"We're looking for exciting new talent for the starring role in Disney's next Broadway musical, Tarzan," reads the casting notice for the Tarzan open call. The musical is slated for a 2006 Broadway berth at a theatre to be announced. No casting has been set, although the musical will boast a company of 34.
The role of Tarzan is described thusly: "A thrilling pop/rock singer to play in his 20s. Caught between the world of gorillas and the world of humans, Tarzan is a human raised by a family of apes in the African jungle. We must identify with him and care about him and his emotional journey. He is charming, sexy, vulnerable, animal-like, mysterious, and has lots of humanity. He is physically lean but toned, like a swimmer; he is not a muscle man as in the traditional Tarzan type. He should have strong upper body strength and be physical, agile, fearless, and very comfortable with movement and tackling aerial work. His body must be at one with the environment."
Both non-Equity and Equity singers of all cultural backgrounds are encouraged to attend the open call, which runs 9 AM to 4 PM with sign-ins beginning at 8:30 AM.
Those auditioning should prepare 16 bars of a contemporary/pop rock song showing vocal range. Auditioners may be asked to sing without accompaniment, although sheet music should be available if needed. Bring a photo (snapshot is okay) and resume.
Those unable to attend the Aug. 29 call can send, photo and resume to Tarzan Casting, 145 West 28th Street, 12th Floor, NY, NY, 10001. The Here Arts Center is located in Manhattan at 145 Sixth Avenue, between Spring and Broome Streets. Visit www.here.org for directions.
Tarzan will feature direction as well as set and costume design by Bob Crowley, choreography by Meryl Tankard with aerial movement by Pichon Baldinu of De La Guarda fame. Natasha Katz will design the lighting with sound design by John Shivers.
Phil Collins, who penned the score for Disney's animated "Tarzan" film, has written several additional songs for the stage version. The musical will also feature a book by David Henry Hwang, adapted from the film's screenplay by Tab Murphy, Bob Tzudiker and Noni White and based on the novel "Tarzan of the Apes" by Edgar Rice Burroughs.
The 1999 animated Disney film of "Tarzan" featured songs by Phil Collins. Collins, in fact, won an Oscar for the tune "You'll Be In My Heart." The film employed the voices of Tony Goldwyn (Tarzan), Minnie Driver (Jane Porter), Glenn Close (Kala), Brian Blessed (Clayton), Nigel Hawthorne (Porter), Lance Henriksen (Kerchak), Wayne Knight (Tanor), Alex D. Linz (Young Tarzan) and Rosie O'Donnell (Terk).