Wednesday, March 24, 2010

WDW College Program Character Performer Audition

Hello World!

I just got back from the WDW CP Character Performer Audition in Boston, and I must say, it was amazing!

Before I give you a step-by-step detailed description of my day, just one word of advice, literally-


Ok, so we arrive in Boston at around 10ish and sign in begins at 10:30. After some confusion about where to go and a quick call to the Disney Recruiting Center, we find our way and I make my way upstairs. Before I know it, I'm sitting in a dance studio with 74 other people (mostly females), filling out the very basic audition form. After getting through the long line and being assigned a number (61), getting my height measured, and having a picture taken we all sit down and listen to Gail, the choreographer. Gail is this incredible energetic woman who stands about 3 inches shorter than me. She's not in the best of shape, but you couldn't really care less once you see this woman "animate." To "animate," as Gail explains to us, is to make your character come alive with your physical movement and facial expressions. Be bigger than big, and energetic as heck (but keep it controlled). We practice doing the first part of the audition a couple times. This means "animating" through two stories. First, you are to meet your favourite character in Disney and interact with him/her/it. Secondly, you're hungry and need to get food. Animate the WHOLE way through. We learn that this is actually what we will be doing before we do the dance, the choreography of which we learned next.

It starts really simply with a few knee pops and some easy hops to the side, and slowly, every 8 counts, it gets just a little bit harder. By the end you realize it wasn't going to be as easy as you initially thought and some people look a little freaked out. However, as Gail assured us, they weren't looking for everybody to be a professional dancer (though some were, like the 4 girls who had been in front of me in line, numbers 57-60. Eek.), what they were looking for was to see how well you could hold your own through the piece. Be energetic, be happy; if you mess up, go with it, don't break character. Basically, OWN IT.

Ok, so after learning the dance we practice our two animated stories, which couldn't have taken more than 2 or 3 eights each, and then go straight into the dance. I should probably note that the song was a pop rock version of Someday My Prince Will Come, and, surprisingly, the more I heard it, the more I loved it. We learn that we will repeat this scenario twice when the actual audition part came.

The hardest part was the waiting. Being 61 was nice cause it meant I was near the end so hopefully I was easy to remember after they left, but it was awful having to wait for the first 10 groups to go. We went in groups of 6. (Luckily for me dancer-chicks 57 - 60 were not in my group, this made me feel much more comfortable.)

Finally, after who knows how long, group 11 (that's me!) goes in. Gail places us in a staggered line. Kelly, who had measured us, and given a brief description of the job before we got started, sits at a table with our applications in front of her, and a pen in hand. Gail, thankfully, does the dance with us. Although I probably could've done it without her, it was nice to have the reassurance she was there to look at if I blanked out for a second.

We do the animated stories into the dance combination twice. Then Gail asks us to just stand and smile. I'm not really sure what this was about, but I think it's to see if any of us could play "look-alikes" (princesses and the like). None of us get asked to stay, so I guess I'm in the running for a costumed character, and we leave.

The entire process was really comfortable. Even though I was nervous I don't think it got the best of me this time. I stood in front while we were all learning, and I never dropped my smile. Even if I wanted to I don't think I could have, it was just so elating to be there.

Anywho, for you potentially character performer auditioners, now you know! It was easy and fun. Best advice I can give is to smile and just have fun. Don't be afraid to look silly. If you do look silly, you're probably doing something right.

We'll hear back in 2-4 weeks as to whether we were cast or not. *fingers crossed!*

That's all for now, I hope everyone has a magical evening! I'll be sure to report back as soon as I have news!