Fast forward to summer of 2019- by the way she got rejected from the summer program at MPulse and Artsbridge- which at the time seemed like the end of the world- ha how little I knew……we decided this was a blessing in disguise and we would use July & August prior to her senior year to do essays, applications and train with coaches, broadway dance center, the local dance studio etc… etc… The MTCA college coach Amy and her organizational system was a huge help and we used their essay coach Lee w a few times as well. Coincidentally Lee is not only a great essay coach but he is an actor himself and that was really helpful in blending the artistic thoughts into a formal college essay as well as not being redundant with the supplemental essays. I truly think this was my D least favorite part (other than maybe the waiting in April of 2020). My D actually enjoys writing but the applications and essays when you apply to this many schools can be overwhelming. However, as I learned from CC getting these things done & being done with ACT/SAT before the school year started and freeing up time for fall auditions was a HUGE advantage. Good time to refill your wine now……
MTCA mock audition- very worthwhile
Film prescreens- yes, we did them professionally & didn’t have a great outcome, coaches all felt they were good before we submitted. This was truly more stressful for my D than the auditions themselves- foreshadowing that my kid is AN IN THE ROOM kinda gal. Results were mediocre at best. It was wake-up call about how hard this process was going to be. D handled the rejection fairly well. I think I handled them worse. In hindsight these rejections were not awful for us. Key Point here: NEVER LOSE A HEALTHY RESPECT FOR THE PROCESS. I also think flying through pre-screens relatively unscathed as some do gives people a false sense of confidence- Did I mention respecting the process? I had the epiphany at this point that the goal is to get as many live auditions as possible. There are so many GREAT programs that still do not prescreen. Look at our pre-screen results and our ultimate outcome, how do you explain that? No rhyme or reason which to me is why forming a smaller well-crafted list is nearly impossible- my opinion. Another point that may be controversial, I considered taking this out, but it needs to be said. The odds are especially slim for Caucasian females. This is just simple math. That doesn’t imply that it’s easy for guys or minorities- it’s not easy for ANYONE, but statistically this is the reality. If you are the parent of a white female be prepared: you are a dime a dozen, half the girls are wearing the same or similar outfit, 90% are very talented–you have to do something to stand out. Let me be clear, I’m not saying the boys are not talented, certainly not saying the minorities are not talented, I am not trying to start a fight, I’m just trying to state simple data points for future people: This is a hard process for EVERYONE ( actually hard doesn’t do it justice), it’s especially hard for white females I love the fact that this field is emphasizing diversity, enough said on this point, please don’t start a brawl w me
10/1 First “real” audition. we went to Muhlenberg to “audition for scholarship” we planned this as a good warm up to run through her material. Which didn’t change much from the pre-screens so I was having some anxiety, but D was steadfast that she connected with her pieces. Of note while we added piece to her repertoire throughout the audition season she never wavered from her original material. The director at Muhlenberg was warm & welcoming, the campus was beautiful …classic college fall day. Really nice facilities, impressive dance class we observed. Director essentially said to D & 3 other girls you are all very talented if you are accepted from admissions in March I would love to have you- that’s when the light bulb went off for me that waiting till march was not really the point of the “safety”. Had lunch w D HS friend. It was a nice day only a 2.5hour drive for us. MY BFA/BM or bust daughter got in the car and said- “if this is the only place I get in, I can actually see myself happy here”. We came home and applied to Columbia College as an additional safety because they had rolling admissions
Interesting anecdote on October 5th at a NYY playoff game I suddenly developed Bell’s Palsy- my entire left side of my face was essentially paralyzed, difficulty eating, blinking, speaking- this stayed with me nearly all of audition season. My wife hypothesizes it was brought on by the stress of this process- (I don’t think that was the case- but it’s possible- guess I’m not as tough and gritty as DD)
10/14- flew to Ohio U for an “experience the arts day” a new up and coming program that you could audition for without even applying seemed like another good test run…Also figured it was “an audition safety” or fit- as if that really exists. This was the only trip (amazing in hindsight) that daughter was a bit under the weather. In addition to her throat not being in optimal condition, at the faculty meeting 1 hour before the audition we get the NO email from Shenandoah regarding her pre-screen. That was a tough moment, she collected herself & did the dance call and the audition, still I felt this would be a likely yes- a few weeks later the “no” or redirect to BA theater came- another surprising moment for me, but a reminder ALWAYS RESPECT THE PROCESS, take NOTHING for granted. D was relatively unfazed as she really was never into the program but agreed since it was Columbus Day weekend to take the trip with me & work out her material once more. (interesting factoid here- In February we got a letter from Ohio U indicating she was awarded a TALENT scholarship, REALLY? then why did we get the BFA no? things that make you say hmmmmm)
One thing of note for October- D did a master class with Robin Lewis from Rider AFTER she was rejected from her Rider pre-screen- I would have said F this guy, but she showed up, smiled and may have even thought he would realize the error in their pre-screen decision- of course he did not but I admire my daughter for the grit and determination shown (note the common theme arising here?)
Foreshadowing moment: We were scheduled to do our first “ big” fall audition 10/26 had the flight to Nashville booked, but then MTCA announced a Victoria Bussert master class that same day, so we quickly changed to the 11/2 audition. Belmont was super accommodating & all worked out well at that point. Note to future peeps, the plan never comes together as you thought it would…Mike Tyson famously said “everyone has a plan till they get punched in the face”. Be prepared to take a few punches and be adaptable or ye’ shall be knocked out by the theater gods AKA keepers of the process.