Let's Make Sure We're Building Each Other Up

  • Shilo Nelson

When I first started acting and singing, I was a very jealous person. I'm not afraid to admit it now. The competition was always intense, and since I'd never been on "the other side of the audition table" I couldn't help but take it personally when I was rejected for a role.

I've still never been on the other side of that table (maybe one day), but I'd like to think that now I have a better understanding of everything that must be considered for casting a show.

I also know that the people that I was jealous of most likely felt just as insecure as I did.

Auditioning is tough for everyone, and once I stopped seeing others as my competition, I realized that I could learn something from them. I've heard a lot of things about how cutthroat the theatre world can be, but if we encourage each other, we can make things a lot nicer for everyone. We all have the same dream, and as long as we keep pursuing it, we will get there in our own time. We each have something to offer that nobody else does, and we should celebrate that.

Recently I moved to Toronto to be closer to the theatre scene there. As I began meeting people, all of them were encouraging and even offered their own advice.

Anyone who discourages you or criticizes you is still struggling with that insecurity and is trying to make themselves feel better by convincing you that they are.

This community is big but small at the same time. You'll likely encounter a lot of the same people at auditions. Stick around long enough, and you'll end up doing a show together.

So you're worried that the person who auditioned before you is more amazing than you'll ever be. Talk to them! Ask them who they studied with, what advice they may have, chances are they'll gladly tell you! And if you get cast in a show with them, it will feel so much better to be supporting each other when you start auditioning all over again (because there's always another audition.)