In this episode of brave space, I caught up with Emily Miller, a Broadway national tour manager and non-professional actor. We met near a Manhattan-bound train station in New Jersey - there are some train sounds in the background that I feel add an oddly appropriate layer to our conversation about the theater world.
Emily (foreground) in Appropriate. Photo by John Fraissinet
I ask Emily about her early experiences in acting, and she tells the story about the moment she fell in love with the art. She loves reading and finds becoming different characters to be cathartic; she's energized by projects, plays, and casts that speak to her. We talk about how each night's audience for a play is part of the dynamic, and Emily shares how she loves the moment when something clicks for the audience.
Emily in makeup for Radium Girls, a play by D. W. Gregory
Emily gives some audition guidance for actors, which includes dressing for the character you’re attempting to book. She stresses not to give up your identity in the process, but to take care of your appearance. We also discuss the importance of being truthful on your resume and reading the job description – don’t waste others' time and do your homework!
We talk about the calculus of casting and do our best to "pull the curtain back" on the audition room. Emily shares that recovering from mistakes in an audition is good and encourages folks to just keep going. She also recommends that all actors have some experience behind the table because it's a tremendous learning experiences; sometimes it’s not about talent, rather it’s the whole package of what one creative team is looking for. We discuss asking for what you want and being your own advocate, things that can be tough to do but are ultimately so rewarding.
Emily in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. Photo by Pang-Dian Fan
Thanks to Emily for chatting with me about her work onstage and behind the scenes! Wishing her all the best for whatever the future holds.