Great for long sustainable work, the music is great; the shows are new works. This is a new company, but they are growing into something big. Currently with four venues, they have produced three original musicals with a fourth on the way. The better the talent the better the productions. This is a great place to start out or to set roots. If they like you, you'll always be welcome to come back. They provide housing, food, and pay; A package that is competitive with other companies.
Does anyone have any info on housing for their Bird-in-Hand location? They said it's a private room in a house, but I'm looking for more details.
I received an offer from them in the past but I have to admit I'm a little jaded. "Wally" offered me a role in half stitched and I asked for time to sort things out (I had other offers pending and a showcase in two weeks). After granting me time, I contacted two other companies and turn them down only to find out that he had offered the role to another actor. Needless to say I was livid. I had scramble again to find othere work for the summer but it left a pretty bad taste in my mouth about them. So beware.
Wally is just used to people dropping out of things on him so sometimes he tries to over cover his bases so that he is not left high and dry. I worked for this company last year and then I extended my contract with them because someone dropped out of an upcoming show and I was a replacement in the first place! The housing is amazing, you get a $500.00 a month food gift card for their restaurant, and you can walk to the theatre. It is a fantastic community of kind and loving people. I would recommend to anyone!
(I worked in the Shipshewana IN one)
This is a GREAT company. I have worked for them several times and intend to do so again! Wally is a very jovial and kind director, however, it is true that if an offer is made and you don't keep communication VERY open until you make a decision he will move on...he likes to book talent quickly because he knows how our schedules fill up if he doesn't! My first cast was wonderful and there isn't a week that goes by that I am not in touch with most of them. I have also worked at BIH before- Lancaster is a great area in general. There are two cast houses. One is newer and nicer..and one is older but still fine. I've stayed in worse! The houses are split between males and females (no co-ed living). Would highly recommend this company to any level of performer. (They are original shows as said...so some of them are better than others but they do continue to improve and they are seeking to better the "quirky" things in the older shows...) Our audiences always raved over the shows...
For the most part I enjoyed my time with this company, but I will never go back. There is no stage manager, but a general manager who is IN the show with the rest of the cast. This person is allowed to give everyone notes, including the actors who interact with the manager on stage. This is a strange set up in which the manager can nit pick at their scene partner. The manager seems to get away with things that the cast gets talked to about. Also the company chooses who they would like to split contracts up for and who they would not (the show is generally a 7 to 8 month contract). After debating splitting up a contract for several reasons, I was told they were not wanting to have any split contracts. My first day of rehearsal I find that several people are leaving midway through and another was told she could leave early if she wanted. They also decide who they will compensate for housing and who they will not, if you must live out (some of the actors are local/stuck in their lease). Unfortunately, I did not feel as if I were treated the way other cast members were treated.
I wish these things would not have happened, because for so long I valued and appreciated my Blue Gate family :(
My experience with the company has been great. As said, they provide housing, food allowance at their restaurant, and you can walk to the theater from the house. Almost every venue has access to a pool and fitness area as well. Their salary is great especially when compared to other companies who don't provide housing or food. In my experience the cast manager has been careful to not step on toes and not be too picky since they're in the shows. But their job is to keep the show as is and Ive seen some actors take too much Liberty since there's no stage manager to stop them. About the comment of picking and choosing who they compensate for housing in the update above: they partner with the venues. They do not, like most other companies, find housing in the area and then pay your rent. The venue itself that they partner with is contracted to provide the housing. So they aren't liable to provide the housing of your choice if you choose to go out of the housing provided or have another place you need to stay. So that comment I feel is a bit misleading. This is a company of very kind people and the venues themselves are in beautiful communities with some awesome people around.
© 2010 Audition Update, LLC. | Site Design by Karl Messner