On The Road 2008: Heading To Auditions

OntheroadHere comes a crazy mobile week. The big trip this week is to head to Memphis for auditions at the UPTA conference. That’s a 5 day conference where we will audition over 600 actors and then interview about 200 or so for possible jobs in our next season which begins in June. More on that later. (Note some of the links in this post are affiliate.)

In the State Capitol


But before we head off to UPTA, I am spending a day doing some political lobbying on behalf of the Arts in our state (and my theatre in particular.) I, and other members of my team, leave this afternoon to head to Richmond. (We’re leaving early enough so we can get into our hotel and watch the Super Bowl.) Early tomorrow morning, we’re off to the state capitol and a day full of appointments. We’ll be using our mobile phones (both voice and text messaging) to keep in touch throughout the day, as appointments often change due to the legislators’ schedules. I’ve planned out the day in MindManager and will be using my Tablet PC to keep track of our progress throughout the day. It will be a fast moving day and interestingly enough most of the work will come in the follow up that we have to do the next day, so keeping accurate records of conversations is a must.

On to the Auditions

Mid-week we head off to the UPTA conference. For this conference (and another one in March) we basically carry a small office with us. The tools I’ll be using will be the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Tablet PC, the HTC Mogul, the Canon Pixma i90 Printer, a LogiTech webcam, and, for brief bits of relaxation, the iPod Touch. I’ll also be carrying a video camera to tape some auditions. I primarily use OneNote 2007 in keeping track of interviews and auditions. I’ve chronicled how I do that in the past, but it has been awhile, so I’ll be updating my process some this year. It has been a successful method of keeping track of actors and interviewees.


Twitter: A Different Communication Method?


Not only do we audition and interview at the conference, but I also do much of my ongoing work for the theatre there as well. In essence a big portion of our office moves to Memphis for the week. Communication is the key as we have a number of big pressing issues (we’re in the middle of renovating the theatre) and there are some issues coming up that we know in advance are going to require relatively immediate responses by me. Auditions are like attending a public event. Cell phones are turned off for courtesy (if an auditor’s cell phone goes off during the audition he/she pays the fee for that actor’s audition!) but the WiFi is plentiful. We are going to try something different this trip as far as a communication method. In the past we’ve used SMS messaging at these events when the folks back home have to reach me. But the buzz of a cell phone in stun mode can still distract. So, I’m going to be using the iPod Touch to follow direct messages from the home office on Twitter. I could just as easily use the HTC Mogul for that, but I’m experimenting, and I want to see if the Touch will do the trick here. We’ll see how that works.

It should be an interesting, but exhausting period of time. As a side note, my participation here on GBM will be light during the auditions. I’m also trying out a couple of new (to me) gadgets and accessories and if all goes well, I’ll be reporting about that either from the road, or after I return.