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Preview: Memoirs of a Flip Musical Theatre Character Actor

Memoirs of an Ethnically Ambiguous Musical Theatre Character Actor



The trials and tribulations of an ethnically ambiguous actor auditioning and working (a.k.a sitting around in holding, waiting to go to set) in NYC.



Updated: 2017-09-08T19:42:18.015-04:00

 



Typecasting? Never... (watch video before reading post)

2014-03-30T11:03:40.836-04:00

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Great video! My favorite moment is near the end when the blonde female yells out, "Ahhhh! I am booking EVERYTHING!!!" I recently went to two auditions that mirrored what the three actors go through this video. One was for a regional production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, a show known for having a multi-cultural cast. But as the guys ahead of me were walking out of the room, I could tell who was staying for the dance call and who was not.  Yes, most if not all, were Caucasian. Not just Caucasian, but the young romantic lead type Caucasian male. Character actors? Out the door. Over 29 years old? Out the door. It was like they were casting all Joseph types for the brothers.

The other was for a combined audition for two regional productions of Les Miserables, pretty much the same story. But in their defense, they did put that they were looking for 20s (I can still pass for 29, right?) tenor/baritone males for the double cast role of Montparnasse/Jean Prouvaire. But as the guys ahead of me exited the room, the ones that were giving high-fives to each other indicating that they were coming back for the callback later that day were....drum roll please...Caucasian males in the 20s, young romantic lead types! You look over 30? There's the door. Character man? And don't let it hit you on the way out.

There were a handful of non-Caucasian males in their 20s, but they only quietly packed up their belongings and headed out the door after singing their 16 bars of music and followed me to the elevator for our Ride of Rejection. I just wanted to ask the guy behind the table, "Couldn't you have put it in the notice that you only wanted Caucasians at this call? So, I didn't have to get out of bed early this morning...on a Saturday, warm up (and wake up my roommate in the process), drink tons of water the night before AND the morning of, and hope and pray all the way there that I could squeak out my high note at 10am after getting my voice cold from walking out on this cold day to get here. Oh, and can I have my headshot back? But hold off, I need to go to the bathroom again."



Back On This Blog After Almost 3 Years!

2014-04-05T13:52:48.913-04:00

Well, finally back on here after a long while. I was discouraged by the format of this site sometime last year, I think, but it looks like they have improved the mobile part at least.

Anyway, to update, I am still in NYC auditioning for theatre and working in the glamorous world of film and television as a background actor. I was inspired to start this blog again after creating my new actor website. And then I re-read some of my past posts from 2006/2007 and saw how positive I was back then...and I liked it better than the slightly jaded person I was becoming recently. I could tell I was getting bitter about not booking much theatre work since I arrived here in 2009. I started only to put my focus on finding the next background gig, because it was giving me an almost living wage. But then, I was starting to not be able to go to theatre auditions and started getting comfortable with settling in the background. It was fine. I was getting semi-steady work. I was paying my bills...sort of. But I just wasn't fulfilled with being a supporting role all the time.

I've had a little taste of being a little more featured, but it didn't dawn on me until I took a seminar with a casting agent, that there was something more. I realized that I do have potential. Everyone has potential to succeed in this business, but few work hard enough to do it. I knew I wasn't working hard at it, just making it by. Just hoping on pure luck, like in the past. But I knew in the back of my mind that if I would just go to that audition, instead of talking myself out of it the night or the morning before, and just get my butt out there that things would happen. Just keep going in and do a great job and one day someone will finally give me the opportunity to keep doing what I love the most...live theatre!

Sometimes, you just need to start the ball rolling yourself. I finally made the decision to watch the cash flow and stop eating out and going to Starbucks so much. Made a budget and kept to it, but always knowing that I could be flexible with it too. I started my taxes earlier this year. I took time off of background work to go to an theatre auditions. Been nailing it in my sessions with my vocal coach, and getting my confidence back in the audition room. And so finally, I am a part of, first a reading, and an upcoming workshop production of a new musical. I won't question how I got the role (as I usually do), I will just say, it was meant to be mine at the moment. Someone may take over, if it goes beyond and headed to Broadway, but, right now it's all mine!

And about another project, it is always great to do another reading for a good friend who is an up and coming writer. A really good one, too. I may not be rich right now, sometimes times are tight, but I'm not starving, I'm not homeless, and I'm still pursuing what I love to do...and not a corporate drone stuck in a cubicle in an office.



Are We There Yet? Regular Bar Patron!

