Posts Tagged ‘The Clinic’

A Birdie In The Clinic In The Moonlight

Today, I took a huge step (IMHO) in my quest for professional theatrical experience.  I had my first full-fledged, prepare a monologue audition for a paying gig.  Moonlight Productions is a production company in my neck of the woods owned and operated by a friend of mine whom I met a few years ago through the WCCT.  The film he is casting for is a cinematic version of a one act play that was written by a remarkably talented pal of mine in which yours truly had a rather significant part.  This fact in no way guarantees me a role in the movie as I have no idea the experience and calibre of the other auditioners.  BUT I AM REALLLLY EXCITED!

Quite a process.  This is the first time in 8 years that I have needed to prepare a monologue.  In my years in community theatre, most of the auditions have been cold readings from the script or singing a song from the musical (if that is the case).  I chose to perform a monologue given by Mr. Harry Macafee from Bye Bye Birdie.  Hey, it worked 8 years ago when I was cast as Motel in Fiddler on the Roof!  Note to self:  time to search out monologue books!

Over the last few weeks while memorizing lines for the staged production of The Hound of the Baskervilles in which I am playing Barrymore, I have been polishing the dust off the old monologue I first encountered while assisting the director of a high school production of Birdie.  Happily enough, it came back rather smoothly.

The last few days, I have been trying to figure out what to wear.  I could have gone with the costume I wore in the stage version of The Clinic.  It might have worked since the monologue takes place at the breakfast table after Harry has had a rather sleepless night after (among other things) outside his window three harpies shrieked “We Love You Conrad” 4,732 times.  However, I decided on a nice dress shirt, slacks, and my Looney Tunes necktie.

I arrived at the audition site my normal 15-20 minutes early and signed in at 9:11 AM.  At about 9:25, the producer came into the lounge and told me (I was the first to arrive) that they would soon be ready.  The space was really small.  After having my mug shot taken, I announced to the video camera my name and monologue I had chosen.  For my first time auditioning for a camera, I thought it went exceptionally well.  I did notice one teeny-weeney mistake but I plowed right along as if nothing had gone amiss.

When I got home before I had to report to my day job, I had a message on my Facebook page:

First audition was very good, waiting on other actors to arrive! Good luck today everyone!

Thanks Jay!  I hope this film makes your company grow and move forward!

And not to worry, Mare… my involvement (when it is made known) will in no way impede upon my performance in October 😉

Something Creaky This Way Comes

Tonight was opening night for You Have the Right to Remain Dead and what an opening  it was.   For a Friday night during football season with many homecoming games going on, I thought the crowd was a decent size and it is very difficult to fill every seat in the venue.  I still cannot say enough how gorgeous and amazing it is to be on the jewel of a stage.  Both times I have been in shows at the Huber I have been spoiled.

I thought that among the best moments were some of the sound effects.  There are many great effects that heighten the atmosphere of the show and tonight we had the heater going.  Not to worry, because I was for a bit.  Everyone I talked to in the audience thought the noise was part of the show… including a few friends who had a great time playing “whodunit.”  The entire audience seemed to get into the participation act but it could have started a bit sooner.  And we were promised that the noise from the heater would be addressed.

Following the show while shedding my costume and persona of Harnell Chesterton, I learned that one of my castmates is a Red Sox fan (I won’t hold that against him).  My Yankee coat was hanging on a hangar and Alex noticed it and we each offered our condolences to each other.  By the way, the Bombers are up 2-0 in the ALDS after beating the Twins 4-3 in 11 innings.

And I think I have made a new friend who has found out about my sterling personality.  the director warned me to watch myself or she would find something to throw at me during the show.  What is it that I do… honestly?

I think I have found a new favorite show that will be really hard to leave when Sunday’s matinee is over.  I think this will be number 3 replacing Rooster and right behind Donnie and “you-know-who.”

Lets see… 14 hours 52 minutes to go….and counting.

