Friday, January 29, 2010

My Insanely Good Day

Today was a seriously fantastic day. And now I shall tell you about it!

It started off by my getting to sleep in because of my canceled writing class. Now, this sounds exciting until you realize that usually class starts at 9:30... and I had a scheduled writing conference with my teacher at 10am. So I got an extra half an hour of sleep, which is good, but it wasn't much. And considering I stayed up significantly late last night to write my rough draft for her... Well, it just wasn't that much sleep. But I did end up feeling pretty well rested regardless, so that just made the whole day better!

The writing conference went really well. All the things I was worried about--having an opinion, the voice of the writing, etc--she thought were pretty good. And the things she suggested that I work on all seem reasonable and doable. Then she told me that she liked my diagnostic paper, which I wrote the night before the second day of class at midnight. I thought it was no good--and the group that read my paper didn't seem to like it either--but she still liked it! And some of the groups that read it (we split the class into groups of three, each reading three random papers at a time and comparing them within that set of three) thought it was the best of three papers, which I totally didn't expect. When I read my paper amongst the group of three, I thought it was definitely 2nd place. So that made me happy.

After the conference I had about half an hour before my next class, so I went to Trojan Grounds and got a chocolate croissant for breakfast. Trogro, as it's called, has excellent chocolate croissants. And I got to read today's issue of the Daily Trojan, which I don't get to do very often.

After breakfast I went to my Chinese class, where I got my test back. I got a 97%! Now, I'm pretty bad at Chinese. When I can remember what I'm saying I'm not bad, but for the most part it doesn't come easily to me. Luckily I'm in a large class of half native Chinese speakers and half total Chinese-newbies, like me. And that means I'm not the worst Chinese student in the class. It's refreshing!!! And I got a 97%, which was higher than some of the native speakers' grades. Not that I'm comparing or anything. But ha ha!! Hooray!!!!

My next class was Performance for Camera, which ended up being a lot of fun. We've been working on auditioning techniques to make the audition less tense and more relaxed, and how to deal with stupid questions like "Tell me about yourself" (aka most annoying question ever! Though technically that's not a question. It's more of a statement. A demand, per se). So we sat with the camera taping us and answered silly questions with whatever images popped into our heads. It was surprisingly fun, and I found myself giggling a lot. It went a lot better than the last two times on-camera in class. I wasn't as awkward and I felt a lot more relaxed. It was fun! So that definitely was a fun class.

The next exciting thing from today was my audition for The Alcestaid. It's a School of Theatre play, and the director had already cast the characters but was looking for a few (re:three) singers to act as a chorus and sing and make the sound effects of the show. So it was more a singing audition than anything else. He didn't even know exactly what they'd be singing... but it'd happen eventually.

Oh. Did I mention that this director is Jason Robert Brown?

If you don't know who that is... then look him up. He's a big-wig in musical theatre world.

So last time I auditioned for him, I felt awkward and uncomfortable and insanely nervous. I mean, this is JRB for heavens sake!! AHHHHH!!! But today I decided to play the auditioning game a bit differently. I cracked little jokes, said what was on my mind, and tried not to obsess about the fact that I was auditioning for such a famous person. I didn't even get dressed up. The only thing I changed for this audition was my shoes: I wore my awesome boots. They're comfy but give me a couple of inches. Perfection.

I sang "Someone to Watch Over Me," which went pretty well. It's a soprano song but doesn't go extremely high--no more than a D, and I can sing much higher than that. So he had me try it a half step higher. No problemo. I'm only re-singing the final ending, so I decide to be a little risky and change the ending a bit. Instead of jumping down an octave, as the music is written, I go up an extra note. Which in hindsight doesn't seem that dramatic, but it felt exciting at the time. And hey, what better time to show off high notes than an audition? His comment was that now I was really singing, yay! I left feeling happy and satisfied.

And then a little dumb, because I accidentally left my sheet music in the room. But the accompanist brought it out to me, so no biggie.

I'm done by 7:30, and this is the earliest I've been home all week! This week has been super crazy, what with KP auditions/rehearsal and Anything Goes rehearsals... I actually have time to sit on the couch and watch TV.

