May 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, 30, 2020


Big Fish

Music and Lyrics by Andrew Lippa

Book by John August

Based on the novel by Daniel Wallace

Directed by Ed Smith




Edward Bloom is a story teller.  He will play ages from 15 to 60+ and share his adventures.  He was a traveling salesman and loved it.  He creates characters in his mind that he then shares with those around him, including his son, Will. In the beginning of the show Will is about to get married to Josephine and asks his father not to tell stories or jokes during the wedding or the reception.  We learn that he and his wife Sandra ae dealing with major issues in his life. We learn of his loves and interactions from working in a circus to knowing how to fish.  Through the stories that he spins we learn who he is and why he needs fight the dragons so he can to exist and be.  So does Will – ultimately.  Along the way you will meet a giant, a witch, a mermaid and many other engaging people.



Edward H. Smith was a senior in high school in north central Wisconsin when they put on their first drama.  It was a murder mystery, and Ed was cast as the handyman who was the one that got murdered.  HE WAS HOOKED. After high school, Ed enlisted in the U.S. Army and stationed in Monterey, California.  He heard about a local theater group on the nearby Naval Base and auditioned and was cast as one of the suitors of Guinevere in CAMELOT.  Ed was then stationed at Kagnew Station, Asmara, Ethiopia. There , Ed met a former choreographer from NYC and he decided to put on musicals in the theater on base. The first one was Bye Bye Birdie, and Ed played Hugo F. Peabody. The next year, they did Guys & Dolls.  After four years in the Army Security Agency, Ed enrolled at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point and earning a double major in English and theater and did summer stock there in the off season.  Ed was selected to do a USO tour to the northwest command – Iceland, Greenland, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Ed has been actively involved in every aspect of theater for nearly 60 years.  He also takes every opportunity to see productions in order to learn and improve his skills.  He has seen 182 productions on Broadway.  Ed can’t really identify any one specific show that made him want to be a director. It was the actual process in and of itself and says “It allows one to share their vison with an audience to entertain and, once in a while, educate at the same time.”

Ed discovered TIP when they first opened after it had been rebuilt in 1996.  He directed their first musical, Quilters.  Since then, Ed has worked on, been in or directed more than 25 productions that included two seasons as the Technical Director.  I have directed – designed sets – designed lighting – operated the sound and light boards -built sets - served as stage manager and acted in these shows.

Ed first saw Big Fish in Atlanta where Judy’s niece was in the cast and knew they had to bring it to audiences here in the Springfield area.  It took three years!  Ed is hoping that the audiences appreciate and embrace the messages as they venture along with Edward Bloom and his family, friends, and enemies as he tells his stories.



Director:  Ed Smith

Co-Director: Judy Smith

Vocal Director:  Bill Bauser, Jr.

Music Director:  Lyle Vandeventer

Choreographer:  Kelsi Lachwala

Production Coordinator:  Cindy Hamblin

Accompanist:  Karen Danner

Costumers:  Sharon Weaver & Phyllis Bliven

Props:  Melody Sheehan

Makeup/Hair:  Judy McEvoy

Stage Manager:  Daniel Humphries

Assistant Stage Manager:  Scott Humphries

Special Asst/costumes:   Tammi Latham


*NOTE: Auditions will be shared with Babes in Arms auditionees as well. 



EDWARD BLOOM – Male lead; plays ages 15 through 60+; baritone; in 17 of the 20 scenes

WILL BLOOM (adult) – Male lead; 20’S TO 30’S; baritone; in 16 of the 20 scenes

WILL BLOOM (child) – tenor; in 5 scenes – would also play Will’s son, Edward in Act II; pre-teen

SANDRA BLOOM – Female lead; middle aged; soprano; in 9 scenes

SANDRA TEMPLETON – soprano; late teens or early 20’s; in 6 scenes

JOSEPHINE -  20’S to 30’S; Soprano; in 9 scenes; is pregnant in Act I and part of Act II

KARL (the giant) – Bass; 30 – 40’s or older; will walk on drywall stilts; in 8 scenes

AMOS CALLOWAY (circus owner - werewolf) – baritone; 40 – 50’s; in 5 scenes

DR. BENNETT – Non singing role; 60+; in 3 scenes

JENNY HILL – alto; 30 – 40’s; in 5 scenes

THE WITCH – soprano; ageless; in 4 scenes

DON PRICE (a bully) – baritone; plays ages 15 to 50; in 11 scenes unless a young Don is cast then     young Don would be in 4 scenes; is also the mayor of Ashton

ZACHY PRICE (little brother) – tenor; plays ages 13 to 40’s; in 11 scenes unless a young Zachy is cast then young Zachy would be in 4 scenes.

Ensemble – will portray other minor characters such as:


                            Witches (2 or 3)

                            Alabama Lambs (2 – females / cheerleader types)


                            Red Fang (martial arts a benefit)

                            General Patterson

                            Waiter (wedding reception)

                            Jugglers and circus acts                         




We will begin rehearsals for Big Fish around 4/1/20 and will work from 6:00 to 9:00 PM for 7 weeks to prepare this piece.

We will rehearse Sunday through Thursday, except for Easter Weekend when we will do Monday through Friday then back to the regular schedule.

You should know that our production staff will be attentive to your efforts and supportive to assure you have the opportunity to do your very best in showing us why you should be part of these regional premier productions.  We remind you that as an actor your “job” is to be prepared and present your very best in your audition.  We expect you to do just that.  Choose a song that you are comfortable with and that will show us what you are capable of.  If that happens to be a song from the show, that is fine.

If callbacks are needed to finalize the casting process then specific songs from the show for that individual character will be used and sheet music will be provided. If you would like the music for a song from either show in advance all you need do is reach out and ask. Likewise, if you have questions about the various characters just get ahold of us.