Musings on m
y life as a busy opera singer, voice teacher, photographer and mom - not necessarily in that order! I consider myself immensely fortunate to have carved out a way of doing all of these things which mean so much to me - it may sometimes get a little crazy, but it's always worth it. Welcome to the madhouse!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

About auditions....

So, it would appear that I have managed to get through the last week. Three roundtrip daytrips to NYC in 6 days (the first two only 48hrs apart).

Life was complicated by my daughter acquiring Some Kind of Chest Thing and having to stay home from school(we're still not sure if it's allergic asthma or an incipient bronchitis, but she's been thoroughly miserable) , but Grandma stepped up to the plate (for which I am profoundly grateful - thanks again, Mom!) and made it possible for me to continue with scheduled travel plans and the assorted auditions without a hitch. (Now I just have to hope I don't catch.... !)

Well-meaning friends and family outside The Biz always wish me luck with a "I hope you get it!" or ask "Did you get the part?" when they hear I've been auditioning. If only it were that simple!!

While many auditions are role-specific and result in an immediate answer, it very seldom works like that in my experience (I can only think of three instances in the recent past where I've been asked to sing for a specific role and was cast AS that role, even though other offers and opportunities may have materialised from the hearing).

One always has a better sense of things when the answer is "yes!" The best response is, of course, to get an offer on the spot (instant gratification!); next best is a call with an offer soon after the audition, although casting is often a longer process than one expects (while offers generally appear fairly quickly, it is far from unheard of to get a call months, or even years afterwards).

Rarely will you get a response in the form of a flat out "no" or rejection letter - unlike schools, and training programs where a "thanks but no thanks letter" is usually sent out after all offers have been made and accepted, professional auditions can (and often do) result in no specific response; you may simply hear nothing at all (and here's where having management helps, because an agent can usually get some kind of response in the form of feedback, or even just a timeframe as to when casting will be completed so you know if you're definitely out of the running).

Also, it's entirely possible to audition in consideration for one role, and be cast as something completely different, perhaps even in a different season; the response may be as vague as "we have something next season we'd like to consider her for - we'll be in touch in a few months". Positive, but entirely inconclusive.

There is also the dreaded "hold", where a company will ask if you have the dates available and if they can have preference on that time, even though they're not ready to make a formal offer yet. This is the most nail-biting kind of limbo as these "holds" disappear as often as they play out, and it can be immensely frustrating.

So, the only way to live with it and stay (relatively!) sane, is to forget about the audition as soon as you have walked out of the room. It takes a long time - and a lot of auditions - to be able to walk away and convince yourself you don't care, but once you've done it enough you find you genuinely don't think about it; once you have sung the final note and closed the door, the audition is over until the phone (hopefully!) rings with an offer. On to the next thing!

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