Broadwayblogspot brings you another great multi-tasking performer, Tracy McDowell! Tracy has had a very successful career performing in many different casts of “Rent” whilst still balancing school, a tv career and performing in tons of other projects. Check out Tracy’s advice on international tours, auditions and so much more!
BB: You have been involved in many different casts/productions of Rent. Can you tell us how your first got the show?
Tracy: I first got the show when I auditioned in line with 2600 other people. I had auditioned before, right after college, but only made it to the callbacks. The last audition was a fluke. I went with a friend and booked Maureen in the national tour.
BB: What was your experience like going to the different casts of Rent. Was it an immediate transition and how did it differ?
Tracy: Well, I went format the National tour to Broadway to the International tour. It all came very fast and I went from one to the other. I did have some time off between Broadway and Asia and I did two regional shows. I didn't do the full international "Final Tour", i just went to the Asia portion.
BB: How was being on an international tour?
Tracy: The international part of the tour was amazing. I loved getting the chance to travel, for free, to Asia. The people were so grateful even though they did not speak the language.
BB: Do you have any advice/words of wisdom for actors wanting to tour internationally..perhaps something you wish you would have known in advance but didn't?
Tracy: Tour internationally when you are young. It’s such a great opportunity to do what you love while seeing the world. Make sure that it’s a reputable company. I have heard many horror stories so be careful and ask around.
BB: And now you just finished the run in the Off-Broadway company of Rent as a swing? What was that like?
Tracy: Off-Broadway RENT was a cool experience because I had to learn a whole new show. The direction was completely different with a lot more dancing, so it was challenging but very exciting,
BB: How do you learn all the different tracks? And what sort of advice do you have for actors who want to be a swing? Or end up being cast as a swing?
Tracy: The dance captain teaches you all the tracks, but it’s really about doing your homework. They don't always have time to teach you everything over and over so you need to be diligent and watch the show and make sure you are comfortable.
BB: Now not only were you just in a show full time, plus doing other shows/workshops..but you are also in school. How do you balance everything?
Tracy: Balancing everything is really hard. I use a day planner and make scheduled time to do my homework. It always seems more daunting than it actually is. I also make sure to give time every night to work on memorizing lines and music etc. I put my songs on my iphone and play them on the subway to keep it fresh.
BB: Any general advice or audition advice for actors wanting to pursue a NY Acting career?
Tracy: Be prepared for anything. Know your whole audition repertoire book so you can be comfortable in the audition and let your true personality show thru. Also, don't be scared. Everyone in the room wants you to be the one so remember to stay positive.
BB: Anything else?
Tracy: Good luck and stay true to yourself. Believe in your talents. Work hard and take class as much as you can. Keep working on your talents and grow!