After 2 hours of mindless television I check my email. And I get this:

Congratulations! You have been cast as The Chorus in the Alcestaid.

WOOO HOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lots of happy bouncing and squealing immediately followed suit.

I'm doing a show directed by JRB. My first School of Theatre show. Picked to be one of four girls in this musical ensemble, doing a cappella harmonies like nobody's business, in an all-female cast with other girls that I really like.


The only problem is that there is no way I can do this and Anything Goes. So I'm calling the guy tomorrow. But in the end, I think it's worth it, because this is just way too exciting an opportunity to pass up!!

And that, my friends, ends my insanely good day.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Anything Goes

I had my first rehearsal for Anything Goes yesterday morning. It went well enough--was pretty much just comprised of introducing ourselves to the rest of the cast and reading through the script. Not that exciting. I'm an ensemble member and Luke--one of the Chinese brothers. Oh irony of ironies. I'm the Asian one.

First real rehearsal is on Tuesday evening, where we're doing some dancing. I'm looking forward to doing some dancing! I haven't done real dancing in a very long time.

For those interested, the show's at Westminster Community Theatre. It performs March 12-27, Friday Saturday and Sundays. Their website is if you want more info.

The auditions themselves were interesting. I went in with no expectations--I'd never heard of the place, so I had no idea what to expect. Auditions were held in the theatre, and we all sat around and watched everyone else do their auditions too. It was extremely informal. Then we all did the dance section, which was tapping. It was fun, just because I hadn't tapped in a really long time, so it was good review.

They had me stay around to do a callback for one of the characters. It went well enough, though I didn't get it in the end. Got in the show though, so hooray!

The only issue is that it's really far away from USC. I don't mind driving a long way, since the way my schedule is set up is that I am done with classes really early every day (by 12pm M-W, by 5pm Thursday and no class on Friday), but it's a lot of miles to go there and back. So we shall see how it goes.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Reader's Digest of Katherine's first two weeks of school:

Didn't get into anything School of Theatre.
DID get into something else: Anything Goes, at Westminster Community Theatre.

Found out about the auditions Monday, auditioned Tuesday. Callbacks were that same night. Got a call Wednesday saying I got in. Yay!!

More details coming soon. ;)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Back to School

My feet are in pain.

Why, you ask? Well, I'll tell you! Today has been, so far, a day of errand-running. And it's not over yet. Ohhh no.

So first I walked to campus, over to the DRC and signed up for auditions. Right now I'm signed up to audition for seven plays. Oh boy... and that's only the School of Theatre ones. Once you put in some ISPs, it's going to be even higher. Unless I somehow get into something right away. We shall see. I have 3 on Monday, 3 on Tuesday, 1 on Thursday (it's a halfa audition. It's the music audition for the show Jason Robert Brown's directing, since apparently there's singing involved. I'm actually signed up to audition twice for that show... So we'll see what I need to do for that) and one on Saturday. Yikes.

Then I checked out a couple of scripts of the plays I'm auditioning for from the DRC, and went off to the bookstore. Grabbed almost all my textbooks (it's not the start of the semester if the USC bookstore isn't missing at least one of my required textbooks) and purchased them. I have more books for piano than any other class. Luckily they're thin. The Chinese book? Not so thin.

I dragged all my stuff over to one of my favorite places on campus, GFS, and sat in the corner bench to read one of the plays. I love sitting there because it's quiet but not too quiet, light but protected, and I just like corners! Yay corners. =) Though I felt like a dork. Here I am, reading plays, taking notes on the characters, essentially doing homework, and the semester hasn't even started yet! But it's homework I want to do, so I don't mind.

After I finished the one play, I brought it back to the DRC and checked out the rest that I hadn't gotten yet. Luckily I already read one of them at home and know the musical pretty well, so I didn't need to take those.

And then I walked home. And this is why my feet are in pain:

I was wearing my new boots with the crazy inserts in them. Me being stupid, didn't wear socks because they felt really bulky. However, I shall not make that mistake again. Because bulky socks are a heck of a lot better than burning feet.


Off to read more plays, watch a musical, work on monologues and songs and--ew--grocery shop. We shall see how well I do the grocery shopping, considering merely walking around the apartment results in squeals of pain.