In Fields Where They Lay Synopsis
by Ricardo Pérez González
It was the war to end all wars. It was a Christmas like no other. These are the men that
The First World War, 1914: a troop of British soldiers joins the battle on the Western Front: Thomas Pfeiffer, a family man just trying to get back to his wife and child; Harold Dietrich, estranged from his family and hateful of his German heritage; Teddy Jones and Giles Anderson, two underage friends who enlisted together, one to avoid being branded a coward, the other to protect him; and Philip Osbourne, who battles the racism of the time to become one of the first soldiers of African descent to be sent into combat.
The trenches are a nightmarish land of maggots and muck, the earth a churning mud pit in which the men wallow like pigs. The embittered Dietrich, the shortest of stature and the surliest of the bunch, becomes the troop whipping boy, while 16-year-old Jones and Anderson are put through the hazing expected for young soldiers. Gradually Osbourne, an outcast, an exotic other, becomes integrated into the corps of men. Their first battle leaves the troop dispirited, as they lose Anderson in a pointless skirmish in No Mans Land, the area between the British and German trenches.
As they each cope with the loss of one of their number, Christmas Eve catches them unawares. A magical frost hardens the earth, making it possible for the men to stand on solid ground for the first time in months. Presents from home soften their hearts.
Suddenly, a glow lights up the German trenches. First one, then another, then another.
Through the distorted view of a trench scope, the men make out the luminescent outlines of Christmas trees, hundreds of them, adorning the German trenches. Sounds begin wafting across No Mans Land. German voices raised in song: Stille nacht, heilige nacht... Silent Night. The British soldiers join their German counterparts in song, and from the music a short-lived truce is born, sealed by the broken English of a German soldier: we no shoot, you no shoot.
The impromptu truce transforms the men. Osbourne, while knowing history will forget men like him who served in the Great War, has gained acceptance among his peers. Pfeiffer begins to believe he will make it home in one piece, and Jones begins to grow into a young man. Only the self-loathing Dietrich resists, and its he who fires the shot that signals the end of peace. Its a shot that will cost millions of lives, and its his brothers in arms who will pay the highest price.
The Dreamscape Theatre is casting all roles for a staged reading scheduled for the evening of January 15th, 2014 (possible additional dates tbd) of the play IN FIELDS WHERE THEY LAY by Ricardo Pérez González, directed by Brad Raimondo with musical direction by Anna Ebbesen. Originally produced by Dreamscape in December 2009 (and hailed as gripping drama by the New York Times), IN FIELDS WHERE THEY LAY tells the incredible true story of the World War I Christmas Truce.
The January staged reading will lead to a planned December 2014 production to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the Christmas Truce of 1914. Although the full production will be cast at a later date, we hope to retain much of the cast of the January reading for the December production.
The rehearsal process for the reading will comply with all AEA requirements. Showcase approval or Off-Broadway contract for the December 2014 production are pending.
All roles require excellent dialect work (cockney, RP, Working Class British or Jamaican as indicated in character breakdown) and some a capella singing.
To request an audition slot, please submit a current headshot and resume with your availability during the scheduled times (3-6pm & 8-10pm Wednesday November 13th) and which character you are primarily interested in reading for. If we are able to schedule an appointment we will email you specific instructions on what to prepare.
Note: All materials, information, casting information, products, and services included in or available through this site (the "content") are provided "as is" and "as available" for your use. The content is provided without warranties of any kind, either express or implied, including, but not limited to, implied warranties of merchantability. All talent under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian at all times
One of many success stories Click here for more
Got picked up by Nickelodeon Qwendera got picked up by Nickelodeon. They have already sent him a script to study. If he is successful he will be going to New York. And I must say that I enjoyed the show. Knowing that I was skeptical and pessimistic at first. You have my apologies. As you know Qwendera is very talented. Thank you so much, Qwendera's dad