2011-07-15T12:02:47.168-04:00

Well, I have finally gotten a semi-regular background gig. I am now part of the regular background actors who appears as a regular bar patron in the new upscale bar called "Martin" named after that character (the white guy) in the TBS sitcom Are We There Yet?. I was booked for the first day in the bar as sort of an audition. So everyone was wondering if they were going to be picked. I, of course, thought everyone was prettier and they were going to pick those guys. But about a week later, I got a call for another day and we were the established bar patrons. Woo hoo!

It's an easy gig. We mostly sit at tables in the bar having fake conversations with each other while the leads do their thing. Probably the hardest part of the gig is getting up early, going to Grand Central Terminal to board a train to Stamford, CT where the show is filmed. Then a van picks us up from the Stamford station and takes us to the studio about 5 minutes away. The crew works very fast and we're usually out of there in about 4 hours. The only bad thing is that we get wrapped right before lunch - which sucks. So, most of us end up grabbing as much craft services as we can before boarding the van to the train station.

We have gotten about 1 day of work a week so far. And only gotten 2 days of work so far and this week, they didn't need the bar patrons at all. So works is kind of random, but at least I know I will be called sooner or later. I'm just glad for the work. And all the tv shows are starting back up for the new season, so I am looking forward to lots and lots of bookings. Maybe even get core on some shows. Along with the ongoing shows they have added 9 new shows that got picked up from pilot season earlier this year. So, I look forward to getting to blog about those experiences in the future.



White Collar

2011-05-29T14:46:27.447-04:00

Just had to blog about my experience with White Collar yesterday. I had worked it before as a pharmaceutical party guest in April, but it was very brief and the cast and crew had some issues with the location - so it wasn't the best time. But that was all forgotten when I got booked for it yesterday. There was a rush call for a nerdy FBI type Wednesday night. I knew they liked to cast pretty people for the FBI agents, so I thought maybe I could get in the nerdy route. Around 11:30pm, I was still awake and got a call from a familiar number. It was Jim from Central Casting to see my availability to play the nerdy FBI the next morning, but only thing was that he could not officially book me - it had to be the casting director, Lucy. Unfortunately, he could not get a hold of her, so he asked if I would stand by. I said yes, even though the call time would be 8:30am - just a few hours away. I thought sure, why not, I only worked one day this week on Damages - so I told him yes. A few minutes later he finally got a hold of Lucy and said that I was officially booked and just needed to bring a nice suit.I guess I was excited, because I couldn't sleep. My eyes were closed but I kept looking at my cell phone clock through out the night to make sure I would get up on time. I finally got up a minute before and got ready. Made it to the studios really early and met one of the core FBI agents, Ryan (of course he was tall and pretty). I got breakfast and as I was eating saw the rest of the "Harvard Crew" or core background (background actors hired to portray FBI agents whenever they do scenes in the office or on location) walk in slowly (all pretty people, of course) - oh great, I thought...what am I doing here? I have dealt with many background people before and usually the pretty people are mostly self absorbed and stand offish. I was wrong with these background actors. They all introduced themselves to me and made sure I was doing ok. You could tell they were sort of like a family and they welcomed me as well. Shortly, I was then whisked away to set because the scene I was in was first. I overheard from one of the wardrobe people that I was going to be putting electronic equipment on Matt Bomer's character. Hmmm, interesting.So, I got to the set of the interogation room and met the 2nd 2nd AD, Jason and 1st AD, Bob, and a lot more people, but was so overwhelmed I couldn't get all their names. I just had to sit in on the rehearsal of the scene with the two leads, Matt Bomer and Tim DeKay, and Sharif Atkins as Agent Clinton Jones. All three guys introduced themselves to me and made it a point to remember my name and refer to me by name. It was such a weird experience because usually as a background actor, you are told to not talk to the leads - not to even look at them in the eye - and here I was conversing with them. Well, it was more them talking to me and me being too nervous to say much. All three guys were very professional, but also joked around with each other between takes. And, if you can believe it, they also sing and dance between takes too. I even got to relax when they relaxed instead of standing with the stand-ins, which was a great perk. The scene was them talking about getting information from someone (watch episode 8 of this season [three] to find out who) by using electronic spyware that the tech (ME!) was placing on Neal Caffrey's (Matt Bomer) wrist, arm and chest. We did the scene a few times and the only issue I had was getting the self-adhesive tape to stick after a few takes. The only note I got was that I was too rushed getting the tape on. Between takes Tim DeKay turned to me after they were running lines to ask if I wanted to run my lines (background actors usually have no lines). And then later he said, "I bet when you woke up this morning that you didn't expect to be reaching down Matt Bomer's cleavage." No, I did not! And for the rest of the day, when I passed Tim and Sharif, they always made it a point to say, "Hi, Fran[...]



