“The stage mother of all musicals”

Music by Marvin Laird; Book and Lyrics by Joel Paley

Directed and Choreographed by Michael C. Mensching and Michael McDermott

Musical Direction by Joanne Mensching

Sunday, February 5 and Monday, February 6, 2023

7:00-9:00 p.m.

Callbacks, if necessary: Tuesday, February 7, 2023 at 7:00 p.m.

At The Ghent Playhouse

6 Town Hall Road

Ghent, New York


“Ruthless” is the story of a naïve 1950’s housewife, Judy Denmark, and her adorable but sociopathic 12 year-old daughter, Tina, who knows she was born to play Pippi Longstocking, and will do anything to win the part in her school musical. Encouraged by her manager, Sylvia St. Croix, Tina will stop at nothing in her quest for stardom!

Cunningly spoofing classic musicals and campy films from “Gypsy” to “The Bad Seed,” this aggressively outrageous musical garnered rave reviews during its long Off-Broadway run.


Ruthless! The Musical is a very funny, fast-paced and wickedly twisted musical comedy with 8 distinct roles. There is no “ensemble.” With the exception of the non-singing role of Miss Block, all of the characters have solo numbers.


TINA DENMARK: (presenting as an 8-13 yo – Strong belt –E flat mix preferred for vocal safety) – An adorable mega-talented “triple threat,” who turns into a ruthless 12 year old diva with a penchant for murder! Tina manipulates by switching from sweet to murderous on a dime! Must be credible as an “Annie wannabee.” Tap dancing also required. NOTE: The role of Tina does use some foul language.

JUDY/GINGER: (30-50 yo – Mezzo belter with a pleasing head voice, as well) – Tina’s mother. A simple June Cleaver-type 1950’s housewife and mother who, after uncovering her hidden talents, is transformed into Ginger, a Norma Desmond-type Broadway diva. Imagine Donna Reed turning into Joan Crawford.

SYLVIA ST. CROIX: (30’s-60’s, played by a man – Baritone) – The stereotypical “in-your-face” talent manager, with a mysterious past, who is obsessed with making Tina a star; a cross between Auntie Mame and Mama Rose, with a touch of Cruella Du Ville.

LOUISE LERMAN: (8-13 yo – Mezzo belter) – That other 12 year old! The one whose parents financially sponsor the school musical and who surprisingly beats Tina out for the lead in the show, “Pippi Longstocking Goes to Tahiti!” She has limited talent, but is still a precocious diva.

LITA ENCORE: (40ish-60ish – Mezzo with a belt) Tina’s grandmother. An old-time theater critic with a poison pen, who hates musicals. An Ethel Merman-type with a strong belt.

MISS THORN/MISS BLOCK: (30-50 yo – Belter who is over life as it is) Tina’s teacher/perky butch sleuth reporter.

EVE: (20ish – 30ish – Belter) – Efficient personal assistant to Broadway star, Ginger. She wants Ginger’s life and copies her ever mannerism. NOTE: The character will appear in tasteful undergarments.


Those auditioning are asked to prepare 16-32 bars of an up-tempo Broadway piece, preferably old-school. An accompanist will be provided. Please no a cappella or taped music for auditions.

Each participant will also read from the script.


Please bring along a current resume and a complete list of conflicts for the period of February 20 through April 30. Regarding conflicts, please remember vacations and holiday schedules before auditioning, as these may be a factor in the casting process. Head shots are welcome, but not required.


Rehearsals will begin Monday, February 20 and will typically be Sunday through Wednesday evenings. Further details TBD after auditions.


Performances begin with a Preview on Thursday evening, April 13, 2023 at 7:30 p.m. and continue Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoons at 2:00 p.m., through April 30, 2023.

Please note that everyone cast in the production MUST be available for every performance.

For further information about auditions or the production, please visit the Ghent Playhouse website or contact directors Michael Mensching or Michael McDermott, by email, at or

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