Ok, so I didn’t get the role I was hoping for, but I did get a place in the ensemble with a few bit roles, which I happily accepted. This won’t be the first time I’ve performed in the ensemble, but it is the first time in a long time. This will require a few mental adjustments. I’m going to flesh it out here in cyber-print.
Pros to being in the ensemble:
- Very few lines to memorize
- Opportunity to focus on the physical aspects of acting, singing, dancing without being bothered by all those pesky lines…he he…meh
- It’s like getting to attend the party without having to be the host…woo hoo!
- Get to play multiple characters. I might be “attractive middle-aged man on street” in the first act and “attractive middle-aged bartender” in the second. 😉
- I still get to benefit from direction from a talented pro actor/director and a talented pro choreographer.
- Might pick up an understudy role over the course of rehearsal
- Get to meet all kinds of cool people
- It’s an opportunity to show the director that I can behave and perform like a pro. He may be more apt to cast me in a larger role next time.
Frame of mind I want to be in for this show:
- Supportive and encouraging – the ultimate team player
I’ve played leading and supporting roles in most of the shows I’ve performed with, and the people I’ve appreciated most are the ones that are everybody’s cheerleader, never complaining, always encouraging, willing to do whatever they are asked to do.
- Meticulous with rehearsal habits
-Arrive early and prepared (pencil, script, score in hand, having rehearsed lines, music, steps, and blocking at home)
-Take notes on all direction given for my role, my understudy role, the ensemble, and anyone I interact with on stage.
-Be quiet and ready for direction
- Being a part of the platform that helps the leads shine and (the whole show for that matter)
Well done ensemble work might not be noticed, but poorly done ensemble work sure might be. Every member of an ensemble has the responsibility of setting the human backdrop and context for the main characters. We act and react. We bring our own individual characterization. And when in group numbers, we move/dance/sing with unity, vitality and precision.
- Being one of the few mature, baritones in the the chorus, my singing will add strength and power to the sound. A solid chorus sound can steal the show. I have 20 years of experience with ensemble/chorus singing and directing and have a lot to offer.
- Gonna have my damn fun. I love being in a show, and I’d rather be in the ensemble than not in the show at all. I love every aspect from learning the music, the choreography, the acting, the makeup, the costumes, the late night rehearsing, the comradery, the performing, and the cast party. YAY!!!!
The worst thing I could do is play sour grapes about not getting the role I wanted. There will be moments when I’ll think, “Gee wiz! I could have done better than this guy,” but most likely, the director made the right choice, and I’ll see exactly why. And maybe I’ll even learn something from watching him…not maybe, definitely.