The Authored Ascension

Unmasking the Phantom (Auditions)

Grace Darnall, Staff Writer

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This year the spring musical is Phantom of the Opera and auditions were this past Monday. Everyone was excited and ready to get this show on the road. Ms. Callie and Mr. Sanford helped with the auditions, along with three guest judges hand picked by them. Phantom is a musical that has been on Broadway for a long time, and it still is running today. It is a difficult musical to put on, but watching the auditions, there will definitely be a great cast.  

One part of the audition was singing and/or acting. Ms. Callie brought about 5-6 students for the first audition. There were five judges waiting to see our talent. It was our choice whether to start off with a song or a monologue. The judges didn’t say much except for thank you and calling the next student up. Before leaving the audition room, all performers were handed a slip of paper inviting them to dance auditions. For the dance audition, senior and Student Director Jillian Verzwyvelt taught a ballet routine. After learning the dance, everyone was split into groups so the judges could watch more closely for talent. It looks like everyone was already having fun, and rehearsals have not even started yet!

I talked to junior Ben Tyrrell and asked what he thought the show would be like, and he said, “This is going to be one of the most difficult shows that Ascension has ever put on. In fact, I can’t think of any theater company that has performed it that weren’t professional.” He thinks it will be hard but that we could make it a good show. I asked if he was nervous and to give advice about being nervous. He responded with, “I wasn’t nervous for this particular audition, but I do get a little nervous auditioning for some.” He added in, “It can be hard to put yourself out there in such a vulnerable way, but if you do it enough, you know what you have to do.” Lastly, he told me, “The theater program is growing exponentially! People see the shows that we put on, and with the quality of the performances and the energy of the cast, no wonder they want to get in on that.” Ascension shows are known to be great, and I could see this one being bigger and better.

I also talked to senior Sophia McCarthy, who was in my audition group, and I asked her if she was ready for the audition or nervous about it. She answered, “I was very prepared and rehearsed for my audition. I was more excited than nervous that it was finally here but of course had some pre-audition nerves!” She said it’s her favorite show. “I’ve been watching it since I was 7 so I could not be happier and more excited for it.” I asked her what she thought the audience would think about the show, and she said, “Phantom of the Opera has a huge following. It can be considered the best and hardest musical of all times.” She thinks the audience will love it, and so do I.  

It is exceptionally great and exciting to see such amazing and talented performers try something that is much harder than usual. It will be a great experience to learn from and something every cast member, director, and stage crew would want to look back on. Both Ben and Sophia agreed the theater program is growing, but Sophia also said, “Almost all of our theater family have returned from last year and the year before that but it’s always great to see some new faces. By the end of the show we have all spent so much time together we are practically family so I’m super excited.” This is my first year taking a part in such an incredible show, and I am excited to see what is to come.

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Unmasking the Phantom (Auditions)