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I’m readying for the upcoming auditions for my next directing project, Beauty and the Beast with a wonderful company Theatre Lawrence. Previously, I blogged a list of secrets to a good audition. So, I brought this one out of the moth balls for you!
You knew this subject was coming, didn’t you? It only seems natural to speak about how I make decisions about casting someone in a play.
Remember, these are only my opinions. Someone else will have a different viewpoint, obviously.
Here is my advice (and secrets) to landing the part:
1. Arrive on time for the auditions and stay until they are finished. If you arrive late or are in a rush to leave early, it implies that the production is not that important to you.
2. Dress appropriately for the audition. If you are auditioning for a musical and there are going to be dance auditions, either bring the right shoe wear or wear them. There is nothing more distracting to a director than observing someone flop around in the wrong shoes as they attempt to dance or move about the stage. And ladies, you hair needs to be swept back away from your face and controlled with a bobby pin or something.
3. Read the script prior to auditions. Now reading the script ahead of time does not guarantee you a part in the production, but most scripts are very well written (that’s why they are produced) and worth your time to read. Or at least watch a movie version of the play or musical if there is one available. My guess is some people don’t read the entire script before auditioning because they don’t want to commit their free time because if they aren’t cast, it feels like they have wasted their time. One hasn’t wasted their time. They have enriched it.
I try to be patient with people who haven’t read the script ahead of time, but secretly nothing is more frustrating than having someone say to me, “So, what’s this play about?” I don’t have the time to explain the story to them nor do I think it is my job to do so.
4. Pay attention during the auditions. If the auditions aren’t closed and you are able to observe them, watch other actors. You never know when a director might call you up to read with someone and if you pay attention you are ready to go.
5. A director doesn’t need to know if you have a cold or don’t feel well, or whatever the excuse might be at the moment. So, don’t announce your maladies–just audition confidently. A director will ask the actor to call backs if he thinks he needs to hear the actor once the cold or illness is over.
6. If you mark on your audition sheet that you will accept any role you are offered, please tell the truth. Nothing is more frustrating than taking the time to cast someone and afterward they announce they won’t accept the role you gave them (since the person wanted another one instead.) Tacky! And, if the accused auditions for another one of the director’s plays, chances are the actor won’t even be considered them based on their past actions.
7. If you mark on your audition sheet that you have no conflicts, then a director expects you to have no conflicts! Avoiding informing the director of a few conflicts and spinning that you have none then coming back later with a litany of conflicts does nothing for the actor’s relationship with the director. Better to tell the truth and let the director work around the conflicts if he thinks he can do so. An actor’s behavior gets around in a theater community very quickly, so just be honest and up front.
8. Sometimes a director will put out the word that they are looking for a particular age actor for a role. It is not wise to try and make yourself up to look half your age if you aren’t really able to convince your best friend of your age change. If your friend thinks you look silly trying to be twenty-five when you are fifty-five, then believe them. Audition for a play that suits your age range.
If you are an adult, you can usually appear ten years either direction of your age. Children and teen agers are a bit different in this regard. Personally, I am more likely to cast someone who is taller and thirteen to play a sixteen year old than a short thirteen year old to play a ten year old.
9. No matter what, always finish your audition with a thank you and get the heck off the stage. An actor trying to make conversation with the director can come across as a desperate attempt for attention. If the director initiates the conversation, then I think it is safe to chat a moment with him or her. But I wouldn’t begin the conversation. Directors are usually considering many things during auditions, so it’s best not to interrupt them.
10. Be confident in your audition. If you audition with others and someone does something that is comical (and the director reacts by laughing), it does not mean you must do the same thing if you read the same part. Be yourself. Be clever and memorable, but don’t behave in such a manner that you make others feel uncomfortable by your audition. In other words, keep your clothes on, keep your mouth clean and be polite.