A Much Needed Update...AGAIN!

2014-03-30T09:33:44.668-04:00

Hey! Well, it has been a long while since I have posted on here. So, to catch up, I joined AFTRA, another union, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, on March 16, 2011. I thought I finally had enough money saved up to do it. So, I started posting for AFTRA background gigs and my first call was from Central Casting letting me know that I had been picked by the director of The Big C to be in a small scene as a doctor. I remember seeing the posting for it as "attractive" doctor and just did it on a whim. So, I was a bit surprised. I said I was a must join and they asked if I was willing to join and I said, yes, but fortunately had a few days to join before the shoot. And then got another call from Central Casting to be a featured role of a "decision maker/casting agent" on the sitcom Are We There Yet? and said I was also willing to join. But this time, I had to do it the next day.

I knew that if you were a must join, and had potential gigs coming up, you could do a payment plan. Which means that instead of paying the full amount of $1663.90 in one whole payment, you can pay $650 down and the rest in 4 payments over the following 4 months. I saw somewhere online where someone said you could just pay $300 down, but I learned that was incorrect. So when I checked my account, I only had $625. But thanks to my sister, Rachel, and overdraft protection on my checking account I marched up to the AFTRA office in midtown and paid the $650 (praying that my credit card didn't get denied because of that $25 shortage). I then called the casting director, Abbie, to let her know I joined. She sounded kinda frustrated and let me know that production of Are We There Yet? was cutting the number of background actors and that she would let me know soon. Great! I just joined AFTRA and my first gig wasn't going to happen.

A few minutes later she called to give me my check in number and wardrobe instructions and to call the hotline number later that evening for call times and location. It was a great experience and I got to work with Ted Lange (Isaac on The Love Boat) and get very featured in the episode "Kevin Gets A Commercial". The next day, Matt from Central calls me to let me know that The Big C has taken the scene I was going to be a doctor in out of the script and wouldn't be needed. Ah, well! Luckily, I ended up working regularly and got another show to replace it. I ended up working on The Big C later as a high school teacher where Laura Linney's character teaches. And I booked a total of 12 AFTRA background gigs in the following 4 weeks after I joined, which I found out is pretty good. I have really lucked out on the work. I'm not as busy as I want to be, but I just got here, so I will just have to see what comes of this. I also don't want to be in the background for the rest of my life, so I also know that I need to take a more proactive role and try to go out there an audition, audition, audition!



The Time Traveler's Wife/Julie and Julia

2009-08-17T18:11:17.381-04:00

Ok. I thought Time Traveler's was good, but not great. It was too much of a condensed version of the book, that focused more on the love story. Granted, I know they were gearing this up as a "chick flick", but I think they could have broader the audience by adding more about the technical aspects of the time traveling (and possibly curing it). Also, Henry was pretty much a sex maniac (in the book) and they chose to cut that aspect from the movie. The ending was different from the book, but still effective. Although, the book ending was better at showing how love can stand the test of time. But that is my humble opinion.

Julie and Julia was very cute. Of course, Meryl Streep was awesome and made Julia Child a human being and not a cartoon. Amy Adams was cute. Some people thought the character was annoying, but I didn't see that. She was just a real person. Also, the men in their lives played by Stanley Tucci and Chris Messina were very complimentary of their counterparts. I looked forward to seeing them on screen. And to see Messina in more stuff. What else has he done? Fun movie! It made me want to cook more.



Well....

2009-08-16T12:18:05.537-04:00

I haven't seen The Time Traveler's Wife yet. Hopefully, tonight! I can't wait for my P90X to be delivered on Wednesday. I need something productive since I have nothing to do during the day. This kind of reminds me of how my life was like before I got into a relationship, got out of a relationship and then got a full time job in the corporate world.

I appreciate that I can start over and restart my life at 40. I think the phrase, "Life Begins at 40", is becoming true...at least for me. As I have more free time here for a few weeks in Texas to re-evaluate my life again, I have discovered more things about myself that I think will improve it in the future. For most of my life, I have always tried to please people and always placed my feeling behind others. I've just been raised to do that. And I don't think it's truly what I want. I tend to be what people want me to be, just so I don't make any waves. And then get frustrated later on, because that's not really me.

