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

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pickin' up the pieces and getting back out there.

It's raining.  I love it.  I love fall.  And we might get snow this weekend.  Insane! Just had to share.

So about two weeks ago I auditions for the Beautiful Soup Collective's upcoming production of Nora! in rep. They're doing A Doll's House and the musical A Doll's Life (which was a broadway flop apparently and the sequel to A Doll's House).  I'm in! I was cast as Torvald which was not a part I thought I'd actually be considered for.  So I went in with a classic-y monologue.  Something from The Importance of Being Earnest.  Most of my monologues, no who am I kidding, ALL of my classic monologues are Shakespeare. They specifically asked for a "modern classic." Something from Wilde, Shaw, Ibsen, Chekov.  I worked up a piece the weekend before and I went in prepared.  I honestly was this time. Bu,t you know what threw me? The freaking warbling opera singer in the room next to me. Not to mention the guy out in the lobby sitting there trilling his lips every 5 seconds and asking me questions about the audition.

I'm in the same boat as you buddy. I'm sitting, quietly waiting.  It's cool to ask a question or two, but I kinda wanna concentrate right now than you very much. Just let me do my thing and leave. Cause usually I have to jet afterwards for something else. And stop the damn trilling!

Anyway, they gave me some adjustments and I like to think I executed them well enough.  I guess I did cause I was cast.  And in BOTH shows. Yup a musical too.  But funny enough, that's the one non-singing part. Here is the PLAYBILL announcement.

After that was meeting at Equity.  The meeting was one of those, so you're on your way to becoming Equity, here are some speakers to listen to who's journeys will not inform yours in any way and here are some things you should know about. All good stuff.  Free food.  I felt like I was in Equity's secret headquarters on the 14th floor.  I mean it was just a big meeting room, but it had all these cool old pictures including a tintype of Edwin Booth (founder of the Players club, note, that's players not playas).  I actually knew several people in the meeting which happens. The theater world is small.  But I met one of the women who will be playing Nora. And me with my non-filtered mouth brings up a company she has worked with and immediately trashes it. Good first impression Patrick.

Way to go.

In truth, it's one of the worst companies in the city.  Working with them me taught me self worth and that I have value.  Because they place NO value on their actors.  Still...not the best move to start off a working relationship.  We'll get over that I'm sure.  Oops. I did get an AEA pencil, pen, and button.  So you know, I'll sport that swag.

Then this Monday I had a fairly good audition for the American Bard Theater company.  I am still trying to get my confidence back after shattering it.  But over all I did fairly well. They are a very friendly welcoming company and I already had a good rapport going on with one of the company members.  My piece I chose to do is when Macduff finds out that his family, servants, dogs, cats, chickens, literally eveyone at home has been slaughtered by Macbeth.  There are some things I do differently then what would be expected. I take some things down as opposed to blowing up the room.  It's a sad moment. He's grieving. And he only gives himself that moment to grieve. Then he moves on to revenge.  So I grieve.  I feel it went well.  This is the second time I've used this piece in an audition and the second time I was met with a genuine, 'Thank you.'  I like to think it was genuine.  And it was nice to get in front of them.  The artistic director said she's been wanting to get me in for something for a while, so lets hope that was for real and that they were pleased.  They also asked for a joke.  Mine was lame.  I wont tell it here for fear we're at a dinner party someday and over the cheese plate I tell you this joke.  I'd rather it be a surprise.  It was met with a chuckle from one of the auditors and a gafaw from the artistic director.  So I did something right. I hope.

Also....I know some of you out there send post card thank you's.  What do you do with one of those small companies that doesn't have a mailing address? Email? Is that ok?

Last two bits of news!  25 Cents for love is going to be premiering and screening at the Asheville Cinema Festival on November 5th!  It's the first festival for us and our first screening, so that's exciting!  If you're in Asheville...come on down.

And also the Poster for A World of her PWN is done and online on the IMDB page.  Check it out.  I'm damn proud of it.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

How to bomb an audition

Some days nothing goes right. Things you think you're good at and have a fair amount of confidence in just fall apart.  Today was one of those days.  One of the auditions I've been looking forward to for months was today.  And boy was it an experience.  Possibly the only good thing was that AEA was EMPTY today.  completely empty. Save for ASC of course.

If you want to completely and utterly bomb an audition, just do the exact opposite of what I did and you're sure to knock it out of the park.

I had the privilege of auditioning for ASC, the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton Virginia.

Nice lookin' logo for sure.  Makes you want to work there right?  I know, me too.  So let's see.  What exactly happened.  I'll break it down.
I submitted to the theater.  twice.
Once last fall post auditions because I just wanted my information out there and then again this summer when I saw the notice go out in backstage like a good little classical actor.

I waited...

And received the phone call and email!  Woohoo they were inviting me in.  Most Excellent.  I looked over the information and was very pleased with the way they handle auditions.  They hold group auditions. Everyone in the room together.  You get up, do your monologue in front of everyone, then they hand out sides to quickly poor over and then perform, and then if you have any musical on.  Some people abhor group auditions like this.  But I feel like I flourish in them.  I much prefer to have people there to play off of rather than you and an auditor scribbling notes while you stare at a spot on the wall.

