My Life in the Theatre: The Audition

The theatre critic wannabe's view from the other side of the stage

I wanted to audition for a local musical production ever since I finished my only other acting credit five years ago. I never had to audition for that role, and looking back I wish that I had been required to do so. After our last performance, my director in that show said that I had been bitten by the bug and encouraged me to audition for something else. Life intervened and although I kept up on auditions in the area, I only managed to get to one and I didn't get a part in the production.

Then I attended the ribbon cutting at a brand new community theatre in the borough, and I thought that maybe I could get back on the stage. Last year I considered trying out for a musical with more than two characters at the Phoenix Stage, but it was eventually replaced with another play. When this year's line up was announced, it listed two musicals and I convinced myself that I had to audition, if nothing else than for a chance to perform a favorite song. I figured that I knew the partners in the theatre pretty well, since I have seen all but one of the productions that they had done since they opened. I really had no expectation of getting anything more than the experience of another audition. How hard could it be? 

My answer is very hard! At first I didn't want to get out of my car and enter the theatre that I have spent so much time in. I was welcomed warmly and told to fill out a form. List your credits and include your director; that was one line for me. I had no training, no other talents, and I was willing to take any part at all. I heard another young lady sing and I had to fight hard to resist the urge to leave right then. I had prepared well more than 32 bars of music from Wicked (what else?) and I managed to get through it.

While waiting for my turn to read from the script, I started shivering. I put my coat back on. One of the partners told me I did great and that auditioning is never easy. I am not really sure I remember much of the short reading that I did with a real actress, but I thought I did ok. Others were asked to learn a song from the show; some of the guys asked when we would hear about who got a role. One of the partners politely told me that they had all they needed and told me of two other roles coming up that I would be perfect for. Consolation prize, I thought, and figured that I would be getting another letter thanking me for showing up.

A week later I was on the phone with my mother telling her how I had tried out but would probably not be getting a role since there were only three women's parts in the show and I hadn't heard anything yet. Someone buzzed in and when I hung up, I saw the phone number of one of the partners in the Phoenix. Would I take the part of Martha in The Last Supper A Musical Enactment? Really?? Yes, I would take it. Now I really have to do this thing! I will keep you posted.

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