It's been a week. I've been traveling like a hipster nomad, living out of my backpack in coffee shops and rehearsal rooms with a flannel shirt and scarf around my neck, getting ready for casting my first show next Wednesday. For those who don't know, I am directing my first play in New York. Its called Aint No Such Thing As Free Pizza by Analisa valeZ, her very first produced play. I excited beyond reason for this amazing opportunity to direct such a diverse play by such an awesome playwright. She's like the Puerto Rican Checkov. The playwright and I have been in constant communication getting ready for audition, calling each other in the middle of the night with ideas, and being excited for our dual New York premier.
We signed up for an account on Backstage.com, which I highly recommend for any and all actors to check out. Its a website that helps actors and casting people get in contact with each other. (See. Prisoners dilemma) For actors you get your own professional profile with a places for resume, experience, headshots, video reels, ect. And you can apply for an audition at the click of a button. As a casting person, you pay a little fee to have your audition listed on their website and then actors can apply to audition. Its is an amazing site that has been super helpful in our casting process. The playwright and I have almost completely filled our audition times with people.
Its exciting and I'm learning a lot about the professional casting world. I don't know what professional casting personnel look for in actors, but I look for people who try and make personal connections. When an actor clicks the button to apply to audition for a show, they can include a little message to the casting person. I found that the people who wrote something about the show and about the reason they wanted to audition were people I wanted to see. But the people whom it seemed just copied and pasted an impersonal carbon copy message seemed distant and unexciting. Now this could be completely different in real life with these people, but I offer that as advice to anyone applying for jobs: The more friendly and personal you make your connection to the person who might hire you, the more interest they will have in you as a person.
So that's what I am learning. I'm still keeping busy with lots of different projects! Auditions are next Wednesday, March 6th. The Musical I am writing has been getting some awesome feedback and is about to enter the second stage of development. The OTHER play I'm directing with the Rhapsody collective has entered the writing development stage. Fundraising for snappytitlehere is rolling along quite well. Be sure to keep telling your friends about us!
And lastly, i'd like to leave you with a poem I wrote in a Starbucks one night when I was supposed to be getting work done. Until next time my friends!
Home for Now.
I’m sitting in the corner of a Broadway Starbucks.
To my left are two young students toiling away under piles of books
in front of laptops and tablets
that churn out data faster than anyone
could have ever imagined.
To the right of me are two young African men
watching a video of an airplane
taking off on their smart phone.
In front of me is a family from somewhere in
They have hijacked the scattered tables and chairs
And made this coffee shop their dinnertable this evening.
Three kids run around playing with new found wind up machines
They acquired from a street vendor or the toy store down the street.
For them, this moment is eternity and they are happy.
If the rest of existence was this moment,
They would be content.
The parents sit, finally, and watch their kids
Run around with energy that can’t even
The other relatives stand or wait for their coffee.
They wander about as though the cashier were the living room
And the windows to the world were the Big Game.
Not quite sure what to do or what to say,
They stand waiting for something to happen.
The grandparents sip their mocas and frapps
And discuss things I cant understand
In a language I cant comprehend.
Tonight we, all of us, are family.
We unknowingly break bread together
And share drink together
under this humble green roof.
My brothers and sisters are students,
My cousins are from African, on their phone,
My mother and father are simply happy to be sitting,
My aunts and uncles wander about, coffee in hand,
My grandparents are speaking in a language I can’t hear.
And tonight, for this moment,
Without knowing it,
We share this starbucks