Pisces 6° (February 24)
Okay so here is the story of auditioning for a touring company of Hair. I lived in Hoboken in the late 1980s before moving to the West Village in the early 90s. While in Hoboken I worked at a restaurant called Lady Janes some nights and the guys who wrote Hair, Rado and Ragni used to come in for steak. I heard they were planning a tour so I rehearsed a song, Donna, from the score, but who knows what that sounded like. I had listened to the record over and over and over when I was in seventh grade—it was part of my sexual awakening as well as my show-tune obsession—but you know how you think the words are one thing only to find out later they weren’t…..?
Well of course I rehearsed with the correct words but when I got into the room something happened. I was already not very good and everyone else there was super legit. I remember this one African American guy who went before me who had like the voice you know the voice. Anyway I was so nervous that I reverted back to my seventh grade understanding of the words. They visbily winced, the auditioners, who included the show writers. I can’t stress that enough. Anyway there is a high note that is hit in full voice by Ragni on the original Broadway recording which was right in that spot where my voice turns to falsetto. It’s a high note at the top of a crescendo and it is held a really long time. I hit it. I could feel the architecture of my face struggling under the strain, like my cheek bones would conceivably crack from the force. And I hit it full voice much to the visible approval of the team. Rado even made a triumph fist pump upward and shouted something like, “that’s it!” or “there you’ve got it!” and I felt so good and that maybe I might even get called back. I didn’t, which was just as well. By the time I had left the building, auditioners know the kind, in the West 40s, I had completely lost my voice. I couldn’t make a sound. I had blown it out so completely. It didn’t full come back for another two weeks.
Typos happen—I don’t have time or an intern to edit.*
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