10. The biggest secret to auditions? Listen to what the director asks of you. I am more likely to cast someone who honestly tries to do what I ask of him (such as lowering the pitch of his voice, trying an unusual laugh or reaction), than someone who has a preconceived vision of the character and can not or will not budge from that idea. Also, I really don’t like it when an actor just imitates someone else portraying the role–either someone else at the auditions or someone they have seen portray the role in the film version, for example. Generally, if I don’t think the inflexible person can adapt themselves to my needs, then I can’t cast them. Simple as that.
I hope this helps you. I would love to answer any other questions you might have about auditions, so send them on. P.S. If you’d like to audition for Beauty and the Beast, go here for information http://www.theatrelawrence.com/index.html
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or DeborrahBaldwin.net
Oh my, James Corden is the voice of Peter Rabbit in a new film!
Everyone’s favorite rambunctious rabbit finds new life as a party animal in the first trailer for the live-action/animated comedy “Peter Rabbit.”
The film stars James Corden as the the titular mischievous bunny whose feud with Mr. McGregor (Domhnall Gleeson) escalates as they rival for the affections of the animal lover who lives next door (Rose Byrne). The film also stars Sam Neill and features the voices of Margot Robbie, Elizabeth Debicki, and Daisy Ridley as his triplets Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail.
The trailer shows Peter and his furry friends raiding Mr. McGregor’s vegetable garden and trashing his home in a wild party, then frantically dispersing when the farmer returns home unexpectedly. The critter exudes so much charm that even a fox who previously tried to eat him is a welcome party guest.
The movie is based on the character from Beatrix Potter’s children’s book series. Peter Rabbit first appeared in “The Tale of Peter Rabbit” in 1902 and the series has since sold more than 150 million copies worldwide in 35 languages.
The film is directed by Will Gluck who also wrote the screenplay with Rob Lieber. Gluck’s previous directing work includes “Easy A,” “Friends With Benefits,” and the 2014 remake of “Annie.” Lieber has previously written the screenplay for “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.”
“Peter Rabbit” hits theaters on Feb. 9, 2018.
https://www.nbcnews.com/business/travel/bored-your-international-flight-icelandair-just-tried-live-theater-n800956I LOVE unique ideas. Do you?
How about this one–live theatre performed on a long airplane flight.
Even with a kooky safety video and a variety of film offerings, long flights can still be boring.
But Icelandair is trying something new: An 11-hour immersive theater production took place last week on a flight from London to New York, with an on-the-ground bonus performance during the layover in Reykjavik.
“We’ve made theater in unusual places but never made a show that started in one country, bounced to another, and ended up in a third on the same day,” said Kate Hargreaves, Founder of Gideon Reeling, the London-based theater company that helped develop the program.
The cast was a mix of professional actors along with pilots, engineers, accountants, ground workers, cabin crew, and other real airline employees who had volunteered to attend a special stage school to prepare for the event.
The characters they played ranged from film stars and flight attendants from various decades to business and leisure travelers, a perky party planner, a vulcanologist, and a farmer — as well as flight attendants from the past, present, and future.
And the performance, which reeled out in entertaining, story-filled, one-on-one encounters at check-in, at the gate and during the flight, hopscotched through time, with some actors playing multiple characters.
There were even a few sing-a-longs and several Icelandic-themed meals during the “Ahead in Time” performance.
Passengers met and had an opportunity to interact with Maria, dressed in a stylish suit from the 1950s, who said she’d be flying the plane; Richie and Cynthia, hippies from the 1960s who met on the road and were hoping to get to Woodstock; Alex, an exuberant, if disorganized, backpacker from the 1990s in search of his passport; and numerous grandchildren and other far-flung relatives of Edda Johnson, a world traveler and former Icelandair flight attendant who had invited everyone to her birthday party but (spoiler alert) was too busy traveling the world to show up.
Icelandair’s one-off immersive in-flight performance (and a series of on-the-ground events in Iceland over the next six months) was sparked by a recent UK-based study in which the majority of air travelers reported being bored during their flights. Three quarters of the study participants thought the people on the plane, especially the cabin crew, could have a greater hand in making the flight more enjoyable.
