Bitching Post

It's ok to get it off your chest.

  • NAB- Cover Letter 08/18/2017  11:59am

    What should you include in a cover letter for an agency submission?

    Thanks!!

    Dreamer18

    Here's a rough template that works for when I got my agent, and for nearly every submission I do, but make it your own:

    Hello Agent's Name!

    I hope this message/note/letter finds you well! My name is Dreamer and would love to sit down with you and talk about legit/commercial representation. Andrew Lloyd Webber (or whatever connection you have) thought we'd be a good fit!

    I'm AEA/SAG/whatever you are, with a BFA in Something from Amazing University. I've recently been seen as Emily in "Our Town" at Arkansas Rep and Mrs. Lovett in "Sweeney Todd" at 5th Avenue, and I am currently in a reading of a new musical based on the life of Steven Tyler, written by Pasek and Paul.

    I've included my headshot and resume in this mailing for your convenience. I hope we have the chance to meet soon! Thanks for your consideration, and I look forward to hearing from you.

    All the best,

    Dreamer

    sosayethi 08/18/2017  5:13pm

    Thank you so much!!

    Dreamer18 08/18/2017  10:08pm

    I wouldn't say "My name is". They can see it from your signature. But do address them by first name to keep it personal. Instead get straight to the important parts. Any referral you have list that first. List your credits if they are impressive. Your type (briefly) is good. Your training - not a resume here. They can look at your resume if they want - so don't just regurgitate your resume. If there is a show you are currently in or something upcoming let them know. And add personality to it. Good luck!

    JackSkellington 08/19/2017  8:16pm

    I think what you're both saying is too long. Everyone knows what you want, an appointment, and they can look at your resume if there is something/someone really worthy of note. If you're getting a recommendation from someone I generally put it in the subject line with this cover letter:

    "Hi there!!

    *Insert talented friend's name here* is a close friend, and they said you might be casting some future productions, so I figured I'd send over my materials in case there might be any opportunities available. Attached is my headshot, resume, and a link to my musical theatre reel. Please let me know if you need anything else? Thank you so much! :)

    Musical Theatre Reel:
    *link here*"

    Fatniss_Neverlean 08/19/2017  10:02pm

    I guess you already told your really talented close friend to refer you? Not being snarky, but I have a lot of talented friends but I can't image throwing out their name without a thumbs up.

    whattheheck 08/20/2017  5:23pm

    Well yes. Definitely get their permission before using their name.

    Fatniss_Neverlean 08/20/2017  10:44pm
  • NAB: tricky rehearsal question 08/18/2017  2:15pm

    What do you guys do when you're in a rehearsal process and you don't feel like you're getting what you need from another actor? Like, for a really clear cut example, you have a line like "Stop yelling!" but... your scene partner isn't yelling.

    My impulse is to bring it up with the director, but I'm not sure how to go about doing that, especially because that conversation is likely to happen in front of the other actor in question while you're rehearsing that scene. Any tips for how to bring it up tactfully?

    Or am I being totally presumptuous and this is why people hate actors?

    actoria

    I would involve your stage manager privately, if you think the other actor will witness a question to the director. Possibly, you can ask the stage manager when they're taking line notes to help you double check the moment for line and justification clarity, and see if they see what you see. Otherwise, if that's too roundabout, you'll have to phrase it to the director in a way that says, "I'm having trouble finding the proper impulse to say this. Any suggestions?" Good luck!

    sosayethi 08/18/2017  3:06pm

    I personally feel like you should just do your best work and leave it up to the director. If the "stop yelling" moment is really bothering you, then perhaps you need to change your tactics in the scene and give the other actor no choice but to actually yell at you?
    Just an opinion, but I don't think an actor should ever give another actor notes, even if it is through a stage manager. If it gets back to the other actor, it could harm your onstage chemistry even further. It is the job of the director to direct, but it is up to you to do everything in your power to get your scene partner to give you what you need through your objective and the tactics that you use to achieve it.

    cL1 08/18/2017  3:27pm

    I'm sorry I misread, and now realize you say "stop yelling"...in that case maybe try changing your tactics and delivering that line next time in a completely different way then you usually do...that may throw your partner off and make them rethink THEIR tactics and that line in the future.....it is SO tricky, as your OP stated!!! good luck

    cL1 08/18/2017  3:31pm

    You can never control what the other actor is going to do, but just react off what their giving you.

