Thursday, June 23, 2005

Speaking of Kimberly, let's meet her!

Kimberly auditioned for Brigadoon to help her prepare and broad her horizons before a big step this Fall.

This isn't Kimberly's first show or musical, but it is her first show outside school and children's programs. And she auditioned because she's going to go to NYU next year to study drama, and wanted to have the experience of a show outside of school at least once before moving on to (hopefully) bigger things in New York. (NYU...pretty impressive!)

Kimberly has been getting training at her current school which really emphasizes "professionalism." So it's gratifying for her to see that rehearsals so far of Brigadoon are pretty much what she expected.

One surprise, though, is the discovery that "professionalism" co-exists with extreme niceness! As Kimberly says:

"There's not this competitive spirit you get sometimes (especially in conservatory programs) and everyone is just so... nice! People are helpful and friendly and they always jump up and offer to help if you ever need it--it's great. We really watch out for each other. For example, when I had to miss rehearsal, I had two people offer to watch my track for me and teach it to me when I got back... everyone's so nice!"

[Editor's ramblings: Actually my experience is that professionalism almost always goes hand-in-hand with, at the very least, graciousness. Especially in the somewhat insecure and unpredictable world of theatre people tend to feel pretty lucky once they actually are in a show...and feeling lucky makes people pretty nice.

Of course there are two exceptions...I agree that sometimes people aren't the nicest in the audition/call-back period. That's when competitiveness rears its ugly head. (And I can see how being in a conservatory setting would feel like you were constantly auditioning or being judged against your peers.) I'm not sure it's really meanness, as much as being stressed out...which makes people less empathetic to others.

Also, I think it's hard to be in a show if you didn't get what you want and felt really strongly that you should have. Few people can resist the urge to be catty and judgmental in that situation.

Here's a little secret: I often don't even go to see a show if someone I know that I'm not too impressed with is playing a role I have played or would like to play...whether I auditioned or not. I figure there's plenty of opportunities in life to be catty and mean...why increase the odds I'll behave that way!!! End Editor's ramblings.]

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