Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

by Stephen Sondheim
Directed by Jeb Bigelow
Music Director Pam Welsh-Huggins

Produced by Heather Schultz

Production Kickoff: June 11, 2023

Audition: June 18, 2023

Performance Dates

Sept. 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, & 23, 2023 at 8:00PM
Sept. 17 & 24, 2023 at 2:00PM

Unless specifically noted, all roles are open to all regardless of race or ethnicity.

Character Notes

  • Character ages are targets, but the director is not locked into them.
  • Some characters will double in the ensemble, which will be small.

  • Sweeney Todd – (30s-50s) Charming but hot-tempered, ferocious yet vulnerable. Formerly a proud barber, a loving husband and a happy father, now consumed by loss and revenge after his wrongful fifteen year imprisonment, Sweeney has returned to London after escaping from prison to right the wrongs committed against him, his wife and his daughter. Strong baritone/bass who can whistle.
  • Nellie Lovett – (30s-50s) An enterprising meat pie shop owner who will do whatever it takes to survive. She is in love with Todd and hopes that he'll forget the past and build a new life with her. At first shocked by Sweeney's bursts of violence, Lovett turns his desire for revenge into a profitable business venture. She is resourceful, ambitious, charismatic, and has great comedic timing. Mezzo with a belt. Speaks with a Cockney accent.
  • Anthony Hope – (20s) A youthful sailor who helps Sweeney return to London and unexpectedly falls in love with Johanna. He is idealistic, romantic and a bit reckless. His passions sometimes get the better of his reason and his enthusiasm sometimes makes him unintentionally comical. Over the course of the show he awakens to the horrors around him and becomes disillusioned with London. Tenor. Speaks with a standard British accent.
  • Johanna Barker – (appears to be 16) Todd's long-lost daughter and Judge Turpin's young ward. Homeschooled and largely homebound. She has a rebellious, subversive and romantic streak and longs to escape from her confinement. Johanna is aware that Judge Turpin isn't her real father and suspects that he might be a predator. Soprano. Speaks with a British accent.
  • Tobias Ragg – (late teens-20s) A poor youngster apprenticed first to Pirelli and then to Mrs. Lovett. He is industrious and eager to please, with a good sense of humor. Uneducated, but innately clever and observant, Tobias responds quickly to the kindness of Lovett but grows increasingly suspicious of Sweeney. Tenor. Speaks with a Cockney accent.
  • Judge Turpin – (40s-50s plus) A lecherous public official who portrays himself as a sanctimonious authoritarian. He takes advantage of his position to imprison Todd, assault Lucy, and take Johanna as his ward. He is aware that what he wants and what he's done is wrong, yet chooses to ignore and push against his conscience. He lusts after Johanna. Bass/baritone. Speaks with a standard British accent.
  • Beadle Bamford – (30s-50s) A pompous public official who is deeply loyal to Judge Turpin. He possesses a dry, deadpan sense of humor and enjoys wielding his power. Tenor with strong falsetto. Speaks with a standard British accent.
  • Beggar Woman (Lucy) – (30s-40s) An eerie, poor soul living on the streets of London. She supports herself by begging and prostituting herself to sailors. She has occasional flashes of lucidity and distrusts Mrs. Lovett. She is the only one who sees what's happening but no one will listen to her. Mezzo. Speaks with a Cockney accent.
  • Adolfo Pirelli – (30s-40s) An Irish former employee of Sweeney's who has since developed a public persona as a flamboyant and flashy world-famous Italian barber. A charlatan who sells face medicine and challenges other barbers to shaving contests. Pirelli is charming, calculating, and over-the-top comedic. High tenor. Speaks in both Italian and Irish accents.

One of the darkest musicals ever written, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is the unsettling tale of a Victorian-era barber who returns home to London after fifteen years of exile, to take revenge on the corrupt judge who ruined his life. While plotting his retaliation against the judge, Sweeney uses the tools of his trade to murder as many people as he can, while his business associate Mrs. Lovett bakes the bodies into meat pies and sells them to the unsuspecting public.

Jeb is excited to return to Curtain Players and to direct his first musical. He had his directorial debut in 2016 with CP's The Importance of Being Earnest. Now, with a few more productions under his belt, he looks forward to this new challenge and opportunity. His theatrical background as a performer has skewed more towards musical theater, so this should be a perfect fit. A Kroger pharmacist by day, he spends many of his nights attending numerous local productions culminating in the annual Jebby Awards, a home grown local theater celebration.

Pam Welsh-Huggins has had the joy of music-directing some of Columbus's finest singing actors of all ages in nearly 20 productions over the last 15 years. Sweeney Todd will be her third Sondheim show, having MD'ed Available Light's production of Merrily We Roll Along and Red Herring's Assassins. She directs the choirs and rocks with the modern band program at Columbus City Schools's Centennial High School on the city's northeast side.


  • Production Kickoff: Sunday, June 11, 2023, 6:30 pm
  • Audition: Sunday, June 18, 2023


Script review, auditions, and performances take place at:
Curtain Players Theatre
5691 Harlem Road, Galena, OH 43021

Curtain Players offers an information session for each of its productions as a help for actors seeking roles, but attendance is not required to audition. The event is an opportunity for actors to become acquainted with the community theatre organization, to discuss the play with the director, and to ask questions about the audition process, rehearsal period, and production plans. Those interested in working behind the scenes are also invited to attend.

Curtain Players conducts open auditions for its productions. Roles are not cast in advance, and, unless specified otherwise in the role's description, are open to all without regard to race or ethnicity. Casting decisions are made by the director and a casting committee comprised of a member of the theatre board, a general member of the organization, and individuals of the director's choosing.

Those auditioning are encouraged to prepare a 16-32 bar Sondheim selection in the original production key. Accompanist will be provided, so please have properly marked sheet music. Auditionees will sign up for a time slot (through sign up genius) and potentially be asked to do a cold reading from the script. Call back date and time will be announced closer to auditions.

Requests for an early audition for Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street must be made no later than June 04, 2023.

Questions related to the audition process may be directed to production@curtainplayers.org.

Rehearsals will generally be held Sundays through Thursdays, not necessarily always at the theater. Looking at roughly 6:30-9:30pm dependent on availability etc. Tech week TBA due to Labor Day weekend being in the mix.
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