It’s casting season once again at Artistree and as I’m in the midst of casting four shows in two weeks, I have a few things to say on the subject. Casting is one of the most wonderful and most horrible parts of my job. The gleeful emails make me smile and the tough emails bring me to tears. I have said this before–in class, in the blog, in the studio–casting is a like putting together a puzzle. And the puzzle only fits together with pieces you are given–essentially, the members of the cast. A different puzzle is going to have different pieces in any given production. But for this moment in time, the creative team has the job of trying to make these particular pieces (actors) fit together.
I love taking chances and risks in casting. And I always cast the actor over the singer. But I also love finding that spark in an actor’s audition. Something that makes them stand out–(especially after you’ve heard thirteen renditions of “Tomorrow” back to back.)
In the end, I would say to every parent and child to trust the process. I say those words, (as many of you know) to my students before every performance. But I would encourage you to think about that phrase from the first audition. Trust that you or your child is being put exactly where they are supposed to be at THIS moment. And throughout the process, can you make your mantra, “what can I learn from this?” If you’re given an ensemble role, what else can you learn when you’re not working? Can you study the performances or the direction being given? Can you tell when an actor is actually TAKING direction? So much is to be learned by watching the process–sometimes even more than the doing.
Think about this as the casting for your show is released. Take a moment to breathe before you approach your creative team and see if you can trust the process that is underway. I assure you, taking that challenge, will be the greatest learning experience of all.