Friday, 16 March 2012

Easy Like Friday Morning

Some auditions are properly hard work. You have to send photos and voicereels and showreels and create carefully crafted cover letters. Then you have agonising waits while the company constantly checks your profile, they put you 'under consideration' and you spend weeks working out how this job is going to change your life forever. Then, they finally contact you and you get an audition and you have to learn a script, prepare two monologues and learn Mandarin in the space of 12 hours. You finally get to the audition and they disregard all your prepared material, despite you learning all of Shakespeare's female monologues in Mandarin 'just in case', and they insetad ask you to recite the complete works of George Bernard Shaw in Swahili while standing on your head with your right hand in a bucket of frogs. Or something like that.

Today's audition was completely different. I fired off a very generic application for it while sitting on the bus and I received a call from them yesterday while I was wandering around the incredible Yayoi Kusama exhibition (if you like dots and making yourself feel completely and utterly spaced out for an afternoon then you should definitely go.) They gave me an audition time and where to be and that was it. Nothing to prepare, no elaborate outfits to organise. Hooray.

So I arrived this morning feeling pretty damn relaxed. Despite having to get up at 8am, I was in a good mood and sauntered in, expecting it all to be a breeze. I arrived at the doors of the very professional building and just as I was looking for which doorbell to press, a security guard comes running towards the glass doors, hollering in panic that the door was already open. I walked in, he breathlessly pointed me in the right direction and I went in. I was signed in and then asked to wait in their reception. A minute later, someone comes and gets me and I'm asked to sit in an empty boardroom and fill in a very short form. I'm left on my own and told that someone will come and collect me soon. I fill out the form and then I'm just left with my thoughts, five jugs of water and a muted television showing golf. After what seems an eternity, I'm collected and taken to another room to wait. I'm told that as soon as the person currently in there comes out, I can go in. Easy peasy.

Another auditionee who appears to have been wandering around the building suddenly appears and we're left to wait together in a waiting room/corridor. Not a second has gone by before the other auditionee informs me that she's off to a modelling shoot straight after this. Oh. Good for you. I mean, I didn't ask but thanks for letting me know anyway. After a good minute of being told just how busy her life is and how she's 'always modelling', I get a condescending smile when she finally asks what I'm up to for the rest of the day and I tell her, in all honesty, that I'll be doing very little indeed.

Two actresses then leave the casting room and I presume that they're obviously auditioning us in pairs. Miss Model Pants gets up to go, as do I but just as I step into the room behind her, she turns, scowls and tells me that it's just her going in. Whether she was right or not, the thought of not having to audition with this monster is too much for me so I step back gladly. She then tells me to look after her bags and waltzes in, leaving me to continue to stand awkwardly in a waiting room with no chairs.

After what seems an eternity, she finally returns. She flouncees out, takes great joy in saying 'enjoy the rest of your day doing nothing' and she's gone. Finally it's my turn. I walk through the door to come face to face with a black sheet which has been put up to section off the casting area. It was fixed in such a way that I had to enter the audition in maybe the most demeaning way possible and found myself trying to shake hands with the director while he greets me while crawling into his studio. Yes. Firstly I try and gatecrash someone else's audition and then I finally enter in on my hands and knees. I make quite the first impression.

I'm pleased to say that the rest of the audition was joyously easy but the damage was done. Unless they're looking for a dusty kneed actress who doesn't quite understand audition etiquette, I think I can safely say that the job ain't mine.

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