    I've heard in plenty of conversations depending on the characters where someone said "stop yelling" and the other person wasn't really yelling. Conversations between parents and bratty teenagers comes to mind.

    You should never try to control what you think the other actor should or shouldn't do, no matter what its going to effect the authenticity of the scene. Just go with it, you could find some real comedic gold there if you truly dig!

    Stcray 08/18/2017  4:15pm

    Just to be clear, the example I gave is totally hypothetical (and not as clear cut as I thought it was, I guess), but everything everyone's said so far has been really helpful food for thought.

    actoria 08/18/2017  4:54pm

    I see no harm in pulling the director aside before or after rehearsal and bringing it up. I mean, your job is to tell the story, and it doesn't seem like you are. I think it all depends how you ask the question. Just make sure it seems like you're confused - like, "i'm suppose to say "stop yelling," but I don't no one is yelling.."

    Smactor 08/19/2017  1:14am

    You dont know where the other actor is in his or her process. Maybe your scene partber haant found that moment yet or,the path to it. Give it time. Help your scene partner get there by adjusting the way you yourself play the scene, if need be. You can even ask your scene partner, generally, how they feel the scene is going and ask if they need anything from you to get it to where they want it, thus opening up a dialogue. Good luck!

    dudeactor 08/19/2017  8:28am

    Do people really think it's out of line to pull the actor aside after rehearsal maybe on the way out of the theater and say "you know, I have this line telling you to stop yelling but I'm thinking maybe I haven't given you much reason to yell in the lead-up to that line, is there anything I can do to help that moment escalate?" I always feel like bringing in another person, especially a person of leadership, makes it feel like a big deal when it could be a simple answer like "I actually have a recording coming up and I'm trying to minimize yelling till after that's done". It might be a chance for the two of you to share a casual moment outside of the work environment.

    FierceConversations 08/19/2017  10:26am

    I would just bring it up in front of everyone after finishing a work session of the scene or after a run through. Just be like hey I have a line where I say stop yelling, is "insert character or actor name here" not going to yell? That way the director can say yes or no and then you move on. Theatre is collaborative. If you pose the question as making sure that everyone is on the same page but not making a judgement on where that page lands you should be fine.

    Jamlando 08/20/2017  4:49pm

    I don't think I would bring it up in front of everyone. That could embarrass or make the actor you're talking about feel uncomfortable. And I don't think you want to do that. It's the director's job to see those things and adjust. And like someone else said, maybe the actor isn't fully there yet. If you're in the rehearsal process, it's not a performance and all the actors are trying to find their way. If you're practically opening and they are still doing that, then you might find a way to bring it up.

    But as someone else also pointed out, does the person have to be yelling to make that line work? No. People can perceive a raise in tone as yelling. Or someone just getting on them as yelling. I know you used this an example. But it doesn't have always have to be the cliche.

    filmandtheatreactress 08/20/2017  5:06pm

    I know it's an unpopular opinion but I think in the best rooms I've been in the work comes first and everyone's ego comes second. If the actor in the above example has made a choice not to yell than they can say no I'm not going to yell. If the director is on board with that choice then that becomes the choice for the moment. If the actor hasn't considered the next line because they are caught up in their own process or whatever, then they are made aware of it. It's not like an actor does their work in secret and then has total ownership of what they do. It's why we rehearse. Of course you can't tell another actor what to do but I think everyone should get to be on the same page about what choice is being made.

    Jamlando 08/20/2017  5:13pm

    I understand what you're saying. But I don't think it's ego as much as it comes across as "this is how you should say your line." Or "this is the choice you need to make." Which, like you said, isn't our job. And there's a director there. That should be their job to make sure things are working. I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think the obvious choice is always the best one.

    filmandtheatreactress 08/20/2017  10:19pm
  • NAB - Belinda King 08/19/2017  10:55pm

    There is no information on Belinda King or Seabourn Cruise Line in Gig & Tell. Has anyone worked for them or auditioned for them that don't mind sharing their experience?

    Thanks!

    ZeroTalent

    Worked for them earlier this year. Happy to answer any questions you may have-- sweetcsh@aol.com :)

    sweetcsh 08/20/2017  8:58pm
  • NAB Musicals Tonight EPA 08/20/2017  7:19pm

    Hey guys!

