Auditions for "Barefoot in the Park," the Panhandle Players final production of their 2016-17 season, will be held tonight, Monday, April 24, at 6 p.m. at the Raney Carriage House, on Market and Avenue F, Apalachicola.

To be directed by Ed Tiley, Barefoot in the Park is a romantic comedy by Neil Simon that opened on Broadway in 1963, featuring Robert Redford. The play was a smash hit, running for over 1,500 performances and was later turned into a successful film.

In the play, Corie and Paul are 20-something newlyweds, fresh from their honeymoon. Corie, still enthralled by the romance and excitement of their wedding and honeymoon, wants this passionate life to continue at full speed. Paul, however, feels it is time to focus on his burgeoning career as an up-and-coming lawyer. When they don't see eye-to-eye about their apartment, their neighbors, and their attitude about romance, the new marriage experiences its first patch of rough weather.

The entire play takes place on the fifth floor of a five-flight New York City walk-up apartment building (no elevator). Walking up the stairs completely exhausts the characters, granting hilarious, out-of-breath entrances for telephone repairmen, delivery men, and mother-in-law alike.

Role descriptions include Corie, the newlywed wife who embraces life as a series of exciting adventures. She is passionate, funny and optimistic, for the most part, the complete opposite of her husband. Paul, a straight-laced, conservative trainee lawyer, finds it difficult to cope with Corie's spontaneity - until he learns to compromise and walks "barefoot in the park."

In addition, an older gentleman, Victor, is an eccentric neighbor, a larger-than-life character who lives in the attic, and who enchants Corie with his zest for life. That worries Paul, mainly because Corie is trying to hook Victor up with her mother, Ethel, a widow living in New Jersey who worries about everything, including her health. She learns to embrace life with the help of Victor.

There are two other adult characters, a telephone installer and a delivery person, who can be of any gender or ethnicity.

Auditioners will be asked to cold read from the script and breathe heavily. “I’m looking for actors with passion to inhabit their characters so deeply the audience won't realize you're acting,” said Tiley. “Voice projection, a confident presence, and enthusiasm are a big plus."

Performance dates for Barefoot in the Park will be June 30, July 1 and 2, 5 and 6. The show replaces “Misery,” which had been scheduled but had to be pulled because performing rights were unobtainable.

For more information contact Tiley at editor@forgottencoastweekend.com