Audition Notice - The Pregnant Speakeasy

08 Oct 2021

Pig Iron Theatre Company is casting five performer-creators for an original, devised performance installation called THE PREGNANT SPEAKEASY.  

We are seeking performers and makers with experience in devised theater, contemporary dance, performance art and physical theater. Performer-creators must be comfortable improvising – both speaking and movement. Performers can be of any race and any gender. We are especially interested in performers and makers who have experienced pregnancy and childbirth and find themselves inspired to dig into this territory with soulfulness and humor. 

Pig Iron is committed to building diversity and inclusion, onstage and throughout the organization. We encourage individuals from underrepresented groups to audition.


THE PREGNANT SPEAKEASY (working title) is a new, devised performance piece conceived, written, and led by the award-winning writer, director, and filmmaker Josephine Decker and directed by OBIE-winning Pig Iron Co-Artistic Director Dan Rothenberg. Josephine Decker’s film work (Shirley, Madeline’s Madeline) has been heralded as ushering in a “new grammar of narrative” by The New Yorker; this collaboration marks her return to live performance. Creative team includes Maiko Matsushima (set), Alicia J. Austin (costumes), Faye Driscoll (movement consultant), and Tareke Ortiz (original music).

This immersive performance is inspired by the mysterious communion of mother and child and the communion of the pregnant with one another. THE PREGNANT SPEAKEASY initiates audiences into a hidden world of special knowledge available only to the pregnant. Audience members become “pregnant” (donning false bellies) to enter and are led in small groups through a series of rooms and installations: part dance, part ritual, and part comic exorcism. Decker's touchstones as she begins this work are: joy, abandon, darkness, and the invitation to fall in love with the unknown. We intend to have a lot of fun—and also maybe explode into tears?

Pig Iron seeks performer-creators to co-create the piece in a process led by Decker and Rothenberg. A team of core creators will develop material and then share performance duties with a larger ensemble during the final creation period. We are seeking decisors and performer-creators from the physical theatre, contemporary dance, and performance art worlds.

If you would like to be considered for an audition, please send a headshot and resume to  Short reels of performance work are welcome, too.

Audition-workshops will be held first on Zoom, and then in-person in New York and Philadelphia in November of 2021. See below for specific dates and times. We will be improvising, moving, and creating in groups at these audition-workshops, in response to prompts and objects curated by Decker and Rothenberg.


Questions? Email



On Zoom

Saturday, November 6: 12pm - 5pm EST 

Sunday, November 7: 12pm - 5pm EST

Wednesday, November 10: 2pm - 7pm EST


Preliminary auditions will be brief solo encounters over Zoom. Each session will be 10 minutes in length.

We will be doing short movement exercises with prompts given over Zoom. Please be ready to walk, jump, and fall to the floor. Come dressed comfortably and be ready to move. 



New York (space TBA)

Saturday, November 13: 10am - 1pm

Saturday, November 13: 3pm - 6pm

Sunday, November 14: 9am - 12pm

Sunday, November 14: 4pm - 7pm


Philadelphia (space TBA)

Wednesday, November 17: 1pm - 4pm

Wednesday, November 17: 6pm - 9pm 


Sessions will be held in groups of 6-8. Each session will last approximately 3 hours. Callbacks will require performers to move and interact with people in the audition space. Com dressed comfortably and be ready to move.

*Please note that we plan for these 3-hour callback sessions to be unmasked and indoors.*

We will ask auditioners to show proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test from the past 48 hours—all Pig Iron creative and production staff will adhere to the same guidelines.



(All in Philadelphia)

Workshop 1: February 21 - March 6, 2022

Workshop 2: March 28 - April 9, 2022

Final Rehearsal Process: August 29 - September 21, 2022

Performances: September 21 - October 10, 2022



Pay for performer-creators is $775/week

Pig Iron will pay for round trip travel for each of the 3 work periods and provide local housing to out-of-town artists when they are in Philadelphia.


COVID-19 Guidelines

We require all callback participants to be fully vaccinated unless they have a medical exemption, and provide proof of a negative COVID test taken within 48 hours of their scheduled time.

We will ask all callback participants to sign a waiver in advance absolving Pig Iron of COVID-related liability. Should any participant test positive in the week following auditions, they should report the positive test to Pig Iron's Managing Director, Laurie Ortega-Murphy ( Any person who auditioned with someone who later tested positive will be informed.

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