I can see now that I have always been a unique personality, but every time that I try to express myself - I get someone telling me that's not appropriate. So I have become over the years what various people call appropriate and it's been easy to maintain that. Now that I am older, I am ready to change that and challenge myself to becoming my true self. "Be true to yourself". So get ready to see some great changes to me in the future!



The Time Traveler's Wife/Anderson Cooper

2009-08-14T15:57:57.763-04:00

I'm very excited because I am going to see 'The Time Traveler's Wife' tonight!!! I finished reading the book last week and this will be the first time I have read the book before the movie. Because I actually made the time to read for the first time in my life. It's so different to read a book because you want to, rather than just read it because a teacher made you. Maybe I might go back and read those books that I never quite read in school. Yeah, I was a bad student.

Also, I just found out that I have the same birthday as Anderson Cooper. Not only because he is Anderson Cooper, but because I hardly know anyone who was born on June 3. We are very rare for some reason. He wasn't born on the same year, but it's a start! Now I am on the lookout for someone on the same day AND the same year!

Ok, since I now have a lot of free time, I will probably will now blog more often...hopefully! Be on the lookout for more!



I'm back!

2009-08-14T16:22:20.663-04:00

Well, it's been over a year since I have blogged on here. I have been laid off from the bank, moved to NYC, found a sublet in the Bronx, auditioned during the worst time ever, discovered background work, filed for unemployment, and now back in Houston for a few weeks to do On The Town at Bayou City Concert Musicals. Whew!

Oh, and this deserves it's own paragraph. On my 40th birthday, June 3, 2009, I decided to treat myself to see Broadway shows. So I got a ticket to see Blithe Spirit with Angela Lansbury, Rupert Everett and Christine Ebersole. Loved it! Angela is amazing! During intermission, I checked my PDA and then put it in my pocket. After the show, I checked my phone again and the screen cracked. I went to the Sprint store and they offered me a $150 credit for a new phone. Then I went to get a ticket for South Pacific.

I was trying to find somewhere to figure out my new phone, but places were packed with tourist. So, I decided to head near Lincoln Center and tried to catch a subway. Well, it was raining, and I slipped on stairs, and dislocated my right shoulder. Usually, I would have just immediately taken care of this and headed to the emergency room, but since I had just bought a ticket to a show - and being an actor and patron of the arts - I wanted to go see the show. I even walked all the way over to Lincoln Center and then got the common sense to go the emergency room - and just eat the cost of the ticket.

So, in short, the doctor's put it back in and it felt SO much better. They told me that it was the fastest that they ever put a shoulder back in the socket. So, that's how I spent my 40th birthday! I guess it had to be memorable.



Ugh...No Company...but Yes NYC and MonaVie!

2008-05-22T21:47:06.938-04:00

Well, after a talk with the director of the show, I couldn't convince her to do a special appearance agreement for Company. So I don't get to do it. I was so close to scabbing just to do a show. But after getting advice from some fellow equity members, I decided to go the good route and decline the role. Sadly. I was looking forward to it. I even highlighted my script and score and tabbed the pages. So you know I was really into it. I'm never that organized.

So now I'm headed to New York City again in June. I'm there to help out my friend, Scott, with the Theatre World Awards as a volunteer. I'm also going to sneak in a couple auditons. I've also been reconnecting with a lot of theatre folk I have worked with over the years and will possibly be getting together with them. I'm only there for 4 days - so it should be jammed packed! I'm also going to catch some shows. Unfortunately it won't be South Pacific on this trip, but they are now an open run and so I can see it later.

On the move to NYC, it has been delayed until the end of the year. I'm taking care of my parents place in Galveston until they come back from the Philippines in November. In the meanwhile, I am trying to build this new business of mine called MonaVie. It's a great company and a great product. I'm feeling so much better now. I'm just waiting for everyone else to see the light. I haven't been working it as much as I should, but work seems to get in the way.

I can see now that I really need to get away from this job. It's draining all my positive energy when I'm there. Most of my co-workers don't see it at all. They just see it as selling juice. And there's so much more, but I don't have time to explain it to them at work. I have no downtime. I barely get a lunch. I usually eat at my desk. And now the end of month is almost here and I am dreading it so much.

Anyway, I truly believe this new business will be my ticket out of the corporate world. I have great mentors and supporters to help me through! And it'll be a great way to be able to afford to live in NYC.



Company

2008-04-28T21:08:07.556-04:00

I've been cast in a show finally! I'm playing Paul in Company. The theatre producing it is called etc (east-end theatre company). I've done 3 shows there and am almost a regular. I don't know who the rest of the cast is yet. But I do know that Penny is playing April, Shelley, who I met at the audition, is playing Amy (my soon-to-be bride). Great moment in the show.

