Friday, 20 May 2011

Auditioning.......

I am just back from my first round audition this morning for Legally Blonde in the West End.  It seems to be getting harder and harder to even get auditions for projects these days so I am lucky to be seen although I had to remind myself of this fact as I sat surrounded by the other energetic auditionees in the waiting room. All wearing varying degrees of pink, still at drama school and ten years my junior , I felt decidedly old and wrong for the job in their presence.  Although compared to last week when I auditioned for the role of an 18 year old in Bill Kenwright's Dreamboats and Petticoats with real 18 year olds, I felt positively sprightly......always got to look for the silver lining!


Auditions are an essential part of being an actor. But my God......they aren’t half terrifying! It’s all consuming from the moment you get phoned until it is over. You eat, sleep and breathe “11.30 next Wednesday, take your tap shoes” and normal life goes out of the window. I yearn for the day that I get used to it or just receive a call offering me work without having to going through the rigmarole.

But until that day comes (I predict it’ll be about the same time as hell freezing over,) I, and fellow actors, will continue to put ourselves through them in the hope of securing our next job.

In my experience, Musical Theatre casting process usually goes something like this: -

Preliminary rounds with singing slots with your own material or a dance call en masse. If you’re successful, a “recall” follows. This includes more dance or script from the show and then numerous recalls ensue before a “final” audition or workshop. Sometimes you’re seen 9 times, sometimes only twice. And this process will differ as you have varied castings for television, plays or adverts.


Now, in the case of Legally Blonde I know that the dance audition consists of a hideous skipping call.  Yes...skipping, with a rope! Not in the fun and relaxed playground way but in an aerobic boxing training type way which last time had me near cardiac arrest by bar 8 of the music!  So as much as I hope today went well I am slightly dreading the potential next stage.


My approach to auditions has drastically changed . The nerves will never go; they fill you with adrenalin but you can’t let them take over. My nerves can make my body shake so much that I generate more vibrato in my voice than is natural but I take deep breaths, knowing that in 5 minutes I’ll be in Starbucks buying my “well done me for going” cookie!  Which is exactly what I was doing about an hour ago, getting my chocolate chunk shortbread at Waterloo station....phew all done for the day!

For more anecdotes about my auditioning past check out my article from The Drama Student Magazine on one of my pages.

2 comments:

  1. Ah! Memories! You describe it all so well! Do I miss it?... Not one bit! :-)

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