I have several pieces ready to go, but upon reading the information they provided it seems they would prefer you used a speech from one of the plays in the season.  So I spent time memorizing something that spoke to me. 

My instincts were to use one of the pieces I already have in my actor utility belt.  I felt it would be better to use a piece from one of the season's shows like they preferred, but turns out that didn't matter.  Many people used pieces from other shows.  And my piece was weak.  Not to mention I had to restart once and did that awkward pause dramatically while you search for the word you lost and hope no one notices but everyone notices and it's painful.  You know what I'm talking about.

The next part of the audition went pretty good. At least I feel it did.  I'm fairly good with cold readings and I'm also fairly familiar with Two Gents, so when I was given a side from Two Gents and asked to read the servant Speed I was delighted.  We got laughs.  My audition partner was excellent (also he got a call back so I like to feel like I had some hand in that.  You're welcome friend.  You're welcome.)  They gave us a ton of sides to look over prior to the auditions and this might be the one place where I truly was prepared and went over all of them.

The sides were extensive. They covered all the plays from the season and you can bet I read them over multiple times.  (secretly hoping I'd get a comic side as I read them)  It's the one aspect of the audition I felt confident in.  That and when I handed in my headshot.  I did a pretty good job with that too.

The last part of the audition is the music section.  Not required, but  if you can play an instrument and or sing then they encourage it.  If you can't play or sing well, don't.  Now I don't sing that great, but I do play guitar well.  So I figured I'd do a fun little song and show off my strummin' and to a song that I could sing effectively.  The theme song from the big bang theory. It's perfect.  Short and sweet, fun chords and picking and fun lyrics.  Well first off, there were 5 guitars in the room.  Skill wise I was on the higher end.  So that made me feel good.  Oh and a flute. A friend of mine brought in her flute and she was amazing.  Actors have so many skills you just never know about. (Heather you played beautifully!)  I however had to freakin restart my song. multiple times.  In fact I never got through it all the way without messing up.

I practiced the song.  I watch the show.  I know it.  Music is easy to memorize. (as is verse, but I'm just lame).  But first I couldn't remember the lyrics.."Our whole universe was just big hot mess?" No wait.  That's me in this audition right now.  Let me start over.  Still not getting it.  So I polled my fellow auditioners...what the hell is that line? GOT IT. I tried again..screeched out something.  I kept screwing up and finally just ended the verse with..'Big Bang' and let the G chord ring true.  So that was not fun. Or a good representation of what I can do.

It was just a sad sad mess. For something I've been waiting a while to attend and hopefully land the job, I blew it.  Unless they play the..he's got moxie, did great with the sides, and made everyone laugh and kept going card...I will not be working at ASC this season.  In the end I did it to myself.  I cannot blame anyone else for my craptastic display of skill and talent with verse and lyrics.  

I'm just trying to make myself remember that there will always be another audition.  Sure wasn't the end of my career or anything.  It just sucks when you know you're not going to be getting something you really wanted (like the ASC gig, or any other gig).  When I don't get cast I usually don't care as long as I did well. I was just so incredibly embarrassed today.  I'll get over it and move on.  If anything, when I crash and burn like this it inspires me to work even harder.  Bring on even more early morning calls at AEA!  And now to watch some videos of the muppets to make me laugh....Movin' right along indeed.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

A Month! It's been a month!

What the hell?  It's been well over a month since I last posted.  Surely I haven't been that busy?  Truth is, I haven't been too busy to write.  I should have been.  But I get so caught up in projects that some things tend to slip to the way side.  No, not slip, not fall...plummet.

So a month, what has been going on?  Well auditions.  Lots of auditions.  Some I didn't even submit for so it's a good thing to be called in by a company that's seen your work right?  (Yes I'm completely patting myself on my back) Lots of Shakespeare.  He's big I hear.  And yesterday I auditioned for Beautiful Soup theater company.  I haven't heard of them before but their organization in setting up the auditions was amazing.  So based on that of course I'd audition.  I love auditioning.  It's a small performance unto itself and it's usually really quick in and out.  The thing I hate about auditioning?  The people trilling their lips next to me as they "warm up" and the opera singers warbling in the rooms around me.  Oh Shetler Studios, you need to invest in some sound proofing.  Great audition though.  I took some adjustments they gave me to a perhaps over-used Wilde monologue and executed them to laughter.  Then was giving sides to read.....which I know not everyone was given.  So woohoo.  Now I was called in for Torvald in A Doll's House.  It certainly depends on how they cast Nora.  I think I may be in the running, but it will all come down to casting.

In other news 25 Cents for Love has been occupying most of my time.  For starters we're on IMDB! Clearly we're legit!  I've been spending the last month fully researching film festivals and submitting like crazy.  It's a lot more work than I thought it would be.  But every time those discs leave my hand and head out to the post office I get such a wonderful feeling of accomplishment.  Something we made is headed out to potentially wow audiences (fingers crossed).  So in all honesty this month has been insanely busy between auditions and film festivals.  And lastly:

I've been working on this funding campaign through kickstarter to help raise funds.  Apparently film festivals are expensive.  The link to the campaign is HERE.  We are in the last hours of it.  So far we've raised $100 OVER our goal, but every little bit counts.  So if you're reading this today...check it out and pass it on.

Anyone who donates now gets one of these nifty Buttons!  Just sayin...