The hills are alive with the sound of auditions

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Have you ever wished you had a chance to be on stage? Or maybe a chance to show off your singing, dancing or acting skills? A place where you could be yourself and have fun? Then the musical is just what you’re looking for! Auditions are coming up sooner than you would think, so here are some things you need to know beforehand.

The annual winter musical has been around since 1968. Auditions are open to everyone, regardless of stage experience. Director Mrs. Kate Costello is in charge of both the musical and play.

The musical this year is The Sound of Music. This Rodgers and Hammerstein musical is set in Austria in 1938 on the eve of Anschluss (the annexation of Austria by German Nazis), leading towards World War II. This musical tells the story of a young woman, Maria, who takes a job as a governess to a large family while she contemplates whether or not to become a nun.

Throughout the show, she ends up falling in love with the children she is caring for and helps them all in different and special ways. It is a heartfelt story with many great casting opportunities including super fun characters to portray.

“I love the plot, the theme, he characters, the music and the setting,” said Mrs. Costello. She wants her final musical to be one of her favorites.

Last year, it was announced that the musical would be no cut, which meant that everyone was ensured a part in the cast. About a hundred students tried out and about seventy students were in the final cast.

On November 3-6, all students will have the opportunity to audition for the musical. There will be reminders and emails about auditions, so just make sure to look out for those in the upcoming days. Three months later, two separate casts will perform the musical over two weekends in late January and early February.

Many people have never been to any sort of audition before, but they are fairly easy.

“During an audition, you are given a number and each student is called in order to the choir room for a singing tryout that lasts about 60-90 seconds,” said senior Kyle Johnson.  Each person sings in front of only four people.

“While this process is happening, students undertake dance portions,” said Johnson. “Each student will be doing both of these throughout the span of the audition.”

As touched upon, dancing is a big part of the musical as well as singing and acting. During auditions, actors are taught a series of simple dance moves and perform as a group for the dancing portion of the audition.

But what is Mrs. Costello looking for in an audition?

“I’d say that she is looking for confidence and lovely acting,” said sophomore Abigail Varvara, who appeared in The Wizard of Oz last year.

Mrs. Costello herself gave her valuable input, as well.

“We are looking for people who fit the characters we need to cast,” said Mrs. Costello. She mainly evaluates students’ vocal range, volume, expression and movement.

Preparation is important, too. Everyone should feel good, self-assured, and have a song prepared from the musical in case they ask people to sing something the soundtrack. Last year for auditions, everyone was given a song to sing from The Wizard of Oz, so it would be wise to go over the musical’s score beforehand.

“Once you are done with your audition, Mrs. Costello will decide that night, and she will post the callback list the next day,” said Johnson.

“If they are called back for a part they will sing and read lines in front of more people,” said Mrs. Costello. “People called back for dancing parts will learn more complex steps at the call back workshop.”

Still feeling nervous or thinking this is too intimidating?

There is no need to be! Everybody is always nervous before auditions, and nerves are not necessarily a bad thing.

“That means you care about what you are doing,” said Mrs. Costello.

The musical has a welcoming, fun and supporting atmosphere from other students who are auditioning as well as the faculty in charge.

After auditions and callbacks are over, the cast lists will be posted online and everyone will find out what part they have received. Scripts are distributed and the schedule is created. Rehearsals are at the same time as winter sports, so auditioning for the lead role and trying out for varsity basketball is not very realistic. Rehearsals are normally multiple days a week, but not everyone is required to attend every rehearsal depending on their role.

Hope to see you there!

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  • Photo by Cassie Limberakis

  • Photo by Cassie Limberakis

  • Photo by Cassie Limberakis

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