Thursday, March 10, 2011

Theater, Drama, Auditions

My Foxy and Fabulous friend recently wrote a rather relate-able entry regarding theater auditions.

Are you a diva if you'd rather have a lead role than an ensemble role?  I once stood on stage at a call-back and said to the director, "I will do wonderful at whatever you want me to do, but I would really really really like to play the part of X."  She responded, "What?  Really?  You'd like a lead role more?"  And then she giggled with me.  We got along stupendously from then on.

But I've heard those rumors that some directors black-list you for admitting such, or for stating you would not be able to commit to the show if you did not get a "more than ensemble" role.  I have yet to actually encounter a director who does this, but the rumors frighten me.  Last year, I could have been one of seven supporting roles in one show, or the teenage-girl lead in another show.  Of course I had to turn down someone and I sure hope that didn't blacklist me in some way.  I apologized profusely to the production I did turn down.

You know what else has really started wearing on me?

Auditioning for the same shows as those I love.  I become so angsty inside knowing that several friends and I may have our hearts set on the same role.  I don't want to be the one to break someone else's heart, but I also don't want to be the one to get my heart broken.  Tough.  I've only, up until now, run into one dear friend at an audition, however having made so many more dear friends over the past three shows and all of us wanting to be in summer shows, more run-in's are bound to happen.  Someone is going to get hurt:-(

Right now, for instance, I have my little heart set on a dream role for which I'd just be plum perfect.  I grew up a country girl in a town next to the hometown of the lead character, I can pull the sweetest little accent, I am the same height as the character, I'm a spitfire to boot, and I'd get to utilize my belty and tender sides. 

Any number of my favorite people may or may not have their hearts set on the same role.  Who is to say for what the director is even looking - may be someone entirely different than what I envision for the part, and there is nothing I can do about that.  Will I do the show if offered a smaller role and give up potential opportunities elsewhere?  I just don't know.


Miss Megan said...

I might blog about this too. I HAVE been up against and lost parts to good friends of mine. It was really hard. But, when I see them onstage and see how great they are, I am glad they had the chance. And I just keep telling myself I'm bound to play the part myself SOMETIME! To be honest, I am really, really afraid to come up against you, darling Larissa. I think I know what upcoming part you are hoping for and I hope you ROCK that audition! Break a leg!

miss kristen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
miss kristen said...

Bah. stupid typos.

my post was SUPPOSED to read:

I hate running into friends at auditions only because you are all so much more talented than me and THAT'S intimidating as hell.

I prefer my odds to be akin to shooting fish in a bucket: guaranteed.

Kenedijs said...

I have had lots of experience with auditions like such, especially as of recently, and I've done a lot of shows that I've been ensemble in and have loved it cause let's be honest, play one character and be onstage only when they're supposed to be on, or be on whenever you want to and be 7 or 20 different characters and be on stage practically the whole show. Granted sometimes it's much better to be that main character you've always wanted to play. I will turn down any part or show, though I don't do it very often. Star Ward was probably my best example. Origionally I was cast as the understudy to Luke Singleswarder and a Sintrooper. With differing circumstances, I probably would have accepted the role, but I had auditioned with my brother, and he hadn't been cast, so I went to the first rehearsal with the intent to inform them that I was bowing out of the show. Things changed as the person cast to play Luke had dropped, so I got bumped up and my spot as sintrooper was opened and I was able to get them to let my brother fill the spot. I've come across some directors who don't like people not willing to play other roles because they want more of a community production rather than divas, but what I've informed some of them that other circumstances may also be at play. Ensemble time commitments can be much much more than a lead's prior to running the show, and sometimes vice versa, and there are times that a certain other part would better accommodate my schedule and be the best for all productions involved. If they have a problem with that, then their loss, and I'd rather not be a part of a production with a directors who pre-judges people. Done shows with those and I'd rather not do that again. Auditions are not just for directors to pick who they want for their show, but also for the actors to figure out if the show is really one they want to be a part of.

Miss Megan said...

In other news, I picked you for a tag on my blog. Please do it! Please?