NAME: Jesse St. James.
At this point, Jesse was unclear as to why they didn’t just ask him which part he wanted to play before announcing the productions to the public, particularly in the wake of his unabashed success as Melchior. Still, even if they did choose to require him to audition, it was only a matter of him choosing which role he wanted, and taking it. Of the roles available, only a couple were worthy of his consideration, and it hadn’t taken long to narrow down his choice to Lysander. A few months ago he would have faced the role with the slight handicap of never having been in love; now, well, he wasn’t entirely sure that was going to be a problem.
Although he was partial to Shakespeare’s tragedies, he understood the appeal of putting on a A Midsummer Night’s Dream - comedy put people in the seats. Well, comedy and talent, and he fully intended to be the latter half of that formula. Every good actor had a Shakespeare monologue in their back pocket, but Jesse had deliberated over his favorites until he found one that seemed to fit - one that showed not only his grasp of the character, but of the language.
He stepped onto the stage with his usual confidence. Finding his light, he cleared this throat - when Jesse St. James cleared his throat, it meant that he was about to say something important - and smiled. “Hello. I’m Jesse St. James, and I will be auditioning for the role of Lysander, reciting sonnet 116.” After a brief pause, so as to clearly indicate the end of his introduction and the start of his audition, he began:
"Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.”
Another beat, another smile, and then, “Thank you.” He inclined his head slightly, a cross between a bow and a sign of respect, and left the stage. Jesse certainly didn’t envy whoever was expected to follow his performance.
The Phantom of the Opera 25th Anniversary Dreamcast | West End
John Owen-Jones as the Phantom
Gina Beck as Christine Daaé
Killian Donnelly as Raoul de Chagny