When we met, we both thought we knew each other. And realized we did Aida at HGO. She was in the chorus and I was a super. Also, I just found out that my friend, Ellen, will be performing the role of Susan. The role was offered to my "second wife", Bethany, who had to turn it down for personal reasons. But you never know, someone might drop out and she could do it after all.

I'm looking forward to the show. I just hope we can work out a deal with the union contract. I heard Robin Lusby might be doing Joanne and she's union too. I think?



Changing My NYC Plan....again. Time to make the jump!

2008-02-03T22:52:25.582-05:00

Well, after my time in NYC recently, I've been getting the urge to make the move quicker than I planned before. Now the plan is to look for a job within the bank in NYC and transfer up to NYC with it. I can still audition for shows by signing up for EPA's time slots during lunch breaks. I can also do ECC's by timing it out right. Maybe working at night - who knows. I'll figure that out in the next few months. I just need to be there to get into the rhythm of auditioning. I've been so out of practice, I just need to just keep auditioning until it become second nature.

I also need to schedule the oral surgery that I have been putting off for too long. I need to get new resume' photos done, get back to dance class, get more vocal coaching, get back into shape, save more money, and just get prepared to make the jump. I talked to my friend Vic this past weekend and he just plain out said I just need to get my ass to NYC and just make the jump. I'm not getting any younger and I'm just not doing anything down here.

And once I'm there in NYC, I can save more money while I'm working and hopefully quit in 3 months. By then, I can get a tour or have enough money saved up to just audition. Ok, so now I'm motivated. It's almost been a year since I first met Vic and he was telling me to move - so I need to do it this year!

Also, my friend Michael has been telling me to just do the move or jump as well. Once I get there, it'll just workout. But I need to just be there first. And I know that is true!

Thanks again, Vic and Michael!



Another NYC Trip! (Long post!!!!)

2008-02-03T08:59:05.273-05:00

This time I went for a week. I planned on auditioning for about 3-4 shows and of course, see some shows too. Tuesday, January 15I took an early flight to LaGuardia. Things looked good since the pilot wanted to leave early. However, when we were just about there, we had to hold in the air for about 30 minutes - so delaying us for 30 minutes. Eeek! Luckily I still had a lot of time before checking in for my audition. Got off the plane, went to my friend, Mitch's place and dropped off the bags and headed straight to the Equity Offices to audition for Phantom of the Opera.This was my first time there since I missed my auditions months previous (look at past blogs for more about that). I was a bit disoriented in finding the studio, but found it soon enough with plenty of time to take a moment to just relax. Since I couldn't sign up for this Equity Chorus Call (ECC), I had to wait in line until they read every name on the list of 308 before I could get a number. Well, not so bad, I got 120. Seems that people don't show up to the call or they sign up more than once just in case they are running late.Well, after waiting over 3 hours my group of 20 was called to line up. When I got in there, the musical director immediately left to go to the bathroom. So I had to wait until she got back and had some very small talk with the casting agent. The accompanist was very stoic and didn't say a word when I was showing him my music. Anyway, I sang my "I Have Dreamed" and everything went well until that high note. I hit a flem ball and it didn't sound good. Ah well! I am not using that song anymore. Seems that it has run it course - so back in a drawer.While I was there, I signed up for The Little Mermaid ECC on that Thursday and also the ECC for The Producers at the Pioneer Theatre in Utah. I signed up as #301 for Mermaid and #187 for The Producers. I also saw my friend, Rick, who I did summer stock with in Galveston in the early 90's. After the audition, I went to TKTS and grabbed a ticket for Spamalot BEFORE Clay Aiken went in. I got a front row seat, off to the left. It was a pretty good view. Show was very good. I saw it on tour, but wanted to see it again in hopes of auditioning for it someday. And before the show, I had dinner with my friend, Bob, formerly from Houston.Wednesday, January 16Next day was a day off from auditioning. I woke up semi-early and went to the Lunt-Fontaine Theatre box office to see what they had for the matinee of The Little Mermaid. I got 4th row center!! I grabbed that immediately and got some breakfast. I loved the show. I heard the critics were not too nice. I think they were a bit harsh. It's a beautiful show. I was looking at it since I was auditioning for it the next day. I'm glad I did to get a sense of the music. I was going for Chef Louis, and I probably could do that someday, but I think I would be also right for Scuttle played by Eddie Korbich - who is a favorite performer of mine.Later that evening, I met with my friend, Kelli, to see a show that a muscial director friend wrote called Trumph, the musical. Yes, it was as bad as it sounds. We went to Vinyl afterwards and caught up. From our conversation, I realized that I've been way out of the loops. I really couldn't update her on much.Thursday, January 17Next day was the Mermaid audition. This time I got #59, so I was done by Noon. I had a great audition. I sang "Sit Down You're Rockin' The Boat" and I was pleased and they were smiling - so who knows? Afterwards, I found a Whole Foods Store and got some salad and pasta for the day. I then waited in the TKTS line and got a ticket for Mary Poppins for $59. Are you noticiing a pattern? Later that week, I stayed with my friend Scott on 59[...]



