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UCR Department of Theatre, Film, and Digital Production





By Lope de Vega

Directed by Melanie Queponds


Granted unexpected social freedom after her husband's death, a young woman plots to protect her reputation by day while enjoying her lover at night, using her wits to fool everyone and keep one step ahead of her increasingly complicated schemes. Lope de Vega’s commedia masterpiece from 1600 crackles in a new translation by UCLA’s Diversifying the Classics group.


DECEMBER 2, 2022

Friday, 5:00-9:00pm

Studio Theatre (ARTS 113)


Callbacks: DECEMBER 3, Saturday 10:00am-2:00pm


Meet the Director (Zoom): Melanie Queponds will be holding a “meet the director” session on Wednesday, November 30th from 6:30-7:30pm in Zoom. This is not required, but you are welcome to come say hello and ask questions about the show. If you want to attend the meet-and-greet please email McKenna Lindheimer, Stage Manager:,  for the Zoom link.


Needed: 11 cast members.



Actors should prepare:

  • A one-minute classical monologue or a monologue written with heightened language or style in English, Spanish, or Spanglish.
  • Please bring the monologue prepared and memorized. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A PREPARED MONOLOGUE, we can also provide a scene for you to read at the audition. Please request the sides at the time you are requesting the audition time slot and come prepared with the sides.
  • Tips for the audition:
    • Read the play before auditioning. An online copy of the play can be read here.
    • Wear clothes you are comfortable and can move in.
    • Being “honest” is preferable to being “theatrically interesting.”
    • If you get a callback, please come dressed in comfortable clothes and closed-toed shoes, ready to move. Be prepared to work with each other and make your scene partners look great – because that makes you look *awesome*!


How to audition:

  • You must sign-up in advance for a five-minute time slot here.
  • Download and fill out the Audition Form here (in either PDF or Word format). Once this form has been filled out and you have signed up for a time slot, email your completed Audition Form and a headshot photo to McKenna Lindheimer, Stage Manager:


Please note:

  • Please review the cast schedule here before signing up to audition. You must be fully available for all dates and times listed on this schedule.
  • Cast members will be enrolled in four units of TFDP 170 in the winter quarter under Professor Melanie Queponds.



Character information:

All roles are open to all ethnicities and all genders. Some parts will be doubled with the sheriff, a scribe, and servants.


LEONARDA: A wealthy widow, niece of Lucencio, lover (and eventually wife) of Camilo. Bold, clever, fiercely independent protagonist of the drama.


LUCENCIO: Uncle of Leonarda. An old man who is concerned with the reputation of his widowed niece and the demands of social status and wishes for her to remarry.


JULIA: Servant in Leonarda’s household. Leonarda’s confidante at the beginning of the play, she assists Urbán and Leonarda with Camilo’s secret visits. Eventually marries Urbán.


URBÁN: Squire to Leonarda and a servant in the household. He helps Leonarda secretly host Camilo in the house. Urbán is the closest figure in the play to the gracioso, or servant side-kick, of comedia.


CAMILO: Secret suitor to Leonarda, whom he marries at the end.


CELIA: Camilo’s spurned former lover and future wife of Floro.


LISANDRO: Buffoonish suitor to Leonarda who makes feeble attempts to woo her.


OTÓN: Buffoonish suitor to Leonarda (with Lisandro and Valerio).


VALERIO: Buffoonish suitor to Leonarda (with Lisandro and Otón).


ROSANO: Messenger from Madrid, stabbed by Lisandro as he comes out of Leonarda’s house.


FLORO: Servant to Camilo, he eventually agrees to marry Celia.


SHERIFF: Leader of the police force in the city of Valencia.


About the play:

How might a young widow satisfy her desire while preserving her independence? In The Widow of Valencia, Lope de Vega presents us with the wealthy and beautiful Leonarda, who defies the wishes of her uncle by refusing to remarry. After a few glances shared with a young gallant in church reawaken her passion, she begins a masked affair in which disguise offers the rewards of pleasure without risk."


Note from the director:

While the play is set in Spain around 1600, the casting should reflect our world today: racially and culturally diverse actors, diversity across all genders and sexualities (despite living in a heteronormative and binary-gendered society), diversity in disability and neurodivergence, and so on. We are also experimenting with integrating the original language of the play to create a Spanglish version of the piece. We will cast and change the script according to each individual actor's comfortability with Spanish. You do not have to be fluent in Spanish to audition, but if you would like to showcase your fluency, please make sure to include Spanish in your initial audition and monologue.

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