The amount of breath wasted on auditions is huge. Not merely the auditions themselves, but the discussion of auditioning. Go into any bookstore, and, no matter how small their drama section is, chances are you'll be able to find titles on auditioning, a book of monologues, and some Shakespeare. Shakespeare is obvious, but monologue books are synonymous with audition booklets. Why would one peruse a book of monologues unless it is to find one to audition with?
But, that being said, it is a topic that has been on my mind more often than not recently. I've got several auditions coming up, some of which I would even venture to call important. Not necessarily because I'm banking on getting them, but because they're big and, for the most part, they're first impressions. They're the first opportunity I have to show people what I can do. Which is exactly why I'm so excited about them. I had a friend mention to me the other day, "I don't see how you can do it. Constantly putting yourself out there for auditions has to be exhausting." And, yeah, it's tiring, but it's an opportunity for more work. Why wouldn't I be excited about that? Why wouldn't I want to give it my all. Especially when I'm auditioning for such high profile places.
As of right now, the Henry VI project is the last thing I've got on my plate. After that, I'm no longer a working actor, and back to the world of the day job. I can't have that.
One of the best parts about this job is getting the job. And to get the job, there is one attribute more important than any other. Not talent, not luck...but one of my favorite words in the English language. Hustle. I may not be the best actor out there, and I'm certainly not the luckiest, or the one with the most special skills, but those are things I can only control to a point. What I can control to the fullest extent, is my intensity when pursuing a job.
It's like the man said, "Definition of the hustle, is mind over muscle."
- Actin'! I just wrapped the official, final Much Ado last night. It was a weird sort of epilogue. I was acutely aware of our final day at the Tavern and treated it as such. By the time we got to the show at McIntosh, I think a lot of people were sort of done with Much Ado. BUT, that isn't to say we gave a poor show. With all of the impediments in the way, I think we gave the same kind of performance we would have given for anyone, which speaks well of us, considering there was a group in house left for the first act that simply would NOT shut up. If any of them happen to be reading this, thank you for leaving at intermission. If we're not your thing, that's fine, but there were a LOT of people in there who were enjoying what we were doing.
Also, there is Twelfth Night.
- Memorizin'. I'm fairly off book for Benedick and Hotspur, but that's to be expected, now isn't it? Ford and Marcus are coming slower, but I have no doubts that I'll have them under my belt soon. I'm really excited about going up there to audition.
- Kidstufin'. We gave what I'm considering a Kidstuf preview at the announcements at Buckhead Church the other day. It was a trip. Singing Bon Jovi to a packed church house is an interesting experience. Literally, every day I am involved in Kidstuf, I am happier that I was their second choice. I KEED, but I am RIDICULOUSLY happy that I'm involved.
I'm still not convinced that anyone besides Ry, Redd, Robbyn (woah...weird...) and, potentially, my dad read this blog. But, regardless, maybe you guys can help me out.
In a few weeks, I've got an audition in Virginia that I will not name until it's over and I can take a breath. I might have talked to you about it in the past. If not and you're super curious, feel free to grab me on Facebook or Twitter and I'd be happy to tell you. For the time being, just be satisfied that it's Shakespeare and it's under my "Places I Want to Work" bookmark heading.
Anyhow, for this audition, I need "short monologue(s), preferably from the plays we're casting (5-10 lines is plenty)". So, I figured the best way to go about that was to memorize four new monologues for the four plays that they've announced.
Here's the problem. I'm a little bit over on some. Literally, a line or two, but I'd be loath to say, "Ah, screw it. It's just a couple lines." I'd be much happier if I could cut it down to the bare minimum. The only problem with THAT is that I'm so close to it, I can't quite figure out what to cut anymore. So, if you guys could do me a favor and take a look at my monologues, I'd sure appreciate any input you could give. Plus, you know, not only cutting advice. Anything you might be interested in saying.
We'll talk in the comments!
Hotspur from Henry IV Part 1. (11 lines - Not counting "Away" as it's own line, and counting "have with me? Come, wilt thou see me ride?" as one, as it comes out to nine syllables.)
Away, Away, you trifler! Love! I love thee not, I care not for thee, Kate: this is no world To play with mammets and to tilt with lips: We must have bloody noses and crack'd crowns, And pass them current too. God's me, my horse! What say'st thou, Kate? what would'st thou have with me? - Come, wilt thou see me ride? And when I am on horseback, I will swear I love thee infinitely. But hark you, Kate; To-day will I set forth, to-morrow you. Will this content you, Kate?
Marcus from Titus Andronicus (7 lines. I like it. It says a lot in a short time span and it completely different from Hotspur. I like that about all of my monologues. They're very different guys.)
Which of your hands hath not defended Rome, And rear'd aloft the bloody battle-axe, Writing destruction on the enemy's castle? O, none of both but are of high desert: My hand hath been but idle; let it serve To ransom my two nephews from their death; Then have I kept it to a worthy end.
Ford from Merry Wives of Windsor (15 lines. What I've DONE and started to work with is a cut that starts right after "damnation together." That pares it down to ten lines. If there's anything before it to cut, I'd be open to listen. I'd also be open to listen to anything that would allow to me keep the last five lines. I REALLY like this monologue. I think it might work it's way into my regulars.)
