Up at dawn and hit the road to be at The Equity Office in downtown Chicago for this morning’s dance audition for Paramount’s OKLAHOMA. I’m writing you, dear reader, sitting behind the table observing Choreographer Katie Spelman put this handsome group through their paces. The temperature in the room has risen fast. Red faced, sweaty, phrasing the steps athletic, rhythmic, all jumps, turns, kicks feet flexing, pointing, balletic to western cowboy characters in a syncopation challenging the best of them! In groups of 25 at a time in a tight audition space, many of the dancers here are from The Lyric Opera’s CAROUSEL and have to leave in time for their matinee this afternoon. Several in this morning’s call also sang yesterday with over 150 auditioning actors.

The room is now a sauna. The dance has been taught, and they will be dancing in groups of four to make the cut to return to sing those we haven’t heard from yet or we need to hear again for one reason or another. The room empties. The air changes, fresher, cooler as one by one the men return with their vocal selections. The talent overwhelms. How do we make the cut? And typically there will be twice as many women auditioning this afternoon. And the word is the dance combination is twice as difficult. Hang in there, ladies! Here we go! A second long day in a row in Chicago and then hittin’ the road back to Aurora!

Sent from Jim Corti’s iPhone