Patrick will be starring in the Last Cyclist at the West End Theater this May - June. Click here for info

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Gotta Get My Head in the Game

Sometime we just have off weeks.  You can't help it.  You plan and plan, and things just simply fall apart.
So here's how it's played out so far.

This weekend I got a call about an audition.  Short little festival of short plays.  I've been submitting like a mad man lately, so it's nice to know people are getting these submissions.

Monday: Sadly, though I had a conflict.  I call the casting director who was very gracious and offered me an alternate time on Wednesday.  Excellent. So 1 confirmed audition and several EPA's all week long.  This could be a good week.

Tuesday: I get a call from the casting people behind 30-Rock.  It's just extra work.  And I loathe extra work.  But my attitude, which is shared by a few people in my inner circle, is that if I like the show....a lot....then I'll do extra work.  Because extra work is just the worst part of film/tv.  That being said, I like 30-Rock, the commute would be nothing since their studio is so accessible, and I really like 30-Rock.  So I agreed to do some extra work this Thursday and possibly Friday.

Wednesday I get a call about a project that evening.  So I have to cancel this audition that was wonderfully rescheduled from Monday.  Remember that one?  Again the casting director is very understanding and says to come in if this other project finishes early.  Unlikely, but you never the end it didn't.  So I miss that auditions.  AND 30-Rock is cancelled.  Apparently an actor from the show itself has a conflict, so we reschedule to next week.  no biggie.  This means that I now have Thursday free, and Friday.  Hello Epas.
Well, that evening I get another call from the casting director of the shorts...She's decided that she really wants to see me and invited me to the call back on Thursday.  Folks, there is something to playing hard to get apparently.  and sleep.

Thursday: Now there is one for sure audition and 2 EPA's I really want to go to.  I've missed the other days these EPA's were being held on.  So I wake up, get all my headshots and resumes together.  I'm about to head out the door when my reliable sources (friends auditioning) that the one at audition space A is full.  And Audition Space B has opennings in the afternoon.  So I take my time.  I head to audition space B, afterwards I'll check out A on the way to my confirmed audition.  So where do I accidently end up before I realize my mistake?  B. The full audition.  Actors covering every inch of open space.  No one is getting seen here.  So now I don't have enough time to go to A, wait the 20-30 minutes, get seen, head to B(and realize I'm not getting seen) and head to my 3rd audition.  But still 1 out of 3 isn't bad.  Especially when I could have been filming all day and not auditioned at all.

Even when I try to plan everything out and make sure I leave enough time to race across town for the next thing, the universe still manages point and laugh at me.

And now bed time.  But I will say, the casting director for the short said she was very happy she decided to call me in anyway.  So hello ego boost.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Last minute audition wacki-ness

The audition!

So i get there...its in the weirdest place. An apartment, I think. You enter through the kitchen and holding is in the same room as they're filming, which I THINK is the bedroom.  So of course we're all as quiet as can be. Did I mention that we're surrounded by gaudy art and sculptures and lady gaga-esque sun glassses? weird.  I feel like we're in some "collectors" trophy room.

Oh and, we're being recorded.  If they use us we get paid..whatever. Really nice crew and director.  It smells scammish, but it's not.

As i'm sitting there watching everyone go before me and of course making mental notes of what not to do, I noticed that everyone who went...everyone save for the cute but not too bright little girl who couldn't read...had an accent.

I spend the next 20 minutes or so listening very carefully and trying to see if they really have accents or if they're putting them on.

I realize...they're doing accents. They don't really have them. Of course in my head i'm thinking..."fuck! I didn't read the notice carefully!"  Something not at all unheard of, but something I try to avoid.  I do my best to read everything carefully...nudity?  No thanks, Crazy accent?  Never mind. Shave 1/2 my head? Mmm, I'll pass.

Now, some of them look the part but are not able to sound like they come from their mother land. Annoying.  What were the accents? ask

Middle eastern? Some third world country? I don't really know. They all sounded like charicatures of immigrants.  Finally I ask, obviously concerned and I'm told..."it doesn't matter, we like your look."  Well, that's a plus at least.  But clearly you wanted people with bizarre fake-o accents.  And then they're in the non-accent group. The NON-ACCENT group!


Looking back at the notice now I see there were "caucasian men" and "ethnic men" whom they were looking for.

again. whew

So I finally go up and read the sides which was through a teleprompter. Now, we had the sides before hand via email. and when we got there we were given the sides. And on top of that..teleprompter!!!  Yet, still people were screwing up. What gives? So I'm slightly nervous. Maybe its an evil teleprompter...nope. They're just not good readers. So, I read. They don't call me one take patrick for nothing.  It's a great thing when as an actor at an audition you can safely proclaim..Nailed it!

...Nailed it!

When I'm done the director looks at me and says, 'would you mind looking over this other side? we're casting another commercial too.' He says, 'just look over this for 5 seconds and jump into it.' I say..'done! let's go.'

Bam! I rocked the first one and was asked to audition for another piece right then and there. How freakin cool!