    I have an appointment for the Musicals Tonight EPA on Friday morning, but afternoon would be better for me. Anyone out there interested in coordinating a switch?

    🐙
  • NAB singing from the show @ an EPA 08/18/2017  10:32pm

    Apologies if this has been covered before, but do people avoid singing from the show at an EPA? It happens that one of my go-to audition cuts is from a leading character of a musical that's having EPA's soon. I know that as a non-eq the chances of me being under actual consideration for a leading role at an equity house are slim to non to negative, so I just don't want to give the impression I'm going in for the lead or nothing - on the contrary, I'd be honored to play second tree from the left in the back row etc. So do I sing the song that's precisely my type and showcases my voice really well and I love singing which just happens to be from the show, or better to steer clear completely? Does that answer change if I go to the ECC? Thanks, guys!!

    FierceConversations

    Unless it specifically says not to in the notice, I don't think there is anything wrong with it.

    ThisCloseToQuitting 08/19/2017  7:26am

    In this specific case, do the song from the show. It's in your book, you knock it out of the park (I assume) so you might as well do it. And no it wouldn't really change from EPA v ECC. Reminder that the only thing really different about them is how they're required to be run, not in terms of what to sing or what these people look for.

    Showbizdreamer 08/19/2017  9:00am

    I appreciate the comments. I have two "hats" so to speak - character belter and strong legit - and sometimes when a show needs the former in a lead and the latter in the ensemble I start to overthink things. Would you ever suggest going to both EPA & ECC bringing drastically different material? Of course I don't want to be greedy with their time. Thanks again :)

    FierceConversations 08/19/2017  9:37am

    Ok the above is little harder to answer, BUT...it's been said many times here that if you go to one, don't go to the other, because what they know they need(IF they need anything at all) isn't going to change within the few days in between EPA and ECC. They saw you once, their opinion won't change in days, plus it really does take away from someone who could potentially be seen if you already were.
    Now you may have 180 degree different material as you mentioned, but it's a matter of being truthful with yourself and being self aware as to know where you'll likely fit MORE. Which song do you like more/feel more alive/etc. Like you, I belt and do soprano and do both extremely well, BUT in terms of my aura as human being, I know where I'll likely fit better, depending on what the show is. What role would you feel more in your own skin doing? Obviously we're all still actors, and can ACT, but over the years of getting to know myself better, there's roles that we're still never going to fit no matter how hard we try, because it's still not our natural essence. I go by this mantra. We're all taught to never judge characters, but if there's a character I find myself judging because I just can't get past her ridiculousness, or any quality that I just plain don't understand at all, then that's a clear sign I shouldn't be going for that role. Which character do you personally relate to the most and and empathize (not just sympathize, EMPATHIZE) with the most? This of course, just one of many things to consider when looking for roles one is right for.

    Showbizdreamer 08/19/2017  10:32am

    I agree completely with what you're saying. I know that certain character belter roles are a perfect fit for me, while my soprano chops are useful in the ensemble if it's a big-sing legit show. I'm no ingenue, in looks or in sound, which is just how I like it ;) so I'm often trying to decide if I should aim my audition at character roles or ensemble. Thank you again for the comments on this topic!

    FierceConversations 08/19/2017  11:42am

    I don't think there's anything wrong with it necessarily. HOWEVER, playing Devil's Advocate: I think that there's three things to consider before you do so. First, if it's a relatively commonly used audition song and they have it in their season, you're likely to not be the only person singing it. Why put yourself in even more competition that usual?

    Second: I don't think most people feel this way, but...what if the person behind the table is one of the few who thinks singing from the show is tacky? Why put yourself in that potential situation?

    And third: If you don't think you're likely to actually be considered for the role itself, I'd say you shouldn't sing the song. I think that, for people behind the table, singing the song says, "I want to be considered specifically for this role." If that's what you want, great. If you want to be considered for ensemble or for other slots in the season, I'd recommend singing something else.

    If you really think the song is your best bet for the audition, may I suggest that you just ask as you go in? "I was considering singing a song from the season...would you prefer that or something else?" You get an easy answer, and you show them that you're being thoughtful about what you sing. Win win.

    TenorGuy 08/20/2017  10:12am

    I've only done it when I knew the role I was perfect for. And those two times, I got the role. But it can be risky, otherwise.

    sosayethi 08/20/2017  12:05pm
  • NAB: Bob Cline WKSP 08/17/2017  8:46pm

    Hi Friends!

