So... tonight was the big meeting at the Asylum. Tonight master plans for world domination were revealed. Tonight the Asylum grew tenfold, but as with anything that evolves, some things are no longer useful and are discarded.
The Touring Company will cease to exist as of February 17th, 2002.
Now, don't freak out (not that I didn't) for all is not bleak and dark.
The owners of the Asylum (let us call them Chorm for brevity's sake) have signed a contract with the Tremont Hotel (or it's various owners) which will take the mainstage cast from the North End and put them in the Theater District. On Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, they will be performing at the Matrix theater/dance club, doing an 8:00 show. As a theater, the Matrix holds about 250 people. On Fridays and Saturdays, they will be performing on the main stage at the Roxy for an 8:00 show. The Roxy, in 'seating mode' can hold about 500. After all shows, the aforementioned now Improv clubs will turn back into dance clubs.
The North End theater (which will be known as the Improv Asylum N.E.T.) will remain open, having (to start) Friday and Saturday 10:00 shows (to avoid conflict with the Theater District shows). They will be establishing a resident "mainstage" cast for the N.E.T. that will be completely independent of the Theater District cast. They will do their own shows, with their own material. None of the Touring Company's recycled mainstage sketches.
There's the catch, though. The N.E.T. cast WILL BE CREATED. We of the Touring Company are not magically becoming the N.E.T. cast. Auditions for the N.E.T. mainstage cast will be held on February 18th (contact the Asylum for more information). Those auditioning should be prepared to sign a six month contract with the Asylum which will require a minimum of six unpaid (for now) hours of rehearsal a week.
The N.E.T. cast will have approximately two months of (unpaid) rehearsal time to come up with their completely original show, and it will open on April 13th, the same night as the Theater District cast's new show. In the mean time, the current Mainstage Cast will be taking over the Wednesday and Sunday shows from the TC.
So yes, I have to re-audition if I want to keep doing the Improv thing.
I want to keep doing the Improv thing.
On the Bright side, all current TC members get to skip the February 18th audition and go right to callbacks on the 19th.
So that's the poop.
Now, how do I feel about this?
I'm feeling betrayed.
I'm ready to fight for what I want, and dammit, I'm going to do my damnedest to make sure that everyone else in those auditions is totally intimidated by my power.
I know that I can do this. I know that with every fiber of my being. This situation has shaken me, but I will not succumb. I will not give in. I will stand, and I will be triumphant.
This is a huge point of change for the Asylum. With this step, they're going to attempt to launch themselves to the status of The Groundlings or Second City. It may or may not work, but I have always believed in what the Asylum produces, and I'm going to stand behind it now. The decisions they've made are logical from a business and artistic standpoint. I, however, have been too emotionally invested in things, which is an error on my part. Love your director. Love what you do. Love doing it. Don't love the guy paying your paycheck, because he can't love you back.
For the first time in my life, I can say that I am an actor first. Because now I am. This is where I belong, and if this is what it takes to get there, so be it. (Can you hear the patriotic music??)
Anyway, that's the situation. If you have questions about what's going on, feel free to ask me.
All the support, love and good karma you can spare would be appreciated from now thru the 19th. :)
Allons enfants de la Patrie
Le jour de gloire est arrivé.