Howl At the Moon

2007-12-29T19:23:06.522-05:00

By Larry O'Keefe (Bat Boy, Legally Blonde)
Song written for his version of Shrek, the musical.

Nice place you got here. I like it. It's clean.
Even the johns and the lawns are so green.
And if he makes you happy, I want you to stay.
But before I can go, I have something to say.

Most of my life, I have hid from the light.
But once in a while, on a cold, cloudless night.
When the moon was so full, I could smell the spring tide.
I would stand in her glow, and have nothing to hide.

And I would howl, howl at the moon.
Oh, I would howl, howl at the moon.
Oh, I would howl in loneliness and fear,
'Cause the moon gave no sign, that she even could hear.

You shine just as bright, but from farther above
And it looks like I've fallen far short of your love.
But my heart will be yours til the day that I die.
And with every full moon, you will hear my goodbye.

'Cause I will howl, howl at the moon.
Oh, I will howl, howl at the moon.
And though I howl, I won't expect your tears.
It's enough that I know, there is someone who hears.

You'll hear me howl, the whole night through.
Oh, I will howl for the loss of you.
Oh how the world will cover up their ears.

When the full moon appears,
For the rest of my years.
I will howl at the moon,
And I'll know someone hears.



Back From Chicago

2007-12-28T22:55:46.322-05:00

Chicago was snowy. I arrived early around 9:30am and my audition for Mamma Mia wasn't until 12:06pm, so I decided to take my time and get some coffee at the airport. I headed around 10:30am and got on the Blue Line train. My friend, Robert, told me that I would have to get on a shuttle bus between Harlem and the next stop. But after I got back on the train, we had to stop to let 2 other trains go by.

So, needless to say, I was late for my audition. I got there around 12:45pm and checked in with the monitor. She told me that I would have to be placed later - but I would be seen. I just waited a few minutes and then my name was called. I met some nice people in line. Some women had not performed in a while, but decided to audition for this show. I also met a woman in the lobby as I waited for Robert and Randy to pick me up after the audition. She had a lot of great info about the acting community in Chicago. She said that I would do well there. Hmmm, now that's another option.

Robert, Randy and I grabbed some lunch. Then I settled into my room at their house. They had a great house, by the way - and I had nice room. I'll be looking forward to staying there again. Then I went to see Jersey Boys. I decided to see it again, because I heard so much about Jarrod Spector who plays Frankie Valli. I heard John Lloyd Young, who originated Frankie Valli in the Broadway production, say that he was the best of all the Frankie's out there. He's more old school and less "American Idol".

The show was good as before. Jarrod was great, although he seemed tired in the beginning. Maybe tired from the matinée earlier that day? I expected an obstructed view, but I couldn't see anything on the catwalk. Oh well, good think I saw the show before. Next day, we had brunch at a Mediterranean restaurant. Good food! Then I flew back to Houston. Short but fun trip!



Paradoxical Commandments

2007-12-01T18:05:47.993-05:00

The following is called the Paradoxical Commandments. My friend, Shannon, told me about this and it spoke to me instantly. It's actually how I've been trying to live my life. If it speaks to you, then we have a lot in common....

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.

In the final analysis, it isn't between you and them. It is between your Soul and your Higher Power. So, do it anyway!



Great News About My Bank Job....Really!

2007-11-24T21:26:04.449-05:00

I never write anything about my job at the bank, but this is something to write about. My supervisor told me in confidence that I will be getting a good raise this year. This news is great because for the past 2 years I have not had an increase in my salary. I was on the "needs improvement" status for those 2 years. It was a real blow to my confidence at work because up until then I had been doing really well at work. By the way, I have been working at this job for 10 years come March.

I have been waiting for a good time to leave and I was planning to next March or April. But I may stay a little longer and wait for a severance package that will be great when I move to NYC. Some of the bookers and the reconciler department are being let go in February and their functions are going to Bangalore, India. Talk around the office is that soon after that happens that more functions will go over there. Actually, I think people were happy they were getting laid off. I know I would.

