‘Audition! The Musical’ in Santa Monica does it right

If you have ever wished to act, were married to an actor, or eaten at a Hollywood restaurant, Audition! The Musical answers all your questions about the actor’s life. With its torrent of witty, wise lyrics and bombardment of ego and angst, Audition! says it all and brilliantly.

Writing that is this smart can only come from those who know. Writer and co-star Evelyn Rudie, co-writer and director Chris DeCarlo and composer Matthew Wrather, obviously really know it.

Three versatile actresses play the apparent “cast of thousands.” While awaiting another chance “to be somebody,” the characters lay bare their souls by strategizing, psyching themselves up and psyching each other out.

Meet the stage mother, prodding her doubtful daughter, the has-been, the never-was, the cynic, the tough, the “too sexy,” the barfer and more. Each has her song and story, but can only express it through acting and dreams of being a “real life facsimile.”

Every actress asks, “Why are you looking at me like that? What did I do wrong?” “Born to it,” she chases success and doubts, and spends her life feeling rejected. “I’m an actress, not a person.”

The songs explore the hunger for acceptance, love and one more chance at fame. The audience recognizes themselves, also dominated by competition and feeling they don’t measure up. Is everyone’s life an endless audition?

In the finale, the cast belts out a defiant “not one more day,” only to conclude ironically with a desperate plea for “but one more day” to make it.

Audition! is for anyone who’s ever wanted to be the best, at anything. This cast and crew fulfills that dream.

“Audition! The Musical” is staged through April 24th at the Santa Monica Playhouse located at 1211 4th Street in Santa Monica. Call (310) 394-9779 or visit them online at SantaMonicaPlayhouse.com for more information.

This review originally appeared in the Tolucan Times on March 26th, 2016.

Picture by James Cooper

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