I’ve been avoiding posting about this event for a little while, because it made me rather sad in the midst of a very happy slew of posts. So, I pushed it way to the back of my mind and tried to forget it. Except, you know, in little moments of clarity where I’d get upset about it again. Like a true actress.
This news is, if you haven’t guessed, that I did not make it into the production I was auditioning for by video. At first, I was crushed. There’s this weird actor punishment system where you try to think of all the things you did wrong, and it sometimes makes it better (albeit soul crushing) if you can point to one moment of your audition and say, “Ah, yes, of course. That was it. If only I hadn’t raised my hand two inches to the left on that pause, I would have had the part. Why, God, why?? Curse my physicality!!” And so forth. I’ve been able to step away from that these past two years, thank God, and mostly just let it go. But this particular audition left me flummoxed. I had sang well, acted well, and basically given them the best audition I possibly could.
I had done everything in my power, so why hadn’t I gotten the part?
I emailed the director, who I know semi-well, to ask for some audition feedback. Partly because I want to improve, but mostly because (unfortunately) this was driving me crazy and I simply could not let it go.
He replied back full of wonderful comments on my audition and callback. Really, all of them were so sweet, nice, and heartfelt–which, believe me, you usually do not get in feedback.
And the last line of his email read thus: “We loved your audition, but we decided to go with an older look for the entire cast.”
Cue major orchestrations of despair.
There are two ways to react to this kind of news: On the one hand, awesome. I did my best audition, and it STILL wasn’t good enough! . But on the other hand, THANK GOD! I don’t suck! And they liked me!
Which do you think is more helpful for your sanity and your career? That’s right, y’all. Keep it positive.
I always struggle with the first one, but I am learning to live by the beauty of that second reaction. Most of the time in your auditions, they are looking for something that is completely out of your control. If they are looking for a 5’8″ blond with stunning legs and the dance skills of Bob Fosse, then I could go in there and sing there socks off, and still not get cast. You never know what they’re looking for (this director just happened to be very nice and let me know).
So, onwards I go. A sadder, but wiser girl. And hopefully, someday in the next score of auditions I’ll be performing, they’ll be looking for a 5’4″ college girl who looks like she’s about 16.
PS: I realized after reading through this again I sound a bit sad and unhappy about the whole thing. Please rest assured I’m not! This happens to all of us BFAs at pretty much every audition we go to. I am all about falling off the horse and getting back in the saddle with a smile on my face, especially after such a wonderful audition experience. I’m a lucky, lucky girl. I think success is shown when we can take our little disappointments and just keep swimming 🙂