So, now I will be taking short trips to NYC and wherever there is an audition worthy of buying a plane ticket. If I get something from that, they I will surely leave as soon as possible!



Another Trip to NYC - Three (3) If You Are Counting

2007-11-24T20:21:01.905-05:00

Well, I went to NYC again! This time I was going as a newly carded Actor's Equity member. My plan was to audition for Les Miserables on November 16th, but a couple weeks before the trip they made an announcement that the show was going to close on January 6, 2008. They canceled the audition, but I had already made the flight reservation. Oh well! So I decided to audition for whatever was auditioning the time I would be in NYC.

I also planned to watch shows, and then the announcement came a few days before the trip that the stagehands were striking. Just my luck! But the shows that I wanted to see were not affected. I saw Young Frankenstein, The Joy Luck Club, The Ritz, Die Mommie Die!, and Forbidden Broadway: Rude Awakening. I had auditions to go to during the day. I went to the union office early in the morning. However, I failed to write down the floor that the audition was on - which I found out was very important because the entire building is the union's. I decided to forgo the audition and just get coffee and relax. I then waited in line at TKTS (which was not busy) and got tickets to The Joy Luck Club.

The night before my next audition, I decided to check my audition book for music, picture and resume. To my surprise, my pictures and resumes were not there! I just grabbed it leaving Galveston not realizing (until that moment I didn't have it) that I left it in the back of my car. I took out the pics and resumes when I was about to audition for TUTS because I didn't want to have too much in the book when I was auditioning. So, as you can tell, I did not audition. Ah well, no biggie. There will be plenty more auditions.

I did have a chance to meet an online friend in a bar suggested by him before seeing a show Friday night. We had a nice but brief conversation. He asked when I was coming back to NYC, and suggested that we meet again whenever that would be. I don't know when I will be able to make it back, but I hope it is soon.

I'm also planning to go to Chicago, IL in a couple weeks and audition for replacements for the Broadway, National Tour and Las Vegas companies of Mamma Mia. More to come with that.



Much Needed Update

2007-08-20T11:47:57.261-04:00

Well, it's been a long while since I posted something on here. I just finished performing as the Geek in the Houston Premiere of Side Show for Arneson Productions. We had a great time doing the show and the show was a great success.

I am currently in Salem, MA visiting an old friend of mine. He graciously let me stay in his apartment while I auditioned in New York for a regional production of Les Miserables for North Shore Music Theatre. I flew to Boston on Sunday the 12th. Mike picked me up and we got to catch up and eat pizza that night. The next morning I took a train to New York City and stayed with another friend, Mitch. Caught up with Mitch and then met up with my friend from Houston, Michael and got dinner at Chipolte before going to see a friend's show at York Theatre called Triumphant Baby. Michael just did a show with a guy I did summer stock with years ago, Allen. He also saw the show with us along with two other friends of both Michael and Allen.

Tuesday was the day of the audition for Les Miz. As I was walking down the street to the Chelsea Studios where the auditions were being held, I saw Leslie Kritzer and Harvey Fierstein walking the opposite way. They must have been on a break from rehearsing The Catered Affair which is about to open soon. I arrived to be number 43 on the non-equity male audition list. We were told to come back at Noon (after most of the union/equity guys had already auditioned). When we came back they put us in a line by the order you signed up and since they had so many union audition, they had to type out. Unfortunately, I was typed out and what was left was skinny, young, pretty, white guys - with one black guy. Ah well, found out later that that is the director's preference. Ah well, I was going in for a couple more auditions, but I recently found some news that I will reveal later as soon as it is confirmed.

Of course, I had to see shows. I ended up seeing Xanadu the musical, Curtains, Les Miz revivial (again), and Legally Blonde. I enjoyed all of them. I then went back to Boston on Friday. Saturday morning, drove to East Haddam and Chester, CT to see two productions at Goodspeed Opera House. High Button Shoes and Happy Days the musical. I've never seen a production of High Button and this was was good. I didn't really care for the male lead, but the rest of the cast was great. Ken Jennings was in the show which was so great since I just did Urinetown and Side Show.

Happy Days was ok. There was some miscasting of Potsie and Ralph Malph, but it was great to see Joey Sorge and Felicia Finley onstage. The cast performances were great, but the show was not so. There might be some chance if they reworked some things, but who knows. Yesterday, I got to see a tech rehearsal of North Shore's The Three Muskateers and tonight I'll see the run-thru. Then tomorrow morning, I will be off on a plane back to Houston.

