Hopeful Thespians Captured on Video

The Client

Theatre Bay Area was founded in 1976 to serve the vital artistic community of the Bay Area, and is today the largest regional theatre service organization in North America.

For nearly a decade, Flying Moose has documented the annual Theatre Bay Area General Auditions. For two days, more than 200 actors present monologues to a large audience of casting directors, directors, and producers. Flying Moose produces short video clips that actors use to promote their careers.

The Project

Two-hundred, two-minute auditions in two days

Velina Brown, Master of Ceremonies for Theatre Bay Area‘s General Auditions, jumped on stage to revive an exhausted audience with a joke:

“How many actors does it take to change a lightbulb?

One: the actor holds the light bulb, and the world revolves around him.”

After nearly two full days of watching nervous actors deliver a monolog every two minutes, the tough crowd of representatives from more than 85 Bay Area theater companies responded with grateful laughter.

Hopeful Thespians Captured on Video-2For the last twenty-five years, TBA’s “General Auditions” have annually introduced more than 160 actors to the local theater community. Performers compete in a lottery for a chance to audition; only half of those who apply can be accommodated in the mind-numbing, monologue-fest.

Flying Moose Pictures has offered economical taping of the Generals since 2005. Meeting the challenge of recording the rapid succession of actors requires careful setup, alert camera work, and careful monitoring of audio in the cavernous Roda Stage at the Berkeley Repertory Theater.

Late Adopters

Hopeful Thespians Captured on Video-3At first, actors were slow to accept a video record of their performance. fearing that an audition on tape would not accurately communicate their live presence on stage. The cash-strapped world of Non-profit theater, however, has increasingly adopted the efficiencies of digital communication. The advantage of getting a first look at an actor on video is now widely acknowledged. Actors have also come around and happily admit that the video service has been a great success:

“Having the video is one more tool, one part of a complete online resume package that encourages people to call you into auditions.” – Elinor Bell

“The Moosepix video on my TBA resume page has absolutely helped me get calls.” – Olivia Hytha

“The videos always look very professional and really flesh out my resume, which has lead to lots of auditions and castings. I’ll definitely return to Flying Moose to produce a professional reel.” – Haley Reicher

Hopeful Thespians Captured on Video-4Videos aren’t a substitute for working with an actor in person, but it is now established as a valuable complement to the more established headshot and resume used to introduce an actor to theater companies and filmmakers. Audition videos produced by Flying Moose Pictures help keep TBA’s oldest and most popular program up-to-date.