Learning Hope from Sopranos

It’s that time of year again – the time when auditions for summer shows come fast and furious. I have lost count of how many auditions I have been on in the last few weeks, but one things for sure: I haven’t gone out recently without my audition binder and a pair of high heels.

I have written before about the resiliency of singers, how we put ourselves on the line over and over again, knowing the odds are usually against us. But a few days ago I recognized another characteristic of my fellow performers: hope.

Every damn time we walk into the audition room, there is a part of us that really believes that this is our shot. We research the roles beforehand and imagine ourselves in them. we scrutinize our schedules for conflicts with rehearsals, convinced that we are going to be invited to rehearse. After the audition our imaginations go into overdrive.

Our minds know that there is competition, that there are a million factors that go into casting decisions, but our hearts still say “yes – this is your time!”. We have the ability to envision the best possible outcome in the face of opposition and unlikely odds.

This guy's smiling even though half his face is gone. "Maybe they won't eat the rest of me!" (Fat chance).

I’ve been watching the TV show “Smash” lately. Despite its soapy tendencies it nails certain details of the life of a performer. In a recent episode we see one of the ensemble members watching the star perform, and as she watches she imagines herself in the spotlight. Trust me when I tell you every singer does that.


My shot is coming, we think. Someone will see me. I’ll get what I’ve wanted. Something good is coming. I just know it.

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