Calm behind chaos

Amidst the hectic and stressful fall play auditions, Talon Theatre’s cast and crew support one another.


Dessi Gomez

As the audition sheet is brought out, students swarm around to sign up.

The bell chimes, marking the end of another school day. As many students take their time leaving the classroom, Talon Theatre actors rush to sign up for audition times at the tech crew table waiting outside the Black Box. At 2:30 p.m., the first name is called and the cast member enters the Black Box. Auditions for the fall play have begun.

A stage manager narrates the love story of George Gibbs and Emily Webb in “Our Town”, a play within a play by Thornton Wilder. The new play is set in Grover’s Corners, New Hampshire, on the brink of World War II. The first step in putting Talon Theatre’s spin on its new performance was auditions, which took place on Aug. 29 in the A Building Black Box. Callbacks followed on Aug. 30.

“This is an educational theatre, so they’re always giving you tips inside the audition,” said junior Alec Melosini. “There is always a lot of positive feedback and rarely negative feedback.”

Melosini auditioned for the male lead, George Gibbs. Although he has participated in two spring musicals, “Our Town” is Melosini’s first fall play.

“What makes me more comfortable is that everyone in that room wants you to do good,” said Melosini. “They all want you to play the lead role whether you’ve had a lead role before or whether it’s your first role in theatre.”

Actors and actresses were called to audition in the order in which they signed up. Ten minutes before their audition, each cast member is provided with a monologue they have not seen before, to evaluate and interpret. This method of auditioning is known as a cold reading.

“Knowing that this is my last show, I’m trying to make every minute count in order to have fun with it and not get too stressed out,” said senior Hannah Baker. “I want to focus on building relationships with people and making it an enjoyable time.”

Baker auditioned for the role of one of the mothers. She must project maturity rather than the bubbliness that was required in her last role, Miss Adelaide, in the spring musical, “Guys and Dolls.”

“My freshman year audition was really scary because Talon Theatre was such a close-knit family group of people, and it felt  weird coming in as an outsider,” Baker said. “But  all of those people ended up making me feel at home and comfortable which made the process easier.”

Talon Theatre’s Thespian Board made changes this year in order to welcome new members. With the focus of connecting everyone, these precedents also welcome freshmen who join Talon Theatre.

“We focus a lot on inducting new members into the family,” said junior Drew Schlingman. “Our biggest goal is to make them feel welcome and that characteristic makes Talon Theatre such a welcoming place.”

Along with the Welcome Social on Sept. 16 where new members get to know each other, the Thespian Board instituted a Big Buddy Little Buddy System to connect freshmen with an older Talon Theatre member. Ironically, freshman Garrett Webb auditioned for the role of Wally Webb, younger brother of the female lead, Emily Webb. Webb knows that his friends will support him until the end of the play.

“Most people would think that we are very competitive but everybody is really supportive of each other,” said freshman Garrett Webb. “Talon Theatre is like a big family so  we are all there for each other during good times and bad.”

Sophomore Katie Flores auditioned for Rebecca Gibbs, the younger sister of male lead, George Gibbs. Flores connected with Rebecca because she felt they were similar.

“She’s really cute and she loves astronomy and stuff,” said Flores. “She goes off on a rant about how cool the milky way is and how we’re all connected in the universe and I do that on a daily basis.”

Flores appreciates the tight bond of Talon Theatre as well. Although there may be some rough patches in auditions, everyone comes together in the end.

“We all trust each other so much, and once Tech Week comes around it feels like you’ve known everyone for your whole life,” said Flores. “We’re each other’s safety nets.”

This unity was has been reflected in many Talon Theatre performances, as well as in “Our Town” auditions. Be on the lookout for ticket sales as performances run from Oct. 26 to Oct. 30.

Auditions from “Our Town”

freshman Garrett Webb auditioning for Wally Webb

sophomore Chloe Grubb auditioning for Emily Webb

junior Drew Schlingman auditioning for the Stage Manager

senior Sabrina Boyd auditioning for the Stage Manager