It’s All About the Prep Work

by RoxyRegionalTheatre on February 21, 2011

Roslyn Seale

This week was all about Once Upon A Time and Ain’t Misbehavin’. We were beginning our make-up student matinees for Once Upon A Time. Depending on the day, we were either doing the show at 9:15am or 11:30am. Those 9:15 shows are brutal. Thankfully, we had a lot of great students this week, and there energy is truly contagious. I’m a true night hawk, which is why theatre is the perfect life for me. Being up in the 7 0’clock hour is an unnatural act for me. I spent years working in corporate America and had to often get up before 7am but I’m just not used to that anymore. Since I’ve started acting, I’ve had a few brushes with having to be somewhere before 9am. I was in a children’s tour, where we would often meet in midtown Manhattan at 6am, which meant that I had to leave Brooklyn by 4:30am. Oh yes, fun times! Luckily for me, once I’m up I’m up. I often go to the gym after our student matinees or to the library to catch up on episodes of TV shows that I’ve been missing. Some people sleep after the matinees, but I can’t be bothered with that. Why waste the day?

This week we had our first Wednesday and Thursday night Ain’t Misbehavin’ performances. Those were a little difficult because we had smaller houses. But luckily on both nights, we had really good audiences. Small but strong! I really am starting to feel more connected to my character and I am beginning to understand the show more and more every time we do it. I’m always finding new things with my character and new moments with my fellow actors. It’s one of the things I love about live theatre. The show is always evolving and growing. Normally I would’ve had a pretty solid grasp on my character before we opened, but we had a very quick rehearsal process for Ain’t Misbehavin’. We were spending all of our energy remembering harmonies and lyrics and blocking, so I didn’t feel like I really had time to figure my character out. But I know that this sort of thing happens all the time. I once had to learn a show in 3 days, and it wasn’t until a week or two of performances that I finally figured out my character beats and motivations. Actors always want more time to work on building a character but sometimes you just have to adjust. It’s good practice!

As the weeks wind down on the first part of my contract here at the Roxy, I’ve been trying to plan for Summer/Fall work. Normally this is the time in a contract that I would start to get really freaked out about my lack of employment. But I will be back at the Roxy in April to do The Civil War and I’ll be in NY for most of March, which is when they have lots of auditions for Summer/Fall work. I spent a lot of time this week e-mailing theatres and mailing out my headshot and resume to companies to try to secure auditions. There are so many theatres doing great shows so I want to make sure I put my best face forward. I hope to record some video of myself singing and dancing so that I can submit online to some companies. Keith and Faith do online submissions all the time, and they are constantly getting work, so I think it’s about time I get on that. I think that NY actors think that NY auditions are the end all be all. But I’ve learned the last year or so that there are many great theatres that never audition in NY. And if I’m being completely honest, NY is not always the best environment to audition in. Especially when it comes to open calls. You’re tired from being up at the crack of dawn to try and get seen, you’re not in the best vocal health because of the stresses of your day job and it’s just plain frustrating. Needless to say I’m not looking forward to going back to the grind. But I’ll have an audition buddy in Rendell and we are going to try and have as much fun as possible.

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