by Karen Moeller
Forward's Annual Open Auditions were held during the first week of August at Edgewood College's spectacular new theater arts facility, The Stream. Many thanks to our hosts there for providing such a welcoming and professional environment. We were lucky enough to see almost 100 actors at our auditions. Some we were meeting for the first time, and some were familiar faces, but all reminded us of what a rich and vibrant artistic community we have here in Madison and Southern Wisconsin.
If you're not an actor and have never been to an open audition, here's how it often goes:
You report to the sign-in desk and have a seat in a hallway or room filled with several people all very intently talking to themselves. You try to calm your nerves. After all, you've been working on your audition piece for quite a while now. What could go wrong? You close your eyes and start to recite the monologue under your breath and suddenly realize that you don't remember it at all. You try not to panic. You take a deep breath. You clear your mind, then focus again. What the heck is the first line?!? Ah hah! There it is. Now it's all coming back. Just as you finish running through it in your head, you hear your name called. You walk into the audition room, say hello to the folks behind the table, and let them know what you're about to perform. You now have anywhere from two to four minutes to show them what you've got. That piece you were certain you had forgotten just a few minutes ago is all there now, and in an ideal world, you perform it just the way you planned it. You try not to think too much about the people sitting in front of you. Are they listening? Are they laughing at the funny parts? Do they like what you're doing? Before you know it, you're done. You smile, you say thank you, and you walk out the door. Immediately, you run the whole audition through your mind and try not to be too critical. You reassure yourself that you did a good job. And if you're me, you stop on the way home and get some ice cream.
Many thanks to those who attended our auditions and shared their talent with us. I hope you all treated yourself to ice cream!