Saturday, 24 November 2012

With every 'no' you're closer to a 'yes'

This post is, frankly, about the millions of auditions well, four which I attended this week, none of which I will know the result of until tomorrow at the earliest. It had to be done straight away before I received the terrifying emails from directors; I might think something entirely different in hindsight, and I wanted to explore the thinks I am thinking at present, unclouded as they are by anything so unattractive as knowledge.

The plays are The Three Musketeers, Midsummer Night's Dream, Twelfth Night and The Merchant of Venice. I know which one I desperately desire a part in, but am loathe to write it. There is only so much potential failure I can set myself up for on the internet.

I have already had two unsuccessful auditions this year. Admittedly, one was a musical I went along to as a bit of fun (aside from the shower, whilst cleaning, or in order to make a fool of myself, I don't sing) but oddly the rejection from this actually stung the more, sure as I was of my incapability of holding up a harmonic line, than the serious play I actually thought I could get a part in.

I think the reason being told you haven't been chosen for a production seems so harsh because we take it personally. I was self-conscious about trying to take myself seriously and sing well. I was rejected by the Director. I used this as proof that I am, as I suspected, terrible at singing. Also, that I am worthless, will never do well in auditions, and should leave University immediately Comic injection - you're allowed to laugh. As it turned out, when I asked for my audition notes the director told me the main reason I hadn't got a part was because my style of singing wasn't right for the production (is Hair; I used to be a choral singer. Go figure.) and because I was so nervous. Not quite what I was beating myself up for...

Auditions are terrifying because we're all a little afraid of being ourselves, as we might not be picked. Of course, you're playing a character and not really yourself at an audition, but aren't these characters merely an extension of your personality? The direction you take a character, or the movement you perform in a workshop is your own personal choice, and it seems as though it is this choice which is unwanted.

To become less afraid of auditions, and to be affected less by directors judgements of me, I need to remember that the ultimate casting decision is down to one, possibly two, people. Just because they weren't in love with the way you performed a certain part, doesn't mean the whole world will think like that. As in auditions, so in life; not everyone will become your friend, and this is in no way a bad thing, nor different for anyone interesting on earth. Another matter I need to come to terms with, incidentally. If you have opinions on any topic, feathers will be ruffled elsewhere.

My advice therefore, is to put yourself out there, and be a little different. In what situation would you be chosen for being the same as everyone else? I can think of few. Stay true to what you believe, that which you enjoy doing, and how you wish to behave. That way, if a director doesn't pick you because you're the wrong height or build, or because you have the wrong kind of voice, you'll know that next time you will fit the preconceived image they have of the character, and your personality will shine through and illustrate you as the sort of person they would like to work with.

This is why I had to write this post before knowing - this way it is neither smug and patronising, nor bitter. Although it may be garbled, as it is four minutes past two in the morning.

Yours, anxiously waiting,

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