    I saw Bob Cline is holding another MT workshop and I wanted some opinions on the class in general. Is it worth it for me to commute in? I've heard nothing but great things about him.

    gimmicks4u

    Where are you commuting in from?

    Personally, I loved his class. He's a great teacher.

    littleeagle 08/17/2017  9:31pm

    He's the best! Please do yourself a favor and take his class. He is optimistic, realistic, and just the kind of energy this industry needs. I can't say enough good things about him.

    Danny

    ilikedogs 08/19/2017  11:43pm
  • We Get It. You Know Each Other. 08/16/2017  10:24pm

    When people make the biggest show of seeing each other at an audition:
    youtu.be

    Itsmeeeeeee

    HAHAHAH We can be the worst sometimes...Thank goodness for Tim

    Showbizdreamer 08/16/2017  10:30pm

    HAHAHAHAHA this is too real

    coolcool 08/17/2017  10:32am

    LOL! So much truth to this video

    justtryintob00k 08/17/2017  11:57am

    LOL this is good

    bubbleT 08/17/2017  1:53pm

    this was hilarious dude. when she whipped out the song flute / when you were dragging her around the floor with her legs spread i literally laughed out loud, so thanks for that. although I will say, you should unrestrain yourself, as I think you have A LOT more in there. but hilarious, more please :)

    thatwasfunnydude 08/17/2017  2:08pm

    Tim you are hilarious. That's so spot on. lol

    Bento Tinderbox 08/18/2017  2:48pm

    Thanks for watching everybody!! Hope this brought you a laugh while waiting hours to be seen :)

    Itsmeeeeeee 08/19/2017  11:52am

    Love it. The only part you forgot was:

    "Omg have you seen Taryn?"
    "Omg just worked with her!!"
    "Omg she's an angel."
    "LITERALLY heaven on earth"
    "She brought me in for that Newsies tour"
    "Omg you're PERF for that"
    "Girl- *squeely hug* -it's SO good to have you back from the west coast"

    carrieunderwire 08/19/2017  3:24pm
  • Can we talk about Scott J. Campbell? 08/19/2017  12:12pm

    This is not to be gossipy or hateful; I'm genuinely concerned for his well-being. For those of you that don't know him, he was in Beautiful but recently left/got fired, and has been posting increasingly bizarre things on his Twitter and Facebook. He also left his agency, got a couple of huge tattoos, and has been posting videos of himself smoking weed and talking about "telling the truth".

    He's obviously going through something big right now; didn't know if anyone had any more details.

    twitter.com

    Springfield

    Sad sad sad. He got divorced. Everyone has been tying to help him but he's going down on a crazy path. His Twitter is scary. He's posting crazy stuff. His career is done. He burned every bridge he had.

    Go to his Instagram to see semi naked pic of him if you want.

    SecretAgentInfo 08/19/2017  1:47pm
  • NAB/ A Therapy Question 08/18/2017  2:46pm

    This is Not a Bitch, but a Therapy Question. I imagine actors can relate. What's the best way to leave a therapist? I have a legitimate reason to leave (insurance ending) and he got weird and challenging toward me. Any advice? Thanks!

    RM

    I had to leave a therapist for financial reasons and said it very up front, and then just didn't schedule any more sessions. It was uncomfortable, but it had to be done.

    If he/she is challenging you, why not just cancel and not go back? Obviously that's not the ideal situation, but if they're not understanding the insurance change that's bizarre. Sorry you're dealing with that.

    blue 08/18/2017  4:24pm

    Any therapist who gets weird and challenging to a client at any time, leaving or not, goodness gracious - run away! You are not beholden to him or his services. But I know when you have that kind of long and deep professional relationship, it can be hard to walk away from. The easiest way to stay strong in that may simply be to block the number or emails for the time being until you may be in a position or want to see him again.

    Me personally, if he is purposely trying to make it difficult for you or has any kind of history of coercing you into staying, I would file a complaint with the licensing board. That's truly inappropriate and I'm sorry you have to deal with that! If you need a recommendation for a different (amazing, supportive) therapist in NY, I'd recommend Megan Bruneau 100%. Good luck!

    iKruse 08/18/2017  4:26pm

    Thank you!

    RM 08/18/2017  6:17pm

    Bump! I would love to hear more, thanks again!

    RM 08/19/2017  1:34pm