New York And Back With Hardly Any New York

My nearly five hour roundtrip commute is in pursuit of a 10 minute audition!

I am typing this while on the 12:07 PM Metro North express from Grand Central Terminal. Until a few minutes ago there were rivers of sweat pouring off my body. This is a train I shouldn’t have attempted to make, but did. I am on my way home from New York City. My nearly five hour roundtrip commute is in pursuit of a 10 minute audition!

I continue to be amazed by people who make this commute to the city from this part of Connecticut every day. When most out-of-towners think of my state they think Fairfield County. When the first of those Fairfield County passengers get off I’ll still have over an hour to go.

This all started yesterday afternoon with an email and three pieces of copy from my commercial agent. Could I be there today at 11:40?

Of course I could.

Making the 9:33 AM train to New York is to me what making at 3:00 AM train is to most of you. I am nocturnal. My bedtime is around 5:00 AM. This morning my alarm was set for 7:50. I was actually up before 7:00.

I now know this trip well. From the Metro North platform the subway is down a long formerly majestic hall. It’s downstairs to the mezzanine then down again to the platform.

I have a MetroCard with a balance. It makes me feel less of an interloper and more like I belong.

Beyond the train today’s destination was one subway for two stops then a two block walk through pouring rain! Less than ten minutes from GCT I was taking an elevator to six and the casting office.

Casting Factory Outlet! The place was nuts.

There were at least six simultaneous auditions noted on laser printed paper signs and close to a hundred actors sitting along the walls. Some folks looked like they knew one another and were chatting. They all seemed to know the drill. Everyone was nervously sizing up the competition.

I signed in and sat down.

It wasn’t long before Colin fetched me into what looked like a large office. We were above Madison Avenue in what was evidently not a soundproof room.

There was a mic, but no headphones. Down near my feet was a Mac laptop. The casting director for this commercial was joining us via Skype!

I read my three pieces of copy took some direction and read one again.

I was OK. I wish I was great. Maybe I was. It’s all so surreal. Judgments are tough to make.

Will I get it? Who knows? A friend who has been a regular at these says you audition then forget about it. Sometimes you hear, usually you don’t.

I love this experience. I loved being in the casting agency, even if only for a few moments. I’d like to get cast, but right now I’m merely learning the ropes and getting comfortable.

A quick look at my watch told me I had time to make this early train I’m now on.

Unfortunately, I entered the subway and got all the way down to the turnstile before realizing it was a downtown only platform! I rechecked on the way back up: no signs!

It wasn’t until I was finally on the “6” heading north that I realized it would be touch and go. I was only two stops away, but as the train pulled into Grand Central it slowed and my pulse quickened. This time of day it’s one train an hour to New Haven.

I ran!

I ran up the stairs past the token booth then up another flight and into Grand Central Terminal proper. My train was on Track 26, a little farther than I expected.

It wasn’t until I cleared the gates and was on the platform that I saw my train was still there. As I panted my way into the car a buzzer buzzed and the doors closed!

I’ll be in New Haven two’ish and hopefully back in bed before three.

It’s a good day.

My Trip To New York: She Was A He!

It wasn’t until I walked into the casting office that I realized the female assistant would be played by a guy!

I’m on the 2:37 from Grand Central. If you’re a New Haven commuter you already know what I’m about to say. There is no 2:37 train from Grand Central to New Haven. Oops!

My time is Manhattan was very brief. I was here for a 2:10 audition at Donald Case Casting for a Peruvian liquor. I played a German scientist with a female assistant. I figured there would be a gorgeous long legged blond standing next to me. It wasn’t until I walked into the casting office that I realized the female assistant would be played by a guy!

I auditioned with two “Tilde’s.” One had a beard!

I hope I get the part, but right now it’s the experience I’m enjoying. Theatrical casting is a world I’m not at all familiar with.

Like I said this was a quick trip. I got right back on the subway and took the Uptown #6 two stops to Grand Central. There was a 2:34 to New Haven, but I knew I’d miss it. I ran anyway and saw the 2:37 to Stamford was still listed. Not thinking I continued to run to the platform.

The doors were closed as I reached the train, but the rear window was open. I asked the conductor if he’d open the door?

It wasn’t until ticket taking time we both realized my error. Stamford is this train’s last stop.

This is a no harm, no foul situation. I’ll just get off in Stamford and wait for the train I would have been on… and stop at every station in Westchester and Fairfield Counties along the way.