When auditions like these come around, where everything just seems to slip away from you, I find it very easy to belittle myself. Why did I let myself get so nervous? Why didn't I go with that other song? Why do people always want extra discussion time debating if I'm good enough to move on, and feel the need to keep me in the room for it? Needless to say, leaving the audition I was in a horrible mood. Luckily, there was coffee (thank god!) and a good friend to distract me. But I still had the long, boring bus ride back to Jersey to sit through, with nothing but time to have my faults stuck on replay. Spiraling into my usual pit of despair, I needed something to pull me out of the "I'm never gonna work again" funk. Thankfully, I had an ace up my sleeve.
I recently saw the revival of Hair! with the new replacement cast. Had a great time, show was fun, yeah yeah yeah...BUT, I hadn't seen the show before, so I didn't realize they asked the audience to come up on stage after the bows. Dressed in my recycled fabric peace sign shirt, and my crazy patch jacket from my college "Hair!" days (of course I'm geeky enough to show up in full regalia) I couldn't resist the opportunity to go belt out a verse of "Let the Sunshine In." It wasn't until we stopped, when the whole building was on its feet, shouting and clapping up a storm, that I realized (as dorky as it is) that I just got to sing and dance on a Broadway stage. Now of course, I know it's not exactly the same thing as actually singing on Broadway. But standing up there, waving my arms around, really letting the music carry me away, everything just felt so...right. I felt completely comfortable. In fact, I felt down right invigorated! And for the first time in my career I thought, "Hey! This IS where I belong. It could be me up here. I will do this someday, I can feel it." And if having my Broadway epiphany wasn't enough, that's when Diana DeGarmo (of American Idol fame, yes, and currently playing Sheila) turned around and said, "Wow. You have the perfect jacket for this!" and proceeded to give me a hug, haha! I went home that night feeling pretty okay with my life. Sometimes things are just grand.
I use this memory as affirmation that I'm on the right track. That I'm not totally insane for attempting this career. And that eventually, all of this B%lls#!t will be worth it and I might just end up in New York after all. I've still got a long way to go, but at least I know that one bad audition isn't gonna make me rethink everything. I can do this. So just wait. I may not know what's in store for me. But I tell ya what, I know I'm gonna be okay anyway.
"Heroes don't succeed because luck is on their side. Heroes succeed because they keep going, even when everything says they will fail."