Analysis, Theatre

No, Rent is not Outdated

I’m not going to lie: I love Rent. Despite that, I’m going to attempt to approach this article as neutrally as possible.

Loving Rent is apparently no longer theatre-kid-couture. A counter-culture of despising the show has sprung up, possibly in response to Lindsay Ellis’s video essay from 2016. I recently asked in a few theatre circles I frequent what exactly everyone’s damage is when it comes to the show– and I got a lot of responses. Everyone was very excited to explain why they hated Rent.

I could see where many responses were coming from. Yet, the response I simply couldn’t wrap my head around was the idea that the show is simply “too outdated” for modern audiences.

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Actor Life, Theatre

Myths, Half-Truths, and Facts Every Performer has Heard About Eating and Drinking Before a Performance: Explained

Chances are, if you’re a performer, you’ve heard some “voice hacks” revolving around food and drink. “Drink lemon water to eliminate phlegm.” “Don’t eat before you go on stage.” “Eat potato chips to solve a sore throat.” Many of these sound reasonable enough and are offered to us as such absolute truths that we accept them without really researching whether they are true or not. As a result, all performers hold in their hearts a unique set of myths and half-truths gathered over the years which they believe makes them better singers. Is there any truth to these claims, or are they only urban legends? I decided I wanted to learn that for myself.

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Theatre, Theatre 101 Series

Theatre 101 Series: A Beginner’s Guide to Audition Prep

The Theatre 101 Series is a set of introductory articles meant to explain theatrical concepts and situations to young actors as well as adult theatrical newcomers. View the whole series here.

When you are new to theatre, preparing for an audition feels like walking blindly into the unknown. While understanding what to expect in your first audition may help, learning how to prepare properly for an audition can require a lot of audition experience. To help newcomers break into auditioning and put their best foot forward, here is a beginner-friendly guide to preparing for auditions!

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Theatre, Theatre 101 Series

Theatre 101 Series: What to Expect in Your First Audition

The Theatre 101 Series is a set of introductory articles meant to explain theatrical concepts and situations to young actors as well as adult theatrical newcomers. View the whole series here.

For new actors, the audition is the scariest part of the entire production process. Even as a seasoned performer, I tend to get more nervous for auditions than I do for actual performances. Auditions can be downright terrifying!

Nevertheless, once you get a few under your belt, auditions get much easier. The first is always the scariest! It would be a shame to never get a chance to perform simply because you’re afraid to audition. Hopefully, I can help! In this article I’m going to explain the general process of auditioning so you know exactly what’s coming.

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Theatre, Theatre 101 Series

Theatre 101 Series: So you Want to try Theatre? 10 Things you Should Know

The Theatre 101 Series is a set of introductory articles meant to explain theatrical concepts and situations to young actors as well as adult theatrical newcomers. View the whole series here.

Getting started in theatre takes a lot of courage.

If you’ve never performed before, you inevitably have a lot of questions about theatre. What does it take to get started? What should I know? What will I learn? The questions can become so daunting that they often prevent would-be performers from ever stepping on stage at all.

In order to help more newcomers make the transition from potential actor to first-time actor, I’m going to explain ten things everyone should know about the art of theatre.

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Guides and Tips, Theatre

The 5 Most Important Learning Objectives From Every Theatre Degree Program— And how to Achieve Them Independently

A college degree simply isn’t the best choice for everyone.

I’m not in the business of discouraging anyone to go to school for theatre. I always stand in support of theatre majors. However, in education, the phrase “one size fits all” is a harmful myth. For many, a college education just doesn’t make sense. Besides the obvious (and woefully often overlooked) point that the traditional higher education setting isn’t the best learning environment for everyone, college is expensive, and theatre majors are too often reminded of the fact that all the money spent for tuition still can’t guarantee future employment.

Many agree that the degree itself  is not the most important outcome of a college education in theatre. Rather, what you receive in return for all that tuition is valuable training and professional connections. As the official degree is the only thing a traditional college path can boast over independent study and on-the-job experience, some are more suited to seek training outside of a college setting, preferably at a much lower price point.

So what exactly should one get from their theatre degree program? And how could they go about getting those without pursuing the degree at all?

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Guides and Tips, Theatre

3 Definitive Traits That Make you an Excellent Performer

I’ve been around a lot of performers, in a lot of different settings. I’ve directed, I’ve taught, I’ve acted, I’ve watched from the audience and from the stage manager’s booth. Every performer is unique, and everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses. Yet, in all of the actors, dancers, and musicians I’ve worked with, I have found that there are exactly three traits every truly excellent performer has in common.

These traits are instrumental to success in the performing arts. You won’t get very far without them, and having them can put you on top in close auditions.

If you can honestly say you have these three traits, then pat yourself on the back! If you’re not so sure, read over this article closely and do what you can to pick them up immediately.

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Actor Life, Theatre

5 Free Online Resources for Performers who are Social Distancing

With COVID-19 shutting down theatrical venues, classes, and performances across the world, many performers now find themselves stuck at home with little to do. However, the arts are as always indomitable, and many performers and arts educators have taken to social media to do what they do best. Why not use your time at home productively? Here are 5 free resources (and one bonus, sort of free resource) for theatrical performers practicing social distancing!

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