Here’s A Few Things I Learned From My TBA Audition…

"If I don't move, maybe they won't notice me!"
“If I don’t move, maybe they won’t notice me!”

I have never been so happy to get off a stage than at that audition. I usually tend to think negatively about my auditions, so I didn’t think about it at all after and went back to working on Evita.  Then came the meetings at the TBA offices and at this last meeting, we actually got forms from the different companies rating our performances that day and if they may be interested in working with us.   We were given some examples of what we should keep in mind and not get discouraged from these pages, like there is a company that is exclusively women, so I probably wouldn’t fit in there.  The important thing is to take this feedback and process it and make decisions with these in mind.  So here goes:

  • List classes from conservatories separately.  One company said “no” as I had no Shakespeare training.  My resume listed my participation of AMTSJ’s conservatory but didn’t break down the courses which included some Shakespeare.  My new resume will have the bulk of the classes listed going forward, I can assure you.
  • I need to remember to breathe.  Auditions will not kill you even though it may feel like they will. As my group was taken from the “holding area,” I could feel my heart trying to jump out of the top of my head. I had to focus on breathing like I was gonna pass a baby or something.  I swear my whole body shook with each beat.  We had to enter the backstage area by going up two short flights of stairs and in that little jaunt, I could swear my eyes were going crossed.  So I looked down because heck if they were getting a mind of their own, I didn’t want anyone to notice.  Then, as I tried to focus on my shoes, I got light-headed and felt like I was going to float away, so I grabbed the railing and kind of just took a moment to assess what I was feeling.  It was then that I realized that I may have been holding my breath from the time we began our journey backstage, because at that moment I had a loud inhalation; like I just discovered how to create gold from garbage on accident.  It was such a fast moment but everything seemed to slow to the point that I could break it down into pieces.
  •  Don’t rush/Don’t plan to fill up allotted time completely.  I only left myself about 7 seconds to dead time for the two minutes we were given.  Many comments said they wished my monologue had let the moments “land.”  So do I, so do I.  I went into my monologue, which is a long piece that I love because there are many ways to edit it and make it new almost every time.  The only problem is that I know I only have about a minute and 20 seconds left and it has timed out at 1:15 each time I clocked it.  My dilemma became: do I edit it on the fly, or not really stop for laughs?  I opt for the latter choice because I wasn’t sure if editing would throw off the rhythm I had practiced and make it longer. I was glad that they laughed but I didn’t want to be the guy that got cut off like I hadn’t planned my pieces (which is pretty unprofessional.)
  • Let the resume do some of the talking or singing.  My resume has 25 musicals listed and only 3 plays.  I should probably opt for two contrasting monologues next time to show range since there were several comments made on this.
  • They like me! They really like me! They just don’t know what to do with me.  As I look through the forms I see a lot of “yes, I would like to work with this actor.” and for every yes there are two “maybe – I like the work but not sure if they would fit into our company’s work”  I knew I should have covered up my tentacles and dorsal fin.  Hahaha.  This for me is the hardest one to figure out because I am not sure if it is because I am short and heavy set or was it something else? Is it because they can’t figure out if I should play Mexican, Philipino, or other?  Gah!  I just wish I could find out so that I can try to adjust.  I don’t even mind the no’s that I got, and there were a few, but the maybe’s?  Those are a killer.
  • Hard work really does pay off, even if you do it out of doubt.  I am my own biggest critic as is the case with most everyone.  I get to the point where I can discourage myself out of things and projects even if they sound insanely fun or massively unique.  This in turns makes me work harder at the things that I do get and create, but with auditions, there just isn’t any winning.  If you asked me to rate my audition from 1 – 10, I would say a 5 or a high 4.  Well, according to those sheets, the average was an 8.  Are you shitting me?  Wow!  I can’t tell you how it feels because I don’t know how to process this info.  LOL!

I hope that you find some thing in this list useful, like listing the classes individually for conservatories.  Or just knowing that we are similar when it comes to talking ourselves out of things or doubting what we can do.  Any suggestions on not passing out?

There’s a comment box below to share any tips or just to say “Hi-ya!”  (I still can’t believe that was my first impression on those people.)    *headdesk*

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