As I fire up this engine to chronicle this year’s audition tour (and how is it happening as early as September 13…?), I see that I abandoned the blog in the middle of this past season. So many good things went undocumented, so many beautiful stories were untold. But regret is cheap; it’s now time to focus forward on this next month of auditions, and I’m happy to bring you along.
As we face the ~8,000 miles of travel in the next 3 weeks, I’m reminded of one of the indirect effects of this annual trek. Of course, its main purpose is to allow us to cast the widest possible net in selecting artists for next season’s roster. And it lets us connect with colleagues across the country. But I can’t underestimate the way in which it allows me to empathize with the very artists we serve. For as they embrace this career they are buying into the reality of a life on the road and in the air.
For various reasons, it’s more difficult for me to leave home this year than it has been for a long time – ever since the early audition tours a few decades ago when I had small children living under my roof. And even as I relish this opportunity to connect with people, talent, and places outside of my typical sphere, I recognize how hard it is for the singers we serve to spend hundreds of days a year away from home.
Empathy is a gift. May we use it wisely.