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Quick and dirty on 14-15 auditions, interviews

I’ve been getting a lot of questions since announcing our super-spiffy 2014-15 season at Crimes of the Heart, so it seemed a good idea to just get some information out there to not only help those who want to plan, but also to clear some common misconceptions about how we work.

We’re well aware that there is a certain perception we don’t work with folks not already “in” with the company. This is patently false. We audition every year, and more often than not we end up with some sort of new blood working on just about every project. Just as artists cycle out of the area and away from Jobsite, artists are always cycling in as well. Yes, we are an ensemble company. We’ll never apologize for that. We’re loyal, but we’re also always on the lookout for the best the area has to offer.

So how do you get seen? In years past we’ve had our season general auditions (where we bring in folks we don’t know/haven’t worked with before) prior to the time the area has held the Unified auditions. We were just on a different schedule, most of the time by the date Unifieds rolled around we’d already cast the season. This year that’s not the case.

Theatre Tampa Bay is holding the area’s Unified Auditions on June 7, at HCC Ybor. We will attend those auditions and pass people on to specific show callbacks as we feel make sense. We will also take a look at portfolios for designers and technicians at that time. If there are folks who for whatever reason do not plan on attending the UA, we will put out a call at a later date and schedule a set of appointments for those people.

Members of our ensemble do not need to attend any kind of general audition. We obviously already know your work and your work ethic. We’ll set you into the callbacks that make sense as they come up. If you feel so compelled to lobby for a part or a play I suppose I can’t stop you, but also don’t get offended if I don’t reply to your email or politely change the subject if we’re out in public (you’ll notice I get scarce socially during casting season …).

We expect casting to be ongoing through the summer into the early fall. We expect Ballyhoo and Vampire Lesbians of Sodom to be cast no later than July, and Twelfth Night to be cast no later than August. The rest? That remains to be seen.

As each callback comes, we will be transparent with those being called in as to what roles are open and what aren’t, what we are looking for, and so forth. Each director has the discretion to cast their show in the manner they best see fit, and they share those cast lists with me prior to offers being made. We’re not looking to be sneaky or waste anyone’s time (yours or ours). I can honestly say right now that there are no firm commitments in place for any role in the coming season, though I have passed a few scripts to a few folks that I believe might be the perfect fit here or there. Designers and directors are currently in negotiation with positions still remaining to be filled.

If anyone wants to be seen for any show in the coming season and is not currently already part of the ensemble — they need to be at Unifieds or reach out to us directly and ask to be seen. I’ll be pretty blunt in that a large majority of those I hear saying things like we “only work with …” or “never work with …” are people who have not bothered to audition for us. What employer chases down individuals at a mass level to submit an application? C’mon …

We’re very excited about seeing new faces, about growing our ensemble, and about putting together the absolute best companies of artists for each and every one of our efforts this coming year! More info to come as it is available, I was just looking to get out in front of this thing a little bit.




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