So there, that was the tail end of a great weekend.  It was a last minute audition I agreed to go to and hopefully they'll use me.  Or call me in for the second commercial.  Either way, it was a great adventure with NY acting craziness.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Friday, October 8, 2010

Downtown Independent Theater Woes

What is going on with auditions and shows!!

There is a scary trend I'm seeing lately in Downtown NY Theater. It's something that has been building over the past few years. The Independent theater scene in New York is a place where we can go for new works. Edgy pieces that no Broadway producer in their right mind would ever pay for. Sometimes they hit, sometimes they miss, but we still go and give these new ideas a chance.

So why why why why why are companies reviving past shows? Broadway does it. I get that. A revival of some past classic. Carrie is coming back soon. And every year there are numerous rumors of other works. Some of these revivals work like La Cage, some like Guys and Dolls just fade away. But thats the place for revivals. Revivals are part of Broadway. A way to showcase past successes or reimagine them for a new audience and generation.

But why I ask to no one in particular, is the hub of creative edgy theater reviving past works? I've seen shows that have been done 3 times prior being brought back again! And it's not that they're 20 years old. No no no, they've been done 3 times within the past 5-10 years. Why?

I can see a show being fun to do, but if it didn't work the second or third time, It's not going to work now. I don't care who you get to do it. Maybe these companies don't realize we're as smart as we are? everything. (google if you're reading this, do i get a kickback for mentioning you?) I search information about companies and shows all the time. I get so annoyed when I see another small independent company is bringing back their big hit from way back when.

Or I walk into an audition the other day and the first thing I'm told is that the show was "amazing 4 years ago when it was done originally, so we figure lets do it again." Which was followed by, "we're going to build off the buzz from the last version 5 years ago."

Really? 5 year old buzz? There is no such thing.

What artistic value does that have? What about new pieces of theater? New stories? New twists? Ok ok, if it's a new twist or an updated version, I see some merit. There are show's I've seen that I would love to be a part of. Hell, I'd love to see them again because I enjoyed them so much. For example, as much fun as Penny Dreadful was, Season 10 would make me want to claw my eyes out I'm sure. (Again, a show that was so entertaining to do. I learned a lot from it as well.) If the creators behind it had a V2.0 they were going to attempt I'd be on board only if it was not a copy of the previous incarnation.

I've been a part of "revivals" where the director read blocking notes off of old faded pads of paper from past productions. Or worse yet, we watched the old version on video and were told "do that." There is no art in copying. Unless you're a monk in the pre-Gutenberg days. I mean that was some impressive stuff there.

This is my rant. If you can give me a viable reason for bringing back old shows from a mediocre company's past please tell me. But to me the beautiful thing about NY theater is that there is so much new and amazingly courageous work being done. I Just get so annoyed combing through auditions and seeing so many old shows coming back. Who is going to see this show again?

Come on Backstage, don't let me down.

And now going over lines for the radio show I've been cast in. It's going to be a good weekend of words words words..At least thats something new and original. And should also be fun!

I hope I don't come off as an elitist about shows. I love performing. I just don't like doing someone else's work.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Rainy Fall Days but still motivated

It's a chilly rainy fall. And I don't really mind. Something about this weather sits right with me. So i'm just enjoying not sweating during the day, or at night, warm cups of coffee, and I supposed it's the weather...but I'm inspired to write more. So it's back to the tablet I've gone scribbling away and fleshing out ideas that have been rattling around in my head for far too long.

I have started auditioning again, it's amazing how that never ends. Show just ended? who cares...back into the auditioning/submitting game again. Managed to get an audition with the York Shakespeare Co. A company I've been wanting to work with for a while. A few friends have worked with them and based on their experiences and the reputation
of the company? Yeah I want to walk their floorboards. So if you're reading this SD, I'm waiting for a call.

Or email. I'm easy.

So auditioning, tiring, but I get so angry at myself when I don't audition. Along with looking up auditions. I feel like I've wasted a day if I don't do at leas
t one thing in support of my career. Sure time can be taken off, but I just get so annoyed. Like it's another missed opportunity. Crazy, I know. But it helps to keep me motivated.

I also got postcards. Finally. Why I never had these before I do not know. Here is a mock up of what they look like:

Something like that. Reproductions. Didn't do too bad of a job. And I'm going to force myself to stay on top of these and send them out often to everyone I meet with. (WB already sent) Now my only issue...Is with Reproductions themselves. I love them. I do. We all use them. For sake of ease I used the online ordering option. Very easy to use. BUT I never got an email saying they were ready for review at reproductions. So I wait a few days, email them, and I get a snarky email back from their cust. service. Not actually answering my question, they just repeated what I ordered and prefaced it all you can see you ordered.....

Thanks for treating me like an idiot. Whatever. I went in, they were great. I checked the spelling over and over again because my name is easy to mess up. Even for me. But in the end Success! I'm hoping the postcard follow up is something that truly will help. Any little thing we can do, right?

And this week I picked up two more web design clients. Nothing too crazy, just some adjustments to existing websites and some consultations. I can do that. So I'm keeping myself busy, that's for sure. Haha.

And now I'm off to go over lines for a radio show I'm voicing. I'll get some samples as soon as I can. should be interesting.

And thus ends this meandering entry. Hope you made it through to the end. Pretty directionless.