Here There Be Trekkers

Tonight was our first dress rehearsal complete with newspaper reviewer and minus one key character from the production… UGH!  I dunno… week of opening with 4 rehearsals to go and one of the major cast members is at a meeting but I guess it must have been important.  So we had a fill-in read lines from the audience.  The reviewer for the Crescent is very personable and has been exceptionally favorable in a few of the WCCT shows he has critiqued and the first show I was in with the Village Players.  He even quoted a line from a review of one of my characters: “A gleefully unrepentent psycho” or something like that.  He must have remembered seeing Grease?

Before we began, the subject of Star Trek: The Motion Picture was addressed by Mr. Greer.  Particularly, the Enterprise‘s fly over, around, and into the behemoth ship that took what seems an eternity to sit through.  We then focused on the number of Trek fans in the cast of which there are many.  The youngest female in the cast is named Katherine Janeway after the first female character to lead a Star Trek television series as captain of the U.S.S. Voyager.  Another has a husband who has thousands of Trek books. I used to read the novels from time to time but have since lost track unless there is a really special one.

A third really got my interest soaring.  It seems that she is a relative of DeForest Kelley (R.I.P) who played my personal favorite character of all Trekdom: the inscrutable, crusty, curmudgeonly Dr. Leonard H. “Bones” McCoy.  She, however, did not inherit the searing blue “Kelley eyes” as her brother had.

Ok… back to the rehearsal.  I think that with the absence of one of our actors, it went awfully well.  Hopefully, this will be the LAST time we are minus a performer.  But how fun was that to discover something new about so many in our small cast?  Hopefully, our kindly reviewer does not print TOO much about the murder mystery in his article… no spoilers.  As soon as I see it, I will make note of it in another post.

3 Days, 22 Hours and counting…

A Wonderful Weekend… Until….

Beautiful weather, fun times with the best of friends, and a bit of work (just a bit) all added up to a fun weekend AND THEN…UGH!  Older brothers can be so trying sometimes (I’m sure the same can be said for younger siblings as well). Fantastic news to start off with: We managed to finish filming The Clinic.  Hopefully, it can be put together well enough to submit for consideration by the deadline.  W have lots of fun things being planned after the final product comes to fruition. The process seemed to be much smoother than last week.  I must say that I am glad we finished when we did.  I think “Donnie” was just about out of energy.  And that, my friend says A LOT.

Saturday night, I once again had the extreme thrill and privilege to assist my  friend in setting up for his totally mind-blowing demonstration of mentalism in Mind Games.  Taylhis and I helped by watching him practice some of his routine.  Thankfully, very little of it was done fully so as not to ruin the performance.  I was asked to provide a dollar bill for a bit and at the end I had no idea what was supposed to have happened, but that is as it was supposed to be until the show.

I was encouraged to ask some of my family to attend the performance which I did and told them that “Upon pain of death” they would attend.  Four of them did… the rest better watch themselves.  Little Sydney really seemed to enjoy herself.  She was on the edge of her seat the whole time, totally mesmerized by the show with her mouth and eyes wide open.  Quite a change from the fright she got from Chris dressed as The Nerd.  Today, I asked if she was still scared of him.  She just laughed and shook her head, no.  Thank goodness.

Later this afternoon, while at my big brother’s house entertaining the kids with my sister and cousin, I noticed that Jeff was nowhere to be found.  Moments later, Kim told me in confidence (the kids were right there) that he went to the ER WITH CHEST PAINS… BY HIMSELF!!!  Given his history, I figured that it would be a long night, so I volunteered to stay with the three kids until their mother could be reached.  When he finally called, it was decided that he would be admitted for the night… just to be safe.  Because their mother could not be reached, I said that I would stay at the house and get the kids ready for school tomorrow.  Still did nothing to calm my nerves that he once again failed to say anything…. AHHHHHHHH!

Well… guess I will get cozy and see if the Yanks can’t take one from the Red Stockings.

