I should be working, but I'm so tired I can't face it!
Tuesday I promised you I'd tell you about the experience the Boy and I were going to have yesterday. As promised, here goes:
The Boy and I went to the American Idol auditions in Milwaukee. Now, to do that, we had to register on Monday. With registration came an assigned seat inside the Bradley center. We had to show that ticket all the time to make sure we were where we belonged.
What you don't see on American Idol is the hours and hours and HOURS of waiting. We were instructed to show up at 5 AM, no exceptions. So we got there at 4:30, and we weren't even close to the first people there. Why we had to be there so early is beyond me, since, because of where we were seated (NOT according to when we registered. Some kid outside with us registered yesterday morning and got in the first group of auditions. He was in and out in under five hours. I envied him.) we didn't sniff an audition until 4:30 in the afternoon. Yes, we waited for 12 hours for a 15 second shot at glory.
That's not all of it, though...the first three hours were outside. We couldn't even get into the Bradley Center until after 8 AM. Why they did this is beyond me. They could have told us to be there at 7 AM and we could have done all the outside filming and still gotten in before the serious layer of humidity induced sweat set in. (One girl behind me was in tears about her hair. In the final analysis of the day...hair was the last thing anyone was looking at.)
After an hour and half of just sitting, most of us were herded into a courtyard outside the Bradley Center. When I say herded, I mean JAMMED. Then we spent the next almost two hours filming little bits like all of us yelling, "Welcome to Milwaukee!" It took them something like fifteen takes for what will be 4 seconds of tv time. By the end most of us realized this was stupid and stopped the endless woo hooing in the interest of you know, SAVING THE VOICE FOR THE AUDITION!
Once inside (auditions were supposed to start at 8) we again had to film multiple takes of Ryan Seacrest walking in and saying, "This is American Idol." More woo hoo ing. (I will say this, I totally respect Seacrest...he's very patient.)
At 10 Am (If you're keeping track, we've now been here for 5.5 hours) the auditions begin. But NOT for those who registered like we were supposed to. No...the first TWO HOURS of auditions were for some DISNEY CRUISE contest winners and some radio station kids who got some sort of fast pass or something. (It should be noted that in those three hours, only 4 kids made it to the next round.)
Once we had all the "VIP" kids go through, then we got to the kids who had actually followed the rules. By then it was noon. 12000 people, two concession stands open. You do the math. I waited for an hour for the priviledge to pay too much for a cold hot dog.
What they don't show you on TV is the fact that the first round of auditions is really just a cattle call. 8000 kids line up to sing for 10-45 seconds and no feedback. That's it. And there's little rhyme or reason to why some kids made it to the next round and why others didn't. I heard a lot of great singing that didn't get through, and I heard a lot of howling that did. I saw kids of all sizes, shapes and colors, make it through and not make it through.
Since this is Milwaukee, and we are boring people, there were very few of the freak shows you come to expect at American Idol auditions. It will be interesting to see if they just make up some for Milwaukee...
A rumor ran around that those moving on would have to come back in October to audition for the judges. That sucks for those who don't live in the Milwaukee area. (I met several parents from all over the country...) I mean, you want your kid to do well, but still...
Other rumors were that the judges were in the buiding. I doubt that. Seriously...I was there for TWELVE HOURS and there was no actual siting of any of the judges.
In the end very few kids made it through. One mom was keeping track. The producer in booth #5 (there were twelve curtained booths) wasn't letting anyone through. Not one single kid all day. Yikes. I figure about 100 to 150 kids moved on. Which is a shame because I heard a lot of kids that were brilliant. Like the very nice boy who sat behind me all day. He even asked when I was auditioning. For that sweet remark, I gave him and his lovely girlfriend and coughdrop. Hey, they were hungry. The line for cold hot dogs was an hour long!
Will Boy child audition again? who knows? he has a good singing voice. Not American Idol, but he's good. He'll probably get in a band at some point in his life. All I know is that next time, I'm bringing a cot or something!