Communication is Key

freeimage-18711456-webThey say in every relationship, communication is key. This doesn’t just go for romantic relationships. It applies to friendships and, as I’m learning, business relationships as well.

The other day, I received a message inviting me to audition for a music video. Unfortunately, I was scheduled to work during the time the CD requested me, but I noticed on the audition breakdown that they were holding auditions the following day as well. It just so happened that I had the day off of work, woo-hoo! I immediately emailed the CD letting him know that I would be unable to make the original audition time, but I could come in the following day before 5:00 PM. I was very specific in my email and made sure to include the day and date I was asking for. I received an email back saying “Anytime before 3.” Great! That works! I said I can come in before 5:00 PM and he said just come in any time before 3. I’ll be there!

I decided not to respond to the message because it was so short that it made me feel like this CD was a bit pressed for time. I felt like if I replied to his short message I would be bothering him and I didn’t want to be annoying.

I drove all the way down to Hollywood for the audition, drove around the block 4 times trying to find parking and finally made it to the studio. It was pretty quiet and empty and no one was at the front desk. Finally, a girl came out and asked if I had a question. I told her what I was there for and she said to have a seat because they were probably starting in an hour. Yikes. They didn’t give me a start time so I was surprised to hear that.

After a while, I started panicking a bit. I started to wonder if it was possible for the CD to be so busy that he didn’t quite read my entire email. What if he saw that I couldn’t make the time and just said “Anytime before 3” meaning that first day…

Well, that is in fact what he meant. About thirty minutes in, another girl came out and asked me what I was there for. She took some time to look into it and finally told me that the audition was actually the day before until 3.

So, what I gather happened is that the CD got my email, read the subject line and realized I was requesting an alternate audition time. His reply of “Anytime before 3” was just telling me that the time didn’t really matter and I should come by when I could. If I had responded to his message with something like, “Great! I’ll see you on Tuesday, 1/21 around 1:00PM,” perhaps he would have noticed we got our wires crossed.

After I realized my mistake, I immediately sent a message apologizing for not making it to the audition. I don’t expect a response from it, but I wanted to cover my bases.

The moral of the story is: COMMUNICATE! Had I just sent a quick email back, I could have avoided a ton of hassle for nothing. I mean, y’all, I curled my hair and everything. Next time I’ll focus more on clarity of email rather than degree of annoyance.

My 2014 Resolution

2014I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions, but this year I feel like I need to. After taking a whole year to settle into the L.A. lifestyle, get my apartment straight and start making back all that money I spent, it’s time to focus on why I’m here. So, with that said, my 2014 resolution is…

Go to every single audition.

That’s it! Easy, right? Well, not always. Part of this resolution includes submitting myself for more projects whether they are paid or not. It might sound crazy since some of those projects will force me to take time off of work, but that’s thinking too far ahead. All I’m concerned with is the audition part of it. Why? Simply put, practice makes perfect.

I know that putting myself on tape and brushing up on my cold reading skills are great ways to stay on top of my game. The thing is, it’s hard to do this “just because” when I know that no one will ever see what I’ve done and I won’t get any real feedback.

My goal with this resolution is to get so comfortable going to auditions that I’m ready at a moment’s notice. There are actually a few steps that I go through to get ready outside of just memorizing and preparing sides. I need to have my resume and headshot prepared. I need to have my outfit picked out and ready to go. I need to decide if I’m straightening my hair and set aside the painful hour of time all that mess will take. Hopefully, with practice, I’ll be able to quickly and efficiently prepare for auditions and go in with extreme confidence.

In my first year in L.A., I felt myself weaseling out of auditions that I really should have gone to. I would make excuses like, “I’m not really right for that part.” or “Well, it doesn’t pay enough for me to take time off of work so I won’t even bother.” Now, I’m not saying I’m going to just submit myself for some random free project that requires full nudity and beat myself up when I don’t make that audition. I just don’t want to allow myself to make excuses. I want to start looking at every audition as an opportunity to, at the very least, be an actor that day.

Okay, so, stipulations. There will be some instances when my work schedule will get in the way. I’m vowing to make every effort to get rid of or switch my shift to ensure I make the audition. If, however, I am unable to do that, then it’ll have to come down to a judgment call. Obviously, if Joss Whedon wants to see me during my scheduled lunch shift, I’m bailing on work and dealing with the consequences later. The bottom line is I have to hang on to my “day job” for now and I won’t compromise that job for an audition to act in a scene for a college directing class. That’s not to say I won’t go the same audition if it’s my day off. I’m just going to be selective is all.

So, there you have it friends! My 2014 resolution! I’ll keep everyone updated of course as the year goes on. Has anyone else out there made a resolution this year?