Barrel of Monkeys company members performing during Celebration of Authors

PlayMakers Laboratory is Casting 2019-2020 Season Artistic Associates


PlayMakers Laboratory (PML) is an arts education nonprofit that teaches creative writing in Chicago elementary schools and then brings students’ stories to life on stage. PML is a community of approximately 60 passionate actor-educators who value the creative voices of young people, teaching both during school hours and in after-school settings. Performers adapt the stories written by our students into sketches, songs, and poems, which are then performed for the school community as well as for the public. PML is seeking actor-educators of all ages, ethnicities, sexual orientations, gender identities, abilities, and silhouettes who have great collaborative skills, improvisation abilities, and a passion for working with and performing for youth.

Ideal candidates have experience in sketch, musical theatre, directing and/or devising original work. They are skilled teaching artists and have experience working in schools, with young people, and performing throughout the city.

PlayMakers Laboratory is especially seeking performers who reflect the cultural backgrounds of the students we serve, who are primarily Black and Latino students on the South and West sides of Chicago. We are also seeking musicians who can underscore and adapt student stories into musical numbers. Fluency in Spanish is also highly desirable.

Above all, we are looking for artists who are passionate about the work we do and the young people with whom we collaborate.

Category:Non Equity
Pay: $140/show; competitive hourly rates for teaching
Expectations: Artistic Associates are expected to perform in 3-5 school-based shows during the 2018-2019 school year, become oriented with our in-school curriculum, attend trainings and meetings, and engage in the PML community. After an Artistic Associate fulfills these expectations for at least one year, they may become candidates for Company Membership. 

Audition Details

Auditions will be held on Monday October 7 and Tuesday October 8 from 6pm-10pm at the PlayMakers Laboratory rehearsal space(4021 N Broadway, 1st Fl) in Buena Park . Each auditioner will be assigned a 5 minute individual slot.

General Callbacks will be held on Saturday October 12, 10am-12pm or 1pm-3pm at the PlayMakers Laboratory rehearsal space (4021 N Broadway, 1st Fl) in Buena Park. If you are called back you will be invited to attend a 2-hour callbacks slot.

Musician Callbacks will be held on Sunday October 13, 5pm-7pm at the PlayMakers Laboratory rehearsal space (4021 N Broadway, 1st Fl) in Buena Park. If you are called back you will be asked to teach others auditioners how to sing your BOM audition song as well as demonstrate your ability to underscore scenes.

*If you are unavailable for any of these times, we may be able to schedule alternate audition or callback slot.

To sign up for an audition slot, please email auditions@barrelofmonkeys.org with your full name as the subject line, and include the following:

  • Your head shot or photo, attached
  • Your performance/artistic resume, attached
  • A resume or description of your history of working as a teaching artist and/or working with young people, attached (if applicable)
  • Information about any and all instruments you play
  • Information about Spanish language proficiency

What to prepare:

ALL Auditioners: You will have 5 minutes to present 2 solo performance pieces of your choosing. Please come prepared to demonstrate your range of talents. You can perform a monologue, tell a story, sing, dance, rap, mime, perform stand-up, spoken word, or incorporate any other artistic element that shows off your skills. Be creative and show us your best work!

Musicians: If you identify as a musician we would like you to prepare a song for one of your solo performance pieces. Please prepare an original musical performance piece adapted from a student-written BOM story of your choosing. Stories can be found here. Musicians can feel free to play any instrument (keyboard is provided) or prerecord a track. Musicians who are called back will be asked to teach a group how to sing your song,

Note for all: There will be no accompanist, but there will be a keyboard and amp with AUX cord for your use. Feel free to bring a portable musical instrument, or to sing a capella.

PlayMakers Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer.

“I had so much fun; you opened me up to new ideas. Now I love to write and act.”

–Juliette, 6th grade, Loyola Park