Remember how I lost a role that I loved last week? ( It kinda blew chunks for those just tuning in.)
Today I had a “Close door, open window” moment.
I got a phone call from the very sweet assistant director who held my hand through the whole ordeal. She told me that she was participating in the summer stock season of an adorable lakeside theater about an hour away from my house and asked if I would have any interest in splitting a role with her because she is so busy she can’t commit to every performance over three months.
I have always wanted to work in this particular theater. It’s small (About 300 seats) and it is a hand built log theater that a family founded about 40 years ago. I love it. I always have, since I was a kid. I just never really thought I could work it into my schedule or pay that much for gas. However, since I am splitting the performances, it will be a manageable 15 shows and since I’m getting paid, the gas point is moot.
The role is in Thoroughly Modern Millie as the eccentric diva, Muzzy (Typecasting, anyone?). Problems? She is in her late 40′s, and is basically supposed to be a bigger diva than Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin combined. You can check out the big number I’ll be singing if you care to. This is a crappy recording, but the actress is a pretty damn good Muzzy (Still a bit young, though.)
A real show stopper, no?
I can’t help but be a little nervous. I know that I am in my early 30′s and am a thin-ish white opera singer that lives in a house built by dairy hands in their spare time, but given that I live in a totally homogenized section of the country, you are doing awesome if you can find a female that isn’t blond, blue eyed and dainty featured.
Even though I was fairly confident I would be cast due to the strong recommendation of my friend, the people in charge still had to hear me in person, so last night I stopped by the director and producer’s house and sang. The role is heavy, jazzy, low and sultry, so I sang few stanzas of a jazzed up version of “Summertime” that I sing about an octave and a half down from the original key because that is the only remotely appropriate styled song I knew. The role uses the belt technique, which is usually harder for me, but the key is so dang low (my comfort zone) that I have little to no issues.
The producer was lovely. She recognized me from The King and I and she said, “I would be standing back stage and this glorious presence and VOICE would glide by.” (FYI, hearing that is much better for your psyche than auditioning when you know that the person doesn’t really dig your sound. Just so you know.)
They must have liked it because I got the call just now that the role is mine and my first rehearsal is tonight.
Even though in so many ways, I am not right for the role, I am really excited because it is TOTALLY different from classical or the musical theater that I usually do. I will get to channel my inner bluesy lounge singer and I will also have something to drag my ass out of the house and work at.
I have never seen the movie, heard the music before yesterday, nada. The cast has already been in rehearsals for almost 8 weeks. My opening performance is June 19th, which means that I have about a month to get this role down.
That is not a long time, people.
Wish me luck. (Don’t tell me to “Break a leg”. With my luck, Karma would probably translate that literally)