Responding to that research, “Our program aims to transform wasted time while traveling into time well-traveled,” said Icelandair CEO Birkir Hólm Guðnason, “We’re pleased to pioneer a new form of entertainment and value-added service for passengers.”
‘Hippies’ on Icelandair’s immersive theatrical performance. Harriet Baskas
“That notion of offering passengers some sort of ‘surprise and delight’ is great,” said travel industry expert Henry Harteveldt of Atmosphere Research, but he notes some passengers would rather use their in-flight time to work, rest, relax, and make their own choices for entertainment.
Still, Harteveldt approves of Icelandair’s effort to be creative and stand out from other airlines, especially as the competition for flights to and through Iceland from WOW air and other airlines heats up.
And while live theater in the aisles might be seen by some as a negative in the air, Harteveldt believes the airline’s Stopover Pass program, which gives passengers entry to special art, culture, and sporting events through April 2018, can be a huge positive on the ground.
“I applaud them for thinking of different ways to distinguish themselves, offering this value-added amenity so that passengers see Icelandair as passenger-centric,” he said.
Contact me at dhcbaldwin.net or Deborahbaldwin.net
I am so excited! Bumbling Bea has been nominated for best YA / middle grade book. PLEASE VOTE,will you? The most votes, wins! https://www.tckpublishing.com/readers-choice-voting
Recently, my husband I flew across the ocean to England. There were several kids on board. One little girl had a terrible time on the trip because her mother didn’t bring many things for the girl to do. Then I ran onto this article about a pilot program being tried on Easyjet! .
An airline has come up with the perfect solution to keep kids entertained on flights, while also encouraging their passion to read.
EasyJet has today launched ‘Flybraries’ (flying libraries), which will see 7,000 books take to the skies in 147 planes.
Children will be offered books to read on the plane from a book trolley.
They have to leave the books on the plane when they land, but they can download free samples of other classics to read afterwards from the easyJet bookclub.
The airline has teamed up with Jaqueline Wilson and Puffin Classics to compile a selection of books kids will enjoy.
Books onboard flights include ‘Peter Pan’, ‘Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland’, ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ and ‘The Railway Children’.
Dame Jacqueline Wilson, who is supporting the campaign, said: “The long summer break is the ideal opportunity for children to get stuck into a great story.
“Books stimulate a child’s imagination and development. Reading soothes, entertains, grows vocabulary and exercises the mind and a flight is the perfect place to escape into a literary adventure. That’s why I think this campaign is such a clever match.”
EasyJet CEO Carolyn McCall said: “Our in-flight lending library means young passengers can pick up a brilliant book during their flight and then return it to the seat pocket at the end of the flight for the next customer to enjoy onboard.
“We think it will be popular with parents and children alike.”
To find out more, visit easyJet’s bookclub online here. http://www.easyjet.com/en/bookclub?awc=6296_1504300509_e305347aaa9fe84b6c2185488f5c9b97&utm_medium=Afiliacion&utm_source=Awin_UK&utm_campaign=home&amc=aff.easyjet.27953.32832.19310
Contact me at Dhcbaldwin@gmail.com or DeborahBaldwin.net
Hey friends, I’m going to be interviewed about Bumbling Bea LIVE on Friday Sept 8 at 7:00 EDT. Plunk us in your calendar, share this info and join Beatrice and I (with maybe a short chat with Michiko 😉).This is guaranteed to be fun!
(This is on behalf of all authors. If you take this personally, that’s on you. 😊)
Teach Your Students That It’s OK to Make Mistakes
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Deborah is a newly retired drama teacher through the Apex Home Enrichment Program in the St. Vrain Valley School District. She has taught all subjects of drama and directed over 250 youth theatre plays for nearly thirty-eight years. This summer, she’ll direct Aladdin, Kids and The Wizard of Oz. She and her husband recently moved to Kansas to be near their family. Her award winning middle grade book, Bumbling Bea can be purchased through Amazon.com. Check out her blog at: Dramamommaspeaks.wordpress.com or her website at: BumblingBea.com