Shedding Some Moonlight On The Clinic

Saturday was the day that the theatre collaborated with Moonlight Productions to make the movie version of one our plays from a few years ago.  This is the first time I have been involved in such an endeavor but have sat through a few acting classes in which we discussed the differences between live theatre and film.  Going in, I knew that there was going to be stops, starts, and the possibiility of some jumping around in the script.  I actually thought it quite ambitious to think that we could shoot the film in one day.

Some of the actors from the stage version of The Clinic could not make the filming; however, the talent that was recruited assumed the roles quite nicely.

When I had posted about a friend who is going to be making her feature film debut,  I had forgotten about the possibility of filming The Clinic for Jay’s production company.  Hopefully, this will help him to get a film submitted to film festivals to help his company grow.  Chris has already gotten the screenplay, which was adapted from his stage play, submitted to a festival in Arizona.  However, the deadline for film submission is the end of April.

I actually felt for the people who had to sit there and watch those in scenes and await their turn.  While I was in the scenes that were shot, most of my dialogue and craziness have yet to be shot.  Most of the cast agreed that we should have had time to rehearse prior to filming.  I would agree with that sentiment but it was difficult enough to find a time to meet that fit everyone’s busy schedules.  I, for one, had a great time participating in a new medium.  I have been on film before but during live broadcasts so this was something entirely new but very exciting.  Chris was very humorous in his role as director using the clapper and forgetting to say “cut” when he needed to stop the scene (Scene C3; Take 259, etc.  HEHE)  I’m sure with the multiple cameras running, there will be plenty to have on a blooper reel.  I just hope that the film is good enough to help get Jay’s name out there.  Wrapping up next Saturday.  Hopefully, we all can look over the script and become more familiar with it and get through smoothly but I am confident that it will BE GREAT!!!

Loaded Questions

Last night, after doing a nine hour shift in the salt mines, I went to a WAY long overdue game night.  We even had a new very fun couple participate.  For some reason, they decided to play one of my favorite games without yours truly.  Why was that?  I a no understand.  I did arrive in time to join in another game in which you show your knowledge of the people participating around you.  One of the questions asked of everyone was “What is the most embarrassing thing that you own?”  I won’t go into detail on some of the other answers, but I received a pair of Spongebob Squarepants pajama pants from my nephew a few years ago.  Not necessarily my most embarrassing thing, but that is all I could come up with at the time.  I even wore them in my performance as a rather disturbed patient in The Clinic a couple of seasons ago.  Ironically, some of the other players had recently watched a recording of the show so my response was easily guessed.  I was pleasantly impressed with the guesses I made on my question “What one thing would you take to a party?”  I matched 4 responses to the correct people… not tooo bad… I know half of them well.  So… anyone own any mentionable items they may wish not to own… unlike one of the responses at the game table?

Birthday Wishes To The Best

Since he so kindly listed several of us in a post proclaiming us as THE BEST, I thought it only fitting to return the favor.  I’m sure I have said most of this in previous entries, but it bears repeating.  He is just the best director, co-actor, playwright (well the only one I have known personally… but he is a darn fine one), source of encouragement, and most of all, friend that anyone could ever ask for.  It is really astonishing that I have known him for only about two years but it seems like forever (and I mean that in the best possible sense).  I met him at auditions for our theatre’s production of Grease and I remember the first thing he said to me.  “I know you from somewhere.”  I was working at Wal-Mart at the time.  “That’s it.”

During the course of the show’s run, he made a point of asking if I was going to audition for the next show, The Odd Couple.  I really was not sure because I had not done a non-musical show in years.  It really did not take long to decide after I spoke with my other source of encouragement that very night about it.  She told me that if I did not she would hunt me down and kick my posterior (not that word but I try to run a family-friendly blog here).  Anyway, I was cast in the role of Vinnie to my great satisfaction and I was told by the actor who played Felix that I stole some of his thunder.  And my involvement with the theatre only increased.