Come back soon to hear the big news! As soon as I find out for sure, I will post it on here.



Free Wireless

2007-05-07T22:55:53.651-04:00

I can't wait until finals are over. Every time I go to a coffee place, it's filled with students and I can't find a table to check my email on the internet. My sister told me this morning that there's going to be free wireless for the city of Houston. I can't wait until that is in place.



AIDA Is Finally Closed!

2007-05-07T08:19:55.000-04:00

Well, I haven't been posting lately because there really wasn't much to talk about. Since we were called in 15 before the show started, and our super entrance was about an hour and 15 minutes after that. We pretty much had enough time to put the make-up and costume on and had a bit of time to chat and socialize around the dressing room.

I usually ended up in one of the dancer dressing rooms, because I had worked with Caesar and Nick before. It usually takes me a while to warm up to someone, I guess. Not that I was a recluse, but some days I felt like I was left out of things the other supers were doing after the show.

There was the one night that some of the supers would stay until the end of the show because there was a cast party at Birapiretti's. Since there was about an hour and a half from our last scene to the end of the show,I decided to just say, "hey what's everyone doing tonight?" I got a reply from one of "we're not sure yet". But once they did decide, I didn't get an invite to join. They just all walked out together. So, I ended up reading in the dressing room until the party started.

And then there was the time after our second student matinee, that the same group of 'we're not sure yet' were going to lunch. No invite. I thought it might be that they knew that I was going back to work but they asked a guy by my dressing station, 'oh I know you work, but just to let you know that we're going to lunch' - this was pretty much said over my head to him...and I was the only other person in the room.

I guess I just give off that vibe of not being social or something. Nothing against anyone. They are all friendly and everything. I just don't seem to get invited to anything. I seem to be the forgotten person. Or maybe that I'm quiet and not pulling any focus or attention to myself that people don't notice me.



AIDA Is Finally Open!

2007-04-14T14:21:26.483-04:00

Opening went very well last night. We had even more additions to our costumes and they want more makeup on the body. The whole night seemed to go by really fast. This was the last night for all the supers to stay for curtain call. Now we are able to leave right after we finish our scene. So we'll be out by intermission.

I don't see how other guys get out so quick. I guess that they don't mind going out with heavy Egyptian makeup, but I'd rather get it off before I leave the theatre. Also, last night, one of the super guys, didn't make the curtain call last night. Very weird. He took off his costume after our scene in Act 2 (as most of us do) and we thought he was just going to either watch the show from backstage or just socialize around the dressing rooms. Nope, he didn't come back at all. Ah well, guess we'll find out tomorrow afternoon when we do our matinée.



AIDA Preview

2007-04-14T14:24:00.452-04:00

Last night, I waited in the lobby before the show to give tickets to my sister and brother. When I got backstage, we got makeup notes to make their eye makeup bolder and thicker. The show went well last night. I talked to my brother this morning and he liked everything but the sets. He said they were ok.

Tonight is a night off and we open tomorrow! Pictures coming soon!



AIDA Almost Open

2007-04-10T22:01:02.042-04:00

Well, I just got out of rehearsal for AIDA. The supers were let go early because they were going to run Act 3 & 4 and most of us are not in those. We just ran through the Triumpful March again, but without costumes this time. The supers got some notes before and afterwards. Pretty simple!

Tomorrow is our first rehearsal in front of an audience. We get 2 tickets and so I invited my brother and sister. My sister finally called back to confirm that she was coming. Also, I saw my friend, James, who I did 'Whorehouse' with at COM years ago. He played the Governor. I've seen him from afar, but hadn't had the chance to say hi yet, but we happen to see each other in passing.



AIDA - First Piano Dress

2007-04-08T14:06:39.493-04:00

Well, we survived! My costume wasn't ready until right before I went onstage. Then there was a piece missing. But some costumes weren't ready - so I knew it would get done soon. Then after our Montu/Anubus apart, some of us changed into Ethiopians. And wait till you see the wig. But the wig to top it all was the guy who plays Amonostros. A bit un-politically correct, especially that most of the Ethiopians are white men and women.

The costumes of the chorus are very....unique. I'm guessing that it looks better from the audience. Mostly everyone was having trouble walking with the sandals they gave us. I almost wiped out while making a turn onstage. Luckily, I remained upright. Wigs were falling off of the gymnasts. Ah well, live theatre. There are a lot of people in this opera - so some quality has lessened. We hear there are going to be many changes. Can't wait to see what that will be.