This week at TMD, we’ve gone country. My mama raised me on John Denver, so I had a blast writing this one. We sing musical theatre all the time, so when it’s time to change it up a bit, I always have a blast. Sold, by John Michael Montgomery, is the piece I used for my audition for The Buddy Holly tour, accompanying myself on the accordion. Mama’s never been so proud of her country boy!
I bet you’re jealous of the night I had. I got to sit at my favorite coffee shop, at my favorite table in the back, and watch clips of The Muppets for about 4 hours and call it work! I laughed, I cried, and I had other patrons looking at me wondering what the hell I was up to. But come on, it’s THE MUPPETS!
One of THE BEST moments of my life thus far, and probably for the rest of my life, was singing in The Musical World of Jim Henson at Carnegie Hall. The night before, I was at Carnegie singing in a concert of John Williams music, and all I could think about was waking up to be with the MUPPETS the next morning. Obviously, it was a thrill to have back-to-back concerts at such an iconic venue, but I can’t even remember that much about the movie concert because I kept thinking about those darn puppets. As a kid, I slept better the night before Christmas than I did at 32 years old, the night before the MUPPETS! I will be eternally grateful to Judith Clurman for all of the memorable experiences singing with Essential Voices USA.
So read on, my friends. This week’s The Audition Playlist is all about using music from The MUPPETS (I can’t help typing in caps because I get so excited), Sesame Street, and Fraggle Rock in musical theatre auditions.
This week, I decided to write my article for TMD on the idea of role modeling (thanks to the great pleasure of watching Karen Ziemba work during rehearsals for Broadway Backwards). If you’re constantly told that you look and sound like someone that’s successful in the field, why not use it to your advantage? Sadly, I don’t have a doppelganger, but if I looked and sounded like Malcolm Gets, you’d better believe I’d be singing “And They’re Off” at every audition possible. You’re celebrity lookalike has already paved the way, so why not piggyback a little?
This week I’m starting rehearsals for my next concert, which is an evening of Stephen Schwartz music. Since I’ve got him on the brain, it was the obvious choice for this week’s The Audition Playlist.
I’m really hoping I’ll be able to say hello to him this time. There was one week where I happened to see him three times, but it never felt right to introduce myself. On a Monday, I was heading into a concert at Birdland (The Callaway Sisters in Boom), just as he was leaving the earlier show. On Wednesday, I was walking down 9th Avenue and passed him again. That Friday–and the full version happens to be one of my favorite stories–we happened to be in the rest room at the same time before a performance of Wonderland at the Marquis Theatre. And you’ll be happy to know that we’re both hand-washers, so we were at adjoining sinks. I tried to catch his eye in the mirror but didn’t succeed.
I also had the pleasure of hearing him speak in an intimate master class by The Dramatists Guild. It was a limited seating thing, so in our request for a ticket, all members had to explain why we would benefit from being in attendance. I wrote so enthusiastically that after I hit that send button, I was worried that I wouldn’t be considered because they were afraid I’d try to kidnap him. But luckily, they chose me and I got to hear him speak, sing, and play. And I’ve got pages and pages of notes to show for it!
And it’s his birthday tomorrow. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, STEPHEN!!