Colchester Theatre Group

It’s a Wonderful Life

 Adapted by Mary Elliott Nelson, based on the critically acclaimed classic film.

 Production Week – WC 4th November 2024 at the Headgate Theatre, Colchester.

 Audition Dates:  Monday 17 and Thursday 20  June (both at 7.30 pm)

Venue – Christ Church, Ireton Road, Colchester, CO3 3AT


Christmas Eve, 1946, Bedford Falls. Down-on-his-luck banker George Bailey feels life has passed him by, and he’s at the end of his rope. Overwhelmed by family obligations and a sense of responsibility towards his community, he feels tied down to a company he has never had an interest in working for, and a life he never wanted to live. As he ages, he sees his youth, dreams and opportunities pass him by, feeling obligated to running his father’s building and loan business, whilst rivalling the villainous Mr Potter.

But when George’s guardian angel pays him a visit, he’s amazed to discover what life in his beloved town would be like without him. Maybe it’s a wonderful life, after all?

This adaptation is based on the critically acclaimed Frank Capra movie and follows the film quite faithfully. It was originally based on the short story and booklet “The Greatest Gift” self-published by Philip Van Doren Stern in 1943, which itself was loosely based on the 1843 Charles Dickens novella A Christmas Carol. Mary Elliott Nelson’s reimagining is a joyful story of love, hope and community.

Upstate New York accent – Rockland/Westchester/Orange/Hudson Valley area which is very similar to a New York City accent.

Setting – 1919 to 1946

Characters – this is written as a four hander but can be divided between more actors, which the director is planning to do, however there may be some cast members with more than one role depending on suitability.

George Bailey

Clarissa (George’s guardian angel)

Mary (George’s wife)

Violet (George’s friend)

Gloria or Gordon (an angel)

Joseph or Josephine (an angel)

Uncle Billy or Aunt Dilly

Sam (George’s friend)

Mr Martini (Bar Owner)

Mr Potter

Bert (a Cop)

Harry Bailey (George’s younger brother)

Mr Gower (Pharmacist)

There are other smaller roles, including townsfolk, but these will be filled by the cast.

NB – The director is also planning to use children to play young George, Harry, Sam, Mary, and Violet (this will be a separate audition call) however if you are interested in auditioning for one of the younger roles then please do (playing age is 12 to 14)