March is Women’s History Month, and throughout the theatre and film industry, women’s achievements are being celebrated. While there have been strides towards gender equity and representation in theatre, there is still work to do. The Actor’s Equity Association has done a study that identifies the “skew” towards white and male for theatre jobs .
Fortunately, there are dynamic groups dedicated to creating opportunities for women artists. The Bridge Initiative, created by Brenda Jean Foley and Tracy Liz Miller, is an incredible non-profit organization that incubates and celebrates professional female theatre artists in the Phoenix area. Read more to learn about the origins and ambitions of The Bridge Initiative.
As a high school teacher, I worked with a lot of students to help them prepare for their college and scholarship auditions. And sitting in on audition committees helped shape my perspective even more. While auditioning for colleges is very similar to any other audition, this moment isn’t for a job, but for a mutual investment for the next two to four years. There are some really important things to remember before stepping into that audition room.
While many English or Theatre teachers (myself included) embrace William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Macbeth, or A Midsummer Night’s Dream, I actually really enjoy the history plays. Richard III is one of my favorite plays to teach because of the intriguing villain, dynamic poetry, and fascinating characters. However, in order for my students to make sense of it, I realized I had to make sense of the English history Shakespeare was using to write Richard III. In that endeavor, I tumbled down a rabbit hole and into a quagmire of complex English history mired in international and civil wars.
Congratulations! You’re directing your first show and are probably feeling a little overwhelmed right now — which is totally normal. Whether you are directing at a school or with a community theater, all directors have the same starting point: choosing the show. Selecting the show requires considering many factors, including people, time frame, budget. And then, after the show is chosen, you now have many things to consider before auditions even start, and all of these things can be broken down into two categories: aesthetics and logistics.