Archives for posts with tag: auditions

Back in November, I was super excited to hear that I was being considered for a small part I had auditioned for on New Girl.

My character name was nothing less than “Newsboy Hat Lesbian”. Fuckin’ badass. And I auditioned the shit out of those two lines, in a real, true, newsboy hat. Take that, casting.

Needless to say, I didn’t get the part, although it was great to have my agent call and tell me they were considering me.

While I was away on my trip, my gf spent some time looking up the episode that Newsboy Hat Lesbian makes her appearance in, so that I could see who my competition was. They basically cut the entire scene I had auditioned with, which makes me think they picked a non-union actor (no lines + non-union = really cheap for them). When she showed me the clip online, I wasn’t totally surprised, except…

Someone shorter – check. Someone a bit thinner – check. I had half-expected that. The surprising and funny thing was that costuming gave the woman they cast the EXACT outfit I wore to my audition. Not that it’s crazy to see a lesbian in a newsboy cap with a vest and tie, but since I was the only one wearing such an outfit the day of the auditions, I can’t quite let go of the  idea that they cast my outfit and not me.

My industry is nuts.

Anyone who wants to view my competition (hi competition! nice to meet you! we should team up!) can check out the episode from season 2 called “Santa”. She’s got no lines, but you can’t miss her.

A few weeks ago I had a veritable golden week as a character actor – three auditions, two in the same day.

On the first audition of my double-day, I walked into a dark, couch-filled holding area to sign in, and casually looked around. There in the corner sat Julie Goldman, furiously engaged in her phone. When she was called into the audition room, the casting crew immediately cheered. I knew I was screwed. 🙂

I’ve been chasing the same parts as Julie since 2004 in Brooklyn when she threw her hat in for the L Word parody “The D Word” to play the Shane character (Drea), whom I had been seen three times for. (Actually, that one worked out well for me because the woman cast as the love interest of Drea ended up being my partners ex-gf, and we would have had some awkward makeout scenes to contend with. Too soon.)

So it’s both heartening and slightly painful to hear Julie speaking about existing in the same middle ground that I do – are we too butch, or not butch enough? Where is the room for comedy, as opposed to the butch always being a sexual predator? Why, in Julie’s case, does the role always go to the black woman, while in my case it always goes to the heaviest girl in the room, who may or may not be non-Caucasian? Apparently there’s only one kind of diversity in H’wood.

Read up on her thoughts here: http://www.austinchronicle.com/arts/2013-04-26/stuck-in-the-middle/

Location: a casting office in Van Nuys.

Look: super cute smaller butch, slicked up black hair and I think some piercings (I’m a sucker for piercings).  Black track suit to match the “sporty” character we were asked to play. Great smile. 🙂

This tribespotting almost doesn’t count since it was during an audition I had this week, but guys!!! There was another butch at this audition!!!

That has never ever happened to me before, in three years of acting in LA and 15 years of acting before that. Sure, there were a whole lot of other women there too who might or might not identify as butch, although none read butch to me. And sure, this butch woman didn’t seem to be an actor professionally – but it was SO GREAT to have some solidarity in the waiting room.

The best part was that the role was for an ice hockey player, and wasn’t even specifically “butch”. We are slowly infiltrating.

 

Hey All –

I’ve been running around like a lunatic this week, and mulling over some major changes that are in the works. In addition to signing with new representation, my gf and I are starting to look for a new place, and I’m considering quitting my day job and taking my freelance career on full time. With the acting, of course.

Just wanted to drop a note saying that even though being an out, butch-identified actor is super difficult, when I get a chance to audition for a role, I’m always really excited about the parts available to me.  Today I had a great audition for NCIS, to play a Naval Lieutenant Commander . I mean, that’s just awesome. I love any roles that involve uniforms. Complements my tailored style.

For this audition, we read the scene with the casting associate while the casting director watched. They didn’t film it, like they sometimes do, but that was ok – my gf had filmed my rehearsals last night and this morning, but it was great just to get to connect with a person instead of the camera. When I finished, the casting director said, “Nice work.” It’s a small thing, but they don’t have to say anything to you at all, so I left feeling pretty pleased, bought myself some cheap Chinese (no rice – I’m once again on the quest to lose fifteen pounds and I’m down 4 as of today) and a gift for my gf who’s having a terrible time right now.

Three weeks ago, I decided to ask myself this question every day: “Why is my life so fun, creative, and easy?” Your brain can’t NOT try to answer any question. Today I feel like I was living the answer.

I just received notice of an audition I have on Thursday for a quick little show with a successful director/producer team across both film and theater. Whenever I hear I have an audition, my first reaction is always instantaneous, unbridled fear, and after I get that out of the way, I start looking at the notice, figuring out what I need to prepare and how to dress and all of that. All the real work.

This audition is a bit different. The role I’m reading for is FTM trans, so there’s a part of me that knows it well. The part that lived and breathed trans culture and my own trans identity, when I was 21 and 22. Then there’s the 30 year old, mostly comfortable butch part of me that says, wait – did I “take” this opportunity from a trans actor?

I’ve been in LA long enough now to know that there are very, very few (if any) out, FTM trans actors here. I know my tagline jokingly states that I’m the only butch actress in LA, but that’s not my own arrogance. It’s the fact that after growing up here for 17 years and returning here for the past three, I’ve only had one audition where there was another butch woman in my age range called. And she got the part. 🙂  – So really I should say that I’m the “only other butch in LA except for that one who booked that music video last year.” (And, of course, the women playing at a more established level – the Ellens, the Julie Goldmans, etc.)

I must point out that I have had the pleasure of meeting several MTF lady actresses out here, one of whom was signed by my former agent while I was still with him. And, of course, LA is fairly drenched with drag queens and gay men.

The point I’m getting to is that while I’m excited for the opportunity to audition for an interesting role that directly means something to me, my life, and the audiences I care most about, I also hope that they found a good handful of talented FTMs to see as well. The sad thing is, from my experience here, I doubt it. We’ll see – I would love to meet them.

**(A side note – I’m signing up for something called the SAG Conservatory, which is a series of workshops for Screen Actors Guild members. Conservatory members also get preferential casting for AFI student films, and on the application you check all the boxes you want to be considered for – M, F, FTM trans, and MTF trans. I was pleasantly surprised at these options. If they add Intersex, Genderqueer, Other, and None, I think we’ll be good to go.)

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