Advice on Dealing with Rejection

Advice on Dealing with Rejection

Let's face it: you've chosen a tough business. The competition is fierce, and people can be ruthless at times.

Chances are you are doing musical theatre because you are passionate. You can't imagine doing anything else. This is what you want more than anything, so it hurts that much more when things don't work out.

So how do you deal with that?

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Saying No to a Role: Does That Make Me a Diva?

Saying No to a Role: Does That Make Me a Diva?

Saying no to roles and jobs can be really difficult sometimes, especially in this overcrowded industry where such opportunities can be infrequent. It might feel like you have no choice - you need the money, the credits, the production team will be left in the lurch if you drop out. There’s always a reason to talk yourself into saying yes, even when you don’t want to. But saying no to something doesn’t make you a bad person, or make you ungrateful in any way. You’re allowed to say no - it’s just saying it out loud that can be hard sometimes.

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Pre-Casting: Why It Happens and How You Can Survive It

Pre-Casting: Why It Happens and How You Can Survive It

Pre-Casting sticks in the craws of every unprofessional theatre artist, and probably in a lot of professional ones, too. Spawning drama that makes every stage manager worth their kit roll their eyes into next weekend, pre-casting somehow manages to worm its way into any given conversation about theater.

High school and undergraduate university productions, regional theatres, children’s theatres alike, all seem to struggle with this one concept that actors all loathe somewhat equally. Of course, being pre-cast is flattering, but no actor is happy knowing someone else got a part we were right for, too just because somebody knew somebody else; our egos are too big to allow it. But how do we survive pre-casting and all the evil that comes with it?

By calming down for two seconds, and thinking critically about why it happens.

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Auditioning: Why Wasn’t I Cast?

Auditioning:  Why Wasn’t I Cast?

Auditions.  We’ve all been there.   Trying to channel your nervous energy into a productive adrenaline.   Hoping to put your best foot forward.   Wanting to make a great first impression.    Anxiously waiting until your number is called.   Finally, taking the stage for a minute or two, and giving it your best shot.   Maybe you get another chance to read.  Maybe even a callback.  And then waiting … and waiting … and hoping and praying.   Hopefully, you got the part, but more often than not, you didn’t.   So, what went wrong?  What, if anything, can you learn from this experience?

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That’s Why They Call It “Casting”

That’s Why They Call It “Casting”

As Casting Chair of my local community theater, I think a lot about the process of casting our shows.  While the goal is always to find the ideal fit between auditioners and available roles, the reality is that we often have to compromise.   Unlike Broadway, we usually don’t have the luxury of picking people who perfectly look the part, fit the age range, and have the exact vocal range suggested by the script or score.  So, we make do with what we have.   In a sense, casting is like fishing.   We cast our line into the water by posting a carefully crafted audition notice.   First, we get some “nibbles”; expressions of interest on Facebook.   Then we see who we catch on audition day.  Many are not “keepers,” and often we have to throw them back (gently) into the pond.  But if we keep an open mind, we’ll often be pleasantly surprised by the talent we land.

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My Five Tips for Community Theatre Auditions

My Five Tips for Community Theatre Auditions

A number of years ago, I decided to try my hand at directing.  I had been involved in community theater for several years as an actor and felt I wanted to experience the dramatic arts from another angle.  I expected there to be learning curve (which there was).  What I didn’t expect was how directing changed my perspective as an actor, especially when it came to auditioning.

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I need an audition song!

I need an audition song!

We’ve all had that thought come in our head, right? An audition comes up and our standard “go-to” songs aren’t going to work, or they’re asking for something specific that you just don’t have. Time to freak out and cancel your audition...just kidding.

Hopefully this blog will help. As I’m thinking about auditioning for a few things and trying to figure out audition material, I thought I would jot down some of my thoughts.  These are things I’ve learned over the years through success and more importantly, failure in picking songs. Hope it helps!

A piece of general advice: make sure you’re prepared First step in that is to make sure you've practiced it with an accompanist/voice teacher etc. You need to know if it’s really difficult to play, if what you have in your mind as the intro actually matches what’s on the page, how to explain the tempo to the accompanist so you sound like you know what you’re talking about. If you don’t know, ask someone who accompanies auditions, and ask them if anything needs to be written on the page that would be helpful for a sight reader. Preparation is the key to doing well and not sweating the small details.

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