Chris has just been so great to work with through his excellent direction and professionalism.  I have been privileged to be cast in two shows that he has written himself: The Clinic and Idol Night at the Karaoke Place (the second one…. which I know some people get tired of hearing me go on about as well as allowing  our Liswathistani  friend contribute to this blog for time to time).  As well as his direction and roles in School House Rock which was memorable for several things not the least for it being my first lead part ever.  I know it sounds silly but every time I have been in a show and Chris and his wife are not involved, it is like there is something missing (something I guess I need to get away from).

Much more important is his role as a great husband, father, and friend.  His family has always come first and he is not afraid to share time together with his family and his friends on our weekly game nights.  After all, he is a big kid at heart himself.  So…. Happy Birthday, my friend and may you have many more.
.. whatever age you may be.

What Is Your Favorite Restroom?

Sometimes it is very difficult to find the moment when you know that a show is going to be great (at times, it may seem that the moment never comes). For two shows I was very proud to be a part of the moment arrived quickly. The first time I held up four fingers and cackled for my audition for The Clinic, I knew that Donnie would be a great part (whoever got it 🙂 ). For Idol Night it came when I read aloud the first line spoken by Morat (“HELLO EVERY PEOPLE!!!!”). Tonight, sitting at the theatre reading through lines for Little Women, I thought this is going to be good. We not only read through the first act, but the director kept going back and asking the cast questions to make them analyze the character and scene they were reading. Who is your character? What is he/she trying to say and do? How is he/she saying it… is he confident or shy? Much more fun and productive to analyze as a group instead of alone.

Before we got into all of that, we had an ice breaker of introducing ourselves. Name, part, past experience, and favorite restroom. OK….. so it was not favorite restroom but the director changed it to such after someone misheard him. Guess who?!

My name is….. I will be playing Braxton Prendergast, the evil aristocratic stock villain in Jo’s stories. My favorite experience on stage was portraying Morat Notboratnichkov in Idol Night at the Karaoke Place. My favorite restroom is the ladies room at Ohio Stadium (long story).

The director made it a point to comment that the video is still on youtube…. (I still have yet to learn how to embed videos on my posts as well as other things). So….You a know Morat. It will be a year on Sunday May 11, which ironically enough, I just learned is Morat’s birthday.

Later, we were asked what our own personal goal for the show is. I said to wear either a hoop skirt as some of the cast do or pumpkin pants which I was told I would be doing.

So, it should be another enjoyable month and few days. Aren’t they all though?

Another Office Party

This evening, I watched the final three episodes of the premiere season of The Clinic (ooopssss…. The Office). I am now absolutely hooked and need to seek out the second and third seasons before April 10 (although I am sure that I will not be able to watch them all.. unless I have an Office party :0). The first segment found Jim jokingly forming an “Alliance” with Dwight in order to investigate the downsizing rumor surrounding the Scranton, PA branch of Dunder-Mifflin. Dwight ends up being taped inside a shipping box to spy on other employees. Hilarious!!!!

The second episode found Michael and the staff taking on the warehouse workers in a “friendly?” game of basketball. Each side places a small bet on the outcome. Michael chooses the players that he thinks will defeat the other team in typical stereotypical fashion and hilarity ensues.

In the final episode of season one, an attractive new saleswoman (Amy Adams) enters the office to sell purses. Michael, Dwight (something strange about that one), and Jim each try to win her affections. Pam’s fiance Roy (David Denman) also makes it known that he finds the new arrival very fetching.

After the final segment, I found myself wanting more. I was hoping to hear that Pam finally dumped her jerk of a fiance (after a three year engagement) and moved on to Jim. Of course, just watching the first season it seemed like a forgone conclusion. Who would be the victim(s) of downsizing? A few of these questions were answered by those who know, but I do want to catch up eventually.

I just cannot believe that I have not discovered this hilarious comedy full of great characters, a fantastic ensemble, and brilliant creative staff before now. I also like the references to other series some of which are not part of NBC’s lineup of shows (Survivor to name one).

Please forgive my allusion to The Clinic at the beginning of the post. A wonderful one-act play which I was part of in January 2007).