Fun Home Synopsis and Character Descriptions

Fun Home is a musical adapted by Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori from Alison Bechdel’s 2006 graphic memoir of the same name. The story concerns Bechdel’s discovery of her own sexuality, her relationship with her gay father, and her attempts to unlock the mysteries surrounding his life. It is told in a series of non-linear vignettes connected by narration provided by the adult Alison character.

Note: Parents are encouraged to research the content of this musical prior to auditions.

Performances will take place at our downtown theater on Grand Ave in Escondido. January 17 to February 9, 2020.

Character Descriptions

ALISON – Alison Bechdel in her early 40s. The narrator of this story. Now a self-aware adult, she is able to reflect insightfully on her own life and her relationship with her father before his tragic death. Must be a strong singer who can move seamlessly in vocal quality from speech to song. 

MEDIUM ALISON (Early to mid-20s to play 19) – Alison Bechdel as a freshman at Oberlin college, discovering her sexuality. For an incredibly well-read, hyper-intelligent teenager, her uncertainty about who she is makes her socially awkward at times. Must be a strong singer who can move seamlessly in vocal quality from speech to song. Should be comfortable being on stage in underwear and with kissing and physical contact with character Joan.

SMALL ALISON – Alison Bechdel as a child, around 8 years old when we meet her. Precocious and opinionated. On the cusp of finding herself and forming her own views on how a girl her age should behave and dress. Seeking an actress who is confident and intelligent. Must be a strong singer who can move seamlessly in vocal quality from speech to song.

BRUCE – Alison’s father. A high-school English teacher and funeral home director, who spends his spare time on the historic restoration of his home. A complex man with a hot temper as a result of years of repression. He can be caring and attentive to his children but is also quick to anger. Must be a strong singer who can move seamlessly in vocal quality from speech to song. Ability to play some piano a plus.

HELEN: Alison’s mother. Frustrated and exhausted by her tumultuous marriage. She has spent her life trying to be a good mother and wife while turning a blind eye to the irreverent activities of her husband. Must be a strong singer who can move seamlessly in vocal quality from speech to song. Ability to play piano a plus.

JOAN – A student at Oberlin. She exudes a confident, sexual energy, with a dry sense of humor. Unlike Alison, Joan is very comfortable in her skin and openly identifies as a lesbian. Must be comfortable with harmony singing, alto lines. Should be comfortable being on stage in underwear and with kissing and physical contact with character Medium Alison.

CHRISTIAN BECHDEL – Alison’s older brother, around 10 years old when we meet him. As the oldest of the three children he strives to be the leader, but is sometimes overshadowed by Alison’s strong personality. Seeking a singer with a natural sound, good sense of harmony and pitch.

JOHN BECHDEL – Alison’s younger brother, around 6 years old when we meet him. Like most boys his age, he is full of energy with a quirky imagination. Looks up to his siblings. Seeking a singer with a natural sound, good sense of harmony and pitch.

ROY / PETE/ MARK / BOBBY JEREMY – Roy, a young man Bruce hires to do yard work; Pete, a mourner who visits the funeral home; Mark, a high school junior; Bobby Jeremy, the lead singer of a band in Alison’s imagination. Seeking a singer with a strong, clean 70s pop sound.