"The Tale of The Bloody Benders" at MN Fringe 2019

"The Tale of The Bloody Benders" is a new play written by Braden Joseph and it's the first play ever written about the Bender family. 

Taking place in Kansas in 1873, this play tells the story of the Bender family: America's first serial killer family. Under the cover of running an Inn during Westward Expansion, they would lure travelers into their cabin, bash them on their heads, and bury them in the Bender orchard. They were eventually found out but never convicted as they disappeared under the veil of a great storm. In this new play, the Benders themselves tell their story, from their demise to their escape!

We are so excited to participate in the Minnesota Fringe Festival this summer! We are looking for collaborative artists who aren't afraid to tell a dark story. Rehearsals will be July 2nd - July 31th and we will perform five times between August 1st - August 11th (Those dates to come later).

The auditions will be cold readings from the script assigned during your slot. They will be at the Pheonix Theatre (2605 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55408) in the Blue Room on April 14th, 2019. Please come with a headshot and resume. Also, please come a little early to fill out a short informational sheet.

If you cannot make this time, The Feral Theatre Company will also be at the MN Fringe Unified Auditions April 20th. If you cannot make either of those times, reach out to TFTC at [email protected] and we can arrange a taped audition. Those must be requested by April 19th.


We are looking for actors 16-30s (suggested age, but people older are welcome too) to play the following roles (except the role of Alice, who may be played by a child. See info below.): 

John Bender (PA), male 45, the gruff quiet type. Follows his wife, even when her motives seem sinister.  

Elvira Bender (MA), female 47, the quiet killer. The brains of The Benders’ operation. She has PA wrapped around her finger. He doesn’t want to be killed like her past three husbands, after all.

Kate Bender (KATE), female 25, daughter of PA, stepdaughter to MA, and wife of JOHN. She is a spiritualist and does psychic readings for the travelers visiting the inn so that the future can be the last thing they see before they are murdered. She has been unable to have children and desperately wants some.  

Sam Brookman (BROOKMAN)/Thomas Miller (THOMAS), male 30s-40s, BROOKMAN is a neighbor to the Benders. Good friends with PA and MA. Has no idea about the Benders’ escapades. THOMAS is a widower heading west to make a better life for him and his daughter, ALICE. Stops at the Benders’ Inn and is murdered.  

Minnie Brookman (MINNIE), female 20, a neighbor of the Benders and daughter of BROOKMAN. Helps JOHN in the family’s orchard and is having an affair with him. Everyone thinks she doesn’t know about the Benders’ murders but she does.

Alice Miller (ALICE), female 7, the daughter of THOMAS. She gets very interested in KATE’s work as a medium. When her father is murdered, KATE unofficially adopts her. ALICE witnessed her father’s murder and she does not like this unofficial adoption.  NOTE WITH THIS ROLE: This role requires a child actor or an adult actor who can convincingly play a child. I will not cast anyone younger than 10-years-old to play this role, due to the content of the play. 



To sign up, follow this link: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050d4fadac2ca6f85-the

Sides are attached if you'd like to be extra prepared!

Contact information

The Feral Theatre Company
Braden Joseph


PDF icon brookmapa(2m1f).PDF (18.98 KB)PDF icon johnminnma(2f1m).PDF (13.32 KB)PDF icon katealice(2f).PDF (13.16 KB)PDF icon katema(2f).pdf (26.08 KB)PDF icon mono(anygender).PDF (16.74 KB)

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Sunday, April 14
Posted March 4