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Esther, A New Musical

Music and Lyrics by Glenna Bowman and Thomas Azar

Book by Glenna Bowman & Matthew Shead

A stage reading to be presented February 10, 2018, at Zach Theatre's Kleberg Stage.

Set in Ancient Persia, Esther, A New Musical is the tale of a young Jewish woman who dreams of traveling the world. But when the king's anti-Semitic advisor conscripts young virgins from across the land to choose a new queen, Esther finds herself unwillingly at the center of the king's court, where she discovers the most important choices in life are often those we make when we are out of options.

This original work will be presented as a stage reading. Actors will present the entire show, including dialogue and songs, but without sets or full costumes. Audience members will have the opportunity to provide feedback on the show that could impact future development work.


(All cast members may be asked to perform ensemble roles/songs, as needed.)


Hadassah (Esther) - 19 years old, beautiful, trustworthy (Soprano)

Suri - 15 years old, sweet, funny, loyal (Alto)

Dalia - 7 years old, a little shy, devoted

Juily - Mid-40s, motherly, takes care of Esther, Suri and Dalia

Zeresh - Mid-50s, Haman's wife, manipulative

Amira - 18 years old, Haman's daughter, beautiful, haughty

Ensemble - Up to 3; will play a variety of roles, including: Egyptian, Hindush and Jewish characters; and harem virgins      


Mordecai - 40 years old, pragmatic, confident, kind (Bari-tenor)

King Xerxes - 35 years old, charming, confident (Baritone)

Haman - Mid-50s, Manipulative (Baritone)

Harbona - King Xerxes' bodyguard, strong, highly intelligent

Hathak - Eunuch in charge of concubines, easily unnerved, but capable

Hegai - Eunuch in charge of virgins, happy, loves fashion and beauty car

Ensemble - Up to 3; will play a variety of roles, including Commander, Persian Nobles (Memucan, Tarshish and Shethar), Tamir (Jewish father), Bigthan and Teresh (king's guards/conspirators); Haman's Sons, harem eunuchs)

PERFORMANCE STIPEND (commensurate with role and experience), starting at $100


Monday, Dec 4th, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Friday, Dec 8th, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.



Saturday, Dec 9th, 1:00 - 4:00 p.m.



Manchaca United Methodist Church

1011 Farm to Market 1626, Manchaca, TX 78652

(at the corner of Manchaca Rd and FM 1626)



  • One 1-minute monologue that best represents your acting ability
  • 16 bars or approximately 30 seconds of music (must provide sheet music in your key). A  piano accompanist will be provided
  • Headshot and resume.


December 12, 2017


Dec 12 - Jan 13, Individual Rehearsals with Principals (specific dates TBD)

Early Jan (TBD), 6-9:30 pm, Full Cast Orientation / Initial Read-Through

Jan 14 - Feb 4, Rehearsals (2-3 rehearsals per week)

Feb 5, 6-10 pm, Tech Rehearsal

Feb 6, 6-10 pm, Tech Rehearsal, with band

Feb 9, 6-10 pm, Dress Rehearsal, with band

Feb 10, 5-10 pm, Performance Night


Zach Theatre, Kleberg Stage

1421 Riverside, Austin, Tx  78704

(at Lamar and Riverside, behind the Zach Topfer Theatre)