Has Page any brains? hath he any eyes? hath he any thinking? Sure, they sleep; he hath no use of them. Why, this boy will carry a letter twenty mile, as easy as a cannon will shoot point-blank twelve score. He pieces out his wife's inclination; he gives her folly motion and advantage: and now she's going to my wife, and Falstaff's boy with her. A man may hear this shower sing in the wind. And Falstaff's boy with her! Good plots, they are laid; and our revolted wives share damnation together. Well; I will take him, then torture my wife, pluck the borrowed veil of modesty from the so seeming Mistress Page, divulge Page himself for a secure and wilful Actaeon; and to these violent proceedings all my neighbours shall cry aim.
Benedick from Much Ado About Nothing (11 lines. I've done Claudio, I've done Leonato, I've done Don Pedro, and ANY of those would have been easier, but this monologue has just called out to me. Any cuts would be appreciated... This one in particular feels like if I remove any from the middle, the whole thing falls apart.)
She told me, not thinking I had been myself, that I was the prince's jester, that I was duller than a great thaw; huddling jest upon jest with such impossible conveyance upon me that I stood like a man at a mark, with a whole army shooting at me. She speaks poniards, and every word stabs: if her breath were as terrible as her terminations, there were no living near her; she would infect to the north star. I would not marry her, though she were endowed with all that Adam bad left him before he transgressed: Come, talk not of her:
You know, I rarely talk specifically about auditions on here, but, I dunno, I'm just pretty disappointed in my OnStage Atlanta audition. Of course, nothing they did. They were super nice. I was just thrown off by some stuff earlier in the day, and was trying something new with this monologue. I was trying to show this guy at almost a loss for words, which probably isn't the best audition idea when these people don't know my acting.
On top of that, I'm not sure if I like this monologue. I mean, that's not true. I know I like it. It's broad, but funny (I think) and shows a character that I rarely get to do. I just don't want that character to be "sexist dude". It's a monologue about a girl thinking she's fat, and how ridiculous the guy thinks that is. I always get uncomfortable before doing it. I mean, I like it, but I know insecurity is such an issue, it might just be a better idea to send this monologue into early retirement and call it a day.
But, you know, the people were nice. That was cool.
Whatever the case may be, I KNOW I need some new contemporary monologues. I've never been particularly good at picking them out. Anyone have any suggestions?
BUT, no time to settling into actor's favorite pass time, which is self-doubt. I've got a C-Lod to be tonight!
That shoulder is still giving me problems. I've been threatened with physical violence if I don't get it looked at if problems continue for more than a week. I think that's counterproductive, but whatever.
It's a weekend full of auditions! How fun! The one today was quick and easy. In and out, and didn't even have to pay for parking. Plus, it was a good excuse to try out a brand spanking new monolgue. (King John, "Am I Rome's slave?") The one tomorrow will be interesting, just because so much of the stuff on my resume recently is in a classic vein. I still wonder how people who do primarily contemporary stuff will react when they see my resume.
UPTA and SETC registration is coming up soon. I'm absolutely going to UPTA, and PROBABLY going to SETC. I imagine going to SETC will be ridiculous and liberating, just because of the tension that is related to it in the past. At my school, there was so much importance placed on SETC, for good or for ill. I know that while I was there, it felt like it was made out to be the ONLY option to get a theatre job while in college. It wasn't until I started seeking out my own auditions in the world, that I even began to have any success.
Basically, every year at SETC, I was so nervous because it had the air of finality to it. "This is your only chance, so don't blow it." I'd do the most broad, scatter-shot audition I possibly could, trying to appeal to everyone, not satisfy myself, and end up getting called back by the same places anyway. Obviously, I can't harp on SETC too much, as I do think it's a good option, and it did bring me to The Lost Colony, for which I am grateful for. But, man, SETC and UPTA is just night and day. I, actually, can't wait to go to UPTA again. So well organized and so much more actor friendly. SETC feel very college theatre to me. So many people out there who are going to get their first professional gigs. It's wonderful. But UPTA feels more...grown up? That works.
Anyway, SETC is going to be fun this year, come hell or high water. I'm going to give myself permission to do exactly what I want, because it ISN'T the be all, end all. That's my 1:00 of time, dammit, and I won't apologize for a second of it.
So, yesterday was an eventful day! I'll get to Tavern World Picture Day in a bit, but first...
I was over at a friend's house watching some Sopranos and decided I wanted to bring some of my new dumbbells over to her place so that I could finish up my workout while still being social. Toward the end of my workout, I decided to do some... I dunno, laying down tricep extension things. Essentially, it looks sorta like this, except I was laying on my back with my arm in front of me, as opposed to over my head. Anyway, I was apparently more tired than I thought, or I misjudged the weight in general, because the weight plummeted to the ground, taking my arm with it. My shoulder made a noise not unlike ripping celery in half. My first reaction was a sort of terrified laughter. I couldn't stop laughing, I was so shocked. I was worried and scared, but it didn't hurt. Like, at all.
Since then, it has started hurting. I've been alternating ice and heat on it since then, as much as possible. I bought these weights at a yard sale. I personally blame Robert Egizio.
So, anyway, by the time I got to Tavern World Picture Day, my shoulder was feeling sort of weirdly loose. However, the set up earlier in the day was so much fun. There's just something about checking in with where the Tavern has been, and in such a short time. Also, it's nice to see all of these pictures now that I actually know who some of the people in them are.
It was nice to meet the new apprentices (apprenti?). They seem like a good group. I'll wait until later to pass judgment on all of them.