Nicely nicely rahree

Screening applications.

It's a little heartbreaking.

I definitely know where I would fit, were I still singing. And therefore I understand why some folks try to distinguish themselves with well-intentioned descriptors: hard-working, mature, curious, collegial, supportive. You're showing us that there's more to you than on that collection of papers, the glossy photo, the painstakingly selected aria list. You are more than that! And I firmly believe, were we to meet in any number of non-auditiony places, that I would really like you. We could grab a cup of coffee, talk about books and movies and favorite places to be. It would be fun!

But it doesn't matter. Either you are singing at the level that we're looking for or you're still working your way up. You could be Mother Teresa, but we can't take you unless you sing well. And unfortunately being a nice guy in our business is not resume-worthy.

I wish it wasn't so. I am a big fan of nice. Having worked and studied with both old-school screamers and nice guys, I will opt for the nice guys almost every time. For people who are kind and thoughtful I will go out of my way even on the busiest days. I will book you last-minute flights, find a hotel that will take both you and your dog, cut an emergency check, even offer to find your SO's luggage and store it while you're onstage. I will coddle your supporters, bring snacks to your rehearsals, and drop everything when you enter my office.

If you're not a nice guy, I'll do a few of the same things for you. Because I like to be a nice guy, too. But if you're mean I'm professional and little more. It's just the way I'm wired - Momma don't tolerate no meanies. No divas, no divos, no pitas. Not allowed.

Luckily, I work with nice guys.

And we are pouring over every scrap of paper, struggling with the staggering number of your applications and the small number of slots. As I read, I promise that I'm trying to think of what I would've wanted to hear, putting myself in your shoes.

Best of luck. I'll be pulling for you, nice guys.

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