'Empire of Venus' Open Auditions **UPDATED 17 July**

About the project and the company

The University of Puget Sound’s Classical and Mediterranean Studies Department is holding open auditions for the premier production of Empire of Venus by Aislinn Melchior, directed by Castor Rosencrantz Kent.


Conceived after Melchior attended a production of Mary Zimmerman’s Metamorphoses, Empire of Venus aims to create a world that does not scrub away the divine violence that dots the mythic landscape of Ovid’s poem, but instead recognizes the function of this violence as a larger critique of Augustan Rome’s consumption and exploitation of the weaker in the imperial pursuit of power. Ovid, a great poet of Rome, died in exile, silenced and ignored. In this silencing, however, came a greater understanding both of the victims he had written, and the tyranny of the violent gods for whom power is all. Empire of Venus allows goddesses, nymphs, and mortal women to reclaim their voices and experiences, reveals to us the power of the poet’s voice to survive through the breath of others, and asks us what the aftermath of violence can be: what is taken from us by these experiences, what do we learn, and how do we grow greater than (or from) the cruelties that we suffer? Content warnings for this play include much discussion of sexual violence; mention of suicide; discussions of domestic violence, sex, racism and slavery; brief mentions of homophobia and transphobia; and misogyny. The sexual violence discussed in the play may be occasionally implied through poses and dance, but is not depicted outright onstage.


The open call will be taking place in person and over Zoom by appointment. 


***17 July UPDATE*** We are still seeking a few actors. Please email us to audition over zoom.

Location of Audition


Other details

Rehearsals will take place in person from mid-late August through our shows in September. Exact scheduling will depend on actors’ availability and schedules.

We are looking to fill 2 male roles and 9 female roles. Each actor will play several characters. We seek collaborators who are strong, but also gentle to themselves and others as they explore this difficult emotional territory.

Audition requirements

We will be providing sides for you to read at auditions, so no preparation is necessary. For those of you who wish to send in a video, please contact us and we will send you sides to choose from. Auditions are open to people of all backgrounds and experience levels. The only requirements are that you are an eager collaborator, and that you are available for our tech and shows in Rausch Auditorium 18-25 September 2022. For accessibility purposes, we will not be requiring a formal headshot and resume, however we would like to get to know you! Please send us a picture of yourself, your contact information, proof of covid-19 vaccination, and any of the following: references, experience/special skills, a resume.

Character breakdown / Project needs
Male, any age (adult), any race
Female, any age (adult), any race
Male, any age (adult), any race
Io/Procne/Female/Guard 1/Student
Female, any age (adult), any race
Female, any age (adult), any race
Nymph Chorus Member 1
Female, any age (adult), any race
Nymph Chorus Member 2
Female, any age (adult), any race
Nymph Chorus Member 3
Female, any age (adult), any race
Nymph Chorus Member 4
Female, any age (adult), any race
Choregos/Professor/Amina/Arachne/Lone Nymph/Young Woman
Female, any age (adult), actor of color
Pentheus/Homer/Phaethon/Tereus/TV Pitchman
Male, any age (adult), any race
Additional information
Preferred method of submission


Audition/Interview dates

Throughout the month of May and June on Zoom by appointment

Pay type


Audition location

Tacoma WA

Pay type

$50 $50

Union Requirements


Equity Contract