Thursday, August 13, 2009

#2. Company One

Since I was in SLAMBoston, Company One, the producing company, let me know about auditions for their upcoming 11th season.

This included productions of THE OVERWHELMING by JT Rogers and THE GOOD NEGRO by Tracey Scott Wilson.

Between boths plays there were only two parts for a young white male, but I figured, what the hell?

Brookline High School. It's on the opposite end of Brookline from where I currently live, but I decided to walk there, anyway.

I haven't seen such a nice public high school since I left New Jersey.

My audition was scheduled for 8:15, which seems pretty late to me.

I strolled into Brookline Hills. As I came in view of the high school, I saw a tall, good-looking young fellow get out of a shiny-new black car and stroll towards the back entrance. He was holding a headshot.

Damn, I thought, actors can own cars?

As he walked out of sight, I took out my phone with the intention of taking a picture of the car and posting it in this post with a caption along the lines of: Check out this SLICK RIDE that this ACTOR drove to this AUDITION at this HIGH SCHOOL!

Check out this SLICK RIDE that this ACTOR drove to this AUDITION at this HIGH SCHOOL!

I did so, and then I turned to walk into the school. I looked up and noticed a stairwell that I lot of people were hanging out in. They were waiting to audition.

Well,this was after they all left

Oh, God, all of these people just saw me take a picture of this car for reasons that they don't understand.

I walked in past the guy with the car talking to another guy about doing background work, grabbed an audition form, and filled it out in such a way as to make anyone reading it think that I had no conflicts.

Fellow Emerson graduate Andrew Oberstein auditioned, as well. He told me he was cast in The Wonderful World of Dissocia. Good for him!

I paced around the halls of the school for a little while. In some ways it was similar to my own Northern Valley Regional High School of Demarest, but different in that some doors had stickers reading GLBT SAFE SPACE and fliers for a Magic: The Gathering Club meeting.

The directors for both plays were attending. They seemed very nice.

"Hey, there. I'm Terry. Uh, I'll be doing a monologue from Red Light Winter by Adam Rapp."

The moment I began, I felt like punching myself. Not only was I standing entirely too close to them, but I realized I hadn't even gone through the whole thing once out loud before stepping into the room.

Once again, I was merely saying words.

You cocky bastard. I knew something was wrong when I didn't feel nervous at all.

They told me Thank You the way you say it to someone who gives you something that you don't really want, and I was on my way.

When I first did my Red Light Winter monologue for my Business of Acting class at Emerson, I was on fire.

This is not to brag, because now I know the reason that I was on fire. It is because I believed that the only way my audience would be able to truly understand and appreciate the piece was if I performed it excellently. So I worked hard on it, because I believed in it.

I also wanted to impress all of the kids in the BFA program.

The response was so glowing that I got cocky about it. I let it sit. I figured that I already put all the work in that I had to.

But if I don't work in it, I can't find anything new in it to get excited about. And if I can't get excited, then neither will any director.

I cannot forget the importance of hard work.

Never forget.

Never give up!

Never surrender!

8 headshots remain.

Friday, August 7, 2009

#0. Counter-Productions Theatre Company

[The events of this post occurred on Sunday, August 2nd.]

Auditions for their third season, including productions of Hair, Yasmina Reza's Art, and Twelve Angry Jurors - presumably the non-gender specific version of Twelve Angry Men.

I was Juror #7 in high school. It's a great damn script, and I wouldn't mind being a part of it again, especially if it meant working with a director who did more than tell me "Louder!" and "Angrier!"

The Factory Theater. I lived a block away from it last year and I never even knew. It's a cozy little location, one I wouldn't mind performing in.

The audition notice asked for two contrasting one-minute monologues. I fell back on my favorite one from The Random Caruso.

For the second, I decided to memorize a monologue from Bernard Shaw's Candida - one delivered by Marchbanks, the young two-faced poet.

I worked on that monologue the night before and all day before going to the audition. I walked all over downtown Boston, performing it aloud.

Then I walked over to the Factory Theater. When I entered the theater proper, I found three people looking at a clipboard, at which point they all stopped looking at the clipboard and looked up at me.

"I'm Terry," I said, "I'm here to audition?"

"Oh, Counter-Productions?" one vaguely familiar-looking woman said, pointing back to the way I came. "They're next door."

I stepped out of the theater, and looked back into the box office. There was a curtain on the back wall.

I stepped through it.


There was a rehearsal room. At the far end was a keyboard.

"Huh," I thought, looking at my watch, "I wonder when they're gonna get here."

And that's when I remembered.

Despite what I had written in my to-do list, as my Google calendar illustrates, the audition was actually scheduled for the day before on Saturday, August 1st.

The reason I post this is to humiliate myself into never screwing up like this again.

We'll see how that works out!

Still, 9 headshots remain.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

#1. Apollinaire Theatre Company

This time, an audition for a production of The Wonderful World of Dissocia. Described by the playwright, Anthony Neilson:

"If you like Alice in Wonderland, but there's not enough sex and violence in it, then Dissocia is the show for you."

The stately Chelsea Theatre Works building.

Chelsea Theatre Works. High ceilings and big old tables. Quite a nice building. Almost suspiciously so.

A few of my friends had worked with Apollinaire before. Some practically just finished a production of The Wedding on the Eiffel Tower and other Absurdities of Love.

When I asked each of them about their experiences with the company, answers varied. One vowed never to work with them again. Another said that they signed up for this very audition immediately, and suggested that I do the same.

A fleeting moment from The Wedding on the Eiffel Tower

I took the bus out to Chelsea, and David the Sound Guy let me into the building. Before I started filling out the audition form, Danielle the Director told me to look at pages 14 through 16 of the script and that I would be reading for Guard 2.

I walked into the giant audition room, and the creative team introduced themselves to me.

I did my Red Light Winter monologue.

And then I sang "All the Things You Are" - I didn't do it very well, I've just always wanted to use it for an audition.

Then I did a cold read of a scene with two other actors - Becki, who was reading for the lead role of Lisa, and Vlad, a company member who was reading for Guard 1.

When I had read it before the audition, I thought it was really funny. Out loud, it sounded really awful. I wasn't sure if it was Becki, Vlad or me.

Danielle asked if I truly was busy every other Saturday night, as I wrote on my audition form.

"Well, I stage manage a show once every two weeks. I'm looking into training a replacement."

"The production runs five weeks," she said. "Will you have a replacement for then?"

I looked off to the side and said, "Uhh."

I couldn't in all honesty tell her that I would be more than willing to change my work schedule for this play.

But I'm realizing now that, if I ever plan on acting in a long-running show any time soon, I'm gonna have to rethink how this stage management gig is gonna work.

9 headshots remain.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

ALERT! SLAMBoston on August 4th!

Come on and SLAM at the SLAMBoston 10-minute play festival on August 4th at the Boston Center of the Arts!

Come and see performances by fellow Emerson alum Megan Reynolds and myself, and probably some other great people I don't know, too.

Click here for tickets and info!