Bucket List Checkoff: Audition for Play (pref. Shakespeare)

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Bucket List Checkoff: Audition for Play (pref. Shakespeare)

Postby jamesmb113 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:03 pm

Done! Really, all I set out to do was audition.

I was scared. The kids were watching "The Flinstones" earlier today: the episode where Fred has convinced Barney to go a round with "the champion". Barney is clinging and scratching on a fire hydrant for dear life, as Fred attempts to drag him in.

That's how I felt. Except, that at the actual venue, everyone was so NICE, that I was really put at ease. There was even a kindly retired English teacher/drama coach there to help, give pointers, and calm nerves.

I went in, and there was the dreaded question "Tell us about yourself."

I hate this question. But I decided to be honest. Quoted Dante about being in the dark wood "at the mid-point in life's journey".

Then I told them about the bucket list. What the hell.

They LOVED this story.

But then a curveball: "Who are you auditioning for?". I just blurted out "The Sea Captain". What? Not Sir Toby Belch? Sir Anthony?

I told them that my last Shakespearian role was as a "rude mechanical" in "Midsummer Night's Dream." So a generic "Sea Captain" with about 5-6 blocks of verse was a bit of a promotion.

This broke them up. "Which one?" The "Simon" judge on the left piped up.

Robin Starveling. "This lanthorn doth the horny moon present..." (the playwright rushes up, whispers in my ear).."umm... the horNED moon present."

More laughter.

I proceeded with my monologue...

and proceeded to choke. Complete brain freeze after the line "Might his quietus make with a bare bodkin."

I apologized, but they were very supportive. They consulted a bit, and asked me to read a scene with an actress.

The audition was for 12th Night, in repertoire with Jean-Francois Regnard's "The Gamester" (modern adaptation by Freyda Thomas). They had me read for Msr. Faux Pas from "The Gamester" Hes very much like Dogberry from "Much Ado About Nothing". Or the "Lirty Dies"/Dan Quayle guy from the Capitol Steps.

10 minutes to go out and rehearse with the actress and the kindly Theater coach. Then GO.

Mlle. is in love with our hero (no, not me. The tall dark handsome guy that auditioned 2 people in front of me). She follows him to a Paris casino. Unfortunately, Msr. Faux Pas, who is crushing on her, shows up She quickly grabs a fan, hides her face, and affects a German accent.

Normally he would get flustered in her presence, and make all sorts of comical malapropisms. But he thinks she is a stranger, and is able to tell her how he REALLY feels.

While unconsciously imitating her fake German accent to comic effect. Got it? Good. GO!

I take that it's a good sign when the judges laugh out loud. And your partner in the scene ALMOST does.

"Wanna hear him in a monologue?' "Yes. Of course." Then almost unanimously "The Croupier".

Again, 10 minutes, kindly coach etc.

Obviously, this is the Roulette dealer.. Someone shouts "Aren't you ashamed of yourself?!!" And he launches into a monologue very much like Falstaff's cynical speech on "Honor".

Kindly coach: "Can you guess which line is a 'pop' or clencher for modern audiences?"

Of course "I shouldn't be surprised if, in the future, they build whole cities where people might game!"

Now to the judeges: GO. Excellent. "Simon" speaks up again: "Ever been in a Casino? Give it to us again, as if you were trying to speak over the slot section. This is probably how this guy talks all the time. Even at the dinner table."

Very good. But then something that floored me. Questions about my experience with music theory and composition. Do I think I could write or improvise musical cues?

The "Ellen" judge - "I think this is Serendipity at work. We're doing one of Shakespeare's most musical plays, and in walks a Violin player who's also an actor."

They'll know something in 2 weeks. But the audition experience itself was more than worth it.
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Re: Bucket List Checkoff: Audition for Play (pref. Shakespeare)

Postby Unity » Sun Apr 11, 2010 1:41 am

Well done in overcoming your brain freeze and getting on with it. Sounds as though everything fell into place for you, including being a musician. :D
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