is dignified and self-controlled, even when others doubt him. He is determined to do the right thing, and although it all seems overwhelming, he manages to overcome the stress to achieve his goal. He hopes to peacefully settle the country’s many conflicts.
  • OSGOOD CLERKWYN: Male/Female. Clerkwyn has good intentions but things don’t always happen the way he thought they would. He is an assistant to the Archbishop and does everything he can to help him, but his clumsiness occasionally gets in the way.
  • OSBERT CLARKWYN: Male/Female. Clarkwyn is, like Clerkwyn, an assistant to the Archbishop. Sometimes scatter-brained, he does the best he can to help and serve but is not always as successful as he would like to be.
  • GWENEVERE: Female. Gwenevere is a shy, sweet, gentle young lady with a big heart. While the other girls admire the knights for their fighting and skills with their swords, Gwenevere is drawn to Arthur’s studious, kind ways. She has no idea that she is the future queen, although she thinks it would be lovely to be such. She has a quiet, humble disposition and Arthur is immediately drawn to her.
  • LADY FERGUS: Female. Lady Fergus is determined that the country’s royalty will come from her family. She has consulted soothsayers who promise her that this will be the case, so she is very sure of herself. She never considers that others might just be telling her what she wants to hear. She is the wife of the Duke of Clarence.
  • LADY ALFRIEDA: Female. Lady Alfrieda is the wife of Earl Pellinore. She is very competitive and very concerned with rank. She tries to act dignified but it comes across as proud and superior.
  • LADY WOLFGAR: Female. Lady Wolfgar is a little insecure. She’s afraid of being outranked by Lady Alfrieda and Lady Fergus which makes her fiercely competitive as she always tries to outdo them. She wants her son to be crowned king and thinks he is the best, most superior child in the entire world.
  • ABBESS OF ALBION: Female. The Abbess is the devoted, but scatter-brained, choir mistress of the Sweet Heavenly Cherubs Children’s Angelic Choir. She wants to find a time for the children to sing for the Archbishop and the nobles. She is kind and sweet but willing to do whatever it takes to make sure her choir is heard. She is a comedic character.
  • SISTER MARY MERCY: The devoted, disorganized assistant choir mistress. She often tells the choir children to stay in one place, and then can’t remember where she told them to stay! The excitement and busy-ness of the tournament enthrall her, and sometimes in all of the chaos she has a hard time keeping up with what she intends to do. Like the Abbess, she is a comedic character.

Parents are welcome, but not required, to stay with their students during the audition.

Group Read-Through:

  • We will be hosting a group read-through of the script prior to the first rehearsal on Thursday September 8, 2016 at 1:00pm at the Harrisburg YMCA.   Parents are welcome to attend.

Rehearsal Schedule:

Participants must be available to rehearse from 1-3 pm, although they may not be asked to rehearse both hours.  Dates are as follows:

  • 1:00 – 2:00/3:00pm for all participants on Tuesdays and Thursdays for an 8-week session, on the dates below.  In general, please plan for your child to be available from 1-3.
    • 9/15, 9/20, 9/22, 9/27, 9/29, 10/4, 10/6, 10/11, 10/13, 10/18, 10/20, 10/25, 10/27
  • 1:00-3:00 for all participants during the final rehearsal week, on the dates below:
    • 11/1, 11/3 

Dress Rehearsal Schedule:

  • 1:00-3:00pm on Friday November 4, 2016 at the Harrisburg YMCA, located @ 4110 Main Street, Suite 200 Harrisburg, NC 28075.

Performance Schedule:


  • When:  Friday Nov 4, 2016 @ 7pm  AND  Saturday Nov 5, 2016 @ 6pm
  • Where: Central Cabarrus High School, Concord NC

Parent Participation:

  • Parent participation is key to achieving a successful experience, therefore participation in Rise & Shine Players℠ should be considered a family commitment.  Parents are encouraged to include any theatre-related talents in the appropriate spot on the enrollment form, however a list of volunteer opportunities will be discussed at a parent meeting on the day of the first rehearsal.
  • For parents who are registering through Option A – “Choose to sell playbill ad space.” :
    • Fundraising through the sale of playbill ad space is one of the primary sources through which we fund our group (pay directors, rent rehearsal space and performance space, etc.).  Ultimately, we use the funds to subsidize the cost of registration to keep the price as affordable as possible.  This is nothing to stress – you’ll receive instructions on how to go about selling ad space, and we’ll do our best to make it as easy for you as possible!
  • One parent from each family is required to:
    1. Attend a parent meeting held during the first rehearsal on9/15/16 at the YMCA from 1:00 – 2:00.  Volunteer roles and marketing assignments (for parents who chose payment option A) will be made during this meeting.
    2. Volunteer approximately 6 hours of time in their assigned role (costume design, set design, playbill creation, etc.)
    3. Visit local businesses to sell advertising space in the playbill (for parents who chose payment option A)