Tuesday, August 23, 2011

If You Give a Girl An Audition...

She will likely ask for a monologue. If you give her a monologue, she will probably ask to sing a song. If you let her sing a song, she might get a callback. And if she gets a callback...

She'll find out if she gets a part tonight at 6 pm!

My friend Emily (of I am not cool or fun fame) also recently moved to Riverton, UT; her family is so scrumptious, it hurts, so we are ecstatic to be living so close to them. Early one morning a few weeks ago, Emily called me and told me that The Riverton Arts Council was putting on a production of Little Women: The Broadway Musical. She really wanted to audition and asked me if I would be willing to go along. I was super thrilled to get my feet wet again into the theatre world.

Performing since the day I was born

I did theatre in high school, all four years. I acted in children's theatre (Puss in Puss in Boots, Barb in Magic Theatre) and regular productions (Mrs. O'Malley in Funny Girl, several parts in The Laramie Project, Miss Van Huysen in The Matchmaker, and many others). I held many technical positions and even got to direct a couple of plays. Additionally, I took every available theatre class and participated in the audition-only acting group Masquers. All of this work landed me in the International Thespian Society with the highest honors (and then some!). I am proud of all of the work I did and count my theatre mentors and friends as some of the best people I know.

Post-Funny Girl with my bff Kyle

That being said, the last time I tried to revisit my theatre past, I failed the intro to acting class at Brigham Young University because I stopped going to class. In my defense, that was the semester I got engaged and I was too busy making out with my soon-to-be husband.

So, when Emily asked me to join her, I decided to go for fun. I had told myself that if I got called back and Emily didn't, I wouldn't go; I was going to support my friend and that was that, right? I prepared a Dolly Levi monologue from The Matchmaker and 16 bars of "Side by Side by Side" from Company.

Singing "Midnight Train to Georgia" at a talent show when I was 12.

Emily went first and did a great job on her audition; she worked so hard on her pieces and I was so proud! I went after her, but they didn't have a cd player available for my accompaniment (like they said they would!). When they got the cd player working, I went. I had forgotten how addicting it is to get inside a character's head and just lose yourself in performing; I am not the best actor, so I think my singing helped me save face.

I ended up getting called back. And I truly struggled with that: should I go with my original plan or should I just go and see what it was about? The callback was a few hours after my audition, and I went back and forth the entire time. But, I ended up going because I had told the director that I would come and I didn't want to punk out.

The room was full of about 15 people, blonde and redhead girls like me, and we all sang some songs and read some scenes from Little Women. I wasn't familiar with the musical at all, so I was at a major disadvantage. But, thanks to the kindness of strangers, I was able to learn what I needed. One of the songs we sang was "Astonishing"; here it is, performed by Sutton Foster, and it is mind blowing.

If I do say so myself, I did well at the callbacks. They kept me until the very end, which consisted of a lot of standing in various groups so the director could see how we looked together. I love that part; when I directed, I would pretend that it was poker, and ask to see people together who I wasn't even considering casting. I didn't want to show my hand!

The cast list goes up this evening, so I am trying to keep myself busy so I don't think about it. For someone who was not invested in the slightest at the beginning of this, I am too nervous!

Have you done any theatre before?
Did you love it?


  1. Not good at acting, my foot! You were AMAZING Holly! And if you had not attended callbacks on my account I would have been furious at you. You will so make it--I'm predicting as Meg. (And let it be noted, the prediction is made a full 8 hours before the cast list is due out!) Thanks for trying out with me. If I didn't make it, at least I get to see someone I think is awesome in it! We're looking forward to seeing you light up the stage in October! :)

  2. oh my goodness, I would love love love to do Little Women (I'm totally in love with Sutton Foster).... Congrats on making it so far! Can't wait to hear!

  3. Good luck, miss! Fingers crossed for you.

  4. i did theatre all throughout high school and college. it is a passion of mine, and up until i was 4 months pregnant with owsley i would go with a group to elementary/middle schools and perform shakespeare. maybe when the boys are a little bigger i can join a local community theatre group.

    good luck!

  5. Yay Holly! Way to get out there - so daring. Callbacks are super exciting. I can't wait to hear.

    I did some theater in high school, but I think I can only play the comic relief, loud character. Singing on stage however, I could do that forever.

    Oh man oh man, I hope this happens for you.

  6. I think I read something on Twitter that you got a part?!?!? Yippee! You are so amazingly talented in so many ways!!