Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A Bright Room Auditions

The auditions for A Bright Room Called Day took place the last two nights at the Casa del Pueblo. As is my custom I arrived with my posse an hour late and slightly drunk on power. Rahaleh, the director and soon to play the moon in Fair Ladies at a Game of Poem Cards, shushed me and told me to sit at the back of the room and to not talk to anyone. My assumption is that this is because of my ability to intimidate other actors with my deep booming voice or it may just be that Rahaleh wanted me as far away from her as possible. Damn restraining order!

Here is what I think. Auditions are demeaning both to the actor and to the auditor. It might be kinder to institute some sort of battle to the death in determining who gets what role. Granted it would mean some really tough looking Juliets but it would save a great deal of stress and avoid the inevitable arguments among directors and producers over who can act and who can't.

Here is my idea. Two actors enter a room, the director comes in on a moving platform like Tina Turner in Beyond Thunderdome, an invocation is made to the Gods of theater (also known as Jack and Jim) and the battle is engaged. Twenty something women take swings at one another with hunting knives and barb wire wrapped knuckles as bored Artistic Directors place bets on the newcomers. Meantime over on the men's side, bareknuckle beatings are delivered by steroid enraged character actors fighting over who will get to play Uncle Vanya this season.

Instead we sit in our chairs and watch talented people read to play roles they are either born to play or could play or will never be able to play in a hundred years. I am of the opinion that if you have the guts to come in and audition for anything you are half way to being an actor. Very few people actually come into an audition and collapse on stage from nerves or fright. Most people do a pretty decent job of coming in and doing something interesting if not extraordinary. That is what makes it so painful sometimes to have to say no.

I have heard about high schools and camps where they are so unwilling to say no that they actually have two casts and present the play in rep with two casts. If it wasn't for the time involved and cost this might be a great idea for professional theaters and there would be an "A" cast and a "B" cast and you wouldn't tell them which was which until the end of the run and then points could be awarded. And one cast could be crowned "The Best" after they pounded one another to a bloody pulp back stage.

So until the day comes when we can settle our theatrical casting needs the way the God Ares intended we will continue to parade ourselves in front of directors and see whether we are right. Or at least right enough for the role.

11 comments:

valamondo said...

That "Tina Turner in the Thunderdome" reference wouldn't have anything to do with my costume at the top of the second half of Beard, now would it...?

DCepticon said...

We don't need another Hero! But the wig is a big inspiration for everything I do in the show Val.

Anonymous said...

Who run BARDer Town?

DCepticon said...

Master Thespian?

Anonymous said...

Or, in this case, Master Caster.

DCepticon said...

Now that is sweet!

Anonymous said...

as if you weren't drunk enough on your power already...

DCepticon said...

You know there is a little bit of me that feel that someone should put down her cocktail before she leaves a comment.

Anonymous said...

I'll have you know that a disney mug with three types of vodka and a plastic spoon in it is NOT a cocktail.

Anonymous said...

*someone* spilled my cocktail, I'll just pass my flask along to Gwen instead.

Anonymous said...

*someone* spilled my cocktail, I'll just pass my flask along to Gwen instead.