Through the recollections of Albert Einstein, Einstein's Gift tells the story of German Jewish chemist, Dr. Fritz Haber, who helped improve living conditions in the early 1900s with his work on nitrogen fixation. His work was later repurposed by the German army to produce chlorine gas in the Second Battle of Ypres in the First World War. The play depicts how his actions and newly forged military connections affect his relationship with his wife, Clara, and his assistant, Otto. As his passion in science intertwines with nationalistic pride, Haber manifests himself as a scientist devoted to a country that never accepts his Jewish origin. Einstein and Haber both grapple with the fundamental nature of science and the responsibility scientists should have for their discoveries.
Albert Einstein (M. 40s-60s): Famous physicist, notable for his work on Relativity and developing the Atomic Bomb. He is very conflicted about the results of his work, and what it led to. He is the audience's link to this story, and is on stage for the entire play (often just watching). He believes firmly that the pursuit of science/knowledge is noble, and application is unnecessary and not the place of the scientist to decide. While the story is told through Einstein's perspective, it is important to remember Haber is the focus of the story.
***All age ranges are flexible. Please feel free to audition outside of the range specified. While this is an historical play, Dundas Little Theatre fully supports inclusive casting and we encourage actors of all ages, ethnicities, genders, etc. to audition.
***This is a non-Equity, non paying Production
Two Ensemble Members (M. 20s +, to play a combination of the following):
Peterson: Commander in the the German army who distrusts Haber both as being a scientist in war and Jewish by birth.
Soldier (in Act 2): an echo to the victims of the gas attacks in Act 1.
Rust: the Minister of Education who enforces Socialist rule.
Deacon: Lutheran minister who administers Haber's conversion to Christianity and his subsequent baptism.
Deimling: General in the German army during WW I who is part of an attack using Haber's chlorine gas.
Gestapo: a guard to Rust.
Various assistants, voices, etc.
Fritz Haber (M. 30s-40s): Ambitious. Born in Germany, originally Jewish, converted to Christianity out of convenience/necessity. A Nobel prize winning chemist for work that saved millions from starvation. That same work was also used to develop chlorine gas for World War I. Haber is very much a nationalist and cannot forsake his country even as it is forsaking him.
Otto (M. 20s-30s): Haber's assistant. Otto is a passionate and over-worked partner to Haber's work, and believes firmly in finding practical applications for his science. However, he is disillusioned when he sees what Haber's work can do. He is lead to join the Nazi government, finally finding some purpose in this pursuit.
Clara (F. 20s-early 30's **also doubles as a singer in Act 2) Haber's first wife. A fellow scholar. She assists with some of Haber's discoveries, and is often completing or fixing his work. She, like Haber, believes in science as being something that should be useful, but much like Otto, cannot abide by how his work is used in the war. Torn by this, she commits suicide once Haber leaves to take part in the war (WW I).
Lotta (F. 20's **also doubles as a Soldier in Act 1): Haber's second wife. She is enamoured with the fame of Haber, fresh off of his Pulitzer Prize. She is afraid of what's coming--the anti-Semitic hints of 30s Germany scare her in a way that it does not scare Haber. She would be happy to flee and live with Haber anywhere else. Despite it all, she sticks with Haber when no one else would.
Directed by Ryan Trepanier
Production Dates: Oct. 25th, 26th, Nov.1st, 2nd, 3rd*, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th* 2019.
Evenings 8 p.m. *2 p.m. Sunday matinees.
Rehearsals 3 times a week. Start mid-to-late August.
Place: Garstin Centre For The Arts, 37 Market St. S. Dundas ON.
Audition Dates: Sunday, May 26th, & Tuesday, May 28th, 7 p.m.
37 Market St. S. Dundas
Auditions will consist of a cold read from the script. No appointment necessary, if you are unable to
attend any of these times contact the director to discuss any other possible arrangements.
Scripts are available upon request from the director.