I had my very first stage audition for a big play last Thursday, for a role of understudy. I love my agent! It was for a well known play, with an A list cast, in a big theatre in the West End (London's Broadway), for a proper 12 week run. The understudy role was to cover the two smallest female parts in the play and required a General American accent.
I had one and a half days to prepare for the audition...
I worked very hard... on character development, and my British accent still isn't completely back... but unfortunately, (whisper) I don't think that I got the gig.
Now. The Rule - as everyone will tell you - The Rule is that you prepare for the audition as best you can in the time you have, you do the audition as best you can, and then you forget all about it. If you hear back - great! - it usually means you've got the part or at least a recall. If you don't hear back it usually means that you didn't get the part.
If you didn't get the part, everybody knows that you shouldn't take it to mean that you were bad or totally crap or just not as good as someone else because that is probably not the case. All manner of factors come into play when they make their choice: your size, colouring and presence relative to the rest of the cast etc...
But the child in me thought: it's an understudy role for the two smallest parts, and requires an American accent (to be judged by a British director/producer) so how many people could possibly be up for the part? Me and one other? That's a 50% chance of getting it! Me and two others? That's still 33.33% chance!
I don't know how many people they auditioned. Maybe 100. I thought I did ok (even though I started walking out half way through the audition because there was a lull and I thought I heard them say "we'll call you" but actually I'd misheard the assistant director's Welsh (I think) accent...) but the play opens in late May and surely they should be getting back to people soon?
I auditioned with the assistant producer and assistant director, both really nice and very friendly and future heavy hitters (it really is a huge production). They will need to run all their choices past the producer and the director and they were auditioning understudies for all the parts on Thursday, so maybe it's taking them a while to process things. And I've got a hunch that the smallest of the understudy parts was not at the top of their list. Or maybe (and this has just occurred to me) some key decision makers were stuck abroad because of the volcanic ash cloud and so the whole process has been delayed...
The truth is, I don't know. Anything. But with every day that goes by I'm more and more confident that I didn't get the gig.
Also, both parts are described by the playwright as "overweight/biggish women" and if that's what they were looking for, well that's just not me. Not even on a fat day. (Hey, there's always a silver lining!)
But let's not dwell on that (the not getting the part bit, not the part about not being overweight even on a fat day... I'm gonna dwell on that all day and use it as an excuse to have one of those delicious coconut macaroon from Apostrophe - or as I like to call it Apostrophee.)
The good news is that I'm going to be in a play in July at the White Bear in Kennington (South London). It's the UK premiere of Desire, a play by Josep Maria Benet I Jornet (an award winning Catalunian playwright who is about to receive a lifetime achievement award from his country- he's like Lorca, but alive) and it's a good meaty part and you can read all about it on my website: www.isabellegregson.com/desire.html
So onwards and upwards. It's not over until the fat girl sings!!