Saturday, August 20, 2011

"Call me old school...": The memoirs of an audition snob

Alright here goes. I'm ready to admit it. I am an audition snob. When it comes to being a performer I try to remain as humble as possible because quite honestly talent is important, but humility and gratitude will get you everywhere. Honestly where I drop the ball is at auditions. I've always been one to remain to myself at auditions. Not because I don't want to talk to anyone, but I like to observe the behavior of everyone around me.

I was at an audition yesterday for a Broadway show and was just blown away by some of these girls. First of all, it looks like everyone stepped out of the latest issue of Seventeen magazine. I want to say that about 85% of these girls all looked alike. Blond. Sundresses from H&M. Overdone make up. Nothing really stood out about any of them.  What I did notice about them was that they all made poor choices in shoe selections. I saw everything from open-toe sandals to rain boots. Girls: This is a job interview. Would you walk into an office interview wearing rain boots or sandals? No? They why do you wear them to an audition? Ugh.

Second. The underage diva. No one likes a diva to begin with. So if you're a mini diva who could barely wipe her own ass?...You're just the worst.  This is a conversation I overheard as I was waiting for my time slot:

Mini diva 1: Oh my god! There are so many people here.
Mini diva 2: Yeah I need to be out of here by 3 p.m. Some people have to work.

Ladies. If there's an open call for a Broadway audition wherein sign in begins at 1:30 p.m. and the actual auditions begin at 2 p.m. Don't expect to stroll in there at 2:10 p.m. and be out by 3:00 p.m. What planet do you live on? Let this be a lesson to you small fry. In this business no one really cares if you have a life outside the show or not. If you can't dedicate one day to an audition, you probably won't be able to dedicate yourself to months of rehearsals and performances. So for now, kick rocks girl. You're a dime a dozen. Unless you wanna become another Kathleen Battle.

Next up: Knowing how to follow direction.  I get it. We're all excited to audition for a Broadway show. Lets face it. Its a big deal for whoever gets this part. But ladies remember, just because you're waiting for your turn doesn't mean there isn't someone auditioning in the room next to us. If the moderator has to come out more than once to tell you to be quiet, it probably means you can't follow direction the first time its given to you. This isn't something I ever thought I'd experience at this level. I thought I had left this behavior back in school. Boy I was wrong. How do you think you'll do in rehearsals for a show if you can't follow direction at the audition? No no....don't answer that. It's just food for thought.

Last but not least: Dress code. This kind of ties in to my first mention of shoes, everyone dressed the same, etc. In this case, the description on the casting says. "A girl in her 20's, beautiful, period, fragile". Now this audition is for the role of Juan Peron's mistress in Evita. Some girls took the whole "period" thing a little too far and kinda looked like they were wearing a costume. However, the ones that really bothered me the most where the ones that apparently thought that a "mistress" is a "hooker". Now don't get me wrong, I know it happens. However, not in this case.  In this case, the mistress was just that...a MISTRESS. Ladies don't dress like modern day hookers. Again. This is your job interview. Plus, most of the time in these auditions you're going to be singing for a woman, who will probably think you look trashy or a gay man who doesn't want what you have so just cover it up. Look like a lady. You'll get further in life.

In closing, I must say. This young generation of performers still have so much to learn. You graduated college but now is when you're real education begins. So at the age of 29, I'd like to be considered "old school".