When I read in the paper yesterday you could go along to the Australian Idol auditions at the Australian Technology Park at Redfern, and it was free, I thought to myself, “Why not?” Although I haven’t regularly followed the program, I thought it could be a bit of fun to see what happened behind the scenes at the audition process. So I jumped off the train one stop early, at Redfern, when coming back from my trip to Eastwood.
As I walked towards the park, I passed a number of groups of young people, mostly late teens and early twenties, carrying guitars looking fairly forlorn. They’d obviously missed out. “I was better than Celine Dione”, I overheard one of them say without any sense of self-awareness or irony, as she walked out defiantly.
And then as I walked towards the shed where auditions were undertaken there were even more, standing around, chatting, smoking, and doing vocal exercises.
Inside, there were hundreds of people sitting around waiting, waiting, waiting. Waiting for their 30 to 60 seconds to audition.
Without wishing to over-generalise, these kids were “the arty ones”, “the overweight ones”, “the non-conformists”, the kids I could relate to. If I’d grown up in Sydney twenty years later, I probably would have been there myself!
It must have been a long and emotionally exhausting day for these kids. Good on ’em, I say